Background. Physical exercise can reduce the risk of developing chronic diseases and
slow the onset of neurodegenerative diseases. Since it has not been assessed which kind
of training protocol might positively modulate both synaptic and muscular plasticity in
neurodegenerative diseases, we studied in a mouse model of Niemann Pick type C disease,
a model of minimal Alzheimer’s Disease, the effect of a short term protocol.
Methods. We evaluated the effect of a short term, aerobic uniform exercise training on
synaptic and muscle plasticity in three different mice groups: WT controls, NPC1+/-
and NPC1-/- animals. The results were compared with those obtained in the sedentary
respective groups. We analyzed the effects on synaptic plasticity by in vitro extracellular
recordings in hippocampal mouse slices; moreover hippocampal and muscle tissue
morphological structure have been investigated by transmission electron microscopy, to
highlight any structural and functional changes due to training.
Results. The results indicate a rescue of long-term potentiation in homozygous but not
in heterozygous mice slices and an induction of neuronal plasticity, observed by morphological
analysis, both in homozygous and in heterozygous trained mice.
Conclusions. Hence this protocol is adequate to improve long term potenti