The CC chemokine receptor 5 regulates olfactory and social recognition in mice

Y. V. Kalkonde, R. Shelton, M. Villarreal, J. Sigala, P. K. Mishra, S. S. Ahuja, E. Barea-Rodriguez, P. Moretti, S. K. Ahuja

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Chemokines are chemotactic cytokines that regulate cell migration and are thought to play an important role in a broad range of inflammatory diseases. The availability of chemokine receptor blockers makes them an important therapeutic target. In vitro, chemokines are shown to modulate neurotransmission. However, it is not very clear if chemokines play a role in behavior and cognition. Here we evaluated the role of CC chemokine receptor 5 (CCR5) in various behavioral tasks in mice using Wt (Ccr5 +/+) and Ccr5-null (Ccr5 -/-) mice. Ccr5 -/- mice showed enhanced social recognition. Administration of CC chemokine ligand 3 (CCL3), one of the CCR5-ligands, impaired social recognition. Since the social recognition task is dependent on the sense of olfaction, we tested olfactory recognition for social and non-social scents in these mice. Ccr5 -/- mice had enhanced olfactory recognition for both these scents indicating that enhanced performance in social recognition task could be due to enhanced olfactory recognition in these mice. Spatial memory and aversive memory were comparable in Wt and Ccr5 -/- mice. Collectively, these results suggest that chemokines/chemokine receptors might play an important role in olfactory recognition tasks in mice and to our knowledge represents the first direct demonstration of an in vivo role of CCR5 in modulating social behavior in mice. These studies are important as CCR5 blockers are undergoing clinical trials and can potentially modulate behavior.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)153-161
Number of pages9
StatePublished - Dec 1 2011


  • Behavior
  • CC-chemokine ligand 3
  • CC-chemokine receptor 5
  • Chemokine
  • N-methyl d-aspartate receptor 1
  • Social recognition

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Neuroscience


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