Pluto Bioinformatics

GSE149661: CD8+ T-cells infiltrate Alzheimers disease brains and regulate neuronal- and synapse-related gene expression in APP-PS1 transgenic mice

Bulk RNA sequencing

Neuroinflammation is a major contributor to disease progression in Alzheimers disease (AD) and is characterized by the activity of brain resident glial cells, in particular microglia cells. However, there is increasing evidence that peripheral immune cells infiltrate the brain at certain stages of AD progression and shape disease pathology. We recently identified CD8+ T-cells in the brain parenchyma of APP-PS1 transgenic mice being tightly associated with microglia as well as with neuronal structures. The functional role of CD8+ T-cells in the AD brain is however completely unexplored. Here, we demonstrate increased numbers of intra-parenchymal CD8+ T-cells in human AD post-mortem hippocampus, which was replicated in APP-PS1 mice. Also, aged WT mice show a remarkable infiltration of CD8+ T-cells, which was more pronounced and had an earlier onset in APP-PS1 mice. To address their functional relevance in AD, we successfully ablated the pool of CD8+ T-cells in the blood, spleen and brain from 12 months-old APP-PS1 and WT mice for a total of 4 weeks using an anti-CD8 antibody treatment. While the treatment at this time of disease stage did neither affect the cognitive outcome nor plaque pathology, RNAseq analysis of the hippocampal transcriptome from APP-PS1 mice lacking CD8+ T-cells revealed highly altered neuronal- and synapse-related gene expression including an up-regulation for neuronal immediate early genes (IEGs) such as the Activity Regulated Cytoskeleton Associated Protein (Arc) and the Neuronal PAS Domain Protein 4 (Npas4). Gene ontology enrichment analysis illustrated that the biological processes regulation of neuronal synaptic plasticity and the cellular components postsynapses were over-represented upon CD8+ T-cell ablation. Additionally, Kegg pathway analysis showed up-regulated pathways for calcium signaling, long-term potentiation, glutamatergic synapse and axon guidance. Therefore, we conclude that CD8+ T-cells infiltrate the aged and AD brain and that brain CD8+ T-cells might directly contribute to neuronal dysfunction in modulating synaptic plasticity. Further analysis will be essential to uncover the exact mechanism of how CD8+ T-cells modulate the neuronal landscape and thereby contribute to AD pathology. SOURCE: Michael Unger ( - Institute for Molecular Regenerative Medicine Paracelsus Medizinische Privatuniversität

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