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Open AccessArticle

Transgenic Mice Overexpressing Human STIM2 and ORAI1 in Neurons Exhibit Changes in Behavior and Calcium Homeostasis but Show No Signs of Neurodegeneration

1
International Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology in Warsaw, 4 Ksiecia Trojdena Str., 02-109 Warsaw, Poland
2
Postgraduate School of Molecular Medicine, Warsaw Medical University, 61 Żwirki i Wigury St., 02-091 Warsaw, Poland
3
Laboratory of Animal Models, Neurobiology Centre, Nencki Institute of Experimental Biology of Polish Academy of Sciences, 3 Pasteur Str., 02-093 Warsaw, Poland
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2020, 21(3), 842; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms21030842
Received: 31 December 2019 / Revised: 23 January 2020 / Accepted: 26 January 2020 / Published: 28 January 2020
The maintenance of proper cytosolic Ca2+ level is crucial for neuronal survival, and dysregulation of Ca2+ homeostasis is found in a variety of neurological disorders, including Alzheimer’s disease. According to the “Ca2+ hypothesis of aging”, Ca2+ disturbances precede the onset of AD symptoms and lead to neurodegeneration. STIM and ORAI proteins are involved in neuronal physiological and pathological processes as essential components of the store-operated Ca2+ entry. Our previous data suggested that overexpression of STIM2 and ORAI1 might increase basal neuronal cytosolic Ca2+ level. We generated double transgenic mice overexpressing these two genes in neurons, expecting that the increased basal Ca2+ concentration will lead to premature neurodegeneration. We observed changes in Ca2+ homeostasis and electrophysiological properties in acute brain slices of STIM2/ORAI1 neurons. However, we did not observe any augmentation of neurodegenerative processes, as tested by Fluoro-Jade® C staining and assessment of amyloidogenesis. The battery of behavioral tests did not show any signs of accelerated aging. We conclude that changes of calcium homeostasis induced by overexpression of STIM2 and ORAI1 had no substantial adverse effects on neurons and did not lead to early neurodegeneration. View Full-Text
Keywords: STIM2; ORAI1; SOCE; Alzheimer’s disease; neurodegeneration; electrophysiology; Ca2+ imaging; behavior; Fluoro-Jade® C; amyloidosis STIM2; ORAI1; SOCE; Alzheimer’s disease; neurodegeneration; electrophysiology; Ca2+ imaging; behavior; Fluoro-Jade® C; amyloidosis
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Majewski, L.; Maciąg, F.; Boguszewski, P.M.; Kuznicki, J. Transgenic Mice Overexpressing Human STIM2 and ORAI1 in Neurons Exhibit Changes in Behavior and Calcium Homeostasis but Show No Signs of Neurodegeneration. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2020, 21, 842.

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