Early and simultaneous emergence of multiple hippocampal biomarkers of aging is mediated by Ca2+-induced Ca2+ release
ABSTRACT Age-dependent changes in multiple Ca2+-related electrophysiological processes in the hippocampus appear to be consistent biomarkers of aging, and several also correlate with cognitive decline. These findings have led to the hypothesis that a common mechanism of Ca2+ dyshomeostasis underlies aspects of aging-dependent brain impairment. However, some key predictions of this view remain untested, including that multiple Ca2+-related biomarkers should emerge concurrently during aging and their onset should also precede/coincide with initial signs of cognitive decline. Moreover, blocking a putative common source of dysregulated Ca2+ should eliminate aging differences. Here, we tested these predictions using combined electrophysiological, imaging, and pharmacological approaches in CA1 neurons to determine the ages of onset (across 4-, 10-, 12-, 14-, and 23-month-old F344 rats) of several established biomarkers, including the increases in the slow afterhyperpolarization, spike accommodation, and [Ca2+]i rise during repetitive synaptic stimulation. In addition, we tested the hypothesis that altered Ca2+-induced Ca2+ release (CICR) from ryanodine receptors, which can be triggered by L-type Ca2+ channels, provides a common source of dysregulated Ca2+ in aging. Results showed that multiple aging biomarkers were first detectable at about the same age (12 months of age; approximately midlife), sufficiently early to influence initial cognitive decline. Furthermore, selectively blocking CICR with ryanodine slowed the Ca2+ rise during synaptic stimulation more in aged rat neurons and, notably, reduced or eliminated aging differences in the biomarkers. Thus, this study provides the first evidence that altered CICR plays a role in driving the early and simultaneous emergence in hippocampus of multiple Ca2+-related biomarkers of aging.
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ABSTRACT: In humans, heterogeneity in the decline of hippocampal-dependent episodic memory is observed during aging. Rodents have been employed as models of age-related cognitive decline and the spatial water maze has been used to show variability in the emergence and extent of impaired hippocampal-dependent memory. Impairment in the consolidation of intermediate-term memory for rapidly acquired and flexible spatial information emerges early, in middle-age. As aging proceeds, deficits may broaden to include impaired incremental learning of a spatial reference memory. The extent and time course of impairment has been be linked to senescence of calcium (Ca²⁺) regulation and Ca²⁺-dependent synaptic plasticity mechanisms in region CA1. Specifically, aging is associated with altered function of N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors (NMDARs), voltage-dependent Ca²⁺ channels (VDCCs), and ryanodine receptors (RyRs) linked to intracellular Ca²⁺ stores (ICS). In young animals, NMDAR activation induces long-term potentiation of synaptic transmission (NMDAR-LTP), which is thought to mediate the rapid consolidation of intermediate-term memory. Oxidative stress, starting in middle-age, reduces NMDAR function. In addition, VDCCs and ICS can actively inhibit NMDAR-dependent LTP and oxidative stress enhances the role of VDCC and RyR-ICS in regulating synaptic plasticity. Blockade of L-type VDCCs promotes NMDAR-LTP and memory in older animals. Interestingly, pharmacological or genetic manipulations to reduce hippocampal NMDAR function readily impair memory consolidation or rapid learning, generally leaving incremental learning intact. Finally, evidence is mounting to indicate a role for VDCC-dependent synaptic plasticity in associative learning and the consolidation of remote memories. Thus, VDCC-dependent synaptic plasticity and extrahippocampal systems may contribute to incremental learning deficits observed with advanced aging.Progress in Neurobiology 01/2012; 96(3):283-303. DOI:10.1016/j.pneurobio.2012.01.007
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ABSTRACT: Recent studies have demonstrated the re-emergence of cell cycle proteins in brain as patients progress from the early stages of mild cognitive impairment (MCI) into Alzheimer's disease (AD). Oxidative stress markers present in AD have also been shown to be present in MCI brain suggesting that these events occur in early stages of the disease. The levels of key cell cycle proteins, such as CDK2, CDK5, cyclin G1, and BRAC1 have all been found to be elevated in MCI brain compared to age-matched control. Further, peptidyl prolyl cis-trans isomerase (Pin1), a protein that plays an important role in regulating the activity of key proteins, such as CDK5, GSK3-β, and PP2A that are involved in both the phosphorylation state of Tau and in the cell cycle, has been found to be oxidatively modified and downregulated in both AD and MCI brain. Hyperphosphorylation of Tau then results in synapse loss and the characteristic Tau aggregation as neurofibrillary tangles, an AD hallmark. In this review, we summarized the role of cell cycle dysregulation in the progression of disease from MCI to AD. Based on the current literature, it is tempting to speculate that a combination of oxidative stress and cell cycle dysfunction conceivably leads to neurodegeneration.Neurotoxicity Research 11/2011; 22(3):220-30. DOI:10.1007/s12640-011-9287-2
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ABSTRACT: Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a progressive, neurodegenerative disorder and the most prevalent senile dementia. The early symptom of memory dysfunction involves synaptic loss, thought to be mediated by soluble amyloid-beta (Aβ) oligomers. These aggregate species target excitatory synapses and their levels correlate with disease severity. Studies in cell culture and rodents have shown that oligomers increase intracellular calcium (Ca(2+)), impairing synaptic plasticity. Yet, the molecular mechanism mediating Aβ oligomers' toxicity in the aged brain remains unclear. Here, we apply quantitative immunofluorescence in human brain tissue from clinically diagnosed mild cognitive impaired (MCI) and AD patients to investigate the distribution of phosphorylated (active) Ca(2+) /calmodulin-dependent protein kinase-α (p(Thr286)CaMKII), a critical enzyme for activity-dependent synaptic remodeling associated with cognitive function. We show that p(Thr286)CaMKII immunoreactivity is redistributed from dendritic arborizations to neural perikarya of both MCI and AD hippocampi. This finding correlates with cognitive assessment scores, suggesting that it may be a molecular read-out of the functional deficits in early AD. Treatment with oligomeric Aβ replicated the observed phenotype in mice and resulted in a loss of p(Thr286)CaMKII from synaptic spines of primary hippocampal neurons. Both outcomes were prevented by inhibiting the phosphatase calcineurin (CaN). Collectively, our results support a model in which the synaptotoxicity of Aβ oligomers in human brain involves the CaN-dependent subcellular redistribution of p(Thr286)CaMKII. Therapies designed to normalize the homeostatic imbalance of neuronal phosphatases and downstream dephosphorylation of synaptic p(Thr286)CaMKII should be considered to prevent and treat early AD.Journal of Neurochemistry 08/2011; 119(4):791-804. DOI:10.1111/j.1471-4159.2011.07447.x