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Amelioration of the cerebrovascular amyloidosis in a transgenic model of Alzheimer's disease with the neurotrophic compound cerebrolysin


Year of Publication:
Contact PI Name:
Eliezer Masliah
Contact PI Affiliation:
Department of Neurosciences, University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, California, USA
E. Rockenstein, A. Adame, M. Mante, G. Larrea, L. Crews, M. Windisch, H. Moessler
Primary Reference (PubMED ID):
Funding Source:
National Institute on Aging (NIA)
EBEWE Pharmaceuticals
Study Goal and Principal Findings:

Increased production and reduced clearance of amyloid beta (Abeta) plays a central role in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease (AD). It was recently shown that the neurotrophic peptide mixture Cerebrolysin (Cbl) has the ability of improving synaptic functioning and reducing amyloid deposition in a transgenic (tg) animal model of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Since in AD, potentially toxic Abeta aggregates accumulate not only around neurons but also in the blood vessels, then it is important to investigate whether bioactive compounds such as Cbl might have the capacity to ameliorate the age-related cerebral amyloid angiopathy (CAA) in tg models. To this end, tg mice expressing mutant human amyloid precursor protein (APP) under the Thy1 promoter were treated with Cbl or saline alone starting at 7 or 12 months of age for a total of three months. Neuropathological analysis with an antibody against Abeta showed that Cbl decreased amyloid deposition around the blood vessels in a time dependent manner. These effects were accompanied by a reduction in perivascular microgliosis and astrogliosis and increased expression of markers of vascular fitness such as CD31 and ZO-1. No lymphocytic infiltration was observed associated with Abeta in the vessels. Consistent with these findings, ultrastructural analysis showed that while in tg mice treated with saline alone there was an abundant accumulation of amyloid fibers in the vascular wall accompanied by thickening of the basal membrane and endothelial cell damage, in Cbl-treated mice there was considerable reduction in the subcellular alterations of endothelial and smooth muscle cells with preservation of basal membranes and intercellular junctions. Taken together, these results suggest that Cbl treatment might have beneficial effects in patients with cognitive impairment due to cerebrovascular amyloidosis by reducing Abeta accumulation and promoting the preservation of the cerebrovasculature.

Therapeutic Agent

Therapeutic Information:
Therapy Type:
Biologic - Peptide
Therapeutic Agent:
Therapeutic Target:
Multi Target

Animal Model

Model Information:
Model Type:
Strain/Genetic Background:
C57BL/6XSwiss Webster F1

Experimental Design

Is the following information reported in the study?:
Power/Sample Size Calculation
Randomized into Groups
Blinded for Treatment
Blinded for Outcome Measures
Pharmacokinetic Measures
Pharmacodynamic Measures
Toxicology Measures
ADME Measures
Route of Delivery
Duration of Treatment
Frequency of Administration
Age of Animal at the Beginning of Treatment
Age of Animal at the End of Treatment
Sex as a Biological Variable
Study Balanced for Sex as a Biological Variable
Number of Premature Deaths
Number of Excluded Animals
Statistical Plan
Genetic Background
Inclusion/Exclusion Criteria Included
Conflict of Interest


Outcome Measured
Outcome Parameters
beta Amyloid Deposits
beta Amyloid Load
Cerebral Amyloid Angiopathy (CAA)
Activated Microglia
Glial Fibrillary Acidic Protein (GFAP)
Ionized Calcium Binding Adaptor Molecule 1 (Iba1)
Integrin Activation
Brain-beta Amyloid Deposits
B Lymphocyte Antigen CD20 (CD20)
Zona Occludens 1 (ZO1)