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Genetic models of cleavage-reduced and soluble TREM2 reveal distinct effects on myelination and microglia function in the cuprizone model.

Beckmann, Nicolau, Neuhaus, Anna, Zurbruegg, Stefan, Joller, Stefanie, Feuerbach, Dominik, Doelemeyer, Arno, Volkmer, Pia, Schweizer, Tatjana, Rudin, Stefan, Patino, Claudia, Neumann, Ulf, Berth, Ramon, Frieauff, Wilfried, Gasparini, Fabrizio and Shimshek, Derya (2023) Genetic models of cleavage-reduced and soluble TREM2 reveal distinct effects on myelination and microglia function in the cuprizone model. Journal of neuroinflammation, 20 (1). p. 29. ISSN 1742-2094


Triggering receptor expressed on myeloid cells 2 (TREM2) is a cell-surface immunoreceptor expressed on microglia, osteoclasts, dendritic cells and macrophages. Heterozygous loss-of-function mutations in TREM2, including mutations enhancing shedding form the cell surface, have been associated with myelin/neuronal loss and neuroinflammation in neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer`s disease and Frontotemporal Dementia. Using the cuprizone model, we investigated the involvement of soluble and cleavage-reduced TREM2 on central myelination processes in cleavage-reduced (TREM2-IPD), soluble-only (TREM2-sol), knockout (TREM2-KO) and wild-type (WT) mice. The TREM2-sol mouse is a new model with selective elimination of plasma membrane TREM2 and a reduced expression of soluble TREM2. In the acute cuprizone model demyelination and remyelination events were reflected by a T2-weighted signal intensity change in magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), most prominently in the external capsule (EC). In contrast to WT and TREM2-IPD, TREM2-sol and TREM2-KO showed an additional increase in MRI signal during the recovery phase. Histological analyses of TREM2-IPD animals revealed no recovery of neuroinflammation as well as of the lysosomal marker LAMP-1 and displayed enhanced cytokine/chemokine levels in the brain. TREM2-sol and, to a much lesser extent, TREM2-KO, however, despite presenting reduced levels of some cytokines/chemokines, showed persistent microgliosis and astrocytosis during recovery, with both homeostatic (TMEM119) as well as activated (LAMP-1) microglia markers increased. This was accompanied, specifically in the EC, by no myelin recovery, with appearance of myelin debris and axonal pathology, while oligodendrocytes recovered. In the chronic model consisting of 12-week cuprizone administration followed by 3-week recovery TREM2-IPD displayed sustained microgliosis and enhanced remyelination in the recovery phase. Taken together, our data suggest that sustained microglia activation led to increased remyelination, whereas microglia without plasma membrane TREM2 and only soluble TREM2 had reduced phagocytic activity despite efficient lysosomal function, as observed in bone marrow-derived macrophages, leading to a dysfunctional phenotype with improper myelin debris removal, lack of remyelination and axonal pathology following cuprizone intoxication.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Animals Mice Cuprizone Cytokines Demyelinating Diseases Disease Models, Animal Membrane Glycoproteins Mice, Inbred C57BL Mice, Knockout Microglia Models, Genetic Myelin Sheath Neuroinflammatory Diseases Receptors, Immunologic
Date Deposited: 02 Mar 2023 00:45
Last Modified: 02 Mar 2023 00:46


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