Recent findings show that parvalbumin (PV) interneuron function is impaired in Alzheimer's disease (AD), and that this impairment in PV function can be linked to network dysfunction and memory deficits. PV cells are often associated with a specific extracellular matrix, the perineuronal net (PNN). PNNs are believed to protect PV cell integrity, and whether the amyloidopathy affects PNNs remains unclear. Here, we evaluated the number of PV cells with and without PNNs in the hippocampus of the Tg2576 mouse model of AD at different stages of the disease. We show a deficit of PV+ and/or PV+/PNN+ cells in the areas CA1, CA2, and CA3 in Tg2576 as young as 3 months of age. Importantly, transient exposure to an enriched environment, which has proven long-lasting beneficial effects on memory in AD subjects, rescues the PV/PNN cell number deficits. We conclude that cognitive improvements induced by enriched environment in AD mouse models could be supported by a remodeling of hippocampal PV cell network and their PNNs.
Keywords: Alzheimer's disease; Enriched housing; Hippocampus; Parvalbumin-expressing interneuron; Perineuronal net.
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