Tau-mediated neurodegeneration is a hallmark of Alzheimer's disease. Primary tauopathies are characterized by pathological tau accumulation and neuronal and synaptic loss. Apolipoprotein E (ApoE)-mediated neuroinflammation is involved in the progression of tau-mediated neurodegeneration, and emerging evidence suggests that the gut microbiota regulates neuroinflammation in an APOE genotype-dependent manner. However, evidence of a causal link between the microbiota and tau-mediated neurodegeneration is lacking. In this study, we characterized a genetically engineered mouse model of tauopathy expressing human ApoE isoforms reared under germ-free conditions or after perturbation of their gut microbiota with antibiotics. Both of these manipulations reduced gliosis, tau pathology, and neurodegeneration in a sex- and ApoE isoform-dependent manner. The findings reveal mechanistic and translationally relevant interrelationships between the microbiota, neuroinflammation, and tau-mediated neurodegeneration.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbereadd1236
Issue number6628
StatePublished - Jan 13 2023


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