Alzheimer's disease (AD) is characterized by cognitive decline and 5- to 10-fold increased seizure incidence. How seizures contribute to cognitive decline in AD or other disorders is unclear. We show that spontaneous seizures increase expression of ΔFosB, a highly stable Fos-family transcription factor, in the hippocampus of an AD mouse model. ΔFosB suppressed expression of the immediate early gene c-Fos, which is critical for plasticity and cognition, by binding its promoter and triggering histone deacetylation. Acute histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibition or inhibition of ΔFosB activity restored c-Fos induction and improved cognition in AD mice. Administration of seizure-inducing agents to nontransgenic mice also resulted in ΔFosB-mediated suppression of c-Fos, suggesting that this mechanism is not confined to AD mice. These results explain observations that c-Fos expression increases after acute neuronal activity but decreases with chronic activity. Moreover, these results indicate a general mechanism by which seizures contribute to persistent cognitive deficits, even during seizure-free periods.
Recommended CitationCorbett, Brian F; You, Jason C; Zhang, Xiaohong; Pyfer, Mark S; Tosi, Umberto; Iascone, Daniel M; Petrof, Iraklis; Hazra, Anupam; Fu, Chia-Hsuan; Stephens, Gabriel S; Ashok, Annie; Aschmies, Suzan; Zhao, Lijuan; Nestler, Eric J; and Chin, Jeannie, "ΔFosB Regulates Gene Expression and Cognitive Dysfunction in a Mouse Model of Alzheimer's Disease." (2017). Department of Neuroscience. Paper 27.
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