Picanço-Diniz, CW., Boche, D., Gomes-Leal, W., Perry, VH. and Cunningham, C.
Neuropil and neuronal changes in hippocampal NADPH-diaphaorase histochemistry in the ME7 model of murine prion disease
Neuropathology and Applied Neurobiology, 30, (3), . (doi:10.1111/j.1365-2990.2004.00537.x).
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Nitric oxide (NO) has been implicated in neurotoxicity and cerebral blood flow changes in chronic neurodegeneration, but its activity in the mammalian prion diseases has not been studied in detail. Nicotine adenine dinucleotide phosphate (NADPH)-diaphorase (NADPH-d) histochemistry is a simple and robust histochemical procedure that allows localization of the tissue distribution of NO synthases. The aim of the present study is to assess whether NADPH-d histochemical activity is altered in the hippocampus in the ME7 model of prion disease in C57BL/6J mice. At early and late stages after the initiation of the disease we assessed features of the NADPH-d positive cells and the neuropil histochemical activity in CA1 and dentate gyrus using densitometric analysis. In C57BL/6J mice 13 weeks postinjection of the prion agent ME7, when behavioural changes first become apparent, neuropil NADPH-d histochemical staining increases, whereas at late stages it decreases dramatically. Both type I and type II NADPH-d positive cells were found to survive throughout the hippocampal formation into the late stages of the disease, but diaphorase activity was reduced in dendritic branches and abnormal varicosities were present in both dendritic and axonal processes of NADPH-d positive type I cells. The pathophysiological implications of the results remain to be investigated but both blood flow alteration and NO neurotoxicity may be features of the disease
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