JPET Highlight: TAK-063, a Novel Phosphodiesterase 10A Inhibitor, Protects from Striatal Neurodegeneration and Ameliorates Behavioral Deficits
Huntington’s disease (HD) is characterized by progressive loss of striatal medium spiny neurons (MSNs) that constitute direct and indirect pathways: the indirect pathway MSNs is more vulnerable than the direct pathway MSNs. Impairment of cAMP/cGMP signaling by mutant huntingtin is hypothesized as the molecular mechanism underlying degeneration of MSNs. Phosphodiesterase 10A (PDE10A) is selectively expressed in MSNs and degrades both cAMP and cGMP; thus, PDE10A inhibition can restore impaired cAMP/cGMP signaling. Compared with other PDE10A inhibitors, a novel PDE10A inhibitor 1-[2-fluoro-4-(1H-pyrazol-1-yl)phenyl]-5-methoxy-3-(1-phenyl-1H-pyrazol-5-yl)pyridazin-4(1H)-one (TAK-063) showed comparable activation of the indirect pathway MSNs, whereas it produced partial activation of the direct pathway MSNs by its faster off-rate property. In this study, we report the effects of TAK-063 on striatal neurodegeneration and behavioral deficits in the R6/2 mouse model of HD. TAK-063 at 0.5 or 5 mg/kg/day was orally administrated from 4.5–5 to 12 weeks of age, and the effects of TAK-063 were characterized over this period. Repeated treatment with TAK-063 suppressed the reduction of brain-derived neurotrophic factor levels, prevented striatal neurodegeneration, and suppressed increase in seizure frequency, but did not prevent the suppression of body weight gain. As for motor deficits, TAK-063 suppressed the development of clasping behavior and motor dysfunctions, including decreased motor activity in the open field, but did not improve the impairment in motor coordination on the rotarod. Regarding cognitive functions, TAK-063 improved deficits in procedural learning, but was ineffective for deficits in contextual memory. These results suggest that TAK-063 reduces striatal neurodegeneration and ameliorates behavioral deficits in R6/2 mice.
See the article by Harada et al. at Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics January 2017, 360 (1) 75-83; DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1124/jpet.116.237388