Influenza A virus (H1N1) infection induces microglia activation and temporal dysbalance in glutamatergic synaptic transmission [article]

Henning Peter Düsedau, Johannes Steffen, Caio Andreeta Figueiredo, Julia Désirée Boehme, Kristin Schultz, Christian Erck, Martin Korte, Heidi Faber-Zuschratter, Karl-Heinz Smalla, Daniela Dieterich, Andrea Kröger, Dunja Bruder (+1 others)
2021 bioRxiv   pre-print
Influenza A virus (IAV) causes respiratory tract disease and is responsible for seasonal and reoccurring epidemics affecting all age groups. Next to typical disease symptoms such as fever and fatigue, IAV infection has been associated with behavioral alterations presumably contributing to the development of major depression. Previous experiments using IAV/H1N1 infection models have shown impaired hippocampal neuronal morphology and cognitive abilities, but the underlying pathways have not been
more » ... ully described. In this study, we demonstrate that infection with a low dose non-neurotrophic H1N1 strain of IAV causes ample peripheral immune response followed by a temporary blood-brain barrier disturbance. Although histological examination did not reveal obvious pathological processes in the brains of IAV-infected mice, detailed multidimensional flow cytometric characterization of immune cells uncovered subtle alterations in the activation status of microglia cells. More specifically, we detected an altered expression pattern of major histocompatibility complex class I and II, CD80, and F4/80 accompanied by elevated mRNA levels of CD36, CD68, C1QA, and C3, suggesting evolved synaptic pruning. To closer evaluate how these profound changes affect synaptic balance, we established a highly sensitive multiplex flow cytometry-based approach called Flow Synaptometry. The introduction of this novel technique enabled us to simultaneously quantify the abundance of pre- and postsynapses from distinct brain regions. Our data reveal a significant reduction of VGLUT1 in excitatory presynaptic terminals in the Cortex and Hippocampus, identifying a subtle dysbalance in glutamatergic synapse transmission upon H1N1 infection in mice. In conclusion, our results highlight the consequences of systemic IAV-triggered inflammation on the central nervous system and the induction and progression of neuronal alterations.
doi:10.1101/2021.08.30.458184 fatcat:qul2mkd7gvcnbh643ng2f6krt4