by Gustavo A. Rodriguez, Geoffrey M. Barrett, Karen E. Duff, S. Abid Hussaini
High levels of the amyloid-beta (Aβ) peptide have been shown to disrupt neuronal function and induce hyperexcitability, but it is unclear what effects Aβ-associated hyperexcitability may have on tauopathy pathogenesis or propagation in vivo. Using a novel transgenic mouse line to model the impact of human APP (hAPP)/Aβ accumulation on tauopathy in the entorhinal cortex–hippocampal (EC-HIPP) network, we demonstrate that hAPP overexpression aggravates EC-Tau aggregation and accelerates pathological tau spread into the hippocampus. In vivo recordings revealed a strong role for hAPP/Aβ, but not tau, in the emergence of EC neuronal hyperactivity and impaired theta rhythmicity. Chronic chemogenetic attenuation of EC neuronal hyperactivity led to reduced hAPP/Aβ accumulation and reduced pathological tau spread into downstream hippocampus. These data strongly support the hypothesis that in Alzheimer’s disease (AD), Aβ-associated hyperactivity accelerates the progression of pathological tau along vulnerable neuronal circuits, and demonstrates the utility of chronic, neuromodulatory approaches in ameliorating AD pathology in vivo.