Activated p38MAPK Is a Novel Component of the Intracellular Inclusions Found in Human Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis and Mutant SOD1 Transgenic Mice

Caterina Bendotti, Cristiana Atzori, Roberto Piva, Massimo Tortarolo, Michael J. Strong, Silvia DeBiasi, Antonio Migheli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Cytoskeletal abnormalities with accumulation of ubiquilated inclusions in the anterior horn cells are a pathological hallmark of both familial and sporadic amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and of mouse models for ALS. Phosphorylated neurofilaments besides ubiquitin and dorfin have been identified as one of the major components of the abnormal intracellular perikaryal aggregates. As we recently found that p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (p38MAPK) colocalized with phosphorylated neurofilaments in spinal motor neurons of SOD1 mutant mice, a model of familial ALS, we investigated whether this kinase also contributed to the inclusions found in ALS patients and SOD1 mutant mice. Intense immunoreactivity for activated p38MAPK was observed in degenerating motor neurons and reactive astrocytes in ALS cases. The intracellular immunostaining for activated p38MAPK appeared in some neurons as filamentous skein-like and ball-like inclusions, with an immunohistochemical pattern identical to that of ubiquitin. Intracellular p38MAPK-positive aggregates containing ubiquitin and neurofilaments were also found in the spinal motor neurons of SOD1 mutant mice. Our observations indicate that activation of p38MAPK might contribute significantly to the pathology of motor neurons in ALS.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)113-119
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Neuropathology and Experimental Neurology
Volume63
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2004

Keywords

  • Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis
  • Inclusion
  • MAP kinase
  • P38MAPK
  • SOD1
  • Ubiquitin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Neuroscience(all)

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