HIV-1 gp120 neurotoxicity proximally and at a distance from the point of exposure: protection by rSV40 delivery of antioxidant enzymes.Neurobiol Dis. 2009 Jun; 34(3):462-76.ND
Toxicity of HIV-1 envelope glycoprotein (gp120) for substantia nigra (SN) neurons may contribute to the Parkinsonian manifestations often seen in HIV-1-associated dementia (HAD). We studied the neurotoxicity of gp120 for dopaminergic neurons and potential neuroprotection by antioxidant gene delivery. Rats were injected stereotaxically into their caudate-putamen (CP); CP and (substantia nigra) SN neuron loss was quantified. The area of neuron loss extended several millimeters from the injection site, approximately 35% of the CP area. SN neurons, outside of this area of direct neurotoxicity, were also severely affected. Dopaminergic SN neurons (expressing tyrosine hydroxylase, TH, in the SN and dopamine transporter, DAT, in the CP) were mostly affected: intra-CP gp120 caused approximately 50% DAT+ SN neuron loss. Prior intra-CP gene delivery of Cu/Zn superoxide dismutase (SOD1) or glutathione peroxidase (GPx1) protected SN neurons from intra-CP gp120. Thus, SN dopaminergic neurons are highly sensitive to HIV-1 gp120-induced neurotoxicity, and antioxidant gene delivery, even at a distance, is protective.