Characterization of a novel mouse model of Alzheimer's disease - Amyloid pathology and unique β-amyloid oligomer profile

Peng Liu, Jennifer B. Paulson, Colleen L. Forster, Samantha L. Shapiro, Karen H Ashe, Kathleen R Zahs

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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Abstract

Amyloid plaques composed of β-amyloid (Aβ) protein are a pathological hallmark of Alzheimer's disease. We here report the generation and characterization of a novel transgenic mouse model of Aβ toxicity. The rTg9191 mice harbor a transgene encoding the 695 aminoacid isoform of human amyloid precursor protein (APP) with the Swedish and London mutations (APPNLI) linked to familial Alzheimer's disease, under the control of a tetracycline-response element, as well as a transgene encoding the tetracycline transactivator, under the control of the promoter for calcium-calmodulin kinase IIα. In these mice, APPNLI is expressed at a level four-fold that of endogenous mouse APP and its expression is restricted to forebrain regions. Transgene expression was suppressed by 87% after two months of doxycycline administration. Histologically, we showed that (1) Aβ plaques emerged in cerebral cortex and hippocampus as early as 8 and 10.5-12.5 months of age, respectively; (2) plaque deposition progressed in an age-dependent manner, occupying up to 19% of cortex at ∼25 months of age; and (3) neuropathology - such as abnormal neuronal architecture, tau hyperphosphorylation and misfolding, and neuroinflammation - was observed in the vicinity of neuritic plaques. Biochemically, we determined total Aβ production at varied ages of mice, and we showed that mice produced primarily fibrillar Aβ assemblies recognized by conformation-selective OC antibodies, but few non-fibrillar oligomers (e.g., Aβ∗56) detectable by A11 antibodies. Finally, we showed that expression of the tetracycline transactivator resulted in reduced brain weight and smaller dentate-gyrus size. Collectively, these data indicate that rTg9191 mice may serve as a model for studying the neurological effects of the fibrillar Aβ assemblies in situ.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere0126317
JournalPLoS One
Volume10
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - May 6 2015

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Pathology
amyloid
Alzheimer disease
Tetracycline
Oligomers
Amyloid
Alzheimer Disease
Trans-Activators
Amyloid beta-Protein Precursor
animal models
mice
Transgenes
tetracycline
transgenes
Serum Amyloid A Protein
Calcium-Calmodulin-Dependent Protein Kinases
Antibodies
Doxycycline
Amyloid Plaques
Response Elements

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Characterization of a novel mouse model of Alzheimer's disease - Amyloid pathology and unique β-amyloid oligomer profile. / Liu, Peng; Paulson, Jennifer B.; Forster, Colleen L.; Shapiro, Samantha L.; Ashe, Karen H; Zahs, Kathleen R.

In: PLoS One, Vol. 10, No. 5, e0126317, 06.05.2015.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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abstract = "Amyloid plaques composed of β-amyloid (Aβ) protein are a pathological hallmark of Alzheimer's disease. We here report the generation and characterization of a novel transgenic mouse model of Aβ toxicity. The rTg9191 mice harbor a transgene encoding the 695 aminoacid isoform of human amyloid precursor protein (APP) with the Swedish and London mutations (APPNLI) linked to familial Alzheimer's disease, under the control of a tetracycline-response element, as well as a transgene encoding the tetracycline transactivator, under the control of the promoter for calcium-calmodulin kinase IIα. In these mice, APPNLI is expressed at a level four-fold that of endogenous mouse APP and its expression is restricted to forebrain regions. Transgene expression was suppressed by 87{\%} after two months of doxycycline administration. Histologically, we showed that (1) Aβ plaques emerged in cerebral cortex and hippocampus as early as 8 and 10.5-12.5 months of age, respectively; (2) plaque deposition progressed in an age-dependent manner, occupying up to 19{\%} of cortex at ∼25 months of age; and (3) neuropathology - such as abnormal neuronal architecture, tau hyperphosphorylation and misfolding, and neuroinflammation - was observed in the vicinity of neuritic plaques. Biochemically, we determined total Aβ production at varied ages of mice, and we showed that mice produced primarily fibrillar Aβ assemblies recognized by conformation-selective OC antibodies, but few non-fibrillar oligomers (e.g., Aβ∗56) detectable by A11 antibodies. Finally, we showed that expression of the tetracycline transactivator resulted in reduced brain weight and smaller dentate-gyrus size. Collectively, these data indicate that rTg9191 mice may serve as a model for studying the neurological effects of the fibrillar Aβ assemblies in situ.",
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