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Forebrain glutamatergic neuron-specific Ctcf deletion induces reactive microgliosis and astrogliosis with neuronal loss in adult mouse hippocampus
Ji-Hye Kwak1 (Graduate student), Kyungmin Lee 1,* (Professor)
1Department of Anatomy, Brain Science & Engineering Institute, School of Medicine, Kyungpook National University
CCCTC-binding factor (CTCF), a zinc finger protein, is a transcription factor and regulator of chromatin structure. Forebrain excitatory neuron-specific CTCF deficiency contributes to inflammation via enhanced transcription of inflammation-related genes in the cortex and hippocampus. However, little is known about the long-term effect of CTCF deficiency on postnatal neurons, astrocytes, or microglia in the hippocampus of adult mice. To address this, we knocked out the Ctcf gene in forebrain glutamatergic neurons (Ctcf cKO) by crossing Ctcf-floxed mice with Camk2a-Cre mice and examined the hippocampi of 7.5–10-month-old male mice using immunofluorescence microscopy. We found obvious neuronal cell death and reactive gliosis in the hippocampal cornu ammonis (CA)1 in 7.5–10-month-old cKO mice. Prominent rod-shaped microglia that participate in immune surveillance were observed in the stratum pyramidale and radiatum layer, indicating a potential increase in inflammatory mediators released by hippocampal neurons. Although neuronal loss was not observed in CA3, and dentate gyrus (DG) CTCF depletion induced a significant increase in the number of microglia in the stratum oriens of CA3 and reactive microgliosis and astrogliosis in the molecular layer and hilus of the DG in 7.5–10-month-old cKO mice. These results suggest that long-term Ctcf deletion from forebrain excitatory neurons may contribute to reactive gliosis induced by neuronal damage and consequent neuronal loss in the hippocampal CA1, DG, and CA3 in sequence over 7 months of age.
Abstract, Accepted Manuscript(in press) [Submitted on December 2, 2020, Accepted on January 22, 2021]
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