Amyloid-β 2 (Aβ 2) plaque deposition in specific brain regions is a pathological hallmark of Alzheimer's disease. However, the mechanism underlying the regional vulnerability to Aβ 2 deposition in Alzheimer's disease is unknown. Herein, we provide evidence that endogenous neuronal activity regulates the regional concentration of interstitial fluid (ISF) Aβ 2, which drives local Aβ 2 aggregation. Using in vivo microdialysis, we show that ISF Aβ 2 concentrations in several brain regions of APP transgenic mice before plaque deposition were commensurate with the degree of subsequent plaque deposition and with the concentration of lactate, a marker of neuronal activity. Furthermore, unilateral vibrissal stimulation increased ISF Aβ 2, and unilateral vibrissal deprivation decreased ISF Aβ 2 and lactate, in contralateral barrel cortex. Long-term unilateral vibrissal deprivation decreased amyloid plaque formation and growth. Our results suggest a mechanism to account for the vulnerability of specific brain regions to Aβ 2 deposition in Alzheimer's disease.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)750-756
Number of pages7
JournalNature neuroscience
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2011


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