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Transl Psychiatry. 2017 Dec 8;7(12):1267. doi: 10.1038/s41398-017-0013-6.

Soluble Tau has devastating effects on the structural plasticity of hippocampal granule neurons.

Author information

1
Department of Molecular Neuropathology, Centro de Biología Molecular "Severo Ochoa", CBMSO, CSICUAM, Madrid, Spain.
2
Network Center for Biomedical Research on Neurodegenerative Diseases (CIBERNED), Madrid, Spain.
3
Department of Molecular Neuropathology, Centro de Biología Molecular "Severo Ochoa", CBMSO, CSICUAM, Madrid, Spain. m.llorens@csic.es.
4
Network Center for Biomedical Research on Neurodegenerative Diseases (CIBERNED), Madrid, Spain. m.llorens@csic.es.
5
Department of Molecular Biology, Faculty of Sciences, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, Madrid, Spain. m.llorens@csic.es.

Abstract

Tau is a neuronal microtubule-associated protein with countless physiological functions. Although the detrimental effects of insoluble aggregated Tau have been widely studied, recent evidence supports the notion that soluble Tau (composed mostly of monomers and dimers) is also toxic for neurons. Here we evaluated the long-term impact of a single stereotaxic injection of human soluble Tau on hippocampal granule neurons in mice. At the ultrastructural level, soluble Tau reduced the number of afferent synapses and caused a dramatic depletion of synaptic vesicles both in afferent and efferent synapses. Furthermore, the use of an RFP-expressing retrovirus revealed that soluble Tau altered the morphology of newborn granule neurons and reduced their afferent (dendritic spines) and efferent (mossy fiber terminals) connectivity. Finally, soluble Tau caused specific impairment of behavioral pattern separation capacity. Our results thus demonstrate for the first time that soluble Tau causes long-term detrimental effects on the morphology and connectivity of newborn granule neurons and that these effects correlate with impaired behavioral pattern separation skills. These data might be relevant for the field of neurodegenerative disorders, since they contribute to reinforcing the pathological roles played by distinct Tau species in vivo.

PMID:
29217824
PMCID:
PMC5802513
DOI:
10.1038/s41398-017-0013-6
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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