Development of a rat model of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis expressing a human SOD1 transgene

Masashi Aoki, Shinsuke Kato, Makiko Nagai, Yasuto Itoyama

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Citations (Scopus)


Mutations in copper-zinc superoxide dismutase gene (SOD1) have been linked to some familial cases of ALS. We report here that rats that express a human SOD1 transgene with two different ALS-associated mutations (G93A and H46R) develop striking motor neuron degeneration and paralysis. By comparing the two transgenic rats with different SOD1 mutations, we demonstrate that the time course in these rats was similar to human SOD1-mediated familial ALS. As in the human disease and transgenic ALS mice, pathological analysis shows selective loss of motor neurons in the spinal cords of these transgenic rats. In addition, typical neuronal Lewy body-like hyaline inclusions as well as astrocytic hyaline inclusions identical to those in human familial ALS are observed in the spinal cords. The larger size of this rat model as compared with the ALS mice will facilitate studies involving manipulations of spinal fluid (implantation of intrathecal catheters for chronic therapeutic studies; CSF sampling) and spinal cord (e.g., direct administration of viral- and cell-mediated therapies).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)365-370
Number of pages6
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2005 Dec


  • Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis
  • Astrocytic hyaline inclusions
  • Lewy body-like hyaline inclusions
  • Mutation
  • Rat
  • SOD1
  • Transgenic

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Clinical Neurology


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