Osteoarthritis accelerates and exacerbates Alzheimer's disease pathology in mice

Stephanos Kyrkanides, Ross H. Tallents, Jen Nie H. Miller, Mallory E. Olschowka, Renee Johnson, Meixiang Yang, John A. Olschowka, Sabine M. Brouxhon, M. Kerry O'Banion

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

82 Scopus citations


Background: The purpose of this study was to investigate whether localized peripheral inflammation, such as osteoarthritis, contributes to neuroinflammation and neurodegenerative disease in vivo.Methods: We employed the inducible Col1-IL1βXAT mouse model of osteoarthritis, in which induction of osteoarthritis in the knees and temporomandibular joints resulted in astrocyte and microglial activation in the brain, accompanied by upregulation of inflammation-related gene expression. The biological significance of the link between peripheral and brain inflammation was explored in the APP/PS1 mouse model of Alzheimer's disease (AD) whereby osteoarthritis resulted in neuroinflammation as well as exacerbation and acceleration of AD pathology.Results: Induction of osteoarthritis exacerbated and accelerated the development of neuroinflammation, as assessed by glial cell activation and quantification of inflammation-related mRNAs, as well as Aβ pathology, assessed by the number and size of amyloid plaques, in the APP/PS1; Col1-IL1βXAT compound transgenic mouse.Conclusion: This work supports a model by which peripheral inflammation triggers the development of neuroinflammation and subsequently the induction of AD pathology. Better understanding of the link between peripheral localized inflammation, whether in the form of osteoarthritis, atherosclerosis or other conditions, and brain inflammation, may prove critical to our understanding of the pathophysiology of disorders such as Alzheimer's, Parkinson's and other neurodegenerative diseases.

Original languageEnglish
Article number112
JournalJournal of Neuroinflammation
StatePublished - Sep 7 2011

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported in part by NIH grants AG28325, AR055035 and DE017765 to SK and NS048522 and AG030149 to MKO as well as a grant from the Caroline Schmitt Foundation.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Neuroscience
  • Immunology
  • Neurology
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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