Elevated neuronal excitability due to modulation of the voltage-gated sodium channel Nav1.6 by Aβ1-42

Xi Wang, Xiao Gang Zhang, Ting Ting Zhou, Na Li, Chun Yan Jang, Zhi Cheng Xiao, Quan Hong Ma, Shao Li

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25 Citations (Scopus)


Aberrant increases in neuronal network excitability may contribute to the cognitive deficits in Alzheimer's disease (AD). However, the mechanisms underlying hyperexcitability are not fully understood. Such overexcitation of neuronal networks has been detected in the brains of APP/PS1 mice. In the present study, using current-clamp recording techniques, we observed that 12 days in vitro (DIV) primary cultured pyramidal neurons from P0 APP/PS1 mice exhibited a more prominent action potential burst and a lower threshold than WT littermates. Moreover, after treatment with Aβ1-42 peptide, 12 DIV primary cultured neurons showed similar changes, to a greater degree than in controls. Voltage-clamp recordings revealed that the voltage-dependent sodium current density of neurons incubated with Aβ1-42 was significantly increased, without change in the voltage-dependent sodium channel kinetic characteristics. Immunohistochemistry and western blot results showed that, after treatment with Aβ1-42, expressions of Nav and Nav1.6 subtype increased in cultured neurons or APP/PS1 brains compared to control groups. The intrinsic neuronal hyperexcitability of APP/PS1 mice might thus be due to an increased expression of voltage-dependent sodium channels induced by Aβ1-42. These results may illuminate the mechanism of aberrant neuronal networks in AD.

Original languageEnglish
Article number94
Number of pages9
JournalFrontiers in Neuroscience
Issue number94
Publication statusPublished - 9 Mar 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • Alzheimer's disease
  • Beta-amyloid peptide
  • Excitability
  • Neurodegeneration
  • Voltage-gated sodium channel

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