The M5 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor (M5R) has been shown to play a crucial role in mediating acetylcholine-dependent dilation of cerebral blood vessels. We show that male M5R-/- mice displayed constitutive constriction of cerebral arteries using magnetic resonance angiography in vivo. Male M5R-/- mice exhibited a significantly reduced cerebral blood flow (CBF) in the cerebral cortex, hippocampus, basal ganglia, and thalamus. Cortical and hippocampal pyramidal neurons from M5R-/- mice showed neuronal atrophy. Hippocampus-dependent spatial and nonspatial memory was also impaired in M5R-/- mice. In M5R-/- mice, CA3 pyramidal cells displayed a significantly attenuated frequency of the spontaneous postsynaptic current and long-term potentiation was significantly impaired at the mossy fiber-CA3 synapse. Our findings suggest that impaired M5R signaling may play a role in the pathophysiology of cerebrovascular deficits. The M5 receptor may represent an attractive novel therapeutic target to ameliorate memory deficits caused by impaired cerebrovascular function.
- Cerebral blood flow
- Muscarinic acetylcholine receptor
- Neuronal atrophy
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