FTDP-17 tau and model Hirano bodies differentially modulate cell death. H4 cells were transiently transfected with equal amounts of plasmid DNA encoding AICD and/or a single tau variant in the presence or absence of model Hirano bodies (CT-GFP). Model Hirano bodies and a tau variant in the absence of AICD (check bars) or presence of AICD (striped bars). GFP and a tau variant in the absence of AICD (gray bars) or the presence of AICD (black bars). A. Tau variants 352WT, 441WT, or 352PHP. B. Tau variants R5H or R406W. C. Tau variants G272V and P301L. D. Tau variants K18 and K18ΔK280. Model Hirano bodies protect from cell death induced by AICD and tau, except for tau mutants G272V and P301L. Note that G272V and P301L potentiate cell death in the presence of model Hirano bodies alone. *p < 0.05, **p < 0.01, ***p < 0.001. Error bars represent the standard deviation.