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Absence of Nitric Oxide Synthase 3 Increases Amyloid β-Protein Pathology in Tg-5xFAD Mice

Author(s): Zishuo Ian Hu | Ann Marie E. Kotarba | William E. Van Nostrand

Journal: Neuroscience & Medicine
ISSN 2158-2912

Volume: 04;
Issue: 02;
Start page: 84;
Date: 2013;
Original page

Keywords: Nitric Oxide Synthase 3; Amyloid β-Protein | Alzheimer’s Disease; Transgenic Mice; Deposition

Aim: The abnormal accumulation, assembly and deposition of the amyloid β-protein (Aβ) are prominent pathological features of patients with Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and related disorders. A number of factors in the brain can influence Aβ accumulation and associated pathologies. The aim of the present study was to determine the consequences of deleting nitric oxide synthase (NOS) 3, the endothelial form of NOS, in Tg-5xFAD mice, a model of parenchymal AD-like amyloid pathology. Methods: Tg-5xFAD mice were bred with NOS3-/- mice. Cohorts of Tg-5xFAD mice and bigenic Tg-5xFAD/NOS3-/- mice were aged to six months followed by collection of the blood and brain tissues from the mice for biochemical and pathological analyses. Results: ELISA analyses show that the absence of NOS3 results in elevated levels of cerebral and plasma Aβ peptides in Tg-5xFAD mice. Immunohistochemical analyses show that the absence of NOS3 increased the amount of parenchymal Aβ deposition and fibrillar amyloid accumulation in Tg-5xFAD mice. The elevated levels of Aβ were not due to changes in the expression levels of transgene encoded human amyloid precursor protein (APP), endogenous β-secretase, or increased proteolytic processing of APP. Conclusions: The results from this study suggest that the loss of NOS3 activity enhances Aβ pathology in Tg-5xFAD mice. These findings are similar to previous studies of NOS2 deletion suggesting that reduced NOS activity and NO levels enhance amyloid-associated pathologies in human APP transgenic mice.

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