Targeting the prodromal stage of spinocerebellar ataxia type 17 mice: G-CSF in the prevention of motor deficits via upregulating chaperone and autophagy levels

Ya Chin Chang, Chia Wei Lin, Chen Ming Hsu, Guey Jen Lee-Chen, Ming Tsan Su, Long Sun Ro, Chiung Mei Chen, Hei Jen Huang, Hsiu Mei Hsieh-Li

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Spinocerebellar ataxia type 17 (SCA17), an autosomal dominant cerebellar ataxia, is a devastating, incurable disease caused by the polyglutamine (polyQ) expansion of transcription factor TATA binding protein (TBP). The polyQ expansion causes misfolding and aggregation of the mutant TBP, further leading to cytotoxicity and cell death. The well-recognized prodromal phase in many forms of neurodegeneration suggests a prolonged period of partial neuronal dysfunction prior to cell loss that may be amenable to therapeutic intervention. The objective of this study was to assess the effects and molecular mechanisms of granulocyte-colony stimulating factor (G-CSF) therapy during the pre-symptomatic stage in SCA17 mice. Treatment with G-CSF at the pre-symptomatic stage improved the motor coordination of SCA17 mice and reduced the cell loss, insoluble mutant TBP protein, and vacuole formation in the Purkinje neurons of these mice. The neuroprotective effects of G-CSF may be produced by increases in Hsp70, Beclin-1, LC3-II and the p-ERK survival pathway. Upregulation of chaperone and autophagy levels further enhances the clearance of mutant protein aggregation, slowing the progression of pathology in SCA17 mice. Therefore, we showed that the early intervention of G-CSF has a neuroprotective effect, delaying the progression of SCA17 in mutant mice via increases in the levels of chaperone expression and autophagy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)132-148
Number of pages17
JournalBrain Research
Publication statusPublished - 2016 Jan 1



  • Autophagy
  • Chaperone
  • G-CSF
  • SCA17
  • Spinocerebellar ataxia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Molecular Biology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Developmental Biology

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