Intrahippocampal Pathways Involved in Learning/Memory Mechanisms are Affected by Intracerebral Infusions of Amyloid-β ed Fullerene C60in Rats
Primary memory impairments associated with increased level of amyloid-β (Aβ) in the brain have been shown to be linked, partially, with early pathological changes in the entorhinal cortex (EC) which spread on the whole limbic system. While the hippocampus is known to play a key role in learning and memory mechanisms, it is as yet unclear how its structures are involved in the EC pathology. In this study, changes in memory and neuronal morphology in male Wistar rats intrahippocampally injected with Aβ25-35were correlated on days 14 and 45 after the injection to reveal specific cognitive-structural associations. The main focus was on the dentate gyrus (DG) and hippocampal areas of CA1 and CA3 because of their involvement in afferent flows from EC to the hippocampus through tri-synaptic (EC → DG → CA3 → CA1) and/or mono-synaptic (EC → CA1) pathways. Evident memory impairments were observed at both time points after Aβ25-35injection. However, on day 14, populations of morphological intact neurons were decreased in CA3 and, drastically, in CA1, and the DG supramedial bundle was significantly damaged. On day 45, this bundle largely and CA1 neurons partially recovered, whereas CA3 neurons remained damaged. We suggest that Aβ25-35primarily affects the tri-synaptic pathway, destroying the granular cells in the DG supramedial area and neurons in CA3 and, through the Schaffer collaterals, in CA1. Intrahippocampal pretreatment with hydrated fullerene C60allows the neurons and their connections to survive the amyloidosis, thus supporting the memory mechanisms.