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Mol Brain. 2012 Aug 14;5:28. doi: 10.1186/1756-6606-5-28.

A series of N-terminal epitope tagged Hdh knock-in alleles expressing normal and mutant huntingtin: their application to understanding the effect of increasing the length of normal Huntingtin's polyglutamine stretch on CAG140 mouse model pathogenesis.

Author information

1
Department of Neuroscience, University of Virginia School of Medicine, Charlottesville, VA 22908, Box 801392, USA.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Huntington's disease (HD) is an autosomal dominant neurodegenerative disease that is caused by the expansion of a polyglutamine (polyQ) stretch within Huntingtin (htt), the protein product of the HD gene. Although studies in vitro have suggested that the mutant htt can act in a potentially dominant negative fashion by sequestering wild-type htt into insoluble protein aggregates, the role of the length of the normal htt polyQ stretch, and the adjacent proline-rich region (PRR) in modulating HD mouse model pathogenesis is currently unknown.

RESULTS:

We describe the generation and characterization of a series of knock-in HD mouse models that express versions of the mouse HD gene (Hdh) encoding N-terminal hemaglutinin (HA) or 3xFlag epitope tagged full-length htt with different polyQ lengths (HA7Q-, 3xFlag7Q-, 3xFlag20Q-, and 3xFlag140Q-htt) and substitution of the adjacent mouse PRR with the human PRR (3xFlag20Q- and 3xFlag140Q-htt). Using co-immunoprecipitation and immunohistochemistry analyses, we detect no significant interaction between soluble full-length normal 7Q- htt and mutant (140Q) htt, but we do observe N-terminal fragments of epitope-tagged normal htt in mutant htt aggregates. When the sequences encoding normal mouse htt's polyQ stretch and PRR are replaced with non-pathogenic human sequence in mice also expressing 140Q-htt, aggregation foci within the striatum, and the mean size of htt inclusions are increased, along with an increase in striatal lipofuscin and gliosis.

CONCLUSION:

In mice, soluble full-length normal and mutant htt are predominantly monomeric. In heterozygous knock-in HD mouse models, substituting the normal mouse polyQ and PRR with normal human sequence can exacerbate some neuropathological phenotypes.

PMID:
22892315
PMCID:
PMC3499431
DOI:
10.1186/1756-6606-5-28
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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