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In JoVE (1)
Other Publications (14)
- Progress in Neuro-psychopharmacology & Biological Psychiatry
- Progress in Neuro-psychopharmacology & Biological Psychiatry
- Neurobiology of Learning and Memory
- Neurobiology of Disease
- Trends in Neurosciences
- The Journal of Neuroscience : the Official Journal of the Society for Neuroscience
- The Journal of Neuroscience : the Official Journal of the Society for Neuroscience
- The Journal of Comparative Neurology
- Age (Dordrecht, Netherlands)
- Experimental Gerontology
- Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
- Cancer Research
- Clinical Cancer Research : an Official Journal of the American Association for Cancer Research
- Age (Dordrecht, Netherlands)
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Articles by Lori- Ann Christie in JoVE
כימות decrements קוגניטיבי נגרמת על ידי הקרנות גולגולתי
Lori- Ann Christie, Munjal M. Acharya, Charles L. Limoli
Department of Radiation Oncology, University of California Irvine
Other articles by Lori- Ann Christie on PubMed
Progress in Neuro-psychopharmacology & Biological Psychiatry. Mar, 2005 | Pubmed ID: 15795044
Spatial discriminations can be performed using either egocentric information based on body position or allocentric information based on the position of landmarks in the environment. Beagle dogs ranging from 2 to 16 years of age were tested for their ability to learn a novel egocentric spatial discrimination task that used two identical blocks paired in three possible spatial positions (i.e. left, center and right). Dogs were rewarded for responding to an object furthest to either their left or right side. Therefore, when the center location was used, it was correct on half of the trials and incorrect on the other half. Upon successful acquisition of the task, the reward contingencies were reversed, and the dogs were rewarded for responding to the opposite side. A subset of dogs was also tested on an allocentric spatial discrimination task, landmark discrimination. Egocentric spatial reversal learning and allocentric discrimination learning both showed a significant age-dependent decline, while initial egocentric learning appeared to be age-insensitive. Intra-subject correlation analyses revealed a significant relationship between egocentric reversal learning and allocentric learning. However, the correlation only accounted for a small proportion of the variance, suggesting that although there might be some common mechanism underlying acquisition of the two tasks, additional unique neural substrates were involved depending on whether allocentric or egocentric spatial information processing was required.
Progress in Neuro-psychopharmacology & Biological Psychiatry. Mar, 2005 | Pubmed ID: 15795052
We compared performance of younger and older human participants to that of younger and older dogs on tasks that evaluate object discrimination, egocentric spatial ability, object recognition, spatial memory, and cognitive flexibility. Our goal was to determine whether (i) tasks sensitive to advanced age in dogs are also age-sensitive in humans; (ii) the pattern of task difficulty observed in dogs mirrors that observed in humans; (iii) dogs and humans use similar strategies to solve equivalent tasks. Dogs performed more poorly than humans on reversal tasks that evaluate cognitive flexibility. We suggest that dogs, most notably older dogs, use different strategies than healthy humans when solving these tasks. Humans appear to test a priori hypotheses to solve the task at hand. As a consequence, expectations about the complexity of the task being tested can impair human performance. By contrast, dogs appear to rely more heavily on either simpler hypotheses, or associative trial and error learning, which probably accounts for their difficulty in learning non-matching tasks. Dogs also show perseverative responding, which hinders the acquisition of reversal tasks.
Visuospatial Function in the Beagle Dog: an Early Marker of Cognitive Decline in a Model of Human Aging and Dementia
Neurobiology of Learning and Memory. Sep, 2006 | Pubmed ID: 16616528
Visuospatial learning and memory impairments are an early marker for age-related cognitive decline and Alzheimer's disease. Similar to humans, aged dogs show visuospatial learning and memory deficits (). One hundred and nine beagle dogs ranging between 0.25 and 11.99 years were tested on a visuospatial delayed non-matching to position (DNMP) task to better characterize the progression of visuospatial deficits in the dog. Age predicted 48.2% of the variability in learning the DNMP, with dogs ranging from 1 to 11.99 years generally making more errors with increasing age. By contrast, puppies (<1 year) likely were showing developmental deficits, possibly due to an immature prefrontal cortex. Mild visuospatial deficits were detected by 6 years, which precedes the typical onset of amyloid-beta (Abeta) accumulation in the dog brain by two years, and can serve as an early marker for cognitive decline in the dog. These findings suggest that (1) age-related changes in visuospatial function in the dog models that seen in humans, further validating the dog as a model for human aging and dementia; and (2) other mechanisms, such as oxidative stress, soluble Abeta oligomers or cholinergic deficits, are likely contributing to the early impairment.
Neurobiology of Disease. Apr, 2007 | Pubmed ID: 17292615
Neuronal degeneration linked to apoptosis can be inhibited by a family of proteins known as inhibitors of apoptosis proteins (IAPs). We examined three members of the IAP family that are implicated in the regulation of neuronal death. We assessed NAIP, XIAP, and cIAP-2 protein levels in the entorhinal cortex of non-demented, cognitively impaired and Alzheimer's disease cases. Levels of paired helical filament-1 (PHF-1), a marker of neurofibrillary tangles, were assessed to determine their relationship to IAP levels. NAIP was decreased in AD cases compared to mildly impaired and unimpaired cases, and this decrease was associated with increased PHF-1 levels. Low NAIP levels were associated with higher Braak and Braak tangle stage and cognitive dysfunction. XIAP levels were higher in AD cases and cIAP-2 levels did not vary with clinical status. Our data suggest that decreased NAIP may place neurons at risk for the development of tangles and apoptosis.
Trends in Neurosciences. Sep, 2007 | Pubmed ID: 17765329
Human and other animal studies demonstrate that exercise targets many aspects of brain function and has broad effects on overall brain health. The benefits of exercise have been best defined for learning and memory, protection from neurodegeneration and alleviation of depression, particularly in elderly populations. Exercise increases synaptic plasticity by directly affecting synaptic structure and potentiating synaptic strength, and by strengthening the underlying systems that support plasticity including neurogenesis, metabolism and vascular function. Such exercise-induced structural and functional change has been documented in various brain regions but has been best-studied in the hippocampus - the focus of this review. A key mechanism mediating these broad benefits of exercise on the brain is induction of central and peripheral growth factors and growth factor cascades, which instruct downstream structural and functional change. In addition, exercise reduces peripheral risk factors such as diabetes, hypertension and cardiovascular disease, which converge to cause brain dysfunction and neurodegeneration. A common mechanism underlying the central and peripheral effects of exercise might be related to inflammation, which can impair growth factor signaling both systemically and in the brain. Thus, through regulation of growth factors and reduction of peripheral and central risk factors, exercise ensures successful brain function.
Lack of Pathology in a Triple Transgenic Mouse Model of Alzheimer's Disease After Overexpression of the Anti-apoptotic Protein Bcl-2
The Journal of Neuroscience : the Official Journal of the Society for Neuroscience. Mar, 2008 | Pubmed ID: 18354008
Alzheimer's disease (AD) is characterized by the accumulation of plaques containing beta-amyloid (Abeta) and neurofibrillary tangles (NFTs) consisting of modified tau. Although Abeta deposition is thought to precede the formation of NFTs in AD, the molecular steps connecting these two pathologies is not known. Previous studies have suggested that caspase activation plays an important role in promoting the pathology associated with AD. To further understand the contribution of caspases in disease progression, a triple transgenic Alzheimer's mouse model overexpressing the anti-apoptotic protein Bcl-2 was generated. Here we show that overexpression of Bcl-2 limited caspase-9 activation and reduced the caspase cleavage of tau. Moreover, overexpression of Bcl-2 attenuated the processing of APP (amyloid precursor protein) and tau and reduced the number of NFTs and extracellular deposits of Abeta associated with these animals. In addition, overexpression of Bcl-2 in 3xTg-AD mice improved place recognition memory. These findings suggest that the activation of apoptotic pathways may be an early event in AD and contributes to the pathological processes that promote the disease mechanisms underlying AD.
A Two-year Study with Fibrillar Beta-amyloid (Abeta) Immunization in Aged Canines: Effects on Cognitive Function and Brain Abeta
The Journal of Neuroscience : the Official Journal of the Society for Neuroscience. Apr, 2008 | Pubmed ID: 18385314
Aged canines (dogs) accumulate human-type beta-amyloid (Abeta) in diffuse plaques in the brain with parallel declines in cognitive function. We hypothesized that reducing Abeta in a therapeutic treatment study of aged dogs with preexisting Abeta pathology and cognitive deficits would lead to cognitive improvements. To test this hypothesis, we immunized aged beagles (8.4-12.4 years) with fibrillar Abeta(1-42) formulated with aluminum salt (Alum) for 2.4 years (25 vaccinations). Cognitive testing during this time revealed no improvement in measures of learning, spatial attention, or spatial memory. After extended treatment (22 vaccinations), we observed maintenance of prefrontal-dependent reversal learning ability. In the brain, levels of soluble and insoluble Abeta(1-40) and Abeta(1-42) and the extent of diffuse plaque accumulation was significantly decreased in several cortical regions, with preferential reductions in the prefrontal cortex, which is associated with a maintenance of cognition. However, the amount of soluble oligomers remained unchanged. The extent of prefrontal Abeta was correlated with frontal function and serum anti-Abeta antibody titers. Thus, reducing total Abeta may be of limited therapeutic benefit to recovery of cognitive decline in a higher mammalian model of human brain aging and disease. Immunizing animals before extensive Abeta deposition and cognitive decline to prevent oligomeric or fibrillar Abeta formation may have a greater impact on cognition and also more directly evaluate the role of Abeta on cognition in canines. Alternatively, clearing preexisting Abeta from the brain in a treatment study may be more efficacious for cognition if combined with a second intervention that restores neuron health.
Rhinal and Dorsolateral Prefrontal Cortex Lesions Produce Selective Impairments in Object and Spatial Learning and Memory in Canines
The Journal of Comparative Neurology. Nov, 2008 | Pubmed ID: 18792072
To examine the effects of rhinal and dorsolateral prefrontal cortex lesions on object and spatial recognition memory in canines, we used a protocol in which both an object (delayed nonmatching to sample, or DNMS) and a spatial (delayed nonmatching to position or DNMP) recognition task were administered daily. The tasks used similar procedures such that only the type of stimulus information to be remembered differed. Rhinal cortex (RC) lesions produced a selective deficit on the DNMS task, both in retention of the task rules at short delays and in object recognition memory. By contrast, performance on the DNMP task remained intact at both short and long delay intervals in RC animals. Subjects who received dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (dlPFC) lesions were impaired on a spatial task at a short, 5-second delay, suggesting disrupted retention of the general task rules; however, this impairment was transient, and long-term spatial memory performance was unaffected in dlPFC subjects. The present results provide support for the involvement of the RC in object, but not visuospatial, processing and recognition memory, whereas the dlPFC appears to mediate retention of a nonmatching rule. These findings support theories of functional specialization within the medial temporal lobe and frontal cortex and suggest that rhinal and dorsolateral prefrontal cortices in canines are functionally similar to analogous regions in other mammals.
Strategies for Improving Cognition with Aging: Insights from a Longitudinal Study of Antioxidant and Behavioral Enrichment in Canines
Age (Dordrecht, Netherlands). Sep, 2009 | Pubmed ID: 19714491
Studies in humans suggest that lifestyle factors can have a beneficial impact on the risk for developing cognitive decline and dementia with age. There is growing evidence that maintaining a physically and intellectually active lifestyle can positively impact cognitive ability in older individuals. Dietary factors, such as the intake of antioxidants, may also prevent age-related cognitive decline. However, studies in humans are challenging; many variables cannot be controlled, making it difficult for researchers to determine the exact types and quantities of enrichment and dietary factors necessary for positive effects on cognition. Studies in animal models of human aging allow researchers to precisely control such variables, and can be used to assess the mechanisms and molecular pathways underlying any positive effects. Here we review the results of an intervention study using a canine model of human aging. The study was unique in that it compared the effects of dietary antioxidant supplementation alone and in combination with behavioral enrichment. We found that both interventions lead to improvements in cognitive ability in aged dogs; however, combining the treatments preserved cognition to a greater extent than either treatment alone. Overall, the results suggest that antioxidant supplementation and behavioral enrichment target separate yet complementary molecular pathways to improve cognition, and support the idea that combinations of treatments to improve cognition and slow brain aging will produce greater benefits than single interventions.
Short-term Supplementation with Acetyl-L-carnitine and Lipoic Acid Alters Plasma Protein Carbonyl Levels but Does Not Improve Cognition in Aged Beagles
Experimental Gerontology. Dec, 2009 | Pubmed ID: 19735717
Previous work has shown that a diet enriched with antioxidants and mitochondrial co-factors improves cognition in aged dogs, which is accompanied by a reduction in oxidative damage in the brain. The objective of the present study was to assess the effects of supplementation with mitochondrial co-factors on cognition and plasma protein carbonyl levels in aged dogs. Specifically, we aimed to test whether the individual or combined action of lipoic acid (LA) and acetyl-l-carnitine (ALCAR) could account for the beneficial effects of the enriched diet that contained both plus antioxidants. Dogs were given LA or ALCAR, alone and then in combination and cognition was assessed using a spatial learning task and two discrimination and reversal paradigms. Dogs receiving the ALCAR supplement showed an increase in protein carbonyl levels that was associated with increased error scores on the spatial task, and which was reduced upon additional supplementation with LA. We did not observe significant positive effects on cognition. The present findings suggest that short-term supplementation with LA and ALCAR is insufficient to improve cognition in aged dogs, and that the beneficial effects of the full spectrum diet arose from either the cellular antioxidants alone or their interaction with LA and ALCAR.
Rescue of Radiation-induced Cognitive Impairment Through Cranial Transplantation of Human Embryonic Stem Cells
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. Nov, 2009 | Pubmed ID: 19901336
Cranial irradiation remains a frontline treatment for the control of tumor growth, and individuals surviving such treatments often manifest various degrees of cognitive dysfunction. Radiation-induced depletion of stem/precursor cell pools in the brain, particularly those residing in the neurogenic region of the hippocampus, is believed, in part, to be responsible for these often-unavoidable cognitive deficits. To explore the possibility of ameliorating radiation-induced cognitive impairment, athymic nude rats subjected to head only irradiation (10 Gy) were transplanted 2 days afterward with human embryonic stem cells (hESC) into the hippocampal formation and analyzed for stem cell survival, differentiation, and cognitive function. Animals receiving hESC transplantation exhibited superior performance on a hippocampal-dependent cognitive task 4 months postirradiation, compared to their irradiated surgical counterparts that did not receive hESCs. Significant stem cell survival was found at 1 and 4 months postirradiation, and transplanted cells showed robust migration to the subgranular zone throughout the dentate gyrus, exhibiting signs of neuron morphology within this neurogenic niche. These results demonstrate the capability to ameliorate radiation-induced normal tissue injury using hESCs, and suggest that such strategies may provide useful interventions for reducing the adverse effects of irradiation on cognition.
Cancer Research. Jul, 2011 | Pubmed ID: 21757460
Cranial radiotherapy induces progressive and debilitating declines in cognition that may, in part, be caused by the depletion of neural stem cells. The potential of using stem cell replacement as a strategy to combat radiation-induced cognitive decline was addressed by irradiating athymic nude rats followed 2 days later by intrahippocampal transplantation with human neural stem cells (hNSC). Measures of cognitive performance, hNSC survival, and phenotypic fate were assessed at 1 and 4 months after irradiation. Irradiated animals engrafted with hNSCs showed significantly less decline in cognitive function than irradiated, sham-engrafted animals and acted indistinguishably from unirradiated controls. Unbiased stereology revealed that 23% and 12% of the engrafted cells survived 1 and 4 months after transplantation, respectively. Engrafted cells migrated extensively, differentiated along glial and neuronal lineages, and expressed the activity-regulated cytoskeleton-associated protein (Arc), suggesting their capability to functionally integrate into the hippocampus. These data show that hNSCs afford a promising strategy for functionally restoring cognition in irradiated animals.
Clinical Cancer Research : an Official Journal of the American Association for Cancer Research. Feb, 2012 | Pubmed ID: 22338017
PURPOSE: A substantial proportion of breast cancer survivors report significant, long-lasting impairments in cognitive function, often referred to as "chemobrain." Advances in detection and treatment mean that many more patients are surviving long-term following diagnosis of invasive breast cancer. Thus, it is important to define the types, extent and persistence of cognitive impairments following treatment with cytotoxic cancer drugs. EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN: We examined the effects of chronic treatment with two agents commonly used in breast cancer patients, cyclophosphamide and doxorubicin (Adriamycin). Athymic nude rats were given 50mg/kg cyclophosphamide, 2mg/kg doxorubicin or saline injections once per week for 4 weeks. A novel place recognition task and contextual and cued fear conditioning were employed to characterize learning and memory ability. Immunofluorescence staining for immature and mature neurons and activated microglia was used to assess changes in neurogenesis and neuroinflammation.RESULTS: Cyclophosphamide- and doxorubicin-treated rats showed significantly impaired performance on the novel place recognition task and the contextual fear conditioning task compared to untreated controls, suggesting disrupted hippocampal-based memory function. Chemotherapy-treated animals showed a significant decline in neurogenesis (80 to 90% drop in BrdU labeled cells expressing NeuN). Activated microglia (ED1 positive) were found after cyclophosphamide, but not doxorubicin treatment.CONCLUSIONS: Our results demonstrate that chronic treatment with either of two commonly-used chemotherapeutic agents impairs cognitive ability, and suggest that strategies to prevent or repair disrupted hippocampal neurogenesis may be effective in ameliorating this serious side effect in cancer survivors.
Age and Distraction Are Determinants of Performance on a Novel Visual Search Task in Aged Beagle Dogs
Age (Dordrecht, Netherlands). Feb, 2012 | Pubmed ID: 21336566
Aging has been shown to disrupt performance on tasks that require intact visual search and discrimination abilities in human studies. The goal of the present study was to determine if canines show age-related decline in their ability to perform a novel simultaneous visual search task. Three groups of canines were included: a young group (N = 10; 3 to 4.5 years), an old group (N = 10; 8 to 9.5 years), and a senior group (N = 8; 11 to 15.3 years). Subjects were first tested for their ability to learn a simple two-choice discrimination task, followed by the visual search task. Attentional demands in the task were manipulated by varying the number of distracter items; dogs received an equal number of trials with either zero, one, two, or three distracters. Performance on the two-choice discrimination task varied with age, with senior canines making significantly more errors than the young. Performance accuracy on the visual search task also varied with age; senior animals were significantly impaired compared to both the young and old, and old canines were intermediate in performance between young and senior. Accuracy decreased significantly with added distracters in all age groups. These results suggest that aging impairs the ability of canines to discriminate between task-relevant and -irrelevant stimuli. This is likely to be derived from impairments in cognitive domains such as visual memory and learning and selective attention.