Image_1_EAAT2 Expression in the Hippocampus, Subiculum, Entorhinal Cortex and Superior Temporal Gyrus in Alzheimer’s Disease.TIF (698.29 kB)
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Image_1_EAAT2 Expression in the Hippocampus, Subiculum, Entorhinal Cortex and Superior Temporal Gyrus in Alzheimer’s Disease.TIF

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posted on 13.09.2021, 13:24 authored by Jason H. Y. Yeung, Thulani H. Palpagama, Oliver W. G. Wood, Clinton Turner, Henry J. Waldvogel, Richard L. M. Faull, Andrea Kwakowsky

Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is a neuropathological disorder characterized by the presence and accumulation of amyloid-beta plaques and neurofibrillary tangles. Glutamate dysregulation and the concept of glutamatergic excitotoxicity have been frequently described in the pathogenesis of a variety of neurodegenerative disorders and are postulated to play a major role in the progression of AD. In particular, alterations in homeostatic mechanisms, such as glutamate uptake, have been implicated in AD. An association with excitatory amino acid transporter 2 (EAAT2), the main glutamate uptake transporter, dysfunction has also been described. Several animal and few human studies examined EAAT2 expression in multiple brain regions in AD but studies of the hippocampus, the most severely affected brain region, are scarce. Therefore, this study aims to assess alterations in the expression of EAAT2 qualitatively and quantitatively through DAB immunohistochemistry (IHC) and immunofluorescence within the hippocampus, subiculum, entorhinal cortex, and superior temporal gyrus (STG) regions, between human AD and control cases. Although no significant EAAT2 density changes were observed between control and AD cases, there appeared to be increased transporter expression most likely localized to fine astrocytic branches in the neuropil as seen on both DAB IHC and immunofluorescence. Therefore, individual astrocytes are not outlined by EAAT2 staining and are not easily recognizable in the CA1–3 and dentate gyrus regions of AD cases, but the altered expression patterns observed between AD and control hippocampal cases could indicate alterations in glutamate recycling and potentially disturbed glutamatergic homeostasis. In conclusion, no significant EAAT2 density changes were found between control and AD cases, but the observed spatial differences in transporter expression and their functional significance will have to be further explored.

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