Send to

Choose Destination
Mol Cells. 2018 May 31;41(5):486-494. doi: 10.14348/molcells.2018.0145. Epub 2018 Apr 26.

Impaired Hippocampal Synaptic Plasticity and Enhanced Excitatory Transmission in a Novel Animal Model of Autism Spectrum Disorders with Telomerase Reverse Transcriptase Overexpression.

Author information

Department of Biological Sciences, College of Bioscience and Biotechnology, Konkuk University, Seoul 05029, Korea.
Department of Neuroscience and Department of Advanced Translational Medicine, School of Medicine, Konkuk University, Seoul 05029, Korea.


Recently, we have reported that animals with telomerase reverse transcriptase (TERT) overexpression exhibit reduced social interaction, decreased preference for novel social interaction and poor nest-building behaviors symptoms that mirror those observed in human autism spectrum disorders (ASD). Overexpression of TERT also alters the excitatory/inhibitory (E/I) ratio in the medial prefrontal cortex. However, the effects of TERT overexpression on hippocampal-dependent learning and synaptic efficacy have not been investigated. In the present study, we employed electrophysiological approaches in combination with behavioral analysis to examine hippocampal function of TERT transgenic (TERT-tg) mice and FVB controls. We found that TERT overexpression results in enhanced hippocampal excitation with no changes in inhibition and significantly impairs long-term synaptic plasticity. Interestingly, the expression levels of phosphorylated CREB and phosphory-lated CaMKIIα were significantly decreased while the expression level of CaMKIIα was slightly increased in the hippocampus of TERT-overexpressing mice. Our observations highlight the importance of TERT in normal synaptic function and behavior and provide additional information on a novel animal model of ASD associated with TERT overexpression.


ASD; E/I imbalance; TERT; hippocampus; long-term potentiation

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Publishing M2Community Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center