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J Pharmacol Sci. 2003 May;92(1):28-34.

Age-related alterations in the expression of glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor in the senescence-accelerated mouse brain.

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Department of Pharmacology, Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Hokkaido University, Sapporo, Japan.


Senescence-accelerated mouse prone 8 (SAMP8) and prone 10 (SAMP10) are useful murine model of accelerated aging. SAMP8 shows marked impairment of learning and memory, whereas SAMP10 shows brain atrophy and aging-associated depressive behavior. This study examined the expression of glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) in SAMP8 and SAMP10 brains, relative to that in SAM resistant 1 (SAMR1) controls, which age normally. Hippocampal GDNF mRNA expression decreased in an age-dependent manner (10- vs 2-month-old animals) in the SAMR1, but not in the SAMP8 or SAMP10 strains. Furthermore, GDNF mRNA expression in 2-month-old SAMP8 and SAMP10 strains was less than in SAMR1 specimens of the same age. The number of surviving neurons in the CA1 region decreased with age in SAMP8 and SAMP10, and also decreased relative to the number of neurons in 10-month-old SAMR1 controls. Immunohistochemistry revealed that cells that were positive for GDNF-like activity in 10-month-old SAMP8 and SAMP10 were diffusely distributed, in part, around the pyramidal cell layer in the hippocampus. These findings suggest that low GDNF expression in young SAMP8 and SAMP10 may be involved in hippocampal dysfunctions, such as age-related learning impairment and neuronal death.

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