Rapid microglial response around amyloid pathology after systemic anti-Aβ antibody administration in PDAPP mice

Jessica Koenigsknecht-Talboo, Melanie Meyer-Luehmann, Maia Parsadanian, Monica Garcia-Alloza, Mary Beth Finn, Bradley T. Hyman, Brian J. Bacskai, David M. Holtzman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

127 Scopus citations


Aggregation of amyloid-β (Aβ) peptide in the brain in the form of neuritic plaques and cerebral amyloid angiopathy (CAA) is a key feature of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Microglial cells surround aggregated Aβ and are believed to play a role in AD pathogenesis. A therapy for AD that has entered clinical trials is the administration of anti-Aβ antibodies. One mechanism by which certain anti-Aβ antibodies have been proposed to exert their effects is via antibody-mediated microglial activation. Whether, when, or to what extent microglial activation occurs after systemic administration of anti-Aβ antibodies has not been fully assessed. We administered an anti-Aβ antibody (m3D6) that binds aggregated Aβ to PDAPP mice, an AD mouse model that was bred to contain fluorescent microglia. Three days after systemic administration of m3D6, there was a marked increase in both the number of microglial cells and processes per cell visualized in vivo by multiphoton microscopy. These changes required the Fc domain of m3D6 and were not observed with an antibody specific to soluble Aβ. These findings demonstrate that some effects of antibodies that recognize aggregated Aβ are rapid, involve microglia, and provide insight into the mechanism of action of a specific passive immunotherapy for AD.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)14156-14164
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Neuroscience
Issue number52
StatePublished - Dec 24 2008


  • Alzheimer's disease
  • Cerebral amyloid angiopathy
  • Microglia
  • Neuritic plaques
  • Passive immunization
  • β-amyloid


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