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β-N-Methylamino-L-alanine (BMAA) Toxicity Is Gender and Exposure-Age Dependent in Rats
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Toxins 2018, 10(1), 22; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins10010022

A Single Neonatal Exposure to BMAA in a Rat Model Produces Neuropathology Consistent with Neurodegenerative Diseases

Department of Biochemistry and Microbiology, Nelson Mandela University, P.O. Box 77 000, Port Elizabeth 6031, South Africa
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Received: 29 November 2017 / Revised: 23 December 2017 / Accepted: 27 December 2017 / Published: 29 December 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Cyanobacterial Neurotoxin BMAA)
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Abstract

Although cyanobacterial β-N-methylamino-l-alanine (BMAA) has been implicated in the development of Alzheimer’s Disease (AD), Parkinson’s Disease (PD) and Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), no BMAA animal model has reproduced all the neuropathology typically associated with these neurodegenerative diseases. We present here a neonatal BMAA model that causes β-amyloid deposition, neurofibrillary tangles of hyper-phosphorylated tau, TDP-43 inclusions, Lewy bodies, microbleeds and microgliosis as well as severe neuronal loss in the hippocampus, striatum, substantia nigra pars compacta, and ventral horn of the spinal cord in rats following a single BMAA exposure. We also report here that BMAA exposure on particularly PND3, but also PND4 and 5, the critical period of neurogenesis in the rodent brain, is substantially more toxic than exposure to BMAA on G14, PND6, 7 and 10 which suggests that BMAA could potentially interfere with neonatal neurogenesis in rats. The observed selective toxicity of BMAA during neurogenesis and, in particular, the observed pattern of neuronal loss observed in BMAA-exposed rats suggest that BMAA elicits its effect by altering dopamine and/or serotonin signaling in rats. View Full-Text
Keywords: β-N-methylamino-l-alanine; BMAA; rats; neurodegeneration; Alzheimer’s disease; amyloid; neurofibrillary tangles; Lewy bodies; Parkinson’s disease β-N-methylamino-l-alanine; BMAA; rats; neurodegeneration; Alzheimer’s disease; amyloid; neurofibrillary tangles; Lewy bodies; Parkinson’s disease
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Scott, L.L.; Downing, T.G. A Single Neonatal Exposure to BMAA in a Rat Model Produces Neuropathology Consistent with Neurodegenerative Diseases. Toxins 2018, 10, 22.

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