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Neurobiol Aging. 2014 Jan;35(1):79-87. doi: 10.1016/j.neurobiolaging.2013.07.006. Epub 2013 Aug 15.

Accumulation of C-terminal fragments of transactive response DNA-binding protein 43 leads to synaptic loss and cognitive deficits in human TDP-43 transgenic mice.

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Department of Physiology and The Barshop Institute for Longevity and Aging Studies, University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, San Antonio, TX, USA.


Accumulation of the transactive response DNA-binding protein 43 (TDP-43) is a major hallmark of several neurodegenerative disorders, collectively known as TDP-43 proteinopathies. The most common TDP-43 proteinopathies, frontotemporal lobar degeneration with TDP-43-positive inclusions, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, share overlapping neuropathological and clinical phenotypes. The development and detailed analysis of animal models of TDP-43 proteinopathies are critical for understanding the pathogenesis of these disorders. Transgenic mice overexpressing mutant human TDP-43 (herein referred to as hTDP-43) are characterized by neurodegeneration and reduced life span. However, little is known about the behavioral phenotype of these mice. Here we report the novel finding that hTDP-43 mice develop deficits in cognition, motor performance, and coordination. We show that these behavioral deficits are associated with the accumulation of nuclear and cytosolic TDP-43 C-terminal fragments, a decrease in endogenous TDP-43 levels, and synaptic loss. Our findings provide critical insights into disease pathology, and will help guide future preclinical studies aimed at testing the effects of potential therapeutic agents on the onset and progression of TDP-43 proteinopathies.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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