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J Alzheimers Dis. 2012;30(2):439-59. doi: 10.3233/JAD-2012-111862.

CB1 agonist ACEA protects neurons and reduces the cognitive impairment of AβPP/PS1 mice.

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1
Institut de Neuropatologia, Servei d'Anatomia Patològica, IDIBELL-Hospital Universitari de Bellvitge, Universitat de Barcelona, L'Hospitalet de Llobregat, Barcelona, Spain. aso@bellvitgehospital.cat

Erratum in

  • J Alzheimers Dis. 2012;31(3):679-80.

Abstract

The present study shows that chronic administration of the cannabinoid receptor type 1 (CB1) receptor agonist arachidonyl-2-chloroethylamide (ACEA) at pre-symptomatic or at early symptomatic stages, at a non-amnesic dose, reduces the cognitive impairment observed in double AβPP(swe)/PS1(1dE9) transgenic mice from 6 months of age onwards. ACEA has no effect on amyloid-β (Aβ) production, aggregation, or clearance. However, ACEA reduces the cytotoxic effect of Aβ42 oligomers in primary cultures of cortical neurons, and reverses Aβ-induced dephosphorylation of glycogen synthase kinase-3β (GSK3β) in vitro and in vivo. Reduced activity of GSK3β in ACEA-treated mice is further supported by the reduced amount of phospho-tau (Thr181) in neuritic processes around Aβ plaques. In addition, ACEA-treated mice show decreased astroglial response in the vicinity of Aβ plaques and decreased expression of the pro-inflammatory cytokine interferon-γ in astrocytes when compared with age-matched vehicle-treated transgenic mice. Our present results show a beneficial effect of ACEA at both the neuronal, mediated at least in part by GSK3β inhibition, and glial levels, resulting in a reduction of reactive astrocytes and lower expression of interferon-γ. As a consequence, targeting the CB1 receptor could offer a versatile approach for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease.

PMID:
22451318
DOI:
10.3233/JAD-2012-111862
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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