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Original Research ARTICLE Provisionally accepted The full-text will be published soon. Notify me

Front. Pharmacol. | doi: 10.3389/fphar.2019.00787

Acute administration of URB597 fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH) inhibitor prevents attentional impairments by distractors in adolescent mice

Gabriella Contarini1, Valentina Ferretti1 and  Francesco Papaleo1*
  • 1Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia, Italy

Maturation of attentional control during adolescence might influence later functional outcome or predisposition to psychiatric disorders. During the adolescent period, the cannabinoid system is particularly sensitive to pharmacological challenges, with potential impact on cognitive functions. Here, we used a recently validated 5-choice serial reaction time task protocol (5-CSRTT) to test adolescent C57BL/6J mice. We show that the pharmacological inhibition (by URB597) of the fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH), the major enzyme implicated in anandamide degradation, prevented the cognitive disruptions induced by distracting cues in adolescent mice. In particular, these protective effects were indicated by increased accuracy and correct responses and decreased premature responses selectively in the distractor trials. Notably, at the relatively low dose used, we detected no effects in other cognitive, motor or incentive measures, nor long-lasting or re-bound effects of FAAH-inhibition in cognitive functions. Overall, these data provide initial evidence of selective pro-cognitive effects of FAAH inhibition in measures of attentional control in adolescent mice.

Keywords: 5-csrtt, adolescence, FAAH, URB 597, Cannabinoid system, attentional control, distractors, impulsivity

Received: 27 Mar 2019; Accepted: 18 Jun 2019.

Edited by:

Salvatore Salomone, University of Catania, Italy

Reviewed by:

Carsten T. Wotjak, Max Planck Institute of Psychiatry (MPI), Germany
Maria Morena, University of Calgary, Canada  

Copyright: © 2019 Contarini, Ferretti and Papaleo. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

* Correspondence: Dr. Francesco Papaleo, Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia, Genoa, Italy, Francesco.Papaleo@iit.it