Decreasing the Expression of GABAA[alfa]5 Subunit-Containing Receptors Partially Improves Cognitive, Electrophysiological, and Morphological Hippocampal Defects in the Ts65Dn Model of Down Syndrome
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AuthorVidal Sánchez, Verónica; García Cerro, Susana; Martínez Fernández, Paula; Corrales Pardo, Andrea; Lantigua Romero, Sara; Vidal Casado, Rebeca; Rueda Revilla, Noemí; Ozmen, Laurence; Hernández, Maria Clemencia; Martínez-Cué Pesini, Carmen
Trisomy 21 or Down syndrome (DS) is the most common cause of intellectual disability of a genetic origin. The Ts65Dn (TS) mouse, which is the most commonly used and best-characterized mouse model of DS, displays many of the cognitive, neuromorphological, and biochemical anomalies that are found in the human condition. One of the mechanisms that have been proposed to be responsible for the cognitive deficits in this mouse model is impaired GABAmediated inhibition. Because of the well-known modulatory role of GABAA ?5 subunit-containing receptors in cognitive processes, these receptors are considered to be potential targets for improving the intellectual disability in DS. The chronic administration of GABAA ?5-negative allosteric modulators has been shown to be procognitive without anxiogenic or proconvulsant side effects. In the present study, we use a genetic approach to evaluate the contribution of GABAA ?5 subunit-containing receptors to the cognitive, electrophysiological, and neuromorphological deficits in TS mice.We show that reducing the expression of GABAA ?5 receptors by deleting one or two copies of the Gabra5 gene in TS mice partially ameliorated the cognitive impairments, improved longterm potentiation, enhanced neural differentiation and maturation, and normalized the density of the GABAergic synapse markers. Reducing the gene dosage of Gabra5 in TS mice did not induce motor alterations and anxiety or affect the viability of the mice. Our results provide further evidence of the role of GABAA ?5 receptor-mediated inhibition in cognitive impairment in the TS mouse model of DS.