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Abstract #2524

Spinal Cord MRI Water Diffusion Alterations are Linked to Early Axonal Degeneration in the YFP, G93A-SOD1 mice.

Rodolfo Gabriel Gatto1, Weiguo Li2, Manish Amin3, Luis Colon-Perez3, Jin Gao2, Thomas H. Mareci3, Scott T. Brady1, Gerardo A Morfini1, and Richard L Magin2

1Anatomy and Cell Biology, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL, United States, 2Biomedical Engineering, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL, United States, 3Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL, United States

Amyotrophic lateral Sclerosis (ALS) is characterized by progressive degeneration of spinal cord motor neurons. To address the role of axonal pathology in ALS, we generated a YFP,G93A-SOD1 reporter mice. Our goal in this study is to evaluate if presymptomatic alterations in MRI water diffusion in the YFP,G93A-SOD1 mice are related to alterations in axonal connectivity by histological methods. Results showed presymptomatic changes in diffusion parameters are associated to specific structural changes in axonal population. The use of this new animal model will help us to understand the structural basis of changes in water diffusion in ALS.

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