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Amyloid-PET predicts inhibition of de novo plaque formation upon chronic γ-secretase modulator treatment

Mol Psychiatry. 2015 Jun 9. doi: 10.1038/mp.2015.74. [Epub ahead of print]

Authors/Editors: Brendel M, Jaworska A, Herms J, Trambauer J, Rötzer C, Gildehaus FJ, Carlsen J, Cumming P, Bylund J, Luebbers T, Bartenstein P, Steiner H, Haass C, Baumann K, Rominger A.
Publication Date: 2015



In a positron-emission tomography (PET) study with the β-amyloid (Aβ) tracer [18F]-florbetaben, we previously showed that Aβ deposition in transgenic mice expressing Swedish mutant APP (APP-Swe) mice can be tracked in vivo. γ-Secretase modulators (GSMs) are promising therapeutic agents by reducing generation of the aggregation prone Aβ42 species without blocking general γ-secretase activity. We now aimed to investigate the effects of a novel GSM [8-(4-Fluoro-phenyl)-[1,2,4]triazolo[1,5-a]pyridin-2-yl]-[1-(3-methyl-[1,2,4]thiadiazol-5-yl)-piperidin-4-yl]-amine (RO5506284) displaying high potency in vitro and in vivo on amyloid plaque burden and used longitudinal Aβ-microPET to trace individual animals. Female transgenic (TG) APP-Swe mice aged 12 months (m) were assigned to vehicle (TG-VEH, n=12) and treatment groups (TG-GSM, n=12), which received daily RO5506284 (30 mg kg-1) treatment for 6 months. A total of 131 Aβ-PET recordings were acquired at baseline (12 months), follow-up 1 (16 months) and follow-up 2 (18 months, termination scan), whereupon histological and biochemical analyses of Aβ were performed. We analyzed the PET data as VOI-based cortical standard-uptake-value ratios (SUVR), using cerebellum as reference region. Individual plaque load assessed by PET remained nearly constant in the TG-GSM group during 6 months of RO5506284 treatment, whereas it increased progressively in the TG-VEH group. Baseline SUVR in TG-GSM mice correlated with Δ%-SUVR, indicating individual response prediction. Insoluble Aβ42 was reduced by 56% in the TG-GSM versus the TG-VEH group relative to the individual baseline plaque load estimates. Furthermore, plaque size histograms showed differing distribution between groups of TG mice, with fewer small plaques in TG-GSM animals. Taken together, in the first Aβ-PET study monitoring prolonged treatment with a potent GSM in an AD mouse model, we found clear attenuation of de novo amyloidogenesis. Moreover, longitudinal PET allows non-invasive assessment of individual plaque-load kinetics, thereby accommodating inter-animal variations.

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