GluA3-deficiency in mice is associated with increased social and aggressive behavior and elevated dopamine in striatum

Abby Adamczyk, Rebeca Mejias, Kogo Takamiya, Jennifer Yocum, Irina N. Krasnova, Juan Calderon, Jean Lud Cadet, Richard L. Huganir, Mikhail V. Pletnikov, Tao Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

43 Scopus citations


Glutamate signaling has been implicated in the regulation of social behavior. AMPA-glutamate receptors are assembled from four subunits (GluA1-4) of mainly GluA1/2 and GluA2/3 tetramers that form ion channels of distinct functional properties. Mice lacking GluA1 showed a reduced anxiety and male aggression. To understand the role of GluA3 in modulating social behavior, we investigated GluA3-deficient mice (Gria3-/Y) on C57BL/6J background. Compared to wild type (WT) littermates (n=14), Gria3-/Y mice (n=13) showed an increase in isolation-induced male aggression (p=0.011) in home cage resident-intruder test; an increase in sociability (p=0.01), and increase in male-male social interactions in neutral arena (p=0.005); an increase in peripheral activities in open field test (p=0.037) with normal anxiety levels in elevated plus maze and light-dark box; and minor deficits in motor and balance function in accelerating rotarod test (p=0.016) with normal grip strength. Gria3-/Y mice showed no significant deficit in spatial memory function in Morris-water maze and Y-maze tests, and normal levels of testosterone. Increased dopamine concentrations in stratum (p=0.034) and reduced serotonin turnover in olfactory bulb (p=0.002) were documented in Gria3-/Y mice. These results support a role of GluA3 in the modulation of social behavior through brain dopamine and/or serotonin signaling and different AMPA receptor subunits affect social behavior through distinct mechanisms.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)265-272
Number of pages8
JournalBehavioural Brain Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - Apr 1 2012


  • Aggression
  • Dopamine
  • GluA3
  • Glutamate receptor
  • Mice
  • Olfactory bulb
  • Serotonin
  • Sociability
  • Social interaction
  • Striatum

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Behavioral Neuroscience


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