Augmented axonal defects and synaptic degenerative changes in female GRK5 deficient mice.
Recent studies suggested that G protein-coupled receptor kinase 5 (GRK5) deficiency plays a significant role in early Alzheimer's disease (AD) pathogenesis, and that the GRK5 knockout (GRK5KO) mouse displays an early Alzheimer-like cognitive deficit associated with increased hippocampal axonal defects and synaptic degenerative changes. Gender is known to play a role in AD, with females showing more extensive pathologic changes in brain compared to males. Although GRK5 deficiency is linked to AD, it is unknown whether the pathologic changes solely driven by the GRK5 deficiency are gender-dependent. To determine this, extent of the pathologic changes in aged GRK5KO mice was compared between genders. We find that female GRK5KO mice had a 2.5-fold increase in hippocampal swollen axonal clusters compared to male GRK5KO mice. Moreover, hippocampal levels of several synaptic proteins, including synaptophysin, were significantly lower in the female than the male. In addition, although increased Luteinizing hormone (LH) activity is believed to play a significant role in the gender phenomenon in AD, we found that desensitization of LH receptor is not affected by the GRK5 deficiency. Therefore, the worsened pathologic changes in the female mice cannot be attributed to an impaired LH receptor desensitization. Taken together, this study demonstrates a synergistic interaction between GRK5 deficiency and gender in promoting early AD-like pathologic changes in the female GRK5KO mice, although the underlying molecular mechanisms remain to be elucidated.
Li, L; Rasul, I; Liu, J; Zhao, B; Tang, R; Premont, RT; Suo, WZ
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