Adult-onset depletion of sulfatide leads to axonal degeneration with relative myelin sparing

E. Dustin, A. R. McQuiston, K. Honke, J. P. Palavicini, X. Han, J. L. Dupree

Producción científica: Articlerevisión exhaustiva


3-O-sulfogalactosylceramide (sulfatide) constitutes a class of sphingolipids that comprise about 4% of myelin lipids in the central nervous system. Previously, our group characterized a mouse with sulfatide's synthesizing enzyme, cerebroside sulfotransferase (CST), constitutively disrupted. Using these mice, we demonstrated that sulfatide is required for establishment and maintenance of myelin, axoglial junctions, and axonal domains and that sulfatide depletion results in structural pathologies commonly observed in Multiple Sclerosis (MS). Interestingly, sulfatide is reduced in regions of normal appearing white matter (NAWM) of MS patients. Sulfatide reduction in NAWM suggests depletion occurs early in disease development and consistent with functioning as a driving force of disease progression. To closely model MS, an adult-onset disease, our lab generated a “floxed” CST mouse and mated it against the PLP-creERT mouse, resulting in a double transgenic mouse that provides temporal and cell-type specific ablation of the Cst gene (Gal3st1). Using this mouse, we demonstrate adult-onset sulfatide depletion has limited effects on myelin structure but results in the loss of axonal integrity including deterioration of domain organization accompanied by axonal degeneration. Moreover, structurally preserved myelinated axons progressively lose the ability to function as myelinated axons, indicated by the loss of the N1 peak. Together, our findings indicate that sulfatide depletion, which occurs in the early stages of MS progression, is sufficient to drive the loss of axonal function independent of demyelination and that axonal pathology, which is responsible for the irreversible loss of neuronal function that is prevalent in MS, may occur earlier than previously recognized.

Idioma originalEnglish (US)
Páginas (desde-hasta)2285-2303
Número de páginas19
EstadoPublished - sept 2023

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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