Dichloroacetate causes reversible demyelination in vitro: potential mechanism for its neuropathic effect
Article first published online: 2 OCT 2006
Journal of Neurochemistry
Volume 100, Issue 2, pages 429–436, January 2007
How to Cite
Felitsyn, N., Stacpoole, P. W. and Notterpek, L. (2007), Dichloroacetate causes reversible demyelination in vitro: potential mechanism for its neuropathic effect. Journal of Neurochemistry, 100: 429–436. doi: 10.1111/j.1471-4159.2006.04248.x
- Issue published online: 2 OCT 2006
- Article first published online: 2 OCT 2006
- Received May 25, 2006; revised manuscript received August 4, 2006; accepted August 11, 2006.
- dorsal root ganglia neurons;
- peripheral neuropathy;
- Schwann cells
Dichloroacetate (DCA) is an investigational drug for genetic mitochondrial diseases whose use has been mitigated by reversible peripheral neuropathy. We investigated the mechanism of DCA neurotoxicity using cultured rat Schwann cells (SCs) and dorsal root ganglia (DRG) neurons. Myelinating SC-DRG neuron co-cultures, isolated SCs and DRG neurons were exposed to 1–20 mm DCA for up to 12 days. In myelinating co-cultures, DCA caused a dose- and exposure-dependent decrease of myelination, as determined by immunolabeling and immunoblotting for myelin basic protein (MBP), protein zero (P0), myelin-associated glycoprotein (MAG) and peripheral myelin protein 22 (PMP22). Partial recovery of myelination occurred following a 10-day washout of DCA. DCA did not affect the steady-state levels of intermediate filament proteins, but promoted the formation of anti-neurofilament antibody reactive whirls. In isolated SC cultures, DCA decreased the expression of P0 and PMP22, while it increased the levels of p75NTR (neurotrophin receptor), as compared with non-DCA-treated samples. DCA had modest adverse effects on neuronal and glial cell vitality, as determined by the release of lactate dehydrogenase. These results demonstrate that DCA induces a reversible inhibition of myelin-related proteins that may account, at least in part, for its clinical peripheral neuropathic effects.