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Neural Regen Res. 2020 Mar;15(3):519-527. doi: 10.4103/1673-5374.266061.

Early active immunization with Aβ3-10-KLH vaccine reduces tau phosphorylation in the hippocampus and protects cognition of mice.

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Department of Neurology, the Fifth People's Hospital of Shenyang, Shenyang, Liaoning Province, China.
Department of Neurology, the First Hospital of China Medical University, Shenyang, Liaoning Province, China.


Active and passive anti-Aβ immunotherapies have successfully been used for the prevention and treatment of Alzheimer's disease animal models. However, clinical use of these immunotherapies is not effective, because the vaccination is administered too late. At 1 month of age, 100 μL of Aβ3-10-KLH peptide (vaccine, 2 μg/μL) was subcutaneously injected into the neck of an amyloid precursor protein/presenilin-1/tau transgenic (3×Tg-AD) mouse model. Aβ3-10-KLH peptide was re-injected at 1.5, 2.5, 3.5, 4.5, 5.5, and 6.5 months of age. Serum levels of Aβ antibody were detected by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, while spatial learning and memory ability were evaluated by Morris water maze. Immunohistochemistry was used to detect total tau with HT7 and phosphorylated tau with AT8 (phosphorylation sites Ser202 and Thr205) and AT180 (phosphorylation site Thr231) antibodies in the hippocampus. In addition, western blot analysis was used to quantify AT8 and AT180 expression in the hippocampus. The results showed that after vaccine injection, mice produced high levels of Aβ antibody, cognitive function was significantly improved, and total tau and phosphorylated tau levels were significantly reduced. These findings suggest that early active immunization with Aβ3-10-KLH vaccine can greatly reduce tau phosphorylation, thereby mitigating the cognitive decline of 3×Tg-AD mice. This study was approved by the Animal Ethics Committee of China Medical University, China (approval No. 103-316) on April 2, 2016.


3×Tg-AD; Alzheimer’s disease; Aβ3–10-KLH vaccine; amyloid precursor protein; amyloid-beta; cognitive decline; tau phosphorylation; transgenic mouse

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