Huntingtin-associated protein 1 regulates postnatal neurogenesis and neurotrophin receptor sorting.

The Journal of clinical investigation (Impact Factor: 15.39). 12/2013; DOI: 10.1172/JCI69206
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Defective neurogenesis in the postnatal brain can lead to many neurological and psychiatric disorders, yet the mechanism behind postnatal neurogenesis remains to be investigated. Huntingtin-associated protein 1 (HAP1) participates in intracellular trafficking in neurons, and its absence leads to postnatal death in mice. Here, we used tamoxifen-induced (TM-induced) Cre recombination to deplete HAP1 in mice at different ages. We found that HAP1 reduction selectively affects survival and growth of postnatal mice, but not adults. Neurogenesis, but not gliogenesis, was affected in HAP1-null neurospheres and mouse brain. In the absence of HAP1, postnatal hypothalamic neurons exhibited reduced receptor tropomyosin-related kinase B (TRKB) levels and decreased survival. HAP1 stabilized the association of TRKB with the intracellular sorting protein sortilin, prevented TRKB degradation, and promoted its anterograde transport. Our findings indicate that intracellular sorting of neurotrophin receptors is critical for postnatal neurogenesis and could provide a therapeutic target for defective postnatal neurogenesis.

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    ABSTRACT: Blood oxygen level dependent (BOLD) imaging in awake mice was used to identify differences in brain activity between wild-type, HETzQ175, and HOMzQ175 genotypes in response to the odor of almond. The study was designed to see how alterations in the huntingtin gene in a mouse model of Huntington's disease would affect the perception and processing of almond odor, an evolutionarily conserved stimulus with high emotional and motivational valence. Moreover, the mice in this study were "odor naïve," i.e., never having smelled almond or any nuts. Using a segmented, annotated MRI atlas of the mouse and computational analysis, 17 out of 116 brain regions were identified as responding differently to almond odor across genotypes. These regions included the glomerulus of the olfactory bulb, forebrain cortex, anterior cingulate, subiculum, and dentate gyrus of the hippocampus, and several areas of the hypothalamus. In many cases, these regions showed a gene-dose effect with HETzQ175 mice showing a reduction in brain activity from wild-type that is further reduced in HOMzQ175 mice. Conspicuously absent were any differences in brain activity in the caudate/putamen, thalamus, CA3, and CA1 of the hippocampus and much of the cortex. The glomerulus of the olfactory bulb in HOMzQ175 mice showed a reduced change in BOLD signal intensity in response to almond odor as compared to the other phenotypes suggesting a deficit in olfactory sensitivity.
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