Maternal inflammation linearly exacerbates offspring age-related changes of spatial learning and memory, and neurobiology until senectitude

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Abstract

Maternal inflammation during pregnancy can elevate the risk of neurodegenerative disorders in offspring. However, how it affects age-related impairments of spatial learning and memory and changes in the neurobiological indictors in the offspring in later adulthood is still elusive. In this study, the CD-1 mice with maternal gestational inflammation due to receiving lipopolysaccharide (LPS, i.p. 50 or 25 μg/kg) were divided into 3-, 12-, 18-, and 22-month-old groups. The spatial learning and memory were evaluated using a six-radial arm water maze and the levels of presynaptic proteins (synaptotagmin-1 and syntaxin-1) and histone acetylation (H3K9ac and H4K8ac) in the dorsal hippocampus were detected using the immunohistochemical method. The results indicated that there were significant age-related impairments of spatial learning and memory, decreased levels of H4K8ac, H3K9ac, and syntaxin-1, and increased levels of synaptotagmin-1 in the offspring mice from 12 months old to 22 months old compared to the same-age controls. Maternal LPS treatment significantly exacerbated the offspring impairments of spatial learning and memory, the reduction of H3K9ac, H4K8ac, and syntaxin-1, and the increment of synaptotagmin-1 from 12 months old to 22 months old compared to the same-age control groups. The changes in the neurobiological indicators significantly correlated with the impairments of spatial learning and memory. Furthermore, this correlation, besides the age and LPS-treatment effects, also showed a dose-dependent effect. Our results suggest that maternal inflammation during pregnancy could exacerbate age-related impairments of spatial learning and memory, and neurobiochemical indicators in the offspring CD-1 mice from midlife to senectitude.

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