Recent advancements in technology have enabled researchers to probe the brain with the greater region, cell, and receptor specificity. These developments have allowed for a more thorough understanding of how regulation of the neurophysiology within a region is essential for maintaining healthy brain function. Stress has been shown to alter the prefrontal cortex (PFC) functioning, and evidence links functional impairments in PFC brain activity with neuropsychiatric disorders. Moreover, a growing body of literature highlights the importance of neuropeptides in the PFC to modulate neural signaling and to influence behavior. The converging evidence outlined in this review indicates that neuropeptides in the PFC are specifically impacted by stress, and are found to be dysregulated in numerous stress-related neuropsychiatric disorders including substance use disorder, major depressive disorder (MDD), posttraumatic stress disorder, and schizophrenia. This review explores how neuropeptides in the PFC function to regulate the neural activity, and how genetic and environmental factors, such as stress, lead to dysregulation in neuropeptide systems, which may ultimately contribute to the pathology of neuropsychiatric diseases.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
- Cognitive Neuroscience
- Behavioral Neuroscience