Dissecting synaptic and circuitry mechanisms of psychiatric disorders
Synaptic dysfunction has emerged as a key pathology in several psychiatric disorders including autism spectrum disorders (ASD) schizophrenia. Recently, large scale human genetic studies have also revealed a significant overlaps of risk genes for schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and autism. However, it is not clear how different mutations of the same gene could contribute to the manifestation of different diseases. Using the postsynaptic scaffolding protein Shank3 as an example, Dr. Feng will discuss: (1) circuitry mechanisms of repetitive behaviors in mouse models of ASD; (2) reversibility of synaptic, circuitry and behavioral abnormalities in adult mouse models of ASD; (3) shared and distinct synaptic and behavioral phenotypes in two lines of Shank3 mutant mice linked to ASD and schizophrenia.