Hier finden Sie wissenschaftliche Publikationen aus den Fraunhofer-Instituten.

Spontaneous white matter damage, cognitive decline and neuroinflammation in middle-aged hypertensive rats: An animal model of early-stage cerebral small vessel disease

: Kaiser, Daniel; Weise, Gesa; Möller, Karoline; Scheibe, Johanna; Pösel, Claudia; Baasch, Sebastian; Gawlitza, Matthias; Lobsien, Donald; Diederich, Kai; Minnerup, Jens; Kranz, Alexander; Boltze, Johannes; Wagner, Daniel-Christoph

Fulltext (PDF; )

Acta Neuropathologica Communications 2 (2014), No.12, Art. 169, 15 pp.
ISSN: 2051-5960
Journal Article, Electronic Publication
Fraunhofer IZI ()
cerebral small vessel disease; white matter disease; spontaneously hypertensive rats; Neuroinflammation; T cells

Cerebral small vessel disease (cSVD) is one of the most prevalent neurological disorders. The progressive remodeling of brain microvessels due to arterial hypertension or other vascular risk factors causes subtle, but constant cognitive decline through to manifest dementia and substantially increases the risk for stroke. Preliminary evidence suggests the contribution of the immune system to disease initiation and progression, but a more detailed understanding is impaired by the unavailability of appropriate animal models. Here, we introduce the spontaneously hypertensive rat (SHR) as a model for early onset cSVD and unveiled substantial immune changes in conjunction with brain abnormalities that resemble clinical findings.
In contrast to age-matched normotensive Wistar Kyoto (WKY) rats, male SHR exhibited non-spatial memory deficits. Magnetic resonance imaging showed brain atrophy and a reduction of white matter volumes in SHR. Histological analyses confirmed white matter demyelination and unveiled a circumscribed blood brain barrier dysfunction in conjunction with micro- and macrogliosis in deep cortical regions. Flow cytometry and histological analyses further revealed substantial disparities in cerebral CD45high leukocyte counts and distribution patterns between SHR and WKY. SHR showed lower counts of T cells in the choroid plexus and meningeal spaces as well as decreased interleukin-10 levels in the cerebrospinal fluid. On the other hand, both T and NK cells were significantly augmented in the SHR brain microvasculature.
Our results indicate that SHR share behavioral and neuropathological characteristics with human cSVD patients and further undergird the relevance of immune responses for the initiation and progression of cSVD.