Long-term memory deficits in Huntington's disease are associated with reduced CBP histone acetylase activity

A. Giralt, M. Puigdellívol, O. Carretón, P. Paoletti, J. Valero, A. Parra-damas, C. A. Saura, J. Alberch, S. Ginés

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Huntington's disease (HD) is an autosomal dominant progressive neurodegenerative disorder caused by an expanded CAG/polyglutamine repeat in the coding region of the huntingtin (htt) gene. Although HD is classically considered a motor disorder, there is now considerable evidence that early cognitive deficits appear in patients before the onset of motor disturbances. Here we demonstrate early impairment of long-term spatial and recognition memory in heterozygous HD knock-in mutant mice (Hdh Q7/Q111), a genetically accurate HD mouse model. Cognitive deficits are associated with reduced hippocampal expression of CREB-binding protein (CBP) and diminished levels of histone H3 acetylation. In agreement with reduced CBP, the expression of CREB/CBP target genes related to memory, such c-fos, Arc and Nr4a2, was significantly reduced in the hippocampus of Hdh Q7/Q111 mice compared with wild-type mice. Finally, and consistent with a role of CBP in cognitive impairment in Hdh Q7/Q111 mice, administration of the histone deacetylase inhibitor trichostatin A rescues recognition memory deficits and transcription of selective CREB/CBP target genes in Hdh Q7/Q111 mice. These findings demonstrate an important role for CBP in cognitive dysfunction in HD and suggest the use of histone deacetylase inhibitors as a novel therapeutic strategy for the treatment of memory deficits in this disease. © The Author 2011. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Article numberddr552
Pages (from-to)1203-1216
JournalHuman Molecular Genetics
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2012


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