Life sciences

REST/NRSF-induced changes of ChAT protein expression in the neocortex and hippocampus of the 3xTg-AD mouse model for Alzheimer's disease.

PMID 25261598


The cholinergic system is one of the neurotransmitter systems altered in Alzheimer's disease (AD), the most common form of human dementia. The objective of this work was to determine the REST/NRSF involvement in altered ChAT expression in the neocortex and hippocampus of an AD transgenic mouse (homozygous 3xTg-AD) that over-expresses 3 proteins, amyloid-β precursor protein, presenilin-1, and tau, all of which are associated with AD and cause cellular degeneration. Two groups (WT and 3xTg-AD) of 11-month-old female mice were analyzed and compared. Half of the brains of each group were used for ChAT immunohistochemistry, and Western Blot analyses of ChAT and REST/NRSF were performed on the other half. We observed significant decreases in the number of ChAT-immunoreactive cells in the Meynert nucleus and of fibers in the frontal motor cortex and hippocampal CA1 area in transgenic mice compared with control mice. An increased level of REST/NRSF protein and a reduction of ChAT protein expression in the 3xTg-AD mice compared with their controls were also found in both in the latter two cerebral regions. The increased REST/NRSF expression reported here and its effect on the regulatory region for ChAT transcription could explain the decreased expression of ChAT in the 3xTg-AD mouse; these findings may be associated with the degeneration observed in AD.