Inhibition of il-1β signaling normalizes NMDA-dependent neurotransmission and reduces seizure susceptibility in a mouse model of Creutzfeldt–Jakob disease

Ilaria Bertani, Valentina Iori, Massimo Trusel, Mattia Maroso, Claudia Foray, Susanna Mantovani, Raffaella Tonini, Annamaria Vezzani, Roberto Chiesa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations

Abstract

Creutzfeldt–Jakob disease (CJD) is a neurodegenerative disorder caused by prion protein (PrP) misfolding, clinically recognized by cognitive and motor deficits, electroencephalographic abnormalities, and seizures. Its neurophysiological bases are not known. To assess the potential involvement of NMDA receptor (NMDAR) dysfunction, we analyzed NMDA-dependent synaptic plasticity in hippocampal slices from Tg(CJD) mice, which model a genetic form of CJD. Because PrP depletion may result in functional upregulation of NMDARs, we also analyzed PrP knock-out (KO) mice. Long-term potentiation (LTP) at the Schaffer collateral-commissural synapses in the CA1 area of ~100-d-old Tg(CJD) mice was comparable to that of wild-type (WT) controls, but there was an inversion of metaplasticity, with increased GluN2B phosphorylation, which is indicative of enhanced NMDAR activation. Similar but less marked changes were seen in PrP KO mice. At ~300 d of age, the magnitude of LTP increased in Tg(CJD) mice but decreased in PrP KO mice, indicating divergent changes in hippocampal synaptic responsiveness. Tg(CJD) but not PrP KO mice were intrinsically more susceptible than WT controls to focal hippocampal seizures induced by kainic acid. IL-1β-positive astrocytes increased in the Tg(CJD) hippocampus, and blocking IL-1 receptor signaling restored normal synaptic responses and reduced seizure susceptibility. These results indicate that alterations in NMDA-dependent glutamatergic transmission in Tg(CJD) mice do not depend solely on PrP functional loss. Moreover, astrocytic IL-1β plays a role in the enhanced synaptic responsiveness and seizure susceptibility, suggesting that targeting IL-1β signaling may offer a novel symptomatic treatment for CJD.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)10278-10289
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Neuroscience
Volume37
Issue number43
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 25 2017
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease
  • IL-1 receptor antagonist
  • Prion
  • Seizures
  • Synaptic plasticity
  • Transgenic mice

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)

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