Huntington's disease (HD) is an autosomal dominant neurodegenerative disease caused by a CAG trinucleotide expansion in exon 1 of the Huntingtin (Htt) gene. We show herein that in an HD transgenic mouse model (R6/2), daily administration of CGS21680 (CGS), an A2A adenosine receptor (A 2A-R)-selective agonist, delayed the progressive deterioration of motor performance and prevented a reduction in brain weight. 3D-μMRI analysis revealed that CGS reversed the enlarged ventricle-to-brain ratio of R6/2 mice, with particular improvements in the left and right ventricles. 1H-MRS showed that CGS significantly reduced the increased choline levels in the striatum. Immunohistochemical analyses further demonstrated that CGS reduced the size of ubiquitin-positive neuronal intranuclear inclusions (NIIs) in the striatum of R6/2 mice and ameliorated mutant Htt aggregation in a striatal progenitor cell line overexpressing mutant Htt with expanded polyQ. Moreover, chronic CGS treatment normalized the elevated blood glucose levels and reduced the overactivation of a major metabolic sensor [5′AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK)] in the striatum of R6/2 mice. Since AMPK is a master switch for energy metabolism, modulation of energy dysfunction caused by the mutant Htt might contribute to the beneficial effects of CGS. Collectively, CGS is a potential drug candidate for the treatment of HD.
- 5′AMP-activated protein kinase
- A adenosine receptor; cAMP
- CGS21680; Huntington's disease
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience