Previous reports indicate a potential role for signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3) in amyloid-β (Aβ) processing and neuritic plaque pathogenesis. In the present study, the impact of STAT3 inhibition on cognition, cerebrovascular function, amyloid pathology, oxidative stress, and neuroinflammation was studied using in vitro and in vivo models of Alzheimer’s disease (AD)-related pathology. For in vitro experiments, human brain vascular smooth muscle cells (HBVSMC) and human brain microvascular endothelial cells (HBMEC) were used, and these cultured cells were exposed to Aβ peptides followed by measurement of activated forms of STAT3 expression and reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation. Further, 6 months old 5XFAD/APOE4 (5XE4) mice and age-matched negative littermates were used for in vivo experiments. These mice were treated with STAT3 specific inhibitor, LLL-12 for 2 months followed by neurobehavioral and histopathological assessment. In vitro experiments showed exposure of cerebrovascular cells to Aβ peptides upregulated activated forms of STAT3 and produced STAT3-mediated vascular oxidative stress. 5XE4 mice treated with the STAT3-specific inhibitor (LLL-12) improved cognitive functions and functional connectivity and augmented cerebral blood flow. These functional improvements were associated with a reduction in neuritic plaques, cerebral amyloid angiopathy (CAA), oxidative stress, and neuroinflammation. Reduction in amyloid precursor protein (APP) processing and attenuation of oxidative modification of lipoprotein receptor related protein-1 (LRP-1) were identified as potential underlying mechanisms. These results demonstrate the broad impact of STAT3 on cognitive functions, parenchymal and vascular amyloid pathology and highlight the therapeutic potential of STAT3 specific inhibition for treatment of AD and CAA.

Original languageEnglish
Article number193
JournalActa Neuropathologica Communications
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 2021


  • Alzheimer’s disease
  • Amyloid-β
  • Cerebral amyloid angiopathy
  • Functional connectivity
  • Neuroinflammation
  • Reactive oxygen species
  • STAT3


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