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Muscle Atrophy and Motor Neuron Degeneration in Human NEDL1 Transgenic Mice

Journal of Biomedicine and Biotechnology
Hindawi Publishing Corporation
Publication Date
DOI: 10.1155/2011/831092
  • Research Article
  • Biology
  • Medicine


Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is the most frequent adult-onset motor neuron disease. Approximately 20% cases of familial ALS show the mutation in the superoxide dismutase-1 (SOD1) gene. We previously demonstrated that homologue to E6AP carboxyl terminus- (HECT-) type ubiquitin protein E3 ligase (NEDL1) physically bind to mutated SOD1 protein but not wild-type SOD1 and promote the degradation of mutated SOD1 protein through ubiquitin-mediated proteasome pathway. To further understand the role of NEDL1 involved in the pathogenesis of familial ALS, we generated transgenic mice with human NEDL1 cDNA. The transgenic mice with human NEDL1 expression showed motor dysfunctions in rotarod, hanging wire, and footprint pattern examination. Histological studies indicated degeneration of neurons in the lumbar spinal cord and muscle atrophy. The number of activated microglia in the spinal cord of transgenic mice was significantly higher than that of wild-type mice, suggesting that inflammation might be observed in the spinal cord of transgenic mice. In conclusion, these findings suggest that the human NEDL1 transgenic mice might develop ALS-like symptoms, showing signs of motor abnormalities, accompanied with significant reduction in muscle strength.

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