This review focuses on recent developments in our understanding of neurodegeneration at the mammalian neuromuscular junction. We provide evidence to support a hypothesis of compartmental neurodegeneration, whereby synaptic degeneration occurs by a separate, distinct mechanism from cell body and axonal degeneration. Studies of the spontaneous mutant Wld(s) mouse, in which Wallerian degeneration is characteristically slow, provide key evidence in support of this hypothesis. Some features of synaptic degeneration in the absence of Wallerian degeneration resemble synapse elimination in neonatal muscle. This and other forms of synaptic plasticity may be accessible to further investigations, exploiting advantages afforded by the Wld(s) mutant, or transgenic mice that express the Wld(s) gene.
|Number of pages||13|
|Journal||Journal of Physiology|
|Issue number||Pt 3|
|Publication status||Published - 1 Aug 2001|
- Mice, Mutant Strains
- Neuronal Plasticity
- Wallerian Degeneration