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D(1A) dopamine receptor (Dopamine D1 receptor)


Impact of dopamine-related genetic variants on physical activity in old age - a cohort study.

The beneficial effects of a physically active lifestyle in aging are well documented. Understanding the factors of importance for physical activity in older adults are therefore essential. Informed by animal and human data linking the dopamine system to motivation and reward processes, we investigated the associations between variations in dopamine genes and objectively measured physical activity and sedentary behaviour. Further, we aimed to verify whether higher age may exacerbate the impact of dopamine genes on physical activity. We analyzed data from 504 older adults, 66-87 years, from the population-based Swedish National study on Aging and Care in Kungsholmen (SNAC-K). Physical activity was measured with activPAL accelerometers and DNA was extracted from blood samples for genotyping. We assessed the effects of three dopamine relevant genetic variations (DRD1, DRD2, and DRD3) on daily time in sedentary behavior, light-intensity physical activity and moderate-to-vigorous physical activity using analyses of covariance, adjusting for sex, age and physical function. Higher dopamine receptor efficacy was related to moderate-to-vigorous physical activity, but not to light-intensity physical activity or sedentary time. DRD1 explained 2.7% of variance in moderate-to-vigorous physical activity, with more pronounced effect in people aged ≥80 years, about 10% of explained variance. Stronger genetic effects in older adults are in line with the well-established nonlinear effects of dopamine signaling on performance, expected to be exacerbated with aging. Individuals over 80 years, genetically predisposed to lower dopamine receptor efficacy, engaged on average 100 min/week in moderate-to-high physical activity, below the recommended levels beneficial for healthy aging. Our findings highlight that some individuals might need extra support to maintain a physically active lifestyle.

MeSH Terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Aging
  • Cohort Studies
  • Exercise
  • Humans
  • Receptors, Dopamine
  • Sedentary Behavior
  • Sweden


  • Accelerometery
  • Aging
  • Dopamine
  • Genes
  • Physical activity
  • Sedentary behaviour

Maternal deprivation enhances behavioral vulnerability to stress associated with miR-504 expression in nucleus accumbens of rats.

In this study, the effect of maternal deprivation (MD) and chronic unpredictable stress (CUS) in inducing depressive behaviors and associated molecular mechanism were investigated in rats. Maternal deprivation was established by separating pups from their mothers for 6 hours daily from postnatal day 1 to day 14. Chronic unpredictable stress was established by water deprivation, elevated open platform, food deprivation, restraint stress and electric foot shock. The depressive behaviors were determined by use of sucrose preference test and forced swim test. Rats in MD/CUS group exhibited lower sucrose preference rate, longer immobility time, and lighter body weights than rats in other groups (MD/control, non-MD/CUS and non-MD/control group). Meanwhile, higher miR-504 expression and lower dopamine receptor D1 (DRD1) and D2 (DRD2) expression were observed in the nucleus accumbens of rats in the MD/CUS group than in the other three groups. MiR-504 expression correlated negatively with DRD1 gene expression and sucrose preference rate in the sucrose preference test, but correlated positively with immobility time in forced swim test. Both DRD2 mRNA and protein expression correlated negatively with immobility time in forced swim test. These results suggest that MD enhances behavioral vulnerability to stress during adulthood, which is associated with the upregulation of miR-504 and downregulation of DRD2 expression in the nucleus accumbens.

MeSH Terms

  • Aging
  • Animals
  • Behavior, Animal
  • Choice Behavior
  • Depression
  • Female
  • Gene Expression Regulation
  • Male
  • Maternal Deprivation
  • MicroRNAs
  • Nucleus Accumbens
  • RNA, Messenger
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley
  • Receptors, Dopamine D1
  • Receptors, Dopamine D2
  • Stress, Psychological
  • Sucrose