Spinocerebellar ataxia (SCA) type 1 (SCA1) is a rare autosomal dominant disorder that is characterized by worsening of disordered coordination, ataxia of the trunk, and other neurological symptoms. Physical activity improves both mobility and the daily living activities of patients with SCA. Intervention with daily regular treadmill exercise may slow the deterioration of cerebellar neurons in SCA1. Therefore, the signal changes and performance of cerebellar neurons after exercise in SCA1 was investigated in this study. We employed a transgenic mouse model of SCA1, generated by amplifying the cytosine-adenine-guanine trinucleotide repeat expansions, and the mice underwent 1 month of moderate daily treadmill exercise for 1 hour. The rotarod test revealed that the motor function of the SCA1 mice that underwent training was superior to that of the control SCA1 mice, which did not undergo training. Moreover, the cerebellar pathology revealed preserved Purkinje neurons stained by carbindin with an increase of the neuronal Per Arnt Sim domain protein 4, a key regulation in the structural and functional plasticity of neurons, in the excised SCA1 mice relative to the controls. The mechanism was related to an increase of phosphorylation of ribosomal protein S6, a downstream target of the mammalian target of rapamycin pathway, but not to autophagy activation. This study determined that regular treadmill exercise may play a crucial role in the viable support of cerebellar neurons in SCA1.
- neuronal Per Arnt Sim domain protein 4
- Purkinje neurons
- ribosomal protein S6
- Spinocerebellar ataxia type 1
- treadmill training
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