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Pharmacological rescue of adult hippocampal neurogenesis in a mouse model of X-linked intellectual disability

Authors
  • Allegra, Manuela
  • Spalletti, Cristina
  • Vignoli, Beatrice
  • Azzimondi, Stefano
  • Busti, Irene
  • Pierre Billuart
  • Canossa, Marco
  • Caleo, Matteo
Type
Published Article
Journal
Neurobiology of Disease
Publisher
Elsevier BV
Publication Date
Jul 25, 2017
Volume
100
Pages
75–86
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1016/j.nbd.2017.01.003
PMID: 28088401
PMCID: PMC5346071
Source
USPC - SET - SVS
License
Green

Abstract

Oligophrenin-1 (OPHN1) is a Rho GTPase activating protein whose mutations cause X-linked intellectual disability (XLID). How loss of function of Ophn1 affects neuronal development is only partly understood. Here we have exploited adult hippocampal neurogenesis to dissect the steps of neuronal differentiation that are affected by Ophn1 deletion. We found that mice lacking Ophn1 display a reduction in the number of newborn neurons in the dentate gyrus. A significant fraction of the Ophn1-deficient newly generated neurons failed to extend an axon towards CA3, and showed an altered density of dendritic protrusions. Since Ophn1-deficient mice display overactivation of Rho-associated protein kinase (ROCK) and protein kinase A (PKA) signaling, we administered a clinically approved ROCK/PKA inhibitor (fasudil) to correct the neurogenesis defects. While administration of fasudil was not effective in rescuing axon formation, the same treatment completely restored spine density to control levels, and enhanced the long-term survival of adult-born neurons in mice lacking Ophn1. These results identify specific neurodevelopmental steps that are impacted by Ophn1 deletion, and indicate that they may be at least partially corrected by pharmacological treatment.

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