A new murine model of giant proximal axonopathy

D. D. Tshala-Katumbay, V. S. Palmer, R. J. Kayton, M. I. Sabri, P. S. Spencer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


The aromatic γ-diketone 1,2-diacetylbenzene (1,2-DAB), the putative active metabolite of the organic solvent 1,2-diethylbenzene, forms blue-colored polymeric protein adducts and induces the formation of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS)-like giant, intraspinal neurofilamentous axonal swellings in Sprague Dawley rats. The pathogenetic mechanism of this neuropathy has yet to be understood. We assessed whether these pathological changes are also seen in the C57BL/6 mouse, the animal of choice for toxicogenomic studies. Mice were treated intraperitoneally with 30, 35, 50, or 70 mg/kg 1,2-DAB or its inactive isomer 1,3-DAB per day (or on alternate days) for up to 43 days. Animals treated with 30 or 35 mg/kg per day 1,2-DAB, but not with 1,3-DAB, developed muscle spasms and progressive weakness, most prominently in hind limbs. Light microscopy revealed swollen axons in spinal anterior horns and proximal ventral roots, and to a lesser extent in dorsal root ganglia of 1,2-DAB-treated animals. Ultrastructural examination of swollen axons revealed clumps of maloriented 10-nm neurofilaments. Sciatic nerves showed clustering of axonal microtubules and other organelles. These findings are qualitatively comparable to those reported in rats treated with 1,2-DAB and represent a suitable phenotype with which to explore molecular mechanisms of proximal, giant neurofilamentous axonopathy using proteomic and genomic technologies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)405-410
Number of pages6
JournalActa Neuropathologica
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2005


  • 1,2-Diacetylbenzene
  • Axonal swellings
  • Clustered microtubules
  • Maloriented neurofilaments
  • γ-Diketone neuropathy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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