Electrical deep brain stimulation (DBS) is currently studied in the treatment of therapy-refractory obsessive compulsive disorders (OCDs). The variety of targeted brain areas and the inconsistency in demonstrating anti-compulsive effects, however, highlight the need for better mapping of brain regions in which stimulation may produce beneficial effects in OCD. Such a goal may be advanced by the assessment of DBS in appropriate animal models of OCD. Currently available data on DBS of the nucleus accumbens (NAc) on OCD-like behavior in rat models of OCD are contradictory and partly in contrast to clinical data and theoretical hypotheses about how the NAc might be pathophysiologically involved in the manifestation of OCD. Consequently, the present study investigates the effects of DBS of the NAc core and shell in a quinpirole rat model of OCD. The study demonstrates that electrical modulation of NAc core and shell activity via DBS reduces quinpirole-induced compulsive checking behavior in rats. We therefore conclude that both, the NAc core and shell constitute potential target structures in the treatment of OCD.
- Deep brain stimulation
- Dopamine agonist
- Obsessive compulsive disorder