Background and purpose: We evaluated the effects of 1-(3',4'-dichloro-2-fluoro[1,1'-biphenyl]-4-yl)-cyclopropanecarboxylic acid (CHF5074), a new gamma-secretase modulator, on brain beta-amyloid pathology and spatial memory in transgenic mice expressing the Swedish and London mutations of human amyloid precursor protein (hAPP).
Experimental approach: Sixty 6-month-old hAPP mice were treated for 6 months with CHF5074 or ibuprofen (375 ppm in the diet) or standard diet. Twenty-one wild-type mice received standard diet.
Key results: Compared with transgenic controls, CHF5074 treatment significantly reduced the area occupied by plaques in cortex (P = 0.003) and hippocampus (P = 0.004). The number of plaques were also reduced by CHF5074 in both cortex (P = 0.022) and hippocampus (P = 0.005). Plaque-associated microglia in CHF5074-treated animals was lower than in transgenic controls in cortex (P = 0.008) and hippocampus (P = 0.002). Ibuprofen treatment significantly reduced microglia area in cortex and hippocampus but not beta-amyloid burden. On the last day of the Morris water maze, transgenic controls performed significantly worse than the non-transgenic animals and the CHF5074-treated transgenic mice, on the swimming path to reach the hidden platform. Ibuprofen-treated animals did not perform significantly better than transgenic controls.
Conclusions and implications: Chronic CHF5074 treatment reduced brain beta-amyloid burden, associated microglia inflammation and attenuated spatial memory deficit in hAPP mice. This novel gamma-secretase modulator is a promising therapeutic agent for Alzheimer's disease.