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Morphological alterations to neurons of the amygdala and impaired fear conditioning in a transgenic mouse model of Alzheimer's disease

AuthorsKnafo, Shira; Venero, César; Merino-Serrais, Paula CSIC ORCID; Fernaud-Espinosa, Isabel CSIC ORCID; González-Soriano, Juncal; Ferrer, Isidro; Santpere, Gabriel CSIC ORCID; DeFelipe, Javier
Issue Date2009
PublisherJohn Wiley & Sons
CitationJournal of Pathology 219: 41- 51 (2009)
AbstractPatients with Alzheimer's disease (AD) suffer from impaired memory and emotional disturbances, the pathogenesis of which is not entirely clear. In APP/PS1 transgenic mice, a model of AD in which amyloid β (Aβ) accumulates in the brain, we have examined neurons in the lateral nucleus of the amygdala (LA), a brain region crucial to establish cued fear conditioning. We found that although there was no neuronal loss in this region and Aβ plaques only occupy less than 1% of its volume, these mice froze for shorter times after auditory fear conditioning when compared to their non-transgenic littermates. We performed a three-dimensional analysis of projection neurons and of thousands of dendritic spines in the LA. We found changes in dendritic tree morphology and a substantial decrease in the frequency of large spines in plaque-free neurons of APP/PS1 mice. We suggest that these morphological changes in the neurons of the LA may contribute to the impaired auditory fear conditioning seen in this AD model. Copyright © 2009 Pathological Society of Great Britain and Ireland. Published by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
Identifiersdoi: 10.1002/path.2565
issn: 0022-3417
Appears in Collections:(IC) Artículos
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