Deleterious mutations in patchd1 domain containing 1 (PTCHD1) gene have been identified in patients with intellectual disability and/or autism spectrum disorder (ASD). To clarify the causal relationship between Ptchd1 deficiency and behavioral defects relevant to neurodevelopmental disorders, we generated global Ptchd1 knockout (KO) mice. Ptchd1 KO mice displayed hyperlocomotion, increased impulsivity, and lower recognition memory, which resemble attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)-like behaviors. Acute or chronic treatment with atomoxetine ameliorated almost all behavioral deficits in Pthcd1 KO mice. We next determined possible involvement of the kynurenine pathway (KP) metabolites in neurodevelopmental disorders in Ptchd1 KO mice and assessed the potential of KP metabolites as biomarkers for ADHD and/or ASD. Ptchd1 KO mice showed drastic changes in KP metabolite concentrations in the serum and the brain, indicating that the activated KP is associated with ADHD-like behaviors. Our findings indicate that Ptchd1 KO mice can be used as an animal model of human ADHD and/or ASD, and KP metabolites are potential diagnostic biomarkers for neurodevelopmental disorders.
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