Peripherally triggered and GSK-3β-driven brain inflammation differentially skew adult hippocampal neurogenesis, behavioral pattern separation and microglial activation in response to ibuprofen.

Llorens-Martín M, Jurado-Arjona J, Fuster-Matanzo A, Hernández F, Rábano A, Ávila J.

Translational Psychiatry.
doi: 10.1038/tp.2014.92.

Both familial and sporadic forms of Alzheimer disease (AD) present memory impairments. It has been proposed that these impairments are related to inflammation in relevant brain areas such as the hippocampus. Whether peripherally triggered and neuron-driven brain inflammation produce similar and equally reversible alterations is a matter of discussion. Here we studied the effects of ibuprofen administration on a familial AD mouse model overexpressing GSK-3β that presents severe brain inflammation. We compared these effects with those observed in a peripherally triggered brain inflammation model based on chronic lipopolysaccharide (LPS) administration. Both proinflammatory stimuli produced equivalent reversible morphological alterations in granule neurons; however, GSK-3β had a much more prominent role in newborn neuron connectivity, causing alterations that were not reversed by ibuprofen. Although both insults triggered similar behavioral impairments, ibuprofen rescued this defect in LPS-treated mice but did not produce any improvement in GSK-3β-overexpressing animals. This observation could be attributable to the different microglial phenotype induced by ibuprofen treatment. These data may be clinically relevant for AD therapies, as GSK-3β appears to determine the efficacy of ibuprofen treatment.

Selective alterations of neurons and circuits related to early memory loss in Alzheimer's disease.

Llorens-Martín M, Blazquez-Llorca L, Benavides-Piccione R, Rabano A, Hernandez F, Avila J, DeFelipe J.

Frontiers in Neuroanatomy.
doi: 10.3389/fnana.2014.00038.

A progressive loss of episodic memory is a well-known clinical symptom that characterizes Alzheimer's disease (AD). The beginning of this loss of memory has been associated with the very early, pathological accumulation of tau and neuronal degeneration observed in the entorhinal cortex (EC). Tau-related pathology is thought to then spread progressively to the hippocampal formation and other brain areas as the disease progresses. The major cortical afferent source of the hippocampus and dentate gyrus is the EC through the perforant pathway. At least two main circuits participate in the connection between EC and the hippocampus; one originating in layer II and the other in layer III of the EC giving rise to the classical trisynaptic (ECII → dentate gyrus → CA3 → CA1) and monosynaptic (ECIII → CA1) circuits. Thus, the study of the early pathological changes in these circuits is of great interest. In this review, we will discuss mainly the alterations of the granule cell neurons of the dentate gyrus and the atrophy of CA1 pyramidal neurons that occur in AD in relation to the possible differential alterations of these two main circuits.

GSK-3β, a pivotal kinase in Alzheimer disease.

Llorens-Martín M, Jurado J, Hernández F, Avila J.

Frontiers in Molecular Neuroscience.
doi: 10.3389/fnmol.2014.00046.

Alzheimer disease (AD) is the most common form of age-related dementia. The etiology of AD is considered to be multifactorial as only a negligible percentage of cases have a familial or genetic origin. Glycogen synthase kinase-3 (GSK-3) is regarded as a critical molecular link between the two histopathological hallmarks of the disease, namely senile plaques and neurofibrillary tangles. In this review, we summarize current data regarding the involvement of this kinase in several aspects of AD development and progression, as well as key observations highlighting GSK-3 as one of the most relevant targets for AD treatment.


Centro de Biología Molecular Severo Ochoa (CBMSO) Universidad Autónoma de Madrid (Campus de Cantoblanco)
C/ Nicolás Cabrera 1 - 28049 Madrid (Spain)

María Llorens-Martín (PI)
+34 911964632