PloS one

Bidirectional crosstalk between stress-induced gastric ulcer and depression under chronic stress.

PMID 23251441


Stress contributes to a variety of diseases and disorders such as depression and peptic ulcer. The present study aimed to investigate the correlation between stress ulcer and depression in pathogenesis and treatment by using chronic stress depression (CSD), chronic psychological stress ulcer (CPSU) and water immersion restrain stress models in rats. Our data showed that the ulcer index of the animals after CSD exposure was significantly higher than that of controls. Depression-like behaviors were observed in rat after CPSU exposure. Fluoxetine hydrochloride significantly reduced the ulcer index of rats exposed to CPSU stress, while ranitidine inhibited depression-like behavior of the animals in CSD group. The ulcer index of rats administered with mifepristone after CPSU stress was markedly reduced compared to CPSU group, although there was no significant difference in the depression-like behavior between mifepristone-treated CSD group and naive controls. We also found that the rats exposed to CPSU or CSD stress displayed a lower level of corticosterone than naive controls, however, the acute stress (AS) group showed an opposite result. Additionally, in order to study the relevance of H(2) receptors and depression, we treated the CSD group with cimetidine and famotidine respectively. The data showed that cimetidine inhibited depression-like behavior in CSD rats, and famotidine had no impact on depression. Overall our data suggested that the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis dysfunction may be the key role in triggering depression and stress ulcer. Acid-suppressing drugs and antidepressants could be used for treatment of depression and stress ulcer respectively. The occurrence of depression might be inhibited by blocking the central H(2) receptors.

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