Stress is critical for LPS-induced activation of microglia and damage in the rat hippocampus.
ABSTRACT The hippocampus is insensitive to strong inflammatory stimulus under normal conditions and one of the most severely affected areas in Alzheimer's disease. We have analyzed the effect of chronic stress for 9 days in the hippocampus unilaterally injected with LPS. In non-stressed rats, LPS injection failed to activate microglia although a subset of degenerating cells in the CA1 area was evident. This effect was not accompanied by loss of Neu-N positive neurons in the CA1 area. In stressed rats, LPS injection had a dramatic effect in activating microglia along with astrogliosis and BDNF mRNA induction. NeuN immunostaining demonstrated a loss of about 50% of CA1 pyramidal neurons under these conditions. Fluoro jade B histochemistry demonstrated the presence of degenerating cells in most of CA1 area. Mechanistically, combination of chronic stress and LPS resulted in prominent activation of MAPKs including JNK, p38 and ERK clearly different from LPS injection in controls. Further, LPS+stress induced a dramatic decrease in phosphorylated levels of both Akt and CREB, which fully supports a consistent deleterious state in the hippocampal system under these conditions. Treatment with RU486, a potent inhibitor of glucocorticoid receptor activation, significantly protected animals against the deleterious effects observed in LPS-stressed animals.
- SourceAvailable from: David M Diamond[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Stress is a biologically significant factor that, by altering brain cell properties, can disturb cognitive processes such as learning and memory, and consequently limit the quality of human life. Extensive rodent and human research has shown that the hippocampus is not only crucially involved in memory formation, but is also highly sensitive to stress. So, the study of stress-induced cognitive and neurobiological sequelae in animal models might provide valuable insight into the mnemonic mechanisms that are vulnerable to stress. Here, we provide an overview of the neurobiology of stress memory interactions, and present a neural endocrine model to explain how stress modifies hippocampal functioning.Nature reviews. Neuroscience 07/2002; 3(6):453-62. · 31.67 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Chronic inflammation is associated with a broad spectrum of neurodegenerative diseases of aging. Included are such disorders as Alzheimer's disease (AD), Parkinson's disease (PD), amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, the Parkinson-dementia complex of Guam, all of the tauopathies, and age-related macular degeneration. Also included are such peripheral conditions as osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, atherosclerosis, and myocardial infarction. Inflammation is a two-edged sword. In acute situations, or at low levels, it deals with the abnormality and promotes healing. When chronically sustained at high levels, it can seriously damage viable host tissue. We describe this latter phenomenon as autotoxicity to distinguish it from autoimmunity. The latter involves a lymphocyte-directed attack against self proteins. Autotoxicity, on the other hand, is determined by the concentration and degree of activation of tissue-based monocytic phagocytes. Microglial cells are the brain representatives of the monocyte phagocytic system. Biochemically, the intensity of their activation is related to a spectrum of inflammatory mediators generated by a variety of local cells. The known spectrum includes, but is not limited to, prostaglandins, pentraxins, complement components, anaphylotoxins, cytokines, chemokines, proteases, protease inhibitors, adhesion molecules, and free radicals. This spectrum offers a huge variety of targets for new anti-inflammatory agents. It has been suggested, largely on the basis of transgenic mouse models, that stimulating inflammation rather than inhibiting it can be beneficial in such diseases as AD. If this were the case, administration of NSAIDs, or other anti-inflammatory drugs, would be expected to exacerbate conditions such as AD, PD, and atherosclerosis. However, epidemiological evidence overwhelmingly demonstrates that the reverse is true. This indicates that, at least in these diseases, the inflammation is harmful. So far, advantage has not been taken of opportunities indicated by these epidemiological studies to treat AD and PD with appropriate anti-inflammatory agents. Based on this evidence, classical NSAIDs are the most logical choice. Dosage, though, must be sufficient to combat the inflammation. Analysis of mRNA levels of inflammatory mediators indicates that the intensity of inflammation is considerably higher in AD hippocampus and in PD substantia nigra than in osteoarthritic joints. Thus, full therapeutic doses of NSAIDs, or combinations of anti-inflammatory agents, are needed to achieve the suggested neurological benefits.Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences 01/2005; 1035:104-16. · 4.38 Impact Factor
Article: Tau, where are we now?[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Tau is a multifunctional protein that was originally identified as a microtubule-associated protein. Tau is primarily a neuronal protein, but it is becoming increasingly evident that tau is present in non-neuronal cells where it also plays important roles. Tau is the primary protein component of the filaments (both paired helical and straight filaments) found in Alzheimer's disease brain. Further there is an ever growing family of neurodegenerative diseases called "tauopathies" where tau pathology is the primary, defining characteristic with little or no Abeta pathology. These findings, along with the fact that mutations in the tau gene cause a group of diseases collectively known as frontotemporal dementia with parkinsonism linked to chromosome 17 (FTDP-17), clearly demonstrate that tau dysfunction results in neuronal dysfunction and death. This review highlights recent findings concerning the normal metabolism and function of tau, as well as the abnormal processing and function of tau in Alzheimer's disease and in the tauopathies, both sporadic and familial.Journal of Alzheimer's disease: JAD 11/2002; 4(5):375-98. · 4.17 Impact Factor