Neuroprotective effect of CTK 01512-2 recombinant toxin at the spinal cord in a model of Huntington's disease.

Joviano-Santos JV; Valadão PAC; Magalhães-Gomes MPS; Fernandes LF; Diniz DM; Machado TCG; Soares KB; Ladeira MS; Massensini AR; Gomez MV; Miranda AS; Tapia, JC; Guatimosim C.

Keywords: muscles, spinal cord, neuropeptides, huntington's disease, BACHD mice, CTK 01512-2


Phα1β is a neurotoxin from the venom of the Phoneutria nigriventer spider, available as CTK 01512-2, a recombinant peptide. Owing to its antinociceptive and analgesic properties, CTK 01512-2 has been described to alleviate neuroinflammatory responses. Despite the diverse actions of CTK 01512-2 on the nervous system, little is known regarding its neuroprotective effect, especially in neurodegenerative conditions such as Huntington's disease (HD), a genetic movement disorder without cure. Here, we investigated whether CTK 01512-2 has a neuroprotective effect in a mouse model of HD. We hypothesized that spinal cord neurons might represent a therapeutic target, because the spinal cord seems to be involved in the motor symptoms of HD (BACHD) mice. We treated BACHD mice with CTK 01512-2 by intrathecal injection and performed in vivo motor behavioural and morphological analyses in the CNS (brain and spinal cord) and muscles. Our data showed that intrathecal injection of CTK 01512-2 significantly improved motor performance in the open field task. CTK 01512-2 protected neurons in the spinal cord (but not in the brain) from death, suggesting a local effect. CTK 01512-2 exerted its neuroprotective effect by inhibiting BACHD neuronal apoptosis, as revealed by a reduction in caspase-3 in the spinal cord. CTK 01512-2 was also able to revert BACHD muscle atrophy. In conclusion, our data suggest a novel role for CTK 01512-2 acting directly in the spinal cord to ameliorate morphofunctional aspects of spinal cord neurons and muscles and improve the performance of BACHD mice in motor behavioural tests. Given that HD shares similar symptoms with many neurodegenerative conditions, the findings presented herein might also be applicable to other disorders.

Más información

Volumen: 107
Número: 8
Editorial: Wiley
Fecha de publicación: 2022
Página de inicio: 933
Página final: 945
Idioma: English
Financiamiento/Sponsor: FONDECYT 1200951
URL: 10.1113/EP090327