Excitatory-inhibitory relationship in the fascia dentata in the Ts65Dn mouse model of down syndrome

Authors

  • Pavel V. Belichenko,

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Neurology & Neurological Sciences, the Center for Research and Treatment of Down Syndrome and Neuroscience Institute at Stanford University, Stanford University Medical Center, Stanford, California 94305-5489
    • Neuroscience Institute at Stanford University, Stanford University Medical Center, 1201 Welch Road, Room P220, Stanford, CA 94305-5489
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  • Alexander M. Kleschevnikov,

    1. Department of Neurology & Neurological Sciences, the Center for Research and Treatment of Down Syndrome and Neuroscience Institute at Stanford University, Stanford University Medical Center, Stanford, California 94305-5489
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  • Eliezer Masliah,

    1. Department of Neurosciences, University of California San Diego, School of Medicine, La Jolla, California 92093-0624
    2. Department of Pathology, University of California San Diego, School of Medicine, La Jolla, California 92093-0624
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  • Chengbiao Wu,

    1. Department of Neurology & Neurological Sciences, the Center for Research and Treatment of Down Syndrome and Neuroscience Institute at Stanford University, Stanford University Medical Center, Stanford, California 94305-5489
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  • Ryoko Takimoto-Kimura,

    1. Department of Neurology & Neurological Sciences, the Center for Research and Treatment of Down Syndrome and Neuroscience Institute at Stanford University, Stanford University Medical Center, Stanford, California 94305-5489
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  • Ahmad Salehi,

    1. Department of Neurology & Neurological Sciences, the Center for Research and Treatment of Down Syndrome and Neuroscience Institute at Stanford University, Stanford University Medical Center, Stanford, California 94305-5489
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  • William C. Mobley

    1. Department of Neurology & Neurological Sciences, the Center for Research and Treatment of Down Syndrome and Neuroscience Institute at Stanford University, Stanford University Medical Center, Stanford, California 94305-5489
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Abstract

Down syndrome (DS) is a neurological disorder causing impaired learning and memory. Partial trisomy 16 mice (Ts65Dn) are a genetic model for DS. Previously, we demonstrated widespread alterations of pre- and postsynaptic elements and physiological abnormalities in Ts65Dn mice. The average diameter of presynaptic boutons and spines in the neocortex and hippocampus was enlarged. Failed induction of long-term potentiation (LTP) due to excessive inhibition was observed. In this paper we investigate the morphological substrate for excessive inhibition in Ts65Dn. We used electron microscopy (EM) to characterize synapses, confocal microscopy to analyze colocalization of the general marker for synaptic vesicle protein with specific protein markers for inhibitory and excitatory synapses, and densitometry to characterize the distribution of the receptor and several proteins essential for synaptic clustering of neurotransmitter receptors. EM analysis of synapses in the Ts65Dn vs. 2N showed that synaptic opposition lengths were significantly greater for symmetric synapses (∼18%), but not for asymmetric ones. Overall, a significant increase in colocalization coefficients of glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD)65/p38 immunoreactivity (IR) (∼27%) and vesicular GABA transporter (VGAT)/p38 IR (∼41%) was found, but not in vesicular glutamate transporter 1 (VGLUT1)/p38 IR. A significant overall decrease of IR in the hippocampus of Ts65Dn mice compared with 2N mice for glutamate receptor 2 (GluR2; ∼13%) and anti-γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA)A receptor β2/3 subunit (∼20%) was also found. The study of proteins essential for synaptic clustering of receptors revealed a significant increase in puncta size for neuroligin 2 (∼13%) and GABAA receptor-associated protein (GABARAP; ∼13%), but not for neuroligin 1 and gephyrin. The results demonstrate a significant alteration of inhibitory synapses in the fascia dentata of Ts65Dn mice. J. Comp. Neurol. 512:453–466, 2009. © 2008 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

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