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Sample records for nonfibrillar amyloid oligomers

  1. Conversion of non-fibrillar {beta}-sheet oligomers into amyloid fibrils in Alzheimer's disease amyloid peptide aggregation

    SciTech Connect

    Benseny-Cases, Nuria; Cocera, Mercedes; Cladera, Josep

    2007-10-05

    A{beta}(1-40) is one of the main components of the fibrils found in amyloid plaques, a hallmark of brains affected by Alzheimer's disease. It is known that prior to the formation of amyloid fibrils in which the peptide adopts a well-ordered intermolecular {beta}-sheet structure, peptide monomers associate forming low and high molecular weight oligomers. These oligomers have been previously described in electron microscopy, AFM, and exclusion chromatography studies. Their specific secondary structures however, have not yet been well established. A major problem when comparing aggregation and secondary structure determinations in concentration-dependent processes such as amyloid aggregation is the different concentration range required in each type of experiment. In the present study we used the dye Thioflavin T (ThT), Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy, and electron microscopy in order to structurally characterize the different aggregated species which form during the A{beta}(1-40) fibril formation process. A unique sample containing 90 {mu}M peptide was used. The results show that oligomeric species which form during the lag phase of the aggregation kinetics are a mixture of unordered, helical, and intermolecular non-fibrillar {beta}-structures. The number of oligomers and the amount of non-fibrillar {beta}-structures grows throughout the lag phase and during the elongation phase these non-fibrillar {beta}-structures are transformed into fibrillar (amyloid) {beta}-structures, formed by association of high molecular weight intermediates.

  2. Non-fibrillar amyloid-{beta} peptide reduces NMDA-induced neurotoxicity, but not AMPA-induced neurotoxicity

    SciTech Connect

    Niidome, Tetsuhiro; Goto, Yasuaki; Kato, Masaru; Wang, Pi-Lin; Goh, Saori; Tanaka, Naoki; Akaike, Akinori; Kihara, Takeshi; Sugimoto, Hachiro

    2009-09-04

    Amyloid-{beta} peptide (A{beta}) is thought to be linked to the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease. Recent studies suggest that A{beta} has important physiological roles in addition to its pathological roles. We recently demonstrated that A{beta}42 protects hippocampal neurons from glutamate-induced neurotoxicity, but the relationship between A{beta}42 assemblies and their neuroprotective effects remains largely unknown. In this study, we prepared non-fibrillar and fibrillar A{beta}42 based on the results of the thioflavin T assay, Western blot analysis, and atomic force microscopy, and examined the effects of non-fibrillar and fibrillar A{beta}42 on glutamate-induced neurotoxicity. Non-fibrillar A{beta}42, but not fibrillar A{beta}42, protected hippocampal neurons from glutamate-induced neurotoxicity. Furthermore, non-fibrillar A{beta}42 decreased both neurotoxicity and increases in the intracellular Ca{sup 2+} concentration induced by N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA), but not by {alpha}-amino-3-hydrozy-5-methyl-4-isoxazole propionic acid (AMPA). Our results suggest that non-fibrillar A{beta}42 protects hippocampal neurons from glutamate-induced neurotoxicity through regulation of the NMDA receptor.

  3. Atomic View of a Toxic Amyloid Small Oligomer

    SciTech Connect

    Laganowsky, Arthur; Liu, Cong; Sawaya, Michael R.; Whitelegge, Julian P.; Park, Jiyong; Zhao, Minglei; Pensalfini, Anna; Soriaga, Angela B.; Landau, Meytal; Teng, Poh K.; Cascio, Duilio; Glabe, Charles; Eisenberg, David

    2012-04-30

    Amyloid diseases, including Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, and the prion conditions, are each associated with a particular protein in fibrillar form. These amyloid fibrils were long suspected to be the disease agents, but evidence suggests that smaller, often transient and polymorphic oligomers are the toxic entities. Here, we identify a segment of the amyloid-forming protein {alpha}{beta} crystallin, which forms an oligomeric complex exhibiting properties of other amyloid oligomers: {beta}-sheet-rich structure, cytotoxicity, and recognition by an oligomer-specific antibody. The x-ray-derived atomic structure of the oligomer reveals a cylindrical barrel, formed from six antiparallel protein strands, that we term a cylindrin. The cylindrin structure is compatible with a sequence segment from the {beta}-amyloid protein of Alzheimer's disease. Cylindrins offer models for the hitherto elusive structures of amyloid oligomers.

  4. Zinc-Amyloid Interactions on a Millisecond Time-Scale Stabilize Non-Fibrillar Alzheimer Related Species

    SciTech Connect

    Noy,D.; Solomonov, I.; Sinkevich, O.; Arad, A.; Kjaer, K.; Sagi, I.

    2008-01-01

    The role of zinc, an essential element for normal brain function, in the pathology of Alzheimer's disease (AD) is poorly understood. On one hand, physiological and genetic evidence from transgenic mouse models supports its pathogenic role in promoting the deposition of the amyloid {beta}-protein (A{beta}) in senile plaques. On the other hand, levels of extracellular ('free') zinc in the brain, as inferred by the levels of zinc in cerebrospinal fluid, were found to be too low for inducing A{beta} aggregation. Remarkably, the release of transient high local concentrations of zinc during rapid synaptic events was reported. The role of such free zinc pulses in promoting A{beta} aggregation has never been established. Using a range of time-resolved structural and spectroscopic techniques, we found that zinc, when introduced in millisecond pulses of micromolar concentrations, immediately interacts with A{beta} 1-40 and promotes its aggregation. These interactions specifically stabilize non-fibrillar pathogenic related aggregate forms and prevent the formation of A{beta} fibrils (more benign species) presumably by interfering with the self-assembly process of A{beta}. These in vitro results strongly suggest a significant role for zinc pulses in A{beta} pathology. We further propose that by interfering with A{beta} self-assembly, which leads to insoluble, non-pathological fibrillar forms, zinc stabilizes transient, harmful amyloid forms. This report argues that zinc represents a class of molecular pathogens that effectively perturb the self-assembly of benign A{beta} fibrils, and stabilize harmful non-fibrillar forms.

  5. High-resolution NMR characterization of low abundance oligomers of amyloid-β without purification

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kotler, Samuel A.; Brender, Jeffrey R.; Vivekanandan, Subramanian; Suzuki, Yuta; Yamamoto, Kazutoshi; Monette, Martine; Krishnamoorthy, Janarthanan; Walsh, Patrick; Cauble, Meagan; Holl, Mark M. Banaszak; Marsh, E. Neil. G.; Ramamoorthy, Ayyalusamy

    2015-07-01

    Alzheimer’s disease is characterized by the misfolding and self-assembly of the amyloidogenic protein amyloid-β (Aβ). The aggregation of Aβ leads to diverse oligomeric states, each of which may be potential targets for intervention. Obtaining insight into Aβ oligomers at the atomic level has been a major challenge to most techniques. Here, we use magic angle spinning recoupling 1H-1H NMR experiments to overcome many of these limitations. Using 1H-1H dipolar couplings as a NMR spectral filter to remove both high and low molecular weight species, we provide atomic-level characterization of a non-fibrillar aggregation product of the Aβ1-40 peptide using non-frozen samples without isotopic labeling. Importantly, this spectral filter allows the detection of the specific oligomer signal without a separate purification procedure. In comparison to other solid-state NMR techniques, the experiment is extraordinarily selective and sensitive. A resolved 2D spectra could be acquired of a small population of oligomers (6 micrograms, 7% of the total) amongst a much larger population of monomers and fibers (93% of the total). By coupling real-time 1H-1H NMR experiments with other biophysical measurements, we show that a stable, primarily disordered Aβ1-40 oligomer 5-15 nm in diameter can form and coexist in parallel with the well-known cross-β-sheet fibrils.

  6. High-resolution NMR characterization of low abundance oligomers of amyloid-β without purification

    PubMed Central

    Kotler, Samuel A.; Brender, Jeffrey R.; Vivekanandan, Subramanian; Suzuki, Yuta; Yamamoto, Kazutoshi; Monette, Martine; Krishnamoorthy, Janarthanan; Walsh, Patrick; Cauble, Meagan; Holl, Mark M. Banaszak; Marsh, E. Neil. G.; Ramamoorthy, Ayyalusamy

    2015-01-01

    Alzheimer’s disease is characterized by the misfolding and self-assembly of the amyloidogenic protein amyloid-β (Aβ). The aggregation of Aβ leads to diverse oligomeric states, each of which may be potential targets for intervention. Obtaining insight into Aβ oligomers at the atomic level has been a major challenge to most techniques. Here, we use magic angle spinning recoupling 1H-1H NMR experiments to overcome many of these limitations. Using 1H-1H dipolar couplings as a NMR spectral filter to remove both high and low molecular weight species, we provide atomic-level characterization of a non-fibrillar aggregation product of the Aβ1-40 peptide using non-frozen samples without isotopic labeling. Importantly, this spectral filter allows the detection of the specific oligomer signal without a separate purification procedure. In comparison to other solid-state NMR techniques, the experiment is extraordinarily selective and sensitive. A resolved 2D spectra could be acquired of a small population of oligomers (6 micrograms, 7% of the total) amongst a much larger population of monomers and fibers (93% of the total). By coupling real-time 1H-1H NMR experiments with other biophysical measurements, we show that a stable, primarily disordered Aβ1-40 oligomer 5–15 nm in diameter can form and coexist in parallel with the well-known cross-β-sheet fibrils. PMID:26138908

  7. High-resolution NMR characterization of low abundance oligomers of amyloid-β without purification.

    PubMed

    Kotler, Samuel A; Brender, Jeffrey R; Vivekanandan, Subramanian; Suzuki, Yuta; Yamamoto, Kazutoshi; Monette, Martine; Krishnamoorthy, Janarthanan; Walsh, Patrick; Cauble, Meagan; Holl, Mark M Banaszak; Marsh, E Neil G; Ramamoorthy, Ayyalusamy

    2015-07-03

    Alzheimer's disease is characterized by the misfolding and self-assembly of the amyloidogenic protein amyloid-β (Aβ). The aggregation of Aβ leads to diverse oligomeric states, each of which may be potential targets for intervention. Obtaining insight into Aβ oligomers at the atomic level has been a major challenge to most techniques. Here, we use magic angle spinning recoupling (1)H-(1)H NMR experiments to overcome many of these limitations. Using (1)H-(1)H dipolar couplings as a NMR spectral filter to remove both high and low molecular weight species, we provide atomic-level characterization of a non-fibrillar aggregation product of the Aβ1-40 peptide using non-frozen samples without isotopic labeling. Importantly, this spectral filter allows the detection of the specific oligomer signal without a separate purification procedure. In comparison to other solid-state NMR techniques, the experiment is extraordinarily selective and sensitive. A resolved 2D spectra could be acquired of a small population of oligomers (6 micrograms, 7% of the total) amongst a much larger population of monomers and fibers (93% of the total). By coupling real-time (1)H-(1)H NMR experiments with other biophysical measurements, we show that a stable, primarily disordered Aβ1-40 oligomer 5-15 nm in diameter can form and coexist in parallel with the well-known cross-β-sheet fibrils.

  8. Breaking the Code of AmyloidOligomers

    PubMed Central

    Lesné, Sylvain E.

    2013-01-01

    Departing from the original postulates that defined various neurodegenerative disorders, accumulating evidence supports a major role for soluble forms of amyloid proteins as initiator toxins in Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, frontotemporal dementias, and prion diseases. Soluble multimeric assemblies of amyloid-β, tau, α-synuclein, and the prion protein are generally englobed under the term oligomers. Due to their biophysical properties, soluble amyloid oligomers can adopt multiple conformations and sizes that potentially confer differential biological activities. Therein lies the problem: with sporadic knowledge and limited tools to identify, characterize, and study amyloid oligomers, how can we solve the enigma of their respective role(s) in the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative disorders? To further our understanding of these devastating diseases, the code of the amyloid oligomers must be broken. PMID:24072999

  9. Stabilization, Characterization, and Selective Removal of Cystatin C Amyloid Oligomers*

    PubMed Central

    Östner, Gustav; Lindström, Veronica; Hjort Christensen, Per; Kozak, Maciej; Abrahamson, Magnus; Grubb, Anders

    2013-01-01

    The pathophysiological process in amyloid disorders usually involves the transformation of a functional monomeric protein via potentially toxic oligomers into amyloid fibrils. The structure and properties of the intermediary oligomers have been difficult to study due to their instability and dynamic equilibrium with smaller and larger species. In hereditary cystatin C amyloid angiopathy, a cystatin C variant is deposited in arterial walls and cause brain hemorrhage in young adults. In the present investigation, we use redox experiments of monomeric cystatin C, stabilized against domain swapping by an intramolecular disulfide bond, to generate stable oligomers (dimers, trimers, tetramers, decamers, and high molecular weight oligomers). These oligomers were characterized concerning size by gel filtration, polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis, and mass spectrometry, shape by electron and atomic force microscopy, and, function by assays of their capacity to inhibit proteases. The results showed the oligomers to be highly ordered, domain-swapped assemblies of cystatin C and that the oligomers could not build larger oligomers, or fibrils, without domain swapping. The stabilized oligomers were used to induce antibody formation in rabbits. After immunosorption, using immobilized monomeric cystatin C, and elution from columns with immobilized cystatin C oligomers, oligomer-specific antibodies were obtained. These could be used to selectively remove cystatin C dimers from biological fluids containing both dimers and monomers. PMID:23629649

  10. Toxic species in amyloid disorders: Oligomers or mature fibrils

    PubMed Central

    Verma, Meenakshi; Vats, Abhishek; Taneja, Vibha

    2015-01-01

    Protein aggregation is the hallmark of several neurodegenerative disorders. These protein aggregation (fibrillization) disorders are also known as amyloid disorders. The mechanism of protein aggregation involves conformation switch of the native protein, oligomer formation leading to protofibrils and finally mature fibrils. Mature fibrils have long been considered as the cause of disease pathogenesis; however, recent evidences suggest oligomeric intermediates formed during fibrillization to be toxic. In this review, we have tried to address the ongoing debate for these toxic amyloid species. We did an extensive literature search and collated information from Pubmed (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov) and Google search using various permutations and combinations of the following keywords: Neurodegeneration, amyloid disorders, protein aggregation, fibrils, oligomers, toxicity, Alzheimer's Disease, Parkinson's Disease. We describe different instances showing the toxicity of mature fibrils as well as oligomers in Alzheimer's Disease and Parkinson's Disease. Distinct structural framework and morphology of amyloid oligomers suggests difference in toxic effect between oligomers and fibrils. We highlight the difference in structure and proposed toxicity pathways for fibrils and oligomers. We also highlight the evidences indicating that intermediary oligomeric species can act as potential diagnostic biomarker. Since the formation of these toxic species follow a common structural switch among various amyloid disorders, the protein aggregation events can be targeted for developing broad-range therapeutics. The therapeutic trials based on the understanding of different protein conformers (monomers, oligomers, protofibrils and fibrils) in amyloid cascade are also described. PMID:26019408

  11. Quaternary structure defines a large class of amyloidoligomers neutralized by sequestration

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Peng; Reed, Miranda N.; Kotilinek, Linda A.; Grant, Marianne K.O.; Forster, Colleen L.; Qiang, Wei; Shapiro, Samantha L.; Reichl, John H.; Chiang, Angie C.A.; Jankowsky, Joanna L.; Wilmot, Carrie M.; Cleary, James P.; Zahs, Kathleen R.; Ashe, Karen H.

    2015-01-01

    Summary The accumulation of amyloid-β (Aβ) as amyloid fibrils and toxic oligomers is an important step in the development of Alzheimer's disease (AD). However, there are numerous potentially toxic oligomers and little is known about their neurological effects when generated in the living brain. Here, we show that Aβ oligomers can be assigned to one of at least two classes (Type 1 and Type 2) based on their temporal, spatial and structural relationships to amyloid fibrils. The Type 2 oligomers are related to amyloid fibrils and represent the majority of oligomers generated in vivo, but remain confined to the vicinity of amyloid plaques and do not impair cognition at levels relevant to AD. Type 1 oligomers are unrelated to amyloid fibrils and may have greater potential to cause global neural dysfunction in AD because they are dispersed. These results refine our understanding of the pathogenicity of Aβ oligomers in vivo. PMID:26051935

  12. A covalent homodimer probing early oligomers along amyloid aggregation

    PubMed Central

    Halabelian, Levon; Relini, Annalisa; Barbiroli, Alberto; Penco, Amanda; Bolognesi, Martino; Ricagno, Stefano

    2015-01-01

    Early oligomers are crucial in amyloid aggregation; however, due to their transient nature they are among the least structurally characterized species. We focused on the amyloidogenic protein beta2-microglobulin (β2m) whose early oligomers are still a matter of debate. An intermolecular interaction between D strands of facing β2m molecules was repeatedly observed, suggesting that such interface may be relevant for β2m dimerization. In this study, by mutating Ser33 to Cys, and assembling the disulphide-stabilized β2m homodimer (DimC33), such DD strand interface was locked. Although the isolated DimC33 display a stability similar to wt β2m under native conditions, it shows enhanced amyloid aggregation propensity. Three distinct crystal structures of DimC33 suggest that dimerization through the DD interface is instrumental for enhancing DimC33 aggregation propensity. Furthermore, the crystal structure of DimC33 in complex with the amyloid-specific dye Thioflavin-T pinpoints a second interface, which likely participates in the first steps of β2m aggregation. The present data provide new insight into β2m early steps of amyloid aggregation. PMID:26420657

  13. Structural polymorphism of amyloid oligomers and fibrils underlies different fibrillization pathways: immunogenicity and cytotoxicity.

    PubMed

    Stefani, Massimo

    2010-08-01

    The past fifteen years have led to a profound re-consideration of the molecular and cellular basis of amyloid diseases. Since the formulation of the amyloid hypothesis in 1991-1992, increasing interest was initially focused at amyloid fibrils and, subsequently, at their precursors, oligomers and pre-fibrillar aggregates as main culprits of cell impairment and demise, particularly in neurodegenerative diseases with amyloid deposition. In 2002, this concept was generalized by the demonstration that pre-fibrillar aggregates were toxic even when they were grown from proteins not associated with amyloid disease. Presently, the general structural features and polymorphism of amyloid fibrils grown from a range of different peptides and proteins are rather well known; however, in spite of the growing interest in amyloid oligomers as the main source of amyloid toxicity, a better definition of their structural features remains elusive due to their transient nature, remarkable instability, high flexibility and structural heterogeneity possibly resulting in the appearance of polymorphic assemblies. Nevertheless, recent studies have started to unravel this key topic by providing significant insights into some general structural features and conformational polymorphism of amyloid oligomers and the higher order structures they generate. Important clues into the structure-toxicity relation of amyloids, the role performed by natural surfaces in oligomer growth and the molecular basis of oligomer-membrane interaction are also emerging. PMID:20423295

  14. Characteristics of Amyloid-Related Oligomers Revealed by Crystal Structures of Macrocyclic [beta]-Sheet Mimics

    SciTech Connect

    Liu, Cong; Sawaya, Michael R.; Cheng, Pin-Nan; Zheng, Jing; Nowick, James S.; Eisenberg, David

    2011-09-20

    Protein amyloid oligomers have been strongly linked to amyloid diseases and can be intermediates to amyloid fibers. {beta}-Sheets have been identified in amyloid oligomers. However, because of their transient and highly polymorphic properties, the details of their self-association remain elusive. Here we explore oligomer structure using a model system: macrocyclic peptides. Key amyloidogenic sequences from A{beta} and tau were incorporated into macrocycles, thereby restraining them to {beta}-strands, but limiting the growth of the oligomers so they may crystallize and cannot fibrillate. We determined the atomic structures for four such oligomers, and all four reveal tetrameric interfaces in which {beta}-sheet dimers pair together by highly complementary, dry interfaces, analogous to steric zippers found in fibers, suggesting a common structure for amyloid oligomers and fibers. In amyloid fibers, the axes of the paired sheets are either parallel or antiparallel, whereas the oligomeric interfaces display a variety of sheet-to-sheet pairing angles, offering a structural explanation for the heterogeneity of amyloid oligomers.

  15. Apoptosis induced by islet amyloid polypeptide soluble oligomers is neutralized by diabetes-associated specific antibodies

    PubMed Central

    Bram, Yaron; Frydman-Marom, Anat; Yanai, Inbal; Gilead, Sharon; Shaltiel-Karyo, Ronit; Amdursky, Nadav; Gazit, Ehud

    2014-01-01

    Soluble oligomeric assemblies of amyloidal proteins appear to act as major pathological agents in several degenerative disorders. Isolation and characterization of these oligomers is a pivotal step towards determination of their pathological relevance. Here we describe the isolation of Type 2 diabetes-associated islet amyloid polypeptide soluble cytotoxic oligomers; these oligomers induced apoptosis in cultured pancreatic cells, permeated model lipid vesicles and interacted with cell membranes following complete internalization. Moreover, antibodies which specifically recognized these assemblies, but not monomers or amyloid fibrils, were exclusively identified in diabetic patients and were shown to neutralize the apoptotic effect induced by these oligomers. Our findings support the notion that human IAPP peptide can form highly toxic oligomers. The presence of antibodies identified in the serum of diabetic patients confirms the pathological relevance of the oligomers. In addition, the newly identified structural epitopes may also provide new mechanistic insights and a molecular target for future therapy. PMID:24589570

  16. Amyloid oligomer structure characterization from simulations: A general method

    SciTech Connect

    Nguyen, Phuong H.; Li, Mai Suan

    2014-03-07

    Amyloid oligomers and plaques are composed of multiple chemically identical proteins. Therefore, one of the first fundamental problems in the characterization of structures from simulations is the treatment of the degeneracy, i.e., the permutation of the molecules. Second, the intramolecular and intermolecular degrees of freedom of the various molecules must be taken into account. Currently, the well-known dihedral principal component analysis method only considers the intramolecular degrees of freedom, and other methods employing collective variables can only describe intermolecular degrees of freedom at the global level. With this in mind, we propose a general method that identifies all the structures accurately. The basis idea is that the intramolecular and intermolecular states are described in terms of combinations of single-molecule and double-molecule states, respectively, and the overall structures of oligomers are the product basis of the intramolecular and intermolecular states. This way, the degeneracy is automatically avoided. The method is illustrated on the conformational ensemble of the tetramer of the Alzheimer's peptide Aβ{sub 9−40}, resulting from two atomistic molecular dynamics simulations in explicit solvent, each of 200 ns, starting from two distinct structures.

  17. Amyloid oligomer structure characterization from simulations: A general method

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nguyen, Phuong H.; Li, Mai Suan; Derreumaux, Philippe

    2014-03-01

    Amyloid oligomers and plaques are composed of multiple chemically identical proteins. Therefore, one of the first fundamental problems in the characterization of structures from simulations is the treatment of the degeneracy, i.e., the permutation of the molecules. Second, the intramolecular and intermolecular degrees of freedom of the various molecules must be taken into account. Currently, the well-known dihedral principal component analysis method only considers the intramolecular degrees of freedom, and other methods employing collective variables can only describe intermolecular degrees of freedom at the global level. With this in mind, we propose a general method that identifies all the structures accurately. The basis idea is that the intramolecular and intermolecular states are described in terms of combinations of single-molecule and double-molecule states, respectively, and the overall structures of oligomers are the product basis of the intramolecular and intermolecular states. This way, the degeneracy is automatically avoided. The method is illustrated on the conformational ensemble of the tetramer of the Alzheimer's peptide Aβ9-40, resulting from two atomistic molecular dynamics simulations in explicit solvent, each of 200 ns, starting from two distinct structures.

  18. Amyloid β oligomers in Alzheimer's disease pathogenesis, treatment, and diagnosis.

    PubMed

    Viola, Kirsten L; Klein, William L

    2015-02-01

    Protein aggregation is common to dozens of diseases including prionoses, diabetes, Parkinson's and Alzheimer's. Over the past 15 years, there has been a paradigm shift in understanding the structural basis for these proteinopathies. Precedent for this shift has come from investigation of soluble Aβ oligomers (AβOs), toxins now widely regarded as instigating neuron damage leading to Alzheimer's dementia. Toxic AβOs accumulate in AD brain and constitute long-lived alternatives to the disease-defining Aβ fibrils deposited in amyloid plaques. Key experiments using fibril-free AβO solutions demonstrated that while Aβ is essential for memory loss, the fibrillar Aβ in amyloid deposits is not the agent. The AD-like cellular pathologies induced by AβOs suggest their impact provides a unifying mechanism for AD pathogenesis, explaining why early stage disease is specific for memory and accounting for major facets of AD neuropathology. Alternative ideas for triggering mechanisms are being actively investigated. Some research favors insertion of AβOs into membrane, while other evidence supports ligand-like accumulation at particular synapses. Over a dozen candidate toxin receptors have been proposed. AβO binding triggers a redistribution of critical synaptic proteins and induces hyperactivity in metabotropic and ionotropic glutamate receptors. This leads to Ca(2+) overload and instigates major facets of AD neuropathology, including tau hyperphosphorylation, insulin resistance, oxidative stress, and synapse loss. Because different species of AβOs have been identified, a remaining question is which oligomer is the major pathogenic culprit. The possibility has been raised that more than one species plays a role. Despite some key unknowns, the clinical relevance of AβOs has been established, and new studies are beginning to point to co-morbidities such as diabetes and hypercholesterolemia as etiological factors. Because pathogenic AβOs appear early in the disease, they

  19. Zn(II)- and Cu(II)-induced non-fibrillar aggregates of amyloid-beta (1-42) peptide are transformed to amyloid fibrils, both spontaneously and under the influence of metal chelators.

    PubMed

    Tõugu, Vello; Karafin, Ann; Zovo, Kairit; Chung, Roger S; Howells, Claire; West, Adrian K; Palumaa, Peep

    2009-09-01

    Aggregation of amyloid-beta (Abeta) peptides is a central phenomenon in Alzheimer's disease. Zn(II) and Cu(II) have profound effects on Abeta aggregation; however, their impact on amyloidogenesis is unclear. Here we show that Zn(II) and Cu(II) inhibit Abeta(42) fibrillization and initiate formation of non-fibrillar Abeta(42) aggregates, and that the inhibitory effect of Zn(II) (IC(50) = 1.8 micromol/L) is three times stronger than that of Cu(II). Medium and high-affinity metal chelators including metallothioneins prevented metal-induced Abeta(42) aggregation. Moreover, their addition to preformed aggregates initiated fast Abeta(42) fibrillization. Upon prolonged incubation the metal-induced aggregates also transformed spontaneously into fibrils, that appear to represent the most stable state of Abeta(42). H13A and H14A mutations in Abeta(42) reduced the inhibitory effect of metal ions, whereas an H6A mutation had no significant impact. We suggest that metal binding by H13 and H14 prevents the formation of a cross-beta core structure within region 10-23 of the amyloid fibril. Cu(II)-Abeta(42) aggregates were neurotoxic to neurons in vitro only in the presence of ascorbate, whereas monomers and Zn(II)-Abeta(42) aggregates were non-toxic. Disturbed metal homeostasis in the vicinity of zinc-enriched neurons might pre-dispose formation of metal-induced Abeta aggregates, subsequent fibrillization of which can lead to amyloid formation. The molecular background underlying metal-chelating therapies for Alzheimer's disease is discussed in this light. PMID:19619132

  20. The Role of AmyloidOligomers in Toxicity, Propagation, and Immunotherapy

    PubMed Central

    Sengupta, Urmi; Nilson, Ashley N.; Kayed, Rakez

    2016-01-01

    The incidence of Alzheimer's disease (AD) is growing every day and finding an effective treatment is becoming more vital. Amyloid-β (Aβ) has been the focus of research for several decades. The recent shift in the Aβ cascade hypothesis from all Aβ to small soluble oligomeric intermediates is directing the search for therapeutics towards the toxic mediators of the disease. Targeting the most toxic oligomers may prove to be an effective treatment by preventing their spread. Specific targeting of oligomers has been shown to protect cognition in rodent models. Additionally, the heterogeneity of research on Aβ oligomers may seem contradictory until size and conformation are taken into account. In this review, we will discuss Aβ oligomers and their toxicity in relation to size and conformation as well as their influence on inflammation and the potential of Aβ oligomer immunotherapy. PMID:27211547

  1. Dynamical stability and assembly cooperativity of β-sheet amyloid oligomers--effect of polarization.

    PubMed

    Li, Yang; Ji, Changge; Xu, Weixin; Zhang, John Z H

    2012-11-15

    The soluble intermediate oligomers of amyloidogenic proteins are suspected to be more cytotoxic than the mature fibrils in neurodegenerative disorders. Here, the dynamic stability and assembly cooperativity of a model oligomer of human islet amyloid polypeptide (hIAPP) segments were explored by means of all-atom molecular dynamics (MD) simulations under different force fields including AMBER99SB, OPLS, and polarized protein-specific charge (PPC) model. Simulation results show that the dynamic stability of β-sheet oligomers is seriously impacted by electrostatic polarization. Without inclusion of polarization (simulation under standard AMBER and OPLS force field), the β-sheet oligomers are dynamically unstable during MD simulation. For comparison, simulation results under PPC give significantly more stable dynamical structures of the oligomers. Furthermore, calculation of electrostatic interaction energy between the neighboring β strands with an approximate polarizable method produces energetic evidence for cooperative assembly of β-strand oligomers. This result supports a picture of downhill-like cooperative assembly of β strands during fibrillation process. The present study demonstrates the critical role of polarization in dynamic stability and assembly cooperativity of β-sheet-rich amyloid oligomers.

  2. Nucleation of Amyloid Oligomers by RepA-WH1-Prionoid-Functionalized Gold Nanorods.

    PubMed

    Fernández, Cristina; González-Rubio, Guillermo; Langer, Judith; Tardajos, Gloria; Liz-Marzán, Luis M; Giraldo, Rafael; Guerrero-Martínez, Andrés

    2016-09-01

    Understanding protein amyloidogenesis is an important topic in protein science, fueled by the role of amyloid aggregates, especially oligomers, in the etiology of a number of devastating human degenerative diseases. However, the mechanisms that determine the formation of amyloid oligomers remain elusive due to the high complexity of the amyloidogenesis process. For instance, gold nanoparticles promote or inhibit amyloid fibrillation. We have functionalized gold nanorods with a metal-chelating group to selectively immobilize soluble RepA-WH1, a model synthetic bacterial prionoid, using a hexa-histidine tag (H6). H6-RepA-WH1 undergoes stable amyloid oligomerization in the presence of catalytic concentrations of anisotropic nanoparticles. Then, in a physically separated event, such oligomers promote the growth of amyloid fibers of untagged RepA-WH1. SERS spectral changes of H6-RepA-WH1 on spherical citrate-AuNP substrates provide evidence for structural modifications in the protein, which are compatible with a gradual increase in β-sheet structure, as expected in amyloid oligomerization. PMID:27489029

  3. Quantitative analysis of co-oligomer formation by amyloid-beta peptide isoforms.

    PubMed

    Iljina, Marija; Garcia, Gonzalo A; Dear, Alexander J; Flint, Jennie; Narayan, Priyanka; Michaels, Thomas C T; Dobson, Christopher M; Frenkel, Daan; Knowles, Tuomas P J; Klenerman, David

    2016-01-01

    Multiple isoforms of aggregation-prone proteins are present under physiological conditions and have the propensity to assemble into co-oligomers with different properties from self-oligomers, but this process has not been quantitatively studied to date. We have investigated the amyloid-β (Aβ) peptide, associated with Alzheimer's disease, and the aggregation of its two major isoforms, Aβ40 and Aβ42, using a statistical mechanical modelling approach in combination with in vitro single-molecule fluorescence measurements. We find that at low concentrations of Aβ, corresponding to its physiological abundance, there is little free energy penalty in forming co-oligomers, suggesting that the formation of both self-oligomers and co-oligomers is possible under these conditions. Our model is used to predict the oligomer concentration and size at physiological concentrations of Aβ and suggests the mechanisms by which the ratio of Aβ42 to Aβ40 can affect cell toxicity. An increased ratio of Aβ42 to Aβ40 raises the fraction of oligomers containing Aβ42, which can increase the hydrophobicity of the oligomers and thus promote deleterious binding to the cell membrane and increase neuronal damage. Our results suggest that co-oligomers are a common form of aggregate when Aβ isoforms are present in solution and may potentially play a significant role in Alzheimer's disease. PMID:27346247

  4. Direct Correlation Between Ligand-Induced α-Synuclein Oligomers and Amyloid-like Fibril Growth

    PubMed Central

    Nors Perdersen, Martin; Foderà, Vito; Horvath, Istvan; van Maarschalkerweerd, Andreas; Nørgaard Toft, Katrine; Weise, Christoph; Almqvist, Fredrik; Wolf-Watz, Magnus; Wittung-Stafshede, Pernilla; Vestergaard, Bente

    2015-01-01

    Aggregation of proteins into amyloid deposits is the hallmark of several neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease. The suggestion that intermediate oligomeric species may be cytotoxic has led to intensified investigations of pre-fibrillar oligomers, which are complicated by their transient nature and low population. Here we investigate alpha-synuclein oligomers, enriched by a 2-pyridone molecule (FN075), and the conversion of oligomers into fibrils. As probed by leakage assays, the FN075 induced oligomers potently disrupt vesicles in vitro, suggesting a potential link to disease related degenerative activity. Fibrils formed in the presence and absence of FN075 are indistinguishable on microscopic and macroscopic levels. Using small angle X-ray scattering, we reveal that FN075 induced oligomers are similar, but not identical, to oligomers previously observed during alpha-synuclein fibrillation. Since the levels of FN075 induced oligomers correlate with the amounts of fibrils among different FN075:protein ratios, the oligomers appear to be on-pathway and modeling supports an ‘oligomer stacking model’ for alpha-synuclein fibril elongation. PMID:26020724

  5. Quantitative analysis of co-oligomer formation by amyloid-beta peptide isoforms

    PubMed Central

    Iljina, Marija; Garcia, Gonzalo A.; Dear, Alexander J.; Flint, Jennie; Narayan, Priyanka; Michaels, Thomas C. T.; Dobson, Christopher M.; Frenkel, Daan; Knowles, Tuomas P. J.; Klenerman, David

    2016-01-01

    Multiple isoforms of aggregation-prone proteins are present under physiological conditions and have the propensity to assemble into co-oligomers with different properties from self-oligomers, but this process has not been quantitatively studied to date. We have investigated the amyloid-β (Aβ) peptide, associated with Alzheimer’s disease, and the aggregation of its two major isoforms, Aβ40 and Aβ42, using a statistical mechanical modelling approach in combination with in vitro single-molecule fluorescence measurements. We find that at low concentrations of Aβ, corresponding to its physiological abundance, there is little free energy penalty in forming co-oligomers, suggesting that the formation of both self-oligomers and co-oligomers is possible under these conditions. Our model is used to predict the oligomer concentration and size at physiological concentrations of Aβ and suggests the mechanisms by which the ratio of Aβ42 to Aβ40 can affect cell toxicity. An increased ratio of Aβ42 to Aβ40 raises the fraction of oligomers containing Aβ42, which can increase the hydrophobicity of the oligomers and thus promote deleterious binding to the cell membrane and increase neuronal damage. Our results suggest that co-oligomers are a common form of aggregate when Aβ isoforms are present in solution and may potentially play a significant role in Alzheimer’s disease. PMID:27346247

  6. Quantitative analysis of co-oligomer formation by amyloid-beta peptide isoforms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Iljina, Marija; Garcia, Gonzalo A.; Dear, Alexander J.; Flint, Jennie; Narayan, Priyanka; Michaels, Thomas C. T.; Dobson, Christopher M.; Frenkel, Daan; Knowles, Tuomas P. J.; Klenerman, David

    2016-06-01

    Multiple isoforms of aggregation-prone proteins are present under physiological conditions and have the propensity to assemble into co-oligomers with different properties from self-oligomers, but this process has not been quantitatively studied to date. We have investigated the amyloid-β (Aβ) peptide, associated with Alzheimer’s disease, and the aggregation of its two major isoforms, Aβ40 and Aβ42, using a statistical mechanical modelling approach in combination with in vitro single-molecule fluorescence measurements. We find that at low concentrations of Aβ, corresponding to its physiological abundance, there is little free energy penalty in forming co-oligomers, suggesting that the formation of both self-oligomers and co-oligomers is possible under these conditions. Our model is used to predict the oligomer concentration and size at physiological concentrations of Aβ and suggests the mechanisms by which the ratio of Aβ42 to Aβ40 can affect cell toxicity. An increased ratio of Aβ42 to Aβ40 raises the fraction of oligomers containing Aβ42, which can increase the hydrophobicity of the oligomers and thus promote deleterious binding to the cell membrane and increase neuronal damage. Our results suggest that co-oligomers are a common form of aggregate when Aβ isoforms are present in solution and may potentially play a significant role in Alzheimer’s disease.

  7. Conformational Switching and Nanoscale Assembly of Human Prion Protein into Polymorphic Amyloids via Structurally Labile Oligomers.

    PubMed

    Dalal, Vijit; Arya, Shruti; Bhattacharya, Mily; Mukhopadhyay, Samrat

    2015-12-29

    Conformational switching of the prion protein (PrP) from an α-helical normal cellular form (PrP(C)) to an aggregation-prone and self-propagating β-rich scrapie form (PrP(Sc)) underlies the molecular basis of pathogenesis in prion diseases. Anionic lipids play a critical role in the misfolding and conformational conversion of the membrane-anchored PrP into the amyloidogenic pathological form. In this work, we have used a diverse array of techniques to interrogate the early intermediates during amyloid formation from recombinant human PrP in the presence of a membrane mimetic anionic detergent such as sodium dodecyl sulfate. We have been able to detect and characterize two distinct types of interconvertible oligomers. Our results demonstrate that highly ordered large β-oligomers represent benign off-pathway intermediates that lack the ability to mature into amyloid fibrils. On the contrary, structurally labile small oligomers are capable of switching to an ordered amyloid-state that exhibits profound toxicity to mammalian cells. Our fluorescence resonance energy transfer measurements revealed that the partially disordered PrP serves as precursors to small amyloid-competent oligomers. These on-pathway oligomers are eventually sequestered into higher order supramolecular assemblies that conformationally mature into polymorphic amyloids possessing varied nanoscale morphology as evident by the atomic force microscopy imaging. The nanoscale diversity of fibril architecture is attributed to the heterogeneous ensemble of early obligatory oligomers and offers a plausible explanation for the existence of multiple prion strains in vivo. PMID:26645611

  8. Causative factors for formation of toxic islet amyloid polypeptide oligomer in type 2 diabetes mellitus

    PubMed Central

    Jeong, Hye Rin; An, Seong Soo A

    2015-01-01

    Human islet amyloid polypeptide (h-IAPP) is a peptide hormone that is synthesized and cosecreted with insulin from insulin-secreting pancreatic β-cells. Recently, h-IAPP was proposed to be the main component responsible for the cytotoxic pancreatic amyloid deposits in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). Since the causative factors of IAPP (or amylin) oligomer aggregation are not fully understood, this review will discuss the various forms of h-IAPP aggregation. Not all forms of IAPP aggregates trigger the destruction of β-cell function and loss of β-cell mass; however, toxic oligomers do trigger these events. Once these toxic oligomers form under abnormal metabolic conditions in T2DM, they can lead to cell disruption by inducing cell membrane destabilization. In this review, the various factors that have been shown to induce toxic IAPP oligomer formation will be presented, as well as the potential mechanism of oligomer and fibril formation from pro-IAPPs. Initially, pro-IAPPs undergo enzymatic reactions to produce the IAPP monomers, which can then develop into oligomers and fibrils. By this mechanism, toxic oligomers could be generated by diverse pathway components. Thus, the interconnections between factors that influence amyloid aggregation (eg, absence of PC2 enzyme, deamidation, reduction of disulfide bonds, environmental factors in the cell, genetic mutations, copper metal ions, and heparin) will be presented. Hence, this review will aid in understanding the fundamental causative factors contributing to IAPP oligomer formation and support studies for investigating novel T2DM therapeutic approaches, such as the development of inhibitory agents for preventing oligomerization at the early stages of diabetic pathology. PMID:26604727

  9. Causative factors for formation of toxic islet amyloid polypeptide oligomer in type 2 diabetes mellitus.

    PubMed

    Jeong, Hye Rin; An, Seong Soo A

    2015-01-01

    Human islet amyloid polypeptide (h-IAPP) is a peptide hormone that is synthesized and cosecreted with insulin from insulin-secreting pancreatic β-cells. Recently, h-IAPP was proposed to be the main component responsible for the cytotoxic pancreatic amyloid deposits in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). Since the causative factors of IAPP (or amylin) oligomer aggregation are not fully understood, this review will discuss the various forms of h-IAPP aggregation. Not all forms of IAPP aggregates trigger the destruction of β-cell function and loss of β-cell mass; however, toxic oligomers do trigger these events. Once these toxic oligomers form under abnormal metabolic conditions in T2DM, they can lead to cell disruption by inducing cell membrane destabilization. In this review, the various factors that have been shown to induce toxic IAPP oligomer formation will be presented, as well as the potential mechanism of oligomer and fibril formation from pro-IAPPs. Initially, pro-IAPPs undergo enzymatic reactions to produce the IAPP monomers, which can then develop into oligomers and fibrils. By this mechanism, toxic oligomers could be generated by diverse pathway components. Thus, the interconnections between factors that influence amyloid aggregation (eg, absence of PC2 enzyme, deamidation, reduction of disulfide bonds, environmental factors in the cell, genetic mutations, copper metal ions, and heparin) will be presented. Hence, this review will aid in understanding the fundamental causative factors contributing to IAPP oligomer formation and support studies for investigating novel T2DM therapeutic approaches, such as the development of inhibitory agents for preventing oligomerization at the early stages of diabetic pathology. PMID:26604727

  10. Effect of pathogenic mutations on the structure and dynamics of Alzheimer's A beta 42-amyloid oligomers.

    PubMed

    Kassler, Kristin; Horn, Anselm H C; Sticht, Heinrich

    2010-05-01

    Converging lines of evidence suggest that soluble A beta-amyloid oligomers play a pivotal role in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease, and present direct effectors of synaptic and cognitive dysfunction. Three pathological E22-A beta-amyloid point mutants (E22G, E22K, E22Q) and the deletion mutant E22 Delta exhibit an enhanced tendency to form prefibrillar aggregates. The present study assessed the effect of these four mutations using molecular dynamics simulations and subsequent structural and energetic analyses. Our data shows that E22 plays a unique role in wild type A beta, since it has a destabilising effect on the oligomer structure due to electrostatic repulsion between adjacent E22 side chains. Mutations in which E22 is replaced by an uncharged residue result in higher oligomer stability. This effect is also observed to a lesser extent for the E22K mutation and is consistent with its lower pathogenicity compared to other mutants. Interestingly, deletion of E22 does not destroy the amyloid fold but is compensated by local changes in the backbone geometry that allow the preservation of a structurally important salt bridge. The finding that all mutant oligomers investigated exhibit higher internal stability than the wild type offers an explanation for the experimentally observed enhanced oligomer formation and stability.

  11. Non-Amyloid-β Component of Human α-Synuclein Oligomers Induces Formation of New Aβ Oligomers: Insight into the Mechanisms That Link Parkinson's and Alzheimer's Diseases.

    PubMed

    Atsmon-Raz, Yoav; Miller, Yifat

    2016-01-20

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is characterized by the formation of Lewy bodies (LBs), of which their major component is the non-amyloid-β component (NAC) of α-synuclein (AS). Clinical studies have identified a link between PD and Alzheimer's disease (AD), but the question of why PD patients are at risk to develop various types of dementia, such as AD, is still elusive. In vivo studies have shown that Aβ can act as a seed for NAC/AS aggregation, promoting NAC/AS aggregation and thus contributing to the etiology of PD. However, the mechanisms by which NAC/AS oligomers interact with Aβ oligomers are still elusive. This work presents the interactions between NAC oligomers and Aβ oligomers at atomic resolution by applying extensive molecular dynamics simulations for an ensemble of cross-seeded NAC-Aβ(1-42) oligomers. The main conclusions of this study are as follows: first, the cross-seeded NAC-Aβ(1-42) oligomers represent polymorphic states, yet NAC oligomers prefer to interact with Aβ(1-42) oligomers to form double-layer over single-layer conformations due to electrostatic/hydrophobic interactions; second, among the single-layer conformations, the NAC oligomers induce formation of new β-strands in Aβ(1-42) oligomers, thus leading to new Aβ oligomer structures; and third, NAC oligomers stabilize the cross-β structure of Aβ oligomers, i.e., yielding compact Aβ fibril-like structures.

  12. Calcium dysregulation and membrane disruption as a ubiquitous neurotoxic mechanism of soluble amyloid oligomers.

    PubMed

    Demuro, Angelo; Mina, Erene; Kayed, Rakez; Milton, Saskia C; Parker, Ian; Glabe, Charles G

    2005-04-29

    Increasing evidence suggests that amyloid peptides associated with a variety of degenerative diseases induce neurotoxicity in their intermediate oligomeric state, rather than as monomers or fibrils. To test this hypothesis and investigate the possible involvement of Ca2+ signaling disruptions in amyloid-induced cytotoxicity, we made homogeneous preparations of disease-related amyloids (Abeta, prion, islet amyloid polypeptide, polyglutamine, and lysozyme) in various aggregation states and tested their actions on fluo-3-loaded SH-SY5Y cells. Application of oligomeric forms of all amyloids tested (0.6-6 microg ml-1) rapidly (approximately 5 s) elevated intracellular Ca2+, whereas equivalent amounts of monomers and fibrils did not. Ca2+ signals evoked by Abeta42 oligomers persisted after depletion of intracellular Ca2+ stores, and small signals remained in Ca2+-free medium, indicating contributions from both extracellular and intracellular Ca2+ sources. The increased membrane permeability to Ca2+ cannot be attributed to activation of endogenous Ca2+ channels, because responses were unaffected by the potent Ca2+-channel blocker cobalt (20 microm). Instead, observations that Abeta42 and other oligomers caused rapid cellular leakage of anionic fluorescent dyes point to a generalized increase in membrane permeability. The resulting unregulated flux of ions and molecules may provide a common mechanism for oligomer-mediated toxicity in many amyloidogenic diseases, with dysregulation of Ca2+ ions playing a crucial role because of their strong trans-membrane concentration gradient and involvement in cell dysfunction and death. PMID:15722360

  13. Desmin modifications associate with amyloid-like oligomers deposition in heart failure

    PubMed Central

    Agnetti, Giulio; Halperin, Victoria L.; Kirk, Jonathan A.; Chakir, Khalid; Guo, Yurong; Lund, Linda; Nicolini, Francesco; Gherli, Tiziano; Guarnieri, Carlo; Caldarera, Claudio M.; Tomaselli, Gordon F.; Kass, David A.; Van Eyk, Jennifer E.

    2014-01-01

    Aims The ultimate cause of heart failure (HF) is not known to date. The cytoskeletal protein desmin is differentially modified and forms amyloid-like oligomers in HF. We postulated that desmin post-translational modifications (PTMs) could drive aberrant desmin aggregation in HF. Therefore, we identified these PTMs and investigated their impact on desmin amyloidogenicity in human and experimental HF. Methods and results We detected increased levels of selectively phosphorylated and cleaved desmin in a canine pacing model of dyssynchronous HF (DHF) compared with either controls or animals treated with cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT). This unique animal model combines clinically relevant features with the possibility of a partly rescued phenotype. We confirmed analogous changes in desmin modifications in human HF and identified two phosphorylation sites within a glycogen synthase kinase 3 (GSK3) consensus sequence. Desmin-positive oligomers were also increased in DHF hearts compared with controls. Their amyloid properties were decreased by treatment with CRT or an anti-amyloid small molecule. Finally, we confirmed GSK3's involvement with desmin phosphorylation using an in vitro model. Conclusions Based on these findings, we postulate a new mechanism of cardiac toxicity based on the PTM-driven accumulation of desmin amyloid-like oligomers. Phosphorylation and cleavage as well as oligomers formation are reduced by treatment (CRT) indicating a relationship between the three. Finally, the decrease of desmin amyloid-like oligomers with CRT or small molecules points both to a general mechanism of HF based on desmin toxicity that is independent of protein mutations and to novel potential therapies. PMID:24413773

  14. Rare individual amyloidoligomers act on astrocytes to initiate neuronal damage.

    PubMed

    Narayan, Priyanka; Holmström, Kira M; Kim, Dong-Hyun; Whitcomb, Daniel J; Wilson, Mark R; St George-Hyslop, Peter; Wood, Nicholas W; Dobson, Christopher M; Cho, Kwangwook; Abramov, Andrey Y; Klenerman, David

    2014-04-22

    Oligomers of the amyloid-β (Aβ) peptide have been implicated in the neurotoxicity associated with Alzheimer's disease. We have used single-molecule techniques to examine quantitatively the cellular effects of adding well characterized Aβ oligomers to primary hippocampal cells and hence determine the initial pathway of damage. We found that even picomolar concentrations of Aβ (1-40) and Aβ (1-42) oligomers can, within minutes of addition, increase the levels of intracellular calcium in astrocytes but not in neurons, and this effect is saturated at a concentration of about 10 nM of oligomers. Both Aβ (1-40) and Aβ (1-42) oligomers have comparable effects. The rise in intracellular calcium is followed by an increase in the rate of ROS production by NADPH oxidase in both neurons and astrocytes. The increase in ROS production then triggers caspase-3 activation resulting in the inhibition of long-term potentiation. Our quantitative approach also reveals that only a small fraction of the oligomers are damaging and that an individual rare oligomer binding to an astrocyte can initiate the aforementioned cascade of responses, making it unlikely to be due to any specific interaction. Preincubating the Aβ oligomers with an extracellular chaperone, clusterin, sequesters the oligomers in long-lived complexes and inhibits all of the physiological damage, even at a ratio of 100:1, total Aβ to clusterin. To explain how Aβ oligomers are so damaging but that it takes decades to develop Alzheimer's disease, we suggest a model for disease progression where small amounts of neuronal damage from individual unsequestered oligomers can accumulate over time leading to widespread tissue-level dysfunction. PMID:24717093

  15. The Anti-Prion Antibody 15B3 Detects Toxic AmyloidOligomers.

    PubMed

    Stravalaci, Matteo; Tapella, Laura; Beeg, Marten; Rossi, Alessandro; Joshi, Pooja; Pizzi, Erika; Mazzanti, Michele; Balducci, Claudia; Forloni, Gianluigi; Biasini, Emiliano; Salmona, Mario; Diomede, Luisa; Chiesa, Roberto; Gobbi, Marco

    2016-07-01

    15B3 is a monoclonal IgM antibody that selectively detects pathological aggregates of the prion protein (PrP). We report the unexpected finding that 15B3 also recognizes oligomeric but not monomeric forms of amyloid-β (Aβ)42, an aggregating peptide implicated in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease (AD). The 15B3 antibody: i) inhibits the binding of synthetic Aβ42 oligomers to recombinant PrP and neuronal membranes; ii) prevents oligomer-induced membrane depolarization; iii) antagonizes the inhibitory effects of oligomers on the physiological pharyngeal contractions of the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans; and iv) counteracts the memory deficits induced by intracerebroventricular injection of Aβ42 oligomers in mice. Thus this antibody binds to pathologically relevant forms of Aβ, and offers a potential research, diagnostic, and therapeutic tool for AD. PMID:27392850

  16. The Anti-Prion Antibody 15B3 Detects Toxic AmyloidOligomers

    PubMed Central

    Stravalaci, Matteo; Tapella, Laura; Beeg, Marten; Rossi, Alessandro; Joshi, Pooja; Pizzi, Erika; Mazzanti, Michele; Balducci, Claudia; Forloni, Gianluigi; Biasini, Emiliano; Salmona, Mario; Diomede, Luisa; Chiesa, Roberto; Gobbi, Marco

    2016-01-01

    15B3 is a monoclonal IgM antibody that selectively detects pathological aggregates of the prion protein (PrP). We report the unexpected finding that 15B3 also recognizes oligomeric but not monomeric forms of amyloid-β (Aβ)42, an aggregating peptide implicated in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer’s disease (AD). The 15B3 antibody: i) inhibits the binding of synthetic Aβ42 oligomers to recombinant PrP and neuronal membranes; ii) prevents oligomer-induced membrane depolarization; iii) antagonizes the inhibitory effects of oligomers on the physiological pharyngeal contractions of the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans; and iv) counteracts the memory deficits induced by intracerebroventricular injection of Aβ42 oligomers in mice. Thus this antibody binds to pathologically relevant forms of Aβ, and offers a potential research, diagnostic, and therapeutic tool for AD. PMID:27392850

  17. The Role of Initial Oligomers in Amyloid Fibril Formation by Human Stefin B

    PubMed Central

    Taler-Verčič, Ajda; Kirsipuu, Tiina; Friedemann, Merlin; Noormägi, Andra; Polajnar, Mira; Smirnova, Julia; Žnidarič, Magda Tušek; Žganec, Matjaž; Škarabot, Miha; Vilfan, Andrej; Staniforth, Rosemary A.; Palumaa, Peep; Žerovnik, Eva

    2013-01-01

    Oligomers are commonly observed intermediates at the initial stages of amyloid fibril formation. They are toxic to neurons and cause decrease in neural transmission and long-term potentiation. We describe an in vitro study of the initial steps in amyloid fibril formation by human stefin B, which proved to be a good model system. Due to relative stability of the initial oligomers of stefin B, electrospray ionization mass spectrometry (ESI MS) could be applied in addition to size exclusion chromatography (SEC). These two techniques enabled us to separate and detect distinguished oligomers from the monomers: dimers, trimers, tetramers, up to decamers. The amyloid fibril formation process was followed at different pH and temperatures, including such conditions where the process was slow enough to detect the initial oligomeric species at the very beginning of the lag phase and those at the end of the lag phase. Taking into account the results of the lower-order oligomers transformations early in the process, we were able to propose an improved model for the stefin B fibril formation. PMID:24013380

  18. Rapid α-oligomer formation mediated by the Aβ C terminus initiates an amyloid assembly pathway

    PubMed Central

    Misra, Pinaki; Kodali, Ravindra; Chemuru, Saketh; Kar, Karunakar; Wetzel, Ronald

    2016-01-01

    Since early oligomeric intermediates in amyloid assembly are often transient and difficult to distinguish, characterize and quantify, the mechanistic basis of the initiation of spontaneous amyloid growth is often opaque. We describe here an approach to the analysis of the Aβ aggregation mechanism that uses Aβ-polyglutamine hybrid peptides designed to retard amyloid maturation and an adjusted thioflavin intensity scale that reveals structural features of aggregation intermediates. The results support an aggregation initiation mechanism for Aβ-polyQ hybrids, and by extension for full-length Aβ peptides, in which a modular Aβ C-terminal segment mediates rapid, non-nucleated formation of α-helical oligomers. The resulting high local concentration of tethered amyloidogenic segments within these α-oligomers facilitates transition to a β-oligomer population that, via further remodelling and/or elongation steps, ultimately generates mature amyloid. Consistent with this mechanism, an engineered Aβ C-terminal fragment delays aggregation onset by Aβ-polyglutamine peptides and redirects assembly of Aβ42 fibrils. PMID:27546208

  19. Methods for the Specific Detection and Quantitation of AmyloidOligomers in Cerebrospinal Fluid.

    PubMed

    Schuster, Judith; Funke, Susanne Aileen

    2016-05-01

    Protein misfolding and aggregation are fundamental features of the majority of neurodegenerative diseases, like Alzheimer's disease (AD), Parkinson's disease, frontotemporal dementia, and prion diseases. Proteinaceous deposits in the brain of the patient, e.g., amyloid plaques consisting of the amyloid-β (Aβ) peptide and tangles composed of tau protein, are the hallmarks of AD. Soluble oligomers of Aβ and tau play a fundamental role in disease progression, and specific detection and quantification of the respective oligomeric proteins in cerebrospinal fluid may provide presymptomatically detectable biomarkers, paving the way for early diagnosis or even prognosis. Several studies on the development of techniques for the specific detection of Aβ oligomers were published, but some of the existing tools do not yet seem to be satisfactory, and the study results are contradicting. The detection of oligomers is challenging due to their polymorphous and unstable nature, their low concentration, and the presence of competing proteins and Aβ monomers in body fluids. Here, we present an overview of the current state of the development of methods for Aβ oligomer specific detection and quantitation. The methods are divided in the three subgroups: (i) enzyme linked immunosorbent assays (ELISA), (ii) methods for single oligomer detection, and (iii) others, which are mainly biosensor based methods. PMID:27163804

  20. Amyloid Oligomers and Mature Fibrils Prepared from an Innocuous Protein Cause Diverging Cellular Death Mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Harte, Níal P; Klyubin, Igor; McCarthy, Eoin K; Min, Soyoung; Garrahy, Sarah Ann; Xie, Yongjing; Davey, Gavin P; Boland, John J; Rowan, Michael J; Mok, K Hun

    2015-11-20

    Despite significant advances, the molecular identity of the cytotoxic species populated during in vivo amyloid formation crucial for the understanding of neurodegenerative disorders is yet to be revealed. In this study lysozyme prefibrillar oligomers and fibrils in both mature and sonicated states have been isolated through an optimized ultrafiltration/ultracentrifugation method and characterized with various optical spectroscopic techniques, atomic force microscopy, and transmission electron microscopy. We examined their level and mode of toxicity on rat pheochromocytoma (PC12) cells in both differentiated and undifferentiated states. We find that oligomers and fibrils display cytotoxic capabilities toward cultured cells in vitro, with oligomers producing elevated levels of cellular injury toward undifferentiated PC12 cells (PC12(undiff)). Furthermore, dual flow cytometry staining experiments demonstrate that the oligomers and mature fibrils induce divergent cellular death pathways (apoptosis and secondary necrosis, respectively) in these PC12 cells. We have also shown that oligomers but not sonicated mature fibrils inhibit hippocampal long term potentiation, a form of synaptic plasticity implicated in learning and memory, in vivo. We conclude that our in vitro and in vivo findings confer a level of resistance toward amyloid fibrils, and that the PC 12-based comparative cytotoxicity assay can provide insights into toxicity differences between differently aggregated protein species.

  1. Structural fingerprints and their evolution during oligomeric vs. oligomer-free amyloid fibril growth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Foley, Joseph; Hill, Shannon E.; Miti, Tatiana; Mulaj, Mentor; Ciesla, Marissa; Robeel, Rhonda; Persichilli, Christopher; Raynes, Rachel; Westerheide, Sandy; Muschol, Martin

    2013-09-01

    Deposits of fibrils formed by disease-specific proteins are the molecular hallmark of such diverse human disorders as Alzheimer's disease, type II diabetes, or rheumatoid arthritis. Amyloid fibril formation by structurally and functionally unrelated proteins exhibits many generic characteristics, most prominently the cross β-sheet structure of their mature fibrils. At the same time, amyloid formation tends to proceed along one of two separate assembly pathways yielding either stiff monomeric filaments or globular oligomers and curvilinear protofibrils. Given the focus on oligomers as major toxic species, the very existence of an oligomer-free assembly pathway is significant. Little is known, though, about the structure of the various intermediates emerging along different pathways and whether the pathways converge towards a common or distinct fibril structures. Using infrared spectroscopy we probed the structural evolution of intermediates and late-stage fibrils formed during in vitro lysozyme amyloid assembly along an oligomeric and oligomer-free pathway. Infrared spectroscopy confirmed that both pathways produced amyloid-specific β-sheet peaks, but at pathway-specific wavenumbers. We further found that the amyloid-specific dye thioflavin T responded to all intermediates along either pathway. The relative amplitudes of thioflavin T fluorescence responses displayed pathway-specific differences and could be utilized for monitoring the structural evolution of intermediates. Pathway-specific structural features obtained from infrared spectroscopy and Thioflavin T responses were identical for fibrils grown at highly acidic or at physiological pH values and showed no discernible effects of protein hydrolysis. Our results suggest that late-stage fibrils formed along either pathway are amyloidogenic in nature, but have distinguishable structural fingerprints. These pathway-specific fingerprints emerge during the earliest aggregation events and persist throughout the

  2. Amyloid Oligomer Neurotoxicity, Calcium Dysregulation, and Lipid Rafts

    PubMed Central

    Malchiodi-Albedi, Fiorella; Paradisi, Silvia; Matteucci, Andrea; Frank, Claudio; Diociaiuti, Marco

    2011-01-01

    Amyloid proteins constitute a chemically heterogeneous group of proteins, which share some biophysical and biological characteristics, the principal of which are the high propensity to acquire an incorrect folding and the tendency to aggregate. A number of diseases are associated with misfolding and aggregation of proteins, although only in some of them—most notably Alzheimer's disease (AD) and transmissible spongiform encephalopathies (TSEs)—a pathogenetic link with misfolded proteins is now widely recognized. Lipid rafts (LRs) have been involved in the pathophysiology of diseases associated with protein misfolding at several levels, including aggregation of misfolded proteins, amyloidogenic processing, and neurotoxicity. Among the pathogenic misfolded proteins, the AD-related protein amyloid β (Aβ) is by far the most studied protein, and a large body of evidence has been gathered on the role played by LRs in Aβ pathogenicity. However, significant amount of data has also been collected for several other amyloid proteins, so that their ability to interact with LRs can be considered an additional, shared feature characterizing the amyloid protein family. In this paper, we will review the evidence on the role of LRs in the neurotoxicity of huntingtin, α-synuclein, prion protein, and calcitonin. PMID:21331330

  3. Conformational stability of fibrillar amyloid-beta oligomers via protofilament pair formation - a systematic computational study.

    PubMed

    Kahler, Anna; Sticht, Heinrich; Horn, Anselm H C

    2013-01-01

    Amyloid-[Formula: see text] (A[Formula: see text]) oligomers play a crucial role in Alzheimer's disease due to their neurotoxic aggregation properties. Fibrillar A[Formula: see text] oligomerization can lead to protofilaments and protofilament pairs via oligomer elongation and oligomer association, respectively. Small fibrillar oligomers adopt the protofilament topology, whereas fibrils contain at least protofilament pairs. To date, the underlying growth mechanism from oligomers to the mature fibril still remains to be elucidated. Here, we performed all-atom molecular dynamics simulations in explicit solvent on single layer-like protofilaments and fibril-like protofilament pairs of different size ranging from the tetramer to the 48-mer. We found that the initial U-shaped topology per monomer is maintained over time in all oligomers. The observed deviations of protofilaments from the starting structure increase significantly with size due to the twisting of the in-register parallel [Formula: see text]-sheets. This twist causes long protofilaments to be unstable and leads to a breakage. Protofilament pairs, which are stabilized by a hydrophobic interface, exhibit more fibril-like properties such as the overall structure and the twist angle. Thus, they can act as stable conformational templates for further fibril growth. Key properties like the twist angle, shape complementarity, and energetics show a size-dependent behavior so that small oligomers favor the protofilament topology, whereas large oligomers favor the protofilament pair topology. The region for this conformational transition is at the size of approximately twelve A[Formula: see text] monomers. From that, we propose the following growth mechanism from A[Formula: see text] oligomers to fibrils: (1) elongation of short protofilaments; (2) breakage of large protofilaments; (3) formation of short protofilament pairs; and (4) elongation of protofilament pairs.

  4. pH-induced molecular shedding drives the formation of amyloid fibril-derived oligomers

    PubMed Central

    Tipping, Kevin W.; Karamanos, Theodoros K.; Jakhria, Toral; Iadanza, Matthew G.; Goodchild, Sophia C.; Tuma, Roman; Ranson, Neil A.; Hewitt, Eric W.; Radford, Sheena E.

    2015-01-01

    Amyloid disorders cause debilitating illnesses through the formation of toxic protein aggregates. The mechanisms of amyloid toxicity and the nature of species responsible for mediating cellular dysfunction remain unclear. Here, using β2-microglobulin (β2m) as a model system, we show that the disruption of membranes by amyloid fibrils is caused by the molecular shedding of membrane-active oligomers in a process that is dependent on pH. Using thioflavin T (ThT) fluorescence, NMR, EM and fluorescence correlation spectroscopy (FCS), we show that fibril disassembly at pH 6.4 results in the formation of nonnative spherical oligomers that disrupt synthetic membranes. By contrast, fibril dissociation at pH 7.4 results in the formation of nontoxic, native monomers. Chemical cross-linking or interaction with hsp70 increases the kinetic stability of fibrils and decreases their capacity to cause membrane disruption and cellular dysfunction. The results demonstrate how pH can modulate the deleterious effects of preformed amyloid aggregates and suggest why endocytic trafficking through acidic compartments may be a key factor in amyloid disease. PMID:25902516

  5. Application of an Amyloid Beta Oligomer Standard in the sFIDA Assay

    PubMed Central

    Kühbach, Katja; Hülsemann, Maren; Herrmann, Yvonne; Kravchenko, Kateryna; Kulawik, Andreas; Linnartz, Christina; Peters, Luriano; Wang, Kun; Willbold, Johannes; Willbold, Dieter; Bannach, Oliver

    2016-01-01

    Still, there is need for significant improvements in reliable and accurate diagnosis for Alzheimer's disease (AD) at early stages. It is widely accepted that changes in the concentration and conformation of amyloid-β (Aβ) appear several years before the onset of first symptoms of cognitive impairment in AD patients. Because Aβ oligomers are possibly the major toxic species in AD, they are a promising biomarker candidate for the early diagnosis of the disease. To date, a variety of oligomer-specific assays have been developed, many of them ELISAs. Here, we demonstrate the sFIDA assay, a technology highly specific for Aβ oligomers developed toward single particle sensitivity. By spiking stabilized Aβ oligomers to buffer and to body fluids from control donors, we show that the sFIDA readout correlates with the applied concentration of stabilized oligomers diluted in buffer, cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), and blood plasma over several orders of magnitude. The lower limit of detection was calculated to be 22 fM of stabilized oligomers diluted in PBS, 18 fM in CSF, and 14 fM in blood plasma. PMID:26858588

  6. Does Thioflavin-T Detect Oligomers Formed During Amyloid Fibril Assembly

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Persichilli, Christopher; Hill, Shannon E.; Mast, Jason; Muschol, Martin

    2011-03-01

    Recent results have shown that oligomeric intermediates of amyloid fibril assembly represent the main toxic species in disorders such as Alzheimer's disease and type II diabetes. Thioflavin-T (ThT) is among the most commonly used indicator dyes for mature amyloid fibrils in vitro. We used ThT to monitor amyloid fibril formation of lysozyme (HEWL), and correlated ThT fluorescence to concurrent dynamic light scattering and atomic force microscopy measurements. Specifically, we tested the ability of ThT to discern among oligomer-free vs. oligomeric fibril assembly pathways. We found that ThT fluorescence did not detect oligomer growth; however, fluorescence increases did coincide with the formation of monomeric filaments in the oligomer-free assembly pathway. This implies that ThT fluorescence is not generally suitable for the detection of oligomeric intermediates. The results further suggest different internal structures for oligomeric vs. monomeric filaments. This research was supported, in part, by funding through the Byrd Alzheimer's Institute (ARG-2007-22) and the BITT-Florida Center of Excellence for M.M., an NSF-REU grant (DMR-1004873) for C. P. and an NSF-IGERT fellowship for S.H.

  7. Biofunctionalized Silica Nanoparticles: Standards in AmyloidOligomer-Based Diagnosis of Alzheimer's Disease.

    PubMed

    Hülsemann, Maren; Zafiu, Christian; Kühbach, Katja; Lühmann, Nicole; Herrmann, Yvonne; Peters, Luriano; Linnartz, Christina; Willbold, Johannes; Kravchenko, Kateryna; Kulawik, Andreas; Willbold, Sabine; Bannach, Oliver; Willbold, Dieter

    2016-07-27

    Amyloid-β (Aβ) oligomers represent a promising biomarker for the early diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease (AD). However, state-of-the-art methods for immunodetection of Aβ oligomers in body fluids show a large variability and lack a reliable and stable standard that enables the reproducible quantitation of Aβ oligomers. At present, the only available standard applied in these assays is based on a random aggregation process of synthetic Aβ and has neither a defined size nor a known number of epitopes. In this report, we generated a highly stable standard in the size range of native Aβ oligomers that exposes a defined number of epitopes. The standard consists of a silica nanoparticle (SiNaP), which is functionalized with Aβ peptides on its surface (Aβ-SiNaP). The different steps of Aβ-SiNaP synthesis were followed by microscopic, spectroscopic and biochemical analyses. To investigate the performance of Aβ-SiNaPs as an appropriate standard in Aβ oligomer immunodetection, Aβ-SiNaPs were diluted in cerebrospinal fluid and quantified down to a concentration of 10 fM in the sFIDA (surface-based fluorescence intensity distribution analysis) assay. This detection limit corresponds to an Aβ concentration of 1.9 ng l-1 and lies in the sensitivity range of currently applied diagnostic tools based on Aβ oligomer quantitation. Thus, we developed a highly stable and well-characterized standard for the application in Aβ oligomer immunodetection assays that finally allows the reproducible quantitation of Aβ oligomers down to single molecule level and provides a fundamental improvement for the worldwide standardization process of diagnostic methods in AD research. PMID:27472876

  8. Soluble Prion Protein Binds Isolated Low Molecular Weight AmyloidOligomers Causing Cytotoxicity Inhibition.

    PubMed

    Williams, Thomas L; Choi, Jin-Kyu; Surewicz, Krystyna; Surewicz, Witold K

    2015-12-16

    A growing number of observations indicate that soluble amyloid-β (Aβ) oligomers play a major role in Alzheimer's disease. Recent studies strongly suggest that at least some of the neurotoxic effects of these oligomers are mediated by cellular, membrane-anchored prion protein and that Aβ neurotoxicity can be inhibited by soluble recombinant prion protein (rPrP) and its fragments. However, the mechanism by which rPrP interacts with Aβ oligomers and prevents their toxicity is largely unknown, and studies in this regard are hindered by the large structural heterogeneity of Aβ oligomers. To overcome this difficulty, here we used photoinduced cross-linking of unmodified proteins (PICUP) to isolate well-defined oligomers of Aβ42 and characterize these species with regard to their cytotoxicity and interaction with rPrP, as well the mechanism by which rPrP inhibits Aβ42 cytotoxicity. Our data shows that the addition of rPrP to the assembling Aβ42 results in a shift in oligomer size distribution, decreasing the population of toxic tetramers and higher order oligomers and increasing the population of nontoxic (and possibly neuroprotective) monomers. Isolated oligomeric species of Aβ42 are cytotoxic to primary neurons and cause permeation of model lipid bilayers. These toxic effects, which are oligomer size-dependent, can be inhibited by the addition of rPrP, and our data suggest potential mechanisms of this inhibitory action. This insight should help in current efforts to develop PrP-based therapeutics for Alzheimer's disease. PMID:26466138

  9. Nature of the Amyloid-β Monomer and the Monomer-Oligomer Equilibrium

    PubMed Central

    Nag, Suman; Sarkar, Bidyut; Bandyopadhyay, Arkarup; Sahoo, Bankanidhi; Sreenivasan, Varun K. A.; Kombrabail, Mamata; Muralidharan, Chandrakesan; Maiti, Sudipta

    2011-01-01

    The monomer to oligomer transition initiates the aggregation and pathogenic transformation of Alzheimer amyloid-β (Aβ) peptide. However, the monomeric state of this aggregation-prone peptide has remained beyond the reach of most experimental techniques, and a quantitative understanding of this transition is yet to emerge. Here, we employ single-molecule level fluorescence tools to characterize the monomeric state and the monomer-oligomer transition at physiological concentrations in buffers mimicking the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). Our measurements show that the monomer has a hydrodynamic radius of 0.9 ± 0.1 nm, which confirms the prediction made by some of the in silico studies. Surprisingly, at equilibrium, both Aβ40 and Aβ42 remain predominantly monomeric up to 3 μm, above which it forms large aggregates. This concentration is much higher than the estimated concentrations in the CSF of either normal or diseased brains. If Aβ oligomers are present in the CSF and are the key agents in Alzheimer pathology, as is generally believed, then these must be released in the CSF as preformed entities. Although the oligomers are thermodynamically unstable, we find that a large kinetic barrier, which is mostly entropic in origin, strongly impedes their dissociation. Thermodynamic principles therefore allow the development of a pharmacological agent that can catalytically convert metastable oligomers into nontoxic monomers. PMID:21349839

  10. Native metastable prefibrillar oligomers are the most neurotoxic species among amyloid aggregates.

    PubMed

    Diociaiuti, Marco; Macchia, Gianfranco; Paradisi, Silvia; Frank, Claudio; Camerini, Serena; Chistolini, Pietro; Gaudiano, Maria Cristina; Petrucci, Tamara Corinna; Malchiodi-Albedi, Fiorella

    2014-09-01

    Many proteins belonging to the amyloid family share the tendency to misfold and aggregate following common steps, and display similar neurotoxicity. In the aggregation pathway different kinds of species are formed, including several types of oligomers and eventually mature fibers. It is now suggested that the pathogenic aggregates are not the mature fibrils, but the intermediate, soluble oligomers. Many kinds of aggregates have been described to exist in a metastable state and in equilibrium with monomers. Up to now it is not clear whether a specific structure is at the basis of the neurotoxicity. Here we characterized, starting from the early aggregation stages, the oligomer populations formed by an amyloid protein, salmon calcitonin (sCT), chosen due to its very slow aggregation rate. To prepare different oligomer populations and characterize them by means of photoinduced cross-linking SDS-PAGE, Energy Filtered-Transmission Electron Microscopy (EF-TEM) and Circular Dichroism (CD) spectroscopy, we used Size Exclusion Chromatography (SEC), a technique that does not influence the aggregation process leaving the protein in the native state. Taking advantage of sCT low aggregation rate, we characterized the neurotoxic potential of the SEC-separated, non-crosslinked fractions in cultured primary hippocampal neurons, analyzing intracellular Ca(2+) influx and apoptotic trend. We provide evidence that native, globular, metastable, prefibrillar oligomers (dimers, trimers and tetramers) were the toxic species and that low concentrations of these aggregates in the population was sufficient to render the sample neurotoxic. Monomers and other kind of aggregates, such as annular or linear protofibers and mature fibers, were totally biologically inactive. PMID:24932517

  11. Natural amyloidoligomers acutely impair the formation of a contextual fear memory in mice.

    PubMed

    Kittelberger, Kara A; Piazza, Fabrizio; Tesco, Giuseppina; Reijmers, Leon G

    2012-01-01

    Memory loss is one of the hallmark symptoms of Alzheimer's disease (AD). It has been proposed that soluble amyloid-beta (Abeta) oligomers acutely impair neuronal function and thereby memory. We here report that natural Abeta oligomers acutely impair contextual fear memory in mice. A natural Abeta oligomer solution containing Abeta monomers, dimers, trimers, and tetramers was derived from the conditioned medium of 7PA2 cells, a cell line that expresses human amyloid precursor protein containing the Val717Phe familial AD mutation. As a control we used 7PA2 conditioned medium from which Abeta oligomers were removed through immunodepletion. Separate groups of mice were injected with Abeta and control solutions through a cannula into the lateral brain ventricle, and subjected to fear conditioning using two tone-shock pairings. One day after fear conditioning, mice were tested for contextual fear memory and tone fear memory in separate retrieval trials. Three experiments were performed. For experiment 1, mice were injected three times: 1 hour before and 3 hours after fear conditioning, and 1 hour before context retrieval. For experiments 2 and 3, mice were injected a single time at 1 hour and 2 hours before fear conditioning respectively. In all three experiments there was no effect on tone fear memory. Injection of Abeta 1 hour before fear conditioning, but not 2 hours before fear conditioning, impaired the formation of a contextual fear memory. In future studies, the acute effect of natural Abeta oligomers on contextual fear memory can be used to identify potential mechanisms and treatments of AD associated memory loss.

  12. Soluble amyloidoligomers as synaptotoxins leading to cognitive impairment in Alzheimer's disease.

    PubMed

    Ferreira, Sergio T; Lourenco, Mychael V; Oliveira, Mauricio M; De Felice, Fernanda G

    2015-01-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is the most common form of dementia in the elderly, and affects millions of people worldwide. As the number of AD cases continues to increase in both developed and developing countries, finding therapies that effectively halt or reverse disease progression constitutes a major research and public health challenge. Since the identification of the amyloid-β peptide (Aβ) as the major component of the amyloid plaques that are characteristically found in AD brains, a major effort has aimed to determine whether and how Aβ leads to memory loss and cognitive impairment. A large body of evidence accumulated in the past 15 years supports a pivotal role of soluble Aβ oligomers (AβOs) in synapse failure and neuronal dysfunction in AD. Nonetheless, a number of basic questions, including the exact molecular composition of the synaptotoxic oligomers, the identity of the receptor(s) to which they bind, and the signaling pathways that ultimately lead to synapse failure, remain to be definitively answered. Here, we discuss recent advances that have illuminated our understanding of the chemical nature of the toxic species and the deleterious impact they have on synapses, and have culminated in the proposal of an Aβ oligomer hypothesis for Alzheimer's pathogenesis. We also highlight outstanding questions and challenges in AD research that should be addressed to allow translation of research findings into effective AD therapies. PMID:26074767

  13. Pre-amyloid oligomers budding:a metastatic mechanism of proteotoxicity

    PubMed Central

    Bernini, Fabrizio; Malferrari, Daniele; Pignataro, Marcello; Bortolotti, Carlo Augusto; Di Rocco, Giulia; Lancellotti, Lidia; Brigatti, Maria Franca; Kayed, Rakez; Borsari, Marco; del Monte, Federica; Castellini, Elena

    2016-01-01

    The pathological hallmark of misfolded protein diseases and aging is the accumulation of proteotoxic aggregates. However, the mechanisms of proteotoxicity and the dynamic changes in fiber formation and dissemination remain unclear, preventing a cure. Here we adopted a reductionist approach and used atomic force microscopy to define the temporal and spatial changes of amyloid aggregates, their modes of dissemination and the biochemical changes that may influence their growth. We show that pre-amyloid oligomers (PAO) mature to form linear and circular protofibrils, and amyloid fibers, and those can break reforming PAO that can migrate invading neighbor structures. Simulating the effect of immunotherapy modifies the dynamics of PAO formation. Anti-fibers as well as anti-PAO antibodies fragment the amyloid fibers, however the fragmentation using anti-fibers antibodies favored the migration of PAO. In conclusion, we provide evidence for the mechanisms of misfolded protein maturation and propagation and the effects of interventions on the resolution and dissemination of amyloid pathology. PMID:27775057

  14. An anti-Aβ (amyloid β) single-chain variable fragment prevents amyloid fibril formation and cytotoxicity by withdrawing Aβ oligomers from the amyloid pathway.

    PubMed

    Marín-Argany, Marta; Rivera-Hernández, Geovanny; Martí, Joaquim; Villegas, Sandra

    2011-07-01

    Aβ (amyloid β) immunotherapy has been revealed as a possible tool in Alzheimer's disease treatment. In contrast with complete antibodies, the administration of scFvs (single-chain variable fragments) produces neither meningoencephalitis nor cerebral haemorrhage. In the present study, the recombinant expression of scFv-h3D6, a derivative of an antibody specific for Aβ oligomers, is presented, as well as the subsequent proof of its capability to recover the toxicity induced by the Aβ1-42 peptide in the SH-SY5Y neuroblastoma cell line. To gain insight into the conformational changes underlying the prevention of Aβ toxicity by this antibody fragment, the conformational landscape of scFv-h3D6 upon temperature perturbation is also described. Heating the native state does not lead to any extent of unfolding, but rather directly to a β-rich intermediate state which initiates an aggregation pathway. This aggregation pathway is not an amyloid fibril pathway, as is that followed by the Aβ peptide, but rather a worm-like fibril pathway which, noticeably, turns out to be non-toxic. On the other hand, this pathway is thermodynamically and kinetically favoured when the scFv-h3D6 and Aβ1-42 oligomers form a complex in native conditions, explaining how the scFv-h3D6 withdraws Aβ1-42 oligomers from the amyloid pathway. To our knowledge, this is the first description of a conformational mechanism by which a scFv prevents Aβ-oligomer cytotoxicity.

  15. Alzheimer's therapeutics targeting amyloid beta 1-42 oligomers II: Sigma-2/PGRMC1 receptors mediate Abeta 42 oligomer binding and synaptotoxicity.

    PubMed

    Izzo, Nicholas J; Xu, Jinbin; Zeng, Chenbo; Kirk, Molly J; Mozzoni, Kelsie; Silky, Colleen; Rehak, Courtney; Yurko, Raymond; Look, Gary; Rishton, Gilbert; Safferstein, Hank; Cruchaga, Carlos; Goate, Alison; Cahill, Michael A; Arancio, Ottavio; Mach, Robert H; Craven, Rolf; Head, Elizabeth; LeVine, Harry; Spires-Jones, Tara L; Catalano, Susan M

    2014-01-01

    Amyloid beta (Abeta) 1-42 oligomers accumulate in brains of patients with Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI) and disrupt synaptic plasticity processes that underlie memory formation. Synaptic binding of Abeta oligomers to several putative receptor proteins is reported to inhibit long-term potentiation, affect membrane trafficking and induce reversible spine loss in neurons, leading to impaired cognitive performance and ultimately to anterograde amnesia in the early stages of Alzheimer's disease (AD). We have identified a receptor not previously associated with AD that mediates the binding of Abeta oligomers to neurons, and describe novel therapeutic antagonists of this receptor capable of blocking Abeta toxic effects on synapses in vitro and cognitive deficits in vivo. Knockdown of sigma-2/PGRMC1 (progesterone receptor membrane component 1) protein expression in vitro using siRNA results in a highly correlated reduction in binding of exogenous Abeta oligomers to neurons of more than 90%. Expression of sigma-2/PGRMC1 is upregulated in vitro by treatment with Abeta oligomers, and is dysregulated in Alzheimer's disease patients' brain compared to age-matched, normal individuals. Specific, high affinity small molecule receptor antagonists and antibodies raised against specific regions on this receptor can displace synthetic Abeta oligomer binding to synaptic puncta in vitro and displace endogenous human AD patient oligomers from brain tissue sections in a dose-dependent manner. These receptor antagonists prevent and reverse the effects of Abeta oligomers on membrane trafficking and synapse loss in vitro and cognitive deficits in AD mouse models. These findings suggest sigma-2/PGRMC1 receptors mediate saturable oligomer binding to synaptic puncta on neurons and that brain penetrant, small molecules can displace endogenous and synthetic oligomers and improve cognitive deficits in AD models. We propose that sigma-2/PGRMC1 is a key mediator of the pathological effects of

  16. Development of new fusion proteins for visualizing amyloidoligomers in vivo.

    PubMed

    Ochiishi, Tomoyo; Doi, Motomichi; Yamasaki, Kazuhiko; Hirose, Keiko; Kitamura, Akira; Urabe, Takao; Hattori, Nobutaka; Kinjo, Masataka; Ebihara, Tatsuhiko; Shimura, Hideki

    2016-01-01

    The intracellular accumulation of amyloid-β (Aβ) oligomers critically contributes to disease progression in Alzheimer's disease (AD) and can be the potential target of AD therapy. Direct observation of molecular dynamics of Aβ oligomers in vivo is key for drug discovery research, however, it has been challenging because Aβ aggregation inhibits the fluorescence from fusion proteins. Here, we developed Aβ1-42-GFP fusion proteins that are oligomerized and visualize their dynamics inside cells even when aggregated. We examined the aggregation states of Aβ-GFP fusion proteins using several methods and confirmed that they did not assemble into fibrils, but instead formed oligomers in vitro and in live cells. By arranging the length of the liker between Aβ and GFP, we generated two fusion proteins with "a long-linker" and "a short-linker", and revealed that the aggregation property of fusion proteins can be evaluated by measuring fluorescence intensities using rat primary culture neurons transfected with Aβ-GFP plasmids and Aβ-GFP transgenic C. elegans. We found that Aβ-GFP fusion proteins induced cell death in COS7 cells. These results suggested that novel Aβ-GFP fusion proteins could be utilized for studying the physiological functions of Aβ oligomers in living cells and animals, and for drug screening by analyzing Aβ toxicity. PMID:26982553

  17. Development of new fusion proteins for visualizing amyloidoligomers in vivo

    PubMed Central

    Ochiishi, Tomoyo; Doi, Motomichi; Yamasaki, Kazuhiko; Hirose, Keiko; Kitamura, Akira; Urabe, Takao; Hattori, Nobutaka; Kinjo, Masataka; Ebihara, Tatsuhiko; Shimura, Hideki

    2016-01-01

    The intracellular accumulation of amyloid-β (Aβ) oligomers critically contributes to disease progression in Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and can be the potential target of AD therapy. Direct observation of molecular dynamics of Aβ oligomers in vivo is key for drug discovery research, however, it has been challenging because Aβ aggregation inhibits the fluorescence from fusion proteins. Here, we developed Aβ1-42-GFP fusion proteins that are oligomerized and visualize their dynamics inside cells even when aggregated. We examined the aggregation states of Aβ-GFP fusion proteins using several methods and confirmed that they did not assemble into fibrils, but instead formed oligomers in vitro and in live cells. By arranging the length of the liker between Aβ and GFP, we generated two fusion proteins with “a long-linker” and “a short-linker”, and revealed that the aggregation property of fusion proteins can be evaluated by measuring fluorescence intensities using rat primary culture neurons transfected with Aβ-GFP plasmids and Aβ-GFP transgenic C. elegans. We found that Aβ-GFP fusion proteins induced cell death in COS7 cells. These results suggested that novel Aβ-GFP fusion proteins could be utilized for studying the physiological functions of Aβ oligomers in living cells and animals, and for drug screening by analyzing Aβ toxicity. PMID:26982553

  18. Formation and growth of oligomers: a Monte Carlo study of an amyloid tau fragment.

    PubMed

    Li, Da-Wei; Mohanty, Sandipan; Irbäck, Anders; Huo, Shuanghong

    2008-12-01

    Small oligomers formed early in the process of amyloid fibril formation may be the major toxic species in Alzheimer's disease. We investigate the early stages of amyloid aggregation for the tau fragment AcPHF6 (Ac-VQIVYK-NH2) using an implicit solvent all-atom model and extensive Monte Carlo simulations of 12, 24, and 36 chains. A variety of small metastable aggregates form and dissolve until an aggregate of a critical size and conformation arises. However, the stable oligomers, which are beta-sheet-rich and feature many hydrophobic contacts, are not always growth-ready. The simulations indicate instead that these supercritical oligomers spend a lengthy period in equilibrium in which considerable reorganization takes place accompanied by exchange of chains with the solution. Growth competence of the stable oligomers correlates with the alignment of the strands in the beta-sheets. The larger aggregates seen in our simulations are all composed of two twisted beta-sheets, packed against each other with hydrophobic side chains at the sheet-sheet interface. These beta-sandwiches show similarities with the proposed steric zipper structure for PHF6 fibrils but have a mixed parallel/antiparallel beta-strand organization as opposed to the parallel organization found in experiments on fibrils. Interestingly, we find that the fraction of parallel beta-sheet structure increases with aggregate size. We speculate that the reorganization of the beta-sheets into parallel ones is an important rate-limiting step in the formation of PHF6 fibrils.

  19. Understanding amyloid fibril nucleation and aβ oligomer/drug interactions from computer simulations.

    PubMed

    Nguyen, Phuong; Derreumaux, Philippe

    2014-02-18

    Evolution has fine-tuned proteins to accomplish a variety of tasks. Yet, with aging, some proteins assemble into harmful amyloid aggregates associated with neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's disease (AD), which presents a complex and costly challenge to our society. Thus, far, drug after drug has failed to slow the progression of AD, characterized by the self-assembly of the 39-43 amino acid β-amyloid (Aβ) protein into extracellular senile plaques that form a cross-β structure. While there is experimental evidence that the Aβ small oligomers are the primary toxic species, standard tools of biology have failed to provide structures of these transient, inhomogeneous assemblies. Despite extensive experimental studies, researchers have not successfully characterized the nucleus ensemble, the starting point for rapid fibril formation. Similarly scientists do not have atomic data to show how the compounds that reduce both fibril formation and toxicity in cells bind to Aβ42 oligomers. In this context, computer simulations are important tools for gaining insights into the self-assembly of amyloid peptides and the molecular mechanism of inhibitors. This Account reviews what analytical models and simulations at different time and length scales tell us about the dynamics, kinetics, and thermodynamics of amyloid fibril formation and, notably, the nucleation process. Though coarse-grained and mesoscopic protein models approximate atomistic details by averaging out unimportant degrees of freedom, they provide generic features of amyloid formation and insights into mechanistic details of the self-assembly process. The thermodynamics and kinetics vary from linear peptides adopting straight β-strands in fibrils to longer peptides adopting in parallel U shaped conformations in fibrils. In addition, these properties change with the balance between electrostatic and hydrophobic interactions and the intrinsic disorder of the system. However, simulations suggest that

  20. Neuroprotective effect of Chunghyuldan from amyloid beta oligomer induced neuroinflammation in vitro and in vivo.

    PubMed

    Kim, Hyo Geun; Kim, Ji-Young; Whang, Wei-Wan; Oh, Myung Sook

    2014-06-01

    Microglia-mediated inflammation is a major pathological mechanism contributing to Alzheimer's disease (AD), and has been proposed as a potential therapeutic target. Chunghyuldan (CHD; Qingxue-dan in Chinese and Daio-Orengedokuto in Japanese) possesses wide-ranging biological effects, including anti-hyperlipidemic, anti-stroke, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidant activities that could affect neurological functions. In this study, we examined the effects of CHD in in-vitro and in-vivo models of AD induced by the oligomeric form of amyloid-beta (Aβ oligomer), which acts directly on microglia-mediated neuroinflammation to result in neuronal damage and cognitive impairment. CHD at 0.1-100 μg·mL(-1) significantly protected PC12 cells and rat primary hippocampal cells from Aβ oligomer1-42 toxicity. In addition, CHD at 1-10 μg·mL(-1) inhibited Aβ oligomer1-42 induced production of nitric oxide, tumor necrosis factor-α, and interleukin-1β in microglial cells. In an in-vivo AD model, administration of CHD (50 mg·(kg body mass)(-1), for 5 days, per oral) inhibited the activation of astrocytes and microglia in the dentate gyrus and neuronal damage in the CA1 of the ipsilateral hippocampus. Moreover, CHD ameliorated cognitive impairment induced by Aβ oligomer1-42 toxicity. These results demonstrate the neuroprotective effects of CHD through inhibition of microglia-mediated neuroinflammation in in-vitro and in-vivo AD-like models induced by Aβ oligomer1-42 toxicity.

  1. Real-time investigation of cytochrome c release profiles in living neuronal cells undergoing amyloid beta oligomer-induced apoptosis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Jae Young; Park, Younggeun; Pun, San; Lee, Sung Sik; Lo, Joe F.; Lee, Luke P.

    2015-06-01

    Intracellular Cyt c release profiles in living human neuroblastoma undergoing amyloid β oligomer (AβO)-induced apoptosis, as a model Alzheimer's disease-associated pathogenic molecule, were analysed in a real-time manner using plasmon resonance energy transfer (PRET)-based spectroscopy.Intracellular Cyt c release profiles in living human neuroblastoma undergoing amyloid β oligomer (AβO)-induced apoptosis, as a model Alzheimer's disease-associated pathogenic molecule, were analysed in a real-time manner using plasmon resonance energy transfer (PRET)-based spectroscopy. Electronic supplementary information (ESI) available. See DOI: 10.1039/c5nr02390d

  2. The stability of cylindrin β-barrel amyloid oligomer models-a molecular dynamics study.

    PubMed

    Berhanu, Workalemahu M; Hansmann, Ulrich H E

    2013-09-01

    Small-soluble amyloid oligomers are believed to play a significant role in the pathology of amyloid diseases. Recently, the atomic structure of a toxic oligomer formed by an 11 residue and its tandem repeat was found to have an out-off register antiparallel β-strands in the shape of a β-barrel. In the present article we investigate the effect of mutations in the hydrophobic cores on the structure and dynamic of the β-barrels using all atom multiple molecular dynamics simulations with an explicit solvent. Extending previous experiments with molecular dynamics simulations we systematically test how stability and formation of cylindrin depends on the interplay between hydrophobicity and steric effects of the core residues. We find that strong hydrophobic interactions between geometrically fitting residues keep the strands (both in register and out-off-register interface) in close proximity, which in turn stabilizes the side-chain and main-chain hydrogen bonds, and the salt bridges on the outer surface along the weak out-of-register interface. Our simulations also indicate presence of water molecules in the hydrophobic interior of the cylindrin β-barrel.Proteins 2013.

  3. Comparative molecular dynamics study of human islet amyloid polypeptide (IAPP) and rat IAPP oligomers.

    PubMed

    Liang, Guizhao; Zhao, Jun; Yu, Xiang; Zheng, Jie

    2013-02-12

    Human islet amyloid polypeptide (hIAPP or amylin) is a causative agent in pancreatic amyloid deposits found in patients with type 2 diabetes. The aggregation of full-length hIAPP(1-37) into small oligomeric species is increasingly believed to be responsible for cell dysfunction and death. However, rat IAPP (rIAPP(1-37)), which differs from hIAPP in only six of 37 residues, loses its aggregation ability to form toxic amyloid species. Atomic details of the effect of sequence on the structure and toxicity between the amyloidogenic, toxic hIAPP peptide and the nonamyloidogenic, nontoxic rIAPP peptide remain unclear. Here, we probe sequence-induced differences in structural stability, conformational dynamics, and driving forces between different hIAPP and rIAPP polymorphic forms from monomer to pentamer using molecular dynamics simulations. Simulations show that hIAPP forms from trimer to pentamer exhibit high structural stability with well-preserved in-register parallel β-sheet and the U-bend conformation. The hIAPP trimer appears to be a smallest minimal seed in solution. The stabilities of parallel hIAPP oligomers increase with the number of peptides. Conversely, replacement of hIAPP sequence by rIAPP sequence causes a significant loss of favorable interpeptide interactions in all rIAPP oligomers, destabilizing the C-terminal β-sheet, turn conformation, and overall stability. A less β-sheet-rich structure and a disturbed U-shaped topology exert a large energy penalty on the self-assemble of the rIAPP peptides into highly ordered, in-register β-sheet-rich protofibrils and fibrils, which explains the nonamyloidogenic activity of rIAPP. Moreover, the absence of interior water within the U-turn region in the well-packed higher-order hIAPP oligomers, not in the poorly packed rIAPP oligomers, also stabilizes peptide association. This work provides atomic details of the sequence-structure relationship between the amyloidogenic hIAPP and its analogues such as the

  4. Comparative molecular dynamics study of human islet amyloid polypeptide (IAPP) and rat IAPP oligomers.

    PubMed

    Liang, Guizhao; Zhao, Jun; Yu, Xiang; Zheng, Jie

    2013-02-12

    Human islet amyloid polypeptide (hIAPP or amylin) is a causative agent in pancreatic amyloid deposits found in patients with type 2 diabetes. The aggregation of full-length hIAPP(1-37) into small oligomeric species is increasingly believed to be responsible for cell dysfunction and death. However, rat IAPP (rIAPP(1-37)), which differs from hIAPP in only six of 37 residues, loses its aggregation ability to form toxic amyloid species. Atomic details of the effect of sequence on the structure and toxicity between the amyloidogenic, toxic hIAPP peptide and the nonamyloidogenic, nontoxic rIAPP peptide remain unclear. Here, we probe sequence-induced differences in structural stability, conformational dynamics, and driving forces between different hIAPP and rIAPP polymorphic forms from monomer to pentamer using molecular dynamics simulations. Simulations show that hIAPP forms from trimer to pentamer exhibit high structural stability with well-preserved in-register parallel β-sheet and the U-bend conformation. The hIAPP trimer appears to be a smallest minimal seed in solution. The stabilities of parallel hIAPP oligomers increase with the number of peptides. Conversely, replacement of hIAPP sequence by rIAPP sequence causes a significant loss of favorable interpeptide interactions in all rIAPP oligomers, destabilizing the C-terminal β-sheet, turn conformation, and overall stability. A less β-sheet-rich structure and a disturbed U-shaped topology exert a large energy penalty on the self-assemble of the rIAPP peptides into highly ordered, in-register β-sheet-rich protofibrils and fibrils, which explains the nonamyloidogenic activity of rIAPP. Moreover, the absence of interior water within the U-turn region in the well-packed higher-order hIAPP oligomers, not in the poorly packed rIAPP oligomers, also stabilizes peptide association. This work provides atomic details of the sequence-structure relationship between the amyloidogenic hIAPP and its analogues such as the

  5. A Foldamer-Dendrimer Conjugate Neutralizes Synaptotoxic β-Amyloid Oligomers

    PubMed Central

    Fülöp, Lívia; Mándity, István M.; Juhász, Gábor; Szegedi, Viktor; Hetényi, Anasztázia; Wéber, Edit; Bozsó, Zsolt; Simon, Dóra; Benkő, Mária; Király, Zoltán; Martinek, Tamás A.

    2012-01-01

    Background and Aims Unnatural self-organizing biomimetic polymers (foldamers) emerged as promising materials for biomolecule recognition and inhibition. Our goal was to construct multivalent foldamer-dendrimer conjugates which wrap the synaptotoxic β-amyloid (Aβ) oligomers with high affinity through their helical foldamer tentacles. Oligomeric Aβ species play pivotal role in Alzheimer's disease, therefore recognition and direct inhibition of this undruggable target is a great current challenge. Methods and Results Short helical β-peptide foldamers with designed secondary structures and side chain chemistry patterns were applied as potential recognition segments and their binding to the target was tested with NMR methods (saturation transfer difference and transferred-nuclear Overhauser effect). Helices exhibiting binding in the µM region were coupled to a tetravalent G0-PAMAM dendrimer. In vitro biophysical (isothermal titration calorimetry, dynamic light scattering, transmission electron microscopy and size-exclusion chromatography) and biochemical tests (ELISA and dot blot) indicated the tight binding between the foldamer conjugates and the Aβ oligomers. Moreover, a selective low nM interaction with the low molecular weight fraction of the Aβ oligomers was found. Ex vivo electrophysiological experiments revealed that the new material rescues the long-term potentiation from the toxic Aβ oligomers in mouse hippocampal slices at submicromolar concentration. Conclusions The combination of the foldamer methodology, the fragment-based approach and the multivalent design offers a pathway to unnatural protein mimetics that are capable of specific molecular recognition, and has already resulted in an inhibitor for an extremely difficult target. PMID:22859942

  6. Calcium binding to gatekeeper residues flanking aggregation-prone segments underlies non-fibrillar amyloid traits in superoxide dismutase 1 (SOD1).

    PubMed

    Estácio, Sílvia G; Leal, Sónia S; Cristóvão, Joana S; Faísca, Patrícia F N; Gomes, Cláudio M

    2015-02-01

    Calcium deregulation is a central feature among neurodegenerative diseases, including amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). Calcium accumulates in the spinal and brain stem motor neurons of ALS patients triggering multiple pathophysiological processes which have been recently shown to include direct effects on the aggregation cascade of superoxide dismutase 1 (SOD1). SOD1 is a Cu/Zn enzyme whose demetallated form is implicated in ALS protein deposits, contributing to toxic gain of function phenotypes. Here we undertake a combined experimental and computational study aimed at establishing the molecular details underlying the regulatory effects of Ca(2+) over SOD1 aggregation potential. Isothermal titration calorimetry indicates entropy driven low affinity association of Ca(2+) ions to apo SOD1, at pH7.5 and 37°C. Molecular dynamics simulations denote a noticeable loss of native structure upon Ca(2+) association that is especially prominent at the zinc-binding and electrostatic loops, whose decoupling is known to expose the central SOD1 β-barrel triggering aggregation. Structural mapping of the preferential apo SOD1 Ca(2+) binding locations reveals that among the most frequent ligands for Ca(2+) are negatively-charged gatekeeper residues located in boundary positions with respect to segments highly prone to edge-to-edge aggregation. Calcium interactions thus diminish gatekeeping roles of these residues, by shielding repulsive interactions via stacking between aggregating β-sheets, partly blocking fibril formation and promoting amyloidogenic oligomers such as those found in ALS inclusions. Interestingly, many fALS mutations occur at these positions, disclosing how Ca(2+) interactions recreate effects similar to those of genetic defects, a finding with relevance to understand sporadic ALS pathomechanisms. PMID:25463043

  7. Alzheimer's therapeutics targeting amyloid beta 1-42 oligomers I: Abeta 42 oligomer binding to specific neuronal receptors is displaced by drug candidates that improve cognitive deficits.

    PubMed

    Izzo, Nicholas J; Staniszewski, Agnes; To, Lillian; Fa, Mauro; Teich, Andrew F; Saeed, Faisal; Wostein, Harrison; Walko, Thomas; Vaswani, Anisha; Wardius, Meghan; Syed, Zanobia; Ravenscroft, Jessica; Mozzoni, Kelsie; Silky, Colleen; Rehak, Courtney; Yurko, Raymond; Finn, Patricia; Look, Gary; Rishton, Gilbert; Safferstein, Hank; Miller, Miles; Johanson, Conrad; Stopa, Edward; Windisch, Manfred; Hutter-Paier, Birgit; Shamloo, Mehrdad; Arancio, Ottavio; LeVine, Harry; Catalano, Susan M

    2014-01-01

    Synaptic dysfunction and loss caused by age-dependent accumulation of synaptotoxic beta amyloid (Abeta) 1-42 oligomers is proposed to underlie cognitive decline in Alzheimer's disease (AD). Alterations in membrane trafficking induced by Abeta oligomers mediates reduction in neuronal surface receptor expression that is the basis for inhibition of electrophysiological measures of synaptic plasticity and thus learning and memory. We have utilized phenotypic screens in mature, in vitro cultures of rat brain cells to identify small molecules which block or prevent the binding and effects of Abeta oligomers. Synthetic Abeta oligomers bind saturably to a single site on neuronal synapses and induce deficits in membrane trafficking in neuronal cultures with an EC50 that corresponds to its binding affinity. The therapeutic lead compounds we have found are pharmacological antagonists of Abeta oligomers, reducing the binding of Abeta oligomers to neurons in vitro, preventing spine loss in neurons and preventing and treating oligomer-induced deficits in membrane trafficking. These molecules are highly brain penetrant and prevent and restore cognitive deficits in mouse models of Alzheimer's disease. Counter-screening these compounds against a broad panel of potential CNS targets revealed they are highly potent and specific ligands of the sigma-2/PGRMC1 receptor. Brain concentrations of the compounds corresponding to greater than 80% receptor occupancy at the sigma-2/PGRMC1 receptor restore cognitive function in transgenic hAPP Swe/Ldn mice. These studies demonstrate that synthetic and human-derived Abeta oligomers act as pharmacologically-behaved ligands at neuronal receptors--i.e. they exhibit saturable binding to a target, they exert a functional effect related to their binding and their displacement by small molecule antagonists blocks their functional effect. The first-in-class small molecule receptor antagonists described here restore memory to normal in multiple AD models

  8. Alzheimer's therapeutics targeting amyloid beta 1-42 oligomers I: Abeta 42 oligomer binding to specific neuronal receptors is displaced by drug candidates that improve cognitive deficits.

    PubMed

    Izzo, Nicholas J; Staniszewski, Agnes; To, Lillian; Fa, Mauro; Teich, Andrew F; Saeed, Faisal; Wostein, Harrison; Walko, Thomas; Vaswani, Anisha; Wardius, Meghan; Syed, Zanobia; Ravenscroft, Jessica; Mozzoni, Kelsie; Silky, Colleen; Rehak, Courtney; Yurko, Raymond; Finn, Patricia; Look, Gary; Rishton, Gilbert; Safferstein, Hank; Miller, Miles; Johanson, Conrad; Stopa, Edward; Windisch, Manfred; Hutter-Paier, Birgit; Shamloo, Mehrdad; Arancio, Ottavio; LeVine, Harry; Catalano, Susan M

    2014-01-01

    Synaptic dysfunction and loss caused by age-dependent accumulation of synaptotoxic beta amyloid (Abeta) 1-42 oligomers is proposed to underlie cognitive decline in Alzheimer's disease (AD). Alterations in membrane trafficking induced by Abeta oligomers mediates reduction in neuronal surface receptor expression that is the basis for inhibition of electrophysiological measures of synaptic plasticity and thus learning and memory. We have utilized phenotypic screens in mature, in vitro cultures of rat brain cells to identify small molecules which block or prevent the binding and effects of Abeta oligomers. Synthetic Abeta oligomers bind saturably to a single site on neuronal synapses and induce deficits in membrane trafficking in neuronal cultures with an EC50 that corresponds to its binding affinity. The therapeutic lead compounds we have found are pharmacological antagonists of Abeta oligomers, reducing the binding of Abeta oligomers to neurons in vitro, preventing spine loss in neurons and preventing and treating oligomer-induced deficits in membrane trafficking. These molecules are highly brain penetrant and prevent and restore cognitive deficits in mouse models of Alzheimer's disease. Counter-screening these compounds against a broad panel of potential CNS targets revealed they are highly potent and specific ligands of the sigma-2/PGRMC1 receptor. Brain concentrations of the compounds corresponding to greater than 80% receptor occupancy at the sigma-2/PGRMC1 receptor restore cognitive function in transgenic hAPP Swe/Ldn mice. These studies demonstrate that synthetic and human-derived Abeta oligomers act as pharmacologically-behaved ligands at neuronal receptors--i.e. they exhibit saturable binding to a target, they exert a functional effect related to their binding and their displacement by small molecule antagonists blocks their functional effect. The first-in-class small molecule receptor antagonists described here restore memory to normal in multiple AD models

  9. Alzheimer's Therapeutics Targeting Amyloid Beta 1–42 Oligomers I: Abeta 42 Oligomer Binding to Specific Neuronal Receptors Is Displaced by Drug Candidates That Improve Cognitive Deficits

    PubMed Central

    Izzo, Nicholas J.; Staniszewski, Agnes; To, Lillian; Fa, Mauro; Teich, Andrew F.; Saeed, Faisal; Wostein, Harrison; Walko, Thomas; Vaswani, Anisha; Wardius, Meghan; Syed, Zanobia; Ravenscroft, Jessica; Mozzoni, Kelsie; Silky, Colleen; Rehak, Courtney; Yurko, Raymond; Finn, Patricia; Look, Gary; Rishton, Gilbert; Safferstein, Hank; Miller, Miles; Johanson, Conrad; Stopa, Edward; Windisch, Manfred; Hutter-Paier, Birgit; Shamloo, Mehrdad; Arancio, Ottavio; LeVine, Harry; Catalano, Susan M.

    2014-01-01

    Synaptic dysfunction and loss caused by age-dependent accumulation of synaptotoxic beta amyloid (Abeta) 1–42 oligomers is proposed to underlie cognitive decline in Alzheimer's disease (AD). Alterations in membrane trafficking induced by Abeta oligomers mediates reduction in neuronal surface receptor expression that is the basis for inhibition of electrophysiological measures of synaptic plasticity and thus learning and memory. We have utilized phenotypic screens in mature, in vitro cultures of rat brain cells to identify small molecules which block or prevent the binding and effects of Abeta oligomers. Synthetic Abeta oligomers bind saturably to a single site on neuronal synapses and induce deficits in membrane trafficking in neuronal cultures with an EC50 that corresponds to its binding affinity. The therapeutic lead compounds we have found are pharmacological antagonists of Abeta oligomers, reducing the binding of Abeta oligomers to neurons in vitro, preventing spine loss in neurons and preventing and treating oligomer-induced deficits in membrane trafficking. These molecules are highly brain penetrant and prevent and restore cognitive deficits in mouse models of Alzheimer's disease. Counter-screening these compounds against a broad panel of potential CNS targets revealed they are highly potent and specific ligands of the sigma-2/PGRMC1 receptor. Brain concentrations of the compounds corresponding to greater than 80% receptor occupancy at the sigma-2/PGRMC1 receptor restore cognitive function in transgenic hAPP Swe/Ldn mice. These studies demonstrate that synthetic and human-derived Abeta oligomers act as pharmacologically-behaved ligands at neuronal receptors - i.e. they exhibit saturable binding to a target, they exert a functional effect related to their binding and their displacement by small molecule antagonists blocks their functional effect. The first-in-class small molecule receptor antagonists described here restore memory to normal in multiple AD

  10. The Slowly Aggregating Salmon Calcitonin: A Useful Tool for the Study of the Amyloid Oligomers Structure and Activity

    PubMed Central

    Diociaiuti, Marco; Gaudiano, Maria Cristina; Malchiodi-Albedi, Fiorella

    2011-01-01

    Amyloid proteins of different aminoacidic composition share the tendency to misfold and aggregate in a similar way, following common aggregation steps. The process includes the formation of dimers, trimers, and low molecular weight prefibrillar oligomers, characterized by the typical morphology of globules less than 10 nm diameter. The globules spontaneously form linear or annular structures and, eventually, mature fibers. The rate of this process depends on characteristics intrinsic to the different proteins and to environmental conditions (i.e., pH, ionic strength, solvent composition, temperature). In the case of neurodegenerative diseases, it is now generally agreed that the pathogenic aggregates are not the mature fibrils, but the intermediate, soluble oligomers. However, the molecular mechanism by which these oligomers trigger neuronal damage is still unclear. In particular, it is not clear if there is a peculiar structure at the basis of the neurotoxic effect and how this structure interacts with neurons. This review will focus on the results we obtained using salmon Calcitonin, an amyloid protein characterized by a very slow aggregation rate, which allowed us to closely monitor the aggregation process. We used it as a tool to investigate the characteristics of amyloid oligomers formation and their interactions with neuronal cells. Our results indicate that small globules of about 6 nm could be the responsible for the neurotoxic effects. Moreover, our data suggest that the rich content in lipid rafts of neuronal cell plasma membrane may render neurons particularly vulnerable to the amyloid protein toxic effect. PMID:22272133

  11. Oligomer stability of Amyloid- β (A β) 25-35: A Dissipative Particle Dynamics study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pivkin, Igor; Peter, Emanuel

    Alzheimer's disease is strongly associated with an accumulation of Amyloid- β (A β) peptide plaques in the human brain. A β is a 43 residues long intrinsically disordered peptide and has a strong tendency to form aggregates. Evidence accumulates that A β acts toxic to the neurons in the brain through the formation of small soluble oligomers. A β 25-35 is the smallest fragment of A β which still retains its toxicity and its ability to form extended fibrils. In this talk we will present the results from simulations of aggregation of up to 100 A β 25-35 peptides using a novel polarizable coarse-grained protein model in combination with Dissipative Particle Dynamics.

  12. Molecular dynamics simulation and computational two-dimensional infrared spectroscopic study of model amyloid β-peptide oligomers.

    PubMed

    Xu, Jun; Zhang, John Z H; Xiang, Yun

    2013-07-25

    Molecular dynamics simulations were carried out to study the structure stability of model amyloid β40 (Aβ40) peptide oligomers, from monomer to hexamer, in aqueous solution at room temperature. The initial oligomer models were built by using the parallel in-register β-sheet fibril structure and then allowed to relax in the simulations. Our simulation results indicated that the stable Aβ40 monomer was a random coil, while the oligomer structures became more fibril-like with the increase of the peptide strands. Linear absorption and two-dimensional infrared spectra of the isotope-labeled oligomers were calculated and analyzed in detail, which revealed the differential secondary structural features characteristic of Aβ40 aggregation. A quantitative relation was established to make connection between the calculated spectra and experimental ensemble measurements.

  13. Conformation-specific antibodies to target amyloid β oligomers and their application to immunotherapy for Alzheimer's disease.

    PubMed

    Murakami, Kazuma

    2014-01-01

    Amyloid β-protein (Aβ) oligomers, intermediates of Aβ aggregation, cause cognitive impairment and synaptotoxicity in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Immunotherapy using anti-Aβ antibody is one of the most promising approaches for AD treatment. However, most clinical trials using conventional sequence-specific antibodies have proceeded with difficulty. This is probably due to the unintended removal of the non-pathological monomer and fibrils of Aβ as well as the pathological oligomers by these antibodies that recognize Aβ sequence, which is not involved in synaptotoxicity. Several efforts have been made recently to develop conformation-specific antibodies that target the tertiary structure of Aβ oligomers. Here, we review the recent findings of Aβ oligomers and anti-Aβ antibodies including our own, and discuss their potential as therapeutic and diagnostic tools.

  14. Effect of Protonation State on the Stability of Amyloid Oligomers Assembled from TTR(105-115).

    PubMed

    Porrini, Massimiliano; Zachariae, Ulrich; Barran, Perdita E; MacPhee, Cait E

    2013-04-18

    Amyloid fibrils are self-assembled aggregates of polypeptides that are implicated in the development of several human diseases. A peptide derived from amino acids 105-115 of the human plasma protein transthyretin forms homogeneous and well-defined fibrils and, as a model system, has been the focus of a number of studies investigating the formation and structure of this class of aggregates. Self-assembly of TTR(105-115) occurs at low pH, and this work explores the effect of protonation on the growth and stability of small cross-β aggregates. Using molecular dynamics simulations of structures up to the decamer in both protonated and deprotonated states, we find that, whereas hexamers are more stable for protonated peptides, higher order oligomers are more stable when the peptides are deprotonated. Our findings imply a change in the acid pK of the protonated C-terminal group during the formation of fibrils, which leads to stabilization of higher-order oligomers through electrostatic interactions. PMID:26282135

  15. Protective spin-labeled fluorenes maintain amyloid beta peptide in small oligomers and limit transitions in secondary structure

    SciTech Connect

    Altman, Robin; Ly, Sonny; Hilt, Silvia; Petrlova, Jitka; Maezawa, Izumi; Kálai, Tamás; Hideg, Kálmán; Jin, Lee-Way; Laurence, Ted A.; Voss, John C.

    2015-12-01

    Alzheimer’s disease is characterized by the presence of extracellular plaques comprised of amyloid beta (Aβ) peptides. Soluble oligomers of the Aβ peptide underlie a cascade of neuronal loss and dysfunction associated with Alzheimer's disease. Single particle analyses of Aβ oligomers in solution by fluorescence correlation spectroscopy (FCS) were used to provide real-time descriptions of how spin-labeled fluorenes (SLFs; bi-functional small molecules that block the toxicity of Aβ) prevent and disrupt oligomeric assemblies of Aβ in solution. The FCS results, combined with electron paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy and circular dichroism spectroscopy, demonstrate SLFs can inhibit the growth of Aβ oligomers and disrupt existing oligomers while retaining Aβ in a largely disordered state. Furthermore, while the ability of SLF to block Aβ toxicity correlates with a reduction in oligomer size, our results suggest the conformation of Aβ within the oligomer determines the toxicity of the species. Attenuation of Aβ toxicity, which has been associated primarily with the soluble oligomeric form, can be achieved through redistribution of the peptides into smaller oligomers and arrest of the fractional increase in beta secondary structure.

  16. Amyloid β oligomers elicit mitochondrial transport defects and fragmentation in a time-dependent and pathway-specific manner.

    PubMed

    Rui, Yanfang; Zheng, James Q

    2016-01-01

    Small oligomeric forms of amyloid-β (Aβ) are believed to be the culprit for declined brain functions in AD in part through their impairment of neuronal trafficking and synaptic functions. However, the precise cellular actions of Aβ oligomers and underlying mechanisms in neurons remain to be fully defined. Previous studies have identified mitochondria as a major target of Aβ toxicity contributing to early cognitive decline and memory loss in neurodegenerative diseases including Alzheimer's disease (AD). In this study, we report that Aβ oligomers acutely elicit distinct effects on the transport and integrity of mitochondria. We found that acute exposure of hippocampal neurons to Aβ oligomers from either synthetic peptides or AD brain homogenates selectively impaired fast transport of mitochondria without affecting the movement of late endosomes and lysosomes. Extended exposure of hipoocampal neurons to Aβ oligomers was found to result in mitochondrial fragmentation. While both mitochondrial effects induced by Aβ oligomers can be abolished by the inhibition of GSK3β, they appear to be independent from each other. Aβ oligomers impaired mitochondrial transport through HDAC6 activation whereas the fragmentation involved the GTPase Drp-1. These results show that Aβ oligomers can acutely disrupt mitochondrial transport and integrity in a time-dependent and pathway-specific manner. These findings thus provide new insights into Aβ-induced mitochondrial defects that may contribute to neuronal dysfunction and AD pathogenesis. PMID:27535553

  17. Dynamic assessment of Amyloid oligomers - cell membrane interaction by advanced impedance spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gheorghiu, M.; David, S.; Polonschii, C.; Bratu, D.; Gheorghiu, E.

    2013-04-01

    The amyloid β (Aβ) peptides are believed to be pivotal in Alzheimer's disease (AD) pathogenesis and onset of vascular dysfunction. Recent studies indicate that Aβ1-42 treatment influences the expression of tight junction protein complexes, stress fibre formation, disruption and aggregation of actin filaments and cellular gap formation. Aiming for functional characterization of model cells upon Aβ1-42 treatment, we deployed an advanced Electric Cell-substrate Impedance Sensing for monitoring cell evolution. A precision Impedance Analyzer with a multiplexing module developed in house was used for recording individual electrode sets in the 40 Hz - 100 KHz frequency range. In a step forward from the classical ECIS assays, we report on a novel data analysis algorithm that enables access to cellular and paracellular electrical parameters and cell surface interaction with fully developed cell monolayers. The evolution of the impedance at selected frequencies provides evidence for a dual effect of Aβ42 exposure, at both paracellular permeability and cell adherence level, with intricate dynamics that open up new perspectives on Aβ1-42 oligomers - cell membrane interaction. Validation of electrical impedance assays of the amyloid fibrils effect on cell membrane structure is achieved by both AFM analysis and Surface Plasmon Resonance studies. The capabilities of this noninvasive, real time platform for cell analysis in a wider applicative context are outlined.

  18. Amyloid β oligomers in Alzheimer’s disease pathogenesis, treatment, and diagnosis

    PubMed Central

    Viola, Kirsten L.; Klein, William L.

    2015-01-01

    Protein aggregation is common to dozens of diseases including prionoses, diabetes, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s. Over the past 15 years, there has been a paradigm shift in understanding the structural basis for these proteinopathies. Precedent for this shift has come from investigation of soluble Aβ oligomers (AβOs), toxins now widely regarded as instigating neuron damage leading to Alzheimer’s dementia. Toxic AβOs accumulate in AD brain and constitute long-lived alternatives to the disease-defining Aβ fibrils deposited in amyloid plaques. Key experiments using fibril-free AβO solutions demonstrated that while Aβ is essential for memory loss, the fibrillar Aβ in amyloid deposits is not the agent. The AD-like cellular pathologies induced by AβOs suggest their impact provides a unifying mechanism for AD pathogenesis, explaining why early stage disease is specific for memory and accounting for major facets of AD neuropathology. Alternative ideas for triggering mechanisms are being actively investigated. Some research favors insertion of AβOs into membrane, while other evidence supports ligand-like accumulation at particular synapses. Over a dozen candidate toxin receptors have been proposed. AβO binding triggers a redistribution of critical synaptic proteins and induces hyperactivity in metabotropic and ionotropic glutamate receptors. This leads to Ca2+ overload and instigates major facets of AD neuropathology, including tau hyperphosphorylation, insulin resistance, oxidative stress, and synapse loss. Because different species of AβOs have been identified, a remaining question is which oligomer is the major pathogenic culprit. The possibility has been raised that more than one species plays a role. Despite some key unknowns, the clinical relevance of AβOs has been established, and new studies are beginning to point to co-morbidities such as diabetes and hypercholesterolemia as etiological factors. Because pathogenic AβOs appear early in the disease

  19. Pre-amyloid oligomers of the proteotoxic RepA-WH1 prionoid assemble at the bacterial nucleoid

    PubMed Central

    Moreno-del Álamo, María; de la Espina, Susana Moreno-Díaz; Fernández-Tresguerres, M. Elena; Giraldo, Rafael

    2015-01-01

    Upon binding to short specific dsDNA sequences in vitro, the N-terminal WH1 domain of the plasmid DNA replication initiator RepA assembles as amyloid fibres. These are bundles of single or double twisted tubular filaments in which distorted RepA-WH1 monomers are the building blocks. When expressed in Escherichia coli, RepA-WH1 triggers the first synthetic amyloid proteinopathy in bacteria, recapitulating some of the features of mammalian prion diseases: it is vertically transmissible, albeit non-infectious, showing up in at least two phenotypically distinct and interconvertible strains. Here we report B3h7, a monoclonal antibody specific for oligomers of RepA-WH1, but which does not recognize the mature amyloid fibres. Unlike a control polyclonal antibody generated against the soluble protein, B3h7 interferes in vitro with DNA-promoted or amyloid-seeded assembly of RepA-WH1 fibres, thus the targeted oligomers are on-pathway amyloidogenic intermediates. Immuno-electron microscopy with B3h7 on thin sections of E. coli cells expressing RepA-WH1 consistently labels the bacterial nucleoid, but not the large cytoplasmic aggregates of the protein. This observation points to the nucleoid as the place where oligomeric amyloid precursors of RepA-WH1 are generated, and suggests that, once nucleated by DNA, further growth must continue in the cytoplasm due to entropic exclusion. PMID:26423724

  20. Aβ42-oligomer Interacting Peptide (AIP) neutralizes toxic amyloid-β42 species and protects synaptic structure and function

    PubMed Central

    Barucker, Christian; Bittner, Heiko J.; Chang, Philip K.-Y.; Cameron, Scott; Hancock, Mark A.; Liebsch, Filip; Hossain, Shireen; Harmeier, Anja; Shaw, Hunter; Charron, François M.; Gensler, Manuel; Dembny, Paul; Zhuang, Wei; Schmitz, Dietmar; Rabe, Jürgen P.; Rao, Yong; Lurz, Rudi; Hildebrand, Peter W.; McKinney, R. Anne; Multhaup, Gerhard

    2015-01-01

    The amyloid-β42 (Aβ42) peptide is believed to be the main culprit in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer disease (AD), impairing synaptic function and initiating neuronal degeneration. Soluble Aβ42 oligomers are highly toxic and contribute to progressive neuronal dysfunction, loss of synaptic spine density, and affect long-term potentiation (LTP). We have characterized a short, L-amino acid Aβ-oligomer Interacting Peptide (AIP) that targets a relatively well-defined population of low-n Aβ42 oligomers, rather than simply inhibiting the aggregation of Aβ monomers into oligomers. Our data show that AIP diminishes the loss of Aβ42-induced synaptic spine density and rescues LTP in organotypic hippocampal slice cultures. Notably, the AIP enantiomer (comprised of D-amino acids) attenuated the rough-eye phenotype in a transgenic Aβ42 fly model and significantly improved the function of photoreceptors of these flies in electroretinography tests. Overall, our results indicate that specifically “trapping” low-n oligomers provides a novel strategy for toxic Aβ42-oligomer recognition and removal. PMID:26510576

  1. Aβ42-oligomer Interacting Peptide (AIP) neutralizes toxic amyloid-β42 species and protects synaptic structure and function

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barucker, Christian; Bittner, Heiko J.; Chang, Philip K.-Y.; Cameron, Scott; Hancock, Mark A.; Liebsch, Filip; Hossain, Shireen; Harmeier, Anja; Shaw, Hunter; Charron, François M.; Gensler, Manuel; Dembny, Paul; Zhuang, Wei; Schmitz, Dietmar; Rabe, Jürgen P.; Rao, Yong; Lurz, Rudi; Hildebrand, Peter W.; McKinney, R. Anne; Multhaup, Gerhard

    2015-10-01

    The amyloid-β42 (Aβ42) peptide is believed to be the main culprit in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer disease (AD), impairing synaptic function and initiating neuronal degeneration. Soluble Aβ42 oligomers are highly toxic and contribute to progressive neuronal dysfunction, loss of synaptic spine density, and affect long-term potentiation (LTP). We have characterized a short, L-amino acid Aβ-oligomer Interacting Peptide (AIP) that targets a relatively well-defined population of low-n Aβ42 oligomers, rather than simply inhibiting the aggregation of Aβ monomers into oligomers. Our data show that AIP diminishes the loss of Aβ42-induced synaptic spine density and rescues LTP in organotypic hippocampal slice cultures. Notably, the AIP enantiomer (comprised of D-amino acids) attenuated the rough-eye phenotype in a transgenic Aβ42 fly model and significantly improved the function of photoreceptors of these flies in electroretinography tests. Overall, our results indicate that specifically “trapping” low-n oligomers provides a novel strategy for toxic Aβ42-oligomer recognition and removal.

  2. Fabrication of an antibody-aptamer sandwich assay for electrochemical evaluation of levels of β-amyloid oligomers

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Yanli; Zhang, Huanqing; Liu, Lantao; Li, Congming; Chang, Zhu; Zhu, Xu; Ye, Baoxian; Xu, Maotian

    2016-01-01

    Amyloid β-peptide (Aβ) in its oligomeric form is often considered as the most toxic species in Alzheimer’s disease (AD), and thus Aβ oligomer is a potentially promising candidate biomarker for AD diagnosis. The development of a sensitive and reliable method for monitoring the Aβ oligomer levels in body fluids is an urgent requirement in order to predict the severity and progression at early or preclinical stages of AD. Here, we show a proof of concept for a sensitive and specific detection of Aβ oligomers by an antibody-aptamer sandwich assay. The antibodies of Aβ oligomers and a nanocomposite of gold nanoparticles with aptamer and thionine (aptamer-Au-Th) were used as the recognition element and the detection probe for specifically binding to Aβ oligomers, respectively. The electrochemical signal of Th reduction could provide measurable electrochemical signals, and a low limit of detection (100 pM) was achieved due to the signal amplification by high loading of Th on the gold nanoparticles. The feasibility of the assay was verified by test of Aβ oligomers in artificial cerebrospinal fluid. The proposed strategy presents valuable information related to early diagnosis of AD process. PMID:27725775

  3. Aβ42-oligomer Interacting Peptide (AIP) neutralizes toxic amyloid-β42 species and protects synaptic structure and function.

    PubMed

    Barucker, Christian; Bittner, Heiko J; Chang, Philip K-Y; Cameron, Scott; Hancock, Mark A; Liebsch, Filip; Hossain, Shireen; Harmeier, Anja; Shaw, Hunter; Charron, François M; Gensler, Manuel; Dembny, Paul; Zhuang, Wei; Schmitz, Dietmar; Rabe, Jürgen P; Rao, Yong; Lurz, Rudi; Hildebrand, Peter W; McKinney, R Anne; Multhaup, Gerhard

    2015-01-01

    The amyloid-β42 (Aβ42) peptide is believed to be the main culprit in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer disease (AD), impairing synaptic function and initiating neuronal degeneration. Soluble Aβ42 oligomers are highly toxic and contribute to progressive neuronal dysfunction, loss of synaptic spine density, and affect long-term potentiation (LTP). We have characterized a short, L-amino acid Aβ-oligomer Interacting Peptide (AIP) that targets a relatively well-defined population of low-n Aβ42 oligomers, rather than simply inhibiting the aggregation of Aβ monomers into oligomers. Our data show that AIP diminishes the loss of Aβ42-induced synaptic spine density and rescues LTP in organotypic hippocampal slice cultures. Notably, the AIP enantiomer (comprised of D-amino acids) attenuated the rough-eye phenotype in a transgenic Aβ42 fly model and significantly improved the function of photoreceptors of these flies in electroretinography tests. Overall, our results indicate that specifically "trapping" low-n oligomers provides a novel strategy for toxic Aβ42-oligomer recognition and removal. PMID:26510576

  4. Assessing the Effects of Acute Amyloid β Oligomer Exposure in the Rat

    PubMed Central

    Wong, Ryan S.; Cechetto, David F.; Whitehead, Shawn N.

    2016-01-01

    Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is the most common form of dementia, yet there are no therapeutic treatments that can either cure or delay its onset. Currently, the pathogenesis of AD is still uncertain, especially with respect to how the disease develops from a normal healthy brain. Amyloid β oligomers (AβO) are highly neurotoxic proteins and are considered potential initiators to the pathogenesis of AD. Rat brains were exposed to AβO via bilateral intracerebroventricular injections. Rats were then euthanized at either 1, 3, 7 or 21-days post surgery. Rat behavioural testing was performed using the Morris water maze and open field tests. Post-mortem brain tissue was immunolabelled for Aβ, microglia, and cholinergic neurons. Rats exposed to AβO showed deficits in spatial learning and anxiety-like behaviour. Acute positive staining for Aβ was only observed in the corpus callosum surrounding the lateral ventricles. AβO exposed rat brains also showed a delayed increase in activated microglia within the corpus callosum and a decreased number of cholinergic neurons within the basal forebrain. Acute exposure to AβO resulted in mild learning and memory impairments with co-concomitant white matter pathology within the corpus callosum and cholinergic cell loss within the basal forebrain. Results suggest that acute exposure to AβO in the rat may be a useful tool in assessing the early phases for the pathogenesis of AD. PMID:27563885

  5. Assessing the Effects of Acute Amyloid β Oligomer Exposure in the Rat.

    PubMed

    Wong, Ryan S; Cechetto, David F; Whitehead, Shawn N

    2016-01-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is the most common form of dementia, yet there are no therapeutic treatments that can either cure or delay its onset. Currently, the pathogenesis of AD is still uncertain, especially with respect to how the disease develops from a normal healthy brain. Amyloid β oligomers (AβO) are highly neurotoxic proteins and are considered potential initiators to the pathogenesis of AD. Rat brains were exposed to AβO via bilateral intracerebroventricular injections. Rats were then euthanized at either 1, 3, 7 or 21-days post surgery. Rat behavioural testing was performed using the Morris water maze and open field tests. Post-mortem brain tissue was immunolabelled for Aβ, microglia, and cholinergic neurons. Rats exposed to AβO showed deficits in spatial learning and anxiety-like behaviour. Acute positive staining for Aβ was only observed in the corpus callosum surrounding the lateral ventricles. AβO exposed rat brains also showed a delayed increase in activated microglia within the corpus callosum and a decreased number of cholinergic neurons within the basal forebrain. Acute exposure to AβO resulted in mild learning and memory impairments with co-concomitant white matter pathology within the corpus callosum and cholinergic cell loss within the basal forebrain. Results suggest that acute exposure to AβO in the rat may be a useful tool in assessing the early phases for the pathogenesis of AD. PMID:27563885

  6. Selective amyloid β oligomer assay based on abasic site-containing molecular beacon and enzyme-free amplification.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Linling; Zhang, Junying; Wang, Fengyang; Wang, Ya; Lu, Linlin; Feng, Chongchong; Xu, Zhiai; Zhang, Wen

    2016-04-15

    Amyloid-beta (Aβ) oligomers are highly toxic species in the process of Aβ aggregation and are regarded as potent therapeutic targets and diagnostic markers for Alzheimer's disease (AD). Herein, a label-free molecular beacon (MB) system integrated with enzyme-free amplification strategy was developed for simple and highly selective assay of Aβ oligomers. The MB system was constructed with abasic site (AP site)-containing stem-loop DNA and a fluorescent ligand 2-amino-5,6,7-trimethyl-1,8-naphyridine (ATMND), of which the fluorescence was quenched upon binding to the AP site in DNA stem. Enzyme-free amplification was realized by target-triggered continuous opening of two delicately designed MBs (MB1 and MB2). Target DNA hybridization with MB1 and then MB2 resulted in the release of two ATMND molecules in one binding event. Subsequent target recycling could greatly amplify the detection sensitivity due to the greatly enhanced turn-on emission of ATMND fluorescence. Combining with Aβ oligomers aptamers, the strategy was applied to analyze Aβ oligomers and the results showed that it could quantify Aβ oligomers with high selectivity and monitor the Aβ aggregation process. This novel method may be conducive to improve the diagnosis and pathogenic study of Alzheimer's disease.

  7. Amyloid β oligomers induce interleukin-1β production in primary microglia in a cathepsin B- and reactive oxygen species-dependent manner

    SciTech Connect

    Taneo, Jun; Adachi, Takumi; Yoshida, Aiko; Takayasu, Kunio; Takahara, Kazuhiko; Inaba, Kayo

    2015-03-13

    Amyloid β (Aβ) peptide, a causative agent of Alzheimer's disease, forms two types of aggregates: oligomers and fibrils. These aggregates induce inflammatory responses, such as interleukin-1β (IL-1β) production by microglia, which are macrophage-like cells located in the brain. In this study, we examined the effect of the two forms of Aβ aggregates on IL-1β production in mouse primary microglia. We prepared Aβ oligomer and fibril from Aβ (1–42) peptide in vitro. We analyzed the characteristics of these oligomers and fibrils by electrophoresis and atomic force microscopy. Interestingly, Aβ oligomers but not Aβ monomers or fibrils induced robust IL-1β production in the presence of lipopolysaccharide. Moreover, Aβ oligomers induced endo/phagolysosome rupture, which released cathepsin B into the cytoplasm. Aβ oligomer-induced IL-1β production was inhibited not only by the cathepsin B inhibitor CA-074-Me but also by the reactive oxygen species (ROS) inhibitor N-acetylcysteine. Random chemical crosslinking abolished the ability of the oligomers to induce IL-1β. Thus, multimerization and fibrillization causes Aβ oligomers to lose the ability to induce IL-1β. These results indicate that Aβ oligomers, but not fibrils, induce IL-1β production in primary microglia in a cathepsin B- and ROS-dependent manner. - Highlights: • We prepared amyloid β (Aβ) fibrils with minimum contamination of Aβ oligomers. • Primary microglia (MG) produced IL-1β in response to Aβ oligomers, but not fibrils. • Only Aβ oligomers induced leakage of cathepsin B from endo/phagolysosomes. • IL-1β production in response to Aβ oligomers depended on both cathepsin B and ROS. • Crosslinking reduced the ability of the Aβ oligomers to induce IL-1β from MG.

  8. Dispersible amyloid β-protein oligomers, protofibrils, and fibrils represent diffusible but not soluble aggregates: their role in neurodegeneration in amyloid precursor protein (APP) transgenic mice.

    PubMed

    Rijal Upadhaya, Ajeet; Capetillo-Zarate, Estibaliz; Kosterin, Irina; Abramowski, Dorothee; Kumar, Sathish; Yamaguchi, Haruyasu; Walter, Jochen; Fändrich, Marcus; Staufenbiel, Matthias; Thal, Dietmar Rudolf

    2012-11-01

    Soluble amyloid β-protein (Aβ) aggregates have been identified in the Alzheimer's disease (AD) brain. Dispersed Aβ aggregates in the brain parenchyma are different from soluble, membrane-associated and plaque-associated solid aggregates. They are in mixture with the extra- or intracellular fluid but can be separated from soluble proteins by ultracentrifugation. To clarify the role of dispersible Aβ aggregates for neurodegeneration we analyzed 2 different amyloid precursor protein (APP)-transgenic mouse models. APP23 mice overexpress human mutant APP with the Swedish mutation. APP51/16 mice express high levels of human wild type APP. Both mice develop Aβ-plaques. Dendritic degeneration, neuron loss, and loss of asymmetric synapses were seen in APP23 but not in APP51/16 mice. The soluble and dispersible fractions not separated from one another were received as supernatant after centrifugation of native forebrain homogenates at 14,000 × g. Subsequent ultracentrifugation separated the soluble, i.e., the supernatant, from the dispersible fraction, i.e., the resuspended pellet. The major biochemical difference between APP23 and APP51/16 mice was that APP23 mice exhibited higher levels of dispersible Aβ oligomers, protofibrils and fibrils precipitated with oligomer (A11) and protofibril/fibril (B10AP) specific antibodies than APP51/16 mice. These differences, rather than soluble Aβ and Aβ plaque pathology were associated with dendritic degeneration, neuron, and synapse loss in APP23 mice in comparison with APP51/16 mice. Immunoprecipitation of dispersible Aβ oligomers, protofibrils, and fibrils revealed that they were associated with APP C-terminal fragments (APP-CTFs). These results indicate that dispersible Aβ oligomers, protofibrils, and fibrils represent an important pool of Aβ aggregates in the brain that critically interact with membrane-associated APP C-terminal fragments. The concentration of dispersible Aβ aggregates, thereby, presumably determines

  9. Donepezil inhibits the amyloid-beta oligomer-induced microglial activation in vitro and in vivo.

    PubMed

    Kim, Hyo Geun; Moon, Minho; Choi, Jin Gyu; Park, Gunhyuk; Kim, Ae-Jung; Hur, Jinyoung; Lee, Kyung-Tae; Oh, Myung Sook

    2014-01-01

    Recent studies on Alzheimer's disease (AD) have focused on soluble oligomeric forms of amyloid-beta (Aβ oligomer, AβO) that are directly associated with AD-related pathologies, such as cognitive decline, neurodegeneration, and neuroinflammation. Donepezil is a well-known anti-dementia agent that increases acetylcholine levels through inhibition of acetylcholinesterase. However, a growing body of experimental and clinical studies indicates that donepezil may also provide neuroprotective and disease-modifying effects in AD. Additionally, donepezil has recently been demonstrated to have anti-inflammatory effects against lipopolysaccharides and tau pathology. However, it remains unknown whether donepezil has anti-inflammatory effects against AβO in cultured microglial cells and the brain in animals. Further, the effects of donepezil against AβO-mediated neuronal death, astrogliosis, and memory impairment have also not yet been investigated. Thus, in the present study, we examined the anti-inflammatory effect of donepezil against AβO and its neuroinflammatory mechanisms. Donepezil significantly attenuated the release of inflammatory mediators (prostaglandin E2, interleukin-1 beta, tumor necrosis factor-α, and nitric oxide) from microglia. Donepezil also decreased AβO-induced up-regulation of inducible nitric oxide synthase and cyclooxygenase-2 protein and phosphorylation of p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase as well as translocation of nuclear factor-kappa B. We next showed that donepezil suppresses activated microglia-mediated toxicity in primary hippocampal cells using the 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide assay. In intrahippocampal AβO-injected mice, donepezil significantly inhibited microgliosis and astrogliosis. Furthermore, behavioral tests revealed that donepezil (2 mg/kg/day, 5 days, p.o.) significantly ameliorated AβO-induced memory impairment. These results suggest that donepezil directly inhibits microglial activation

  10. Identification of approved drugs that inhibit the binding of amyloid β oligomers to ephrin type-B receptor 2.

    PubMed

    Suzuki, Koichiro; Aimi, Takahiro; Ishihara, Tomoaki; Mizushima, Tohru

    2016-05-01

    Ephrin type-B receptor 2 (EphB2) is a member of the receptor tyrosine kinase family and plays an important role in learning and memory functions. In patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD) and in mouse models of AD, a reduction in the hippocampal EphB2 level is observed. It was recently reported that normalization of the EphB2 level in the dentate gyrus rescues memory function in a mouse model of AD, suggesting that drugs that restore EphB2 levels may be beneficial in the treatment of AD. Amyloid β (Aβ) oligomers, which are believed to be key molecules involved in the pathogenesis of AD, induce EphB2 degradation through their direct binding to EphB2. Thus, compounds that inhibit the binding of Aβ oligomers to EphB2 may be beneficial. Here, we screened for such compounds from drugs already approved for clinical use in humans. Utilizing a cell-free screening assay, we determined that dihydroergotamine mesilate, bromocriptine mesilate, cepharanthine, and levonorgestrel inhibited the binding of Aβ oligomers to EphB2 but not to cellular prion protein, another endogenous receptor for Aβ oligomers. Additionally, these four compounds did not affect the binding between EphB2 and ephrinB2, an endogenous ligand for EphB2, suggesting that the compounds selectively inhibited the binding of Aβ oligomers to EphB2. This is the first identification of compounds that selectively inhibit the binding of Aβ oligomers to EphB2. These results suggest that these four compounds may be safe and effective drugs for treatment of AD. PMID:27419051

  11. Binding affinity of amyloid oligomers to cellular membranes is a generic indicator of cellular dysfunction in protein misfolding diseases

    PubMed Central

    Evangelisti, Elisa; Cascella, Roberta; Becatti, Matteo; Marrazza, Giovanna; Dobson, Christopher M.; Chiti, Fabrizio; Stefani, Massimo; Cecchi, Cristina

    2016-01-01

    The conversion of peptides or proteins from their soluble native states into intractable amyloid deposits is associated with a wide range of human disorders. Misfolded protein oligomers formed during the process of aggregation have been identified as the primary pathogenic agents in many such conditions. Here, we show the existence of a quantitative relationship between the degree of binding to neuronal cells of different types of oligomers formed from a model protein, HypF-N, and the GM1 content of the plasma membranes. In addition, remarkably similar behavior is observed for oligomers of the Aβ42 peptide associated with Alzheimer’s disease. Further analysis has revealed the existence of a linear correlation between the level of the influx of Ca2+ across neuronal membranes that triggers cellular damage, and the fraction of oligomeric species bound to the membrane. Our findings indicate that the susceptibility of neuronal cells to different types of misfolded oligomeric assemblies is directly related to the extent of binding of such oligomers to the cellular membrane. PMID:27619987

  12. Binding affinity of amyloid oligomers to cellular membranes is a generic indicator of cellular dysfunction in protein misfolding diseases.

    PubMed

    Evangelisti, Elisa; Cascella, Roberta; Becatti, Matteo; Marrazza, Giovanna; Dobson, Christopher M; Chiti, Fabrizio; Stefani, Massimo; Cecchi, Cristina

    2016-01-01

    The conversion of peptides or proteins from their soluble native states into intractable amyloid deposits is associated with a wide range of human disorders. Misfolded protein oligomers formed during the process of aggregation have been identified as the primary pathogenic agents in many such conditions. Here, we show the existence of a quantitative relationship between the degree of binding to neuronal cells of different types of oligomers formed from a model protein, HypF-N, and the GM1 content of the plasma membranes. In addition, remarkably similar behavior is observed for oligomers of the Aβ42 peptide associated with Alzheimer's disease. Further analysis has revealed the existence of a linear correlation between the level of the influx of Ca(2+) across neuronal membranes that triggers cellular damage, and the fraction of oligomeric species bound to the membrane. Our findings indicate that the susceptibility of neuronal cells to different types of misfolded oligomeric assemblies is directly related to the extent of binding of such oligomers to the cellular membrane. PMID:27619987

  13. Nicotine prevents synaptic impairment induced by amyloidoligomers through α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor activation.

    PubMed

    Inestrosa, Nibaldo C; Godoy, Juan A; Vargas, Jessica Y; Arrazola, Macarena S; Rios, Juvenal A; Carvajal, Francisco J; Serrano, Felipe G; Farias, Ginny G

    2013-09-01

    An emerging view on Alzheimer disease's (AD) pathogenesis considers amyloid-β (Aβ) oligomers as a key factor in synaptic impairment and rodent spatial memory decline. Alterations in the α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α7-nAChR) have been implicated in AD pathology. Herein, we report that nicotine, an unselective α7-nAChR agonist, protects from morphological and synaptic impairments induced by Aβ oligomers. Interestingly, nicotine prevents both early postsynaptic impairment and late presynaptic damage induced by Aβ oligomers through the α7-nAChR/phosphatidylinositol-3-kinase (PI3K) signaling pathway. On the other hand, a cross-talk between α7-nAChR and the Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway was revealed by the following facts: (1) nicotine stabilizes β-catenin, in a concentration-dependent manner; (2) nicotine prevents Aβ-induced loss of β-catenin through the α7-nAChR; and (3) activation of canonical Wnt/β-catenin signaling induces α7-nAChR expression. Analysis of the α7-nAChR promoter indicates that this receptor is a new Wnt target gene. Taken together, these results demonstrate that nicotine prevents memory deficits and synaptic impairment induced by Aβ oligomers. In addition, nicotine improves memory in young APP/PS1 transgenic mice before extensive amyloid deposition and senile plaque development, and also in old mice where senile plaques have already formed. Activation of the α7-nAChR/PI3K signaling pathway and its cross-talk with the Wnt signaling pathway might well be therapeutic targets for potential AD treatments.

  14. Cu K-edge X-ray Absorption Spectroscopy Reveals Differential Copper Coordimation Within Amyloid-beta Oligomers Compared to Amyloid-beta Monomers

    SciTech Connect

    J Shearer; P Callan; T Tran; V Szalai

    2011-12-31

    The fatal neurodegenerative disorder Alzheimer's disease (AD) has been linked to the formation of soluble neurotoxic oligomers of amyloid-{beta} (A{beta}) peptides. These peptides have high affinities for copper cations. Despite their potential importance in AD neurodegeneration few studies have focused on probing the Cu{sup 2+/1+} coordination environment within A{beta} oligomers. Herein we present a Cu K-edge X-ray absorption spectroscopic study probing the copper-coordination environment within oligomers of A{beta}(42) (sequence: DAEFRHDSGYEVHHQKLVFFAEDVGSNKGAIIGLMVGGVVIA). We find that the Cu{sup 2+} cation is contained within a square planar mixed N/O ligand environment within A{beta}(42) oligomers, which is similar to the copper coordination environment of the monomeric forms of {l_brace}Cu{sup II}A{beta}(40){r_brace} and {l_brace}Cu{sup II}A{beta}(16){r_brace}. Reduction of the Cu{sup 2+} cation within the A{beta}(42) oligomers to Cu{sup 1+} yields a highly dioxygen sensitive copper-species that contains Cu{sup 1+} in a tetrahedral coordination geometry. This can be contrasted with monomers of {l_brace}Cu{sup I}A{beta}(40){r_brace} and {l_brace}Cu{sup I}A{beta}(16){r_brace}, which contain copper in a dioxygen inert linear bis-histidine ligand environment [Shearer and Szalai, J. Am. Chem. Soc., 2008, 130, 17826]. The biological implications of these findings are discussed.

  15. Structural, thermodynamical, and dynamical properties of oligomers formed by the amyloid NNQQ peptide: Insights from coarse-grained simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lu, Yan; Wei, Guanghong; Derreumaux, Philippe

    2012-07-01

    Characterizing the early formed oligomeric intermediates of amyloid peptides is of particular interest due to their links with neurodegenerative diseases. Here we study the NNQQ peptide, known to display parallel β-strands in amyloid fibrils by x-ray microcrystallography, and investigate the structural, thermodynamical, and dynamical properties of 20 NNQQ peptides using molecular dynamics and replica exchange molecular dynamics simulations coupled to a coarse-grained force field. All simulations are initiated from randomized and fully dispersed monomeric conformations. Our simulations reveal that the phase transition is characterized by a change in the oligomer and β-sheet size distributions and the percentage of mixed parallel/antiparallel β-strands when the sheets are formed. At all temperatures, however, the fraction of parallel β-strands remains low, though there are many association/fragmentation events. This work and a growing body of computational studies provide strong evidence that the critical nucleus goes beyond 20 chains and reordering of the β-strands occurs in larger oligomers.

  16. Oligomer Formation of Amyloid-β(29-42) from Its Monomers Using the Hamiltonian Replica-Permutation Molecular Dynamics Simulation.

    PubMed

    Itoh, Satoru G; Okumura, Hisashi

    2016-07-14

    Oligomers of amyloid-β peptides (Aβ) are formed during the early stage of the amyloidogenesis process and exhibit neurotoxicity. The oligomer formation process of Aβ and even that of Aβ fragments are still poorly understood, though understanding of these processes is essential for remedying Alzheimer's disease. In order to better understand the oligomerization process of the C-terminal Aβ fragment Aβ(29-42) at the atomic level, we performed the Hamiltonian replica-permutation molecular dynamics simulation with Aβ(29-42) molecules using the explicit water solvent model. We observed that oligomers increased in size through the sequential addition of monomers to the oligomer, rather than through the assembly of small oligomers. Moreover, solvent effects played an important role in this oligomerization process. PMID:27281682

  17. Beta-amyloid 1-42 monomers, but not oligomers, produce PHF-like conformation of Tau protein.

    PubMed

    Manassero, Giusi; Guglielmotto, Michela; Zamfir, Raluca; Borghi, Roberta; Colombo, Laura; Salmona, Mario; Perry, George; Odetti, Patrizio; Arancio, Ottavio; Tamagno, Elena; Tabaton, Massimo

    2016-10-01

    The mechanistic relationship between amyloid β1-42 (Aβ1-42) and the alteration of Tau protein are debated. We investigated the effect of Aβ1-42 monomers and oligomers on Tau, using mice expressing wild-type human Tau that do not spontaneously develop Tau pathology. After intraventricular injection of Aβ1-42, mice were sacrificed after 3 h or 4 days. The short-lasting treatment with Aβ monomers, but not oligomers, showed a conformational PHF-like change of Tau, together with hyperphosphorylation. The same treatment induced increase in concentration of GSK3 and MAP kinases. The inhibition of the kinases rescued the Tau changes. Aβ monomers increased the levels of total Tau, through the inhibition of proteasomal degradation. Aβ oligomers reproduced all the aforementioned alterations only after 4 days of treatment. It is known that Aβ1-42 monomers foster synaptic activity. Our results suggest that Aβ monomers physiologically favor Tau activity and dendritic sprouting, whereas their excess causes Tau pathology. Moreover, our study indicates that anti-Aβ therapies should be targeted to Aβ1-42 monomers too.

  18. Computational insights into the inhibition and destabilization of morin on the oligomer of full-length human islet amyloid polypeptide.

    PubMed

    Wang, Qianqian; Zhou, Shuangyan; Wei, Wei; Yao, Xiaojun; Liu, Huanxiang; Hu, Zhide

    2015-11-21

    The aggregation of human islet amyloid polypeptide (hIAPP) is closely related with the occurrence of type 2 diabetes (T2D). Natural flavonoid morin was confirmed to not only inhibit the amyloid formation of hIAPP, but disaggregate its preformed amyloid fibrils. In this study, with the goal of elucidating the molecular mechanism of inhibition and destabilization of morin on the full-length hIAPP(1-37) oligomer, molecular dynamics simulations were performed for hIAPP(1-37) pentamer in the presence and absence of morin. The obtained results show that during the protein-inhibitor interaction, morin can notably alter the structural properties of hIAPP(1-37) pentamer, such as morphology, solvent accessible surface area and secondary structure. Moreover, we identified three possible binding sites of morin on hIAPP, all of which located near the amyloidogenic region of this protein. From the binding free energy calculations, we found that Site II was the most possible one. Further conformational analysis together with energy decomposition showed that the residues His18, Phe23 and Ile26 play a key role in the binding with morin by hydrogen bond, π-π and hydrophobic interactions. The proposal of the theoretical mechanism of morin against hIAPP aggregation will provide valuable information for the development of new drugs to inhibit hIAPP aggregation.

  19. Template-directed deposition of amyloid

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ha, Chanki

    The formation of amyloid plaques in tissue is a pathological feature of many neurodegenerative diseases. Amyloid deposition, the process of amyloid plaque growth by the association of individual soluble amyloid molecules with a pre-existing amyloid template (i.e. plaque), is known to be critical for amyloid formation in vivo. In order to characterize amyloid deposition, we developed novel, synthetic amyloid templates like amyloid plaques in the human Alzheimer's brain by attaching amyloid seeds covalently onto an N-hydroxysuccinimide-activated surface. Amyloid plaques with a characteristic beta-sheet structure formed through a conformational rearrangement of soluble insulin or Abeta monomers upon interaction with the template. The amyloid deposition rate followed saturation kinetics with respect to insulin concentration in the solution. According to visualization of temporal evolution of Abeta plaque deposition on a template, it was found that mature amyloid plaques serve as a sink of soluble Abeta in a solution as well as a reservoir of small aggregates such as oligomers and protofibrils. Quantitative analysis of seeding efficiencies of three different Abeta species revealed that oligomeric forms of Abeta act more efficiently as seeds than monomers or fibrils do. Furthermore, studies on the interaction between Abeta40 and 42 showed an important role of Abeta42 in amyloid deposition. A slightly acidic condition was found to be unfavorable for amyloid plaque formation. Effects of metal ions on amyloid deposition indicated that Fe3+, but not Cu3 and Zn2+, is important for the deposition of amyloid plaques. The binding of Fe3+ to Abeta42 peptide was confirmed by using SIMS analysis. Zn2+ induced nonfibrillar amorphous aggregates, but the release of Zn2+ from Abeta42 deposits by Fe3+ triggered the formation of amyloid fibers. Effects or metal ion chelators such as ethylenediamine tetraacetic acid, deferoxamine, and clioquinol on amyloid deposition were tested to

  20. A mechanistic model of tau amyloid aggregation based on direct observation of oligomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shammas, Sarah L.; Garcia, Gonzalo A.; Kumar, Satish; Kjaergaard, Magnus; Horrocks, Mathew H.; Shivji, Nadia; Mandelkow, Eva; Knowles, Tuomas P. J.; Mandelkow, Eckhard; Klenerman, David

    2015-04-01

    Protein aggregation plays a key role in neurodegenerative disease, giving rise to small oligomers that may become cytotoxic to cells. The fundamental microscopic reactions taking place during aggregation, and their rate constants, have been difficult to determine due to lack of suitable methods to identify and follow the low concentration of oligomers over time. Here we use single-molecule fluorescence to study the aggregation of the repeat domain of tau (K18), and two mutant forms linked with familial frontotemporal dementia, the deletion mutant ΔK280 and the point mutant P301L. Our kinetic analysis reveals that aggregation proceeds via monomeric assembly into small oligomers, and a subsequent slow structural conversion step before fibril formation. Using this approach, we have been able to quantitatively determine how these mutations alter the aggregation energy landscape.

  1. Pioglitazone and exenatide enhance cognition and downregulate hippocampal beta amyloid oligomer and microglia expression in insulin-resistant rats.

    PubMed

    Gad, Enas S; Zaitone, Sawsan A; Moustafa, Yasser M

    2016-08-01

    Insulin resistance is known to be a risk factor for cognitive impairment, most likely linked to insulin signaling, microglia overactivation, and beta amyloid (Aβ) deposition in the brain. Exenatide, a long lasting glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) analogue, enhances insulin signaling and shows neuroprotective properties. Pioglitazone, a peroxisome proliferated-activated receptor-γ (PPAR-γ) agonist, was previously reported to enhance cognition through its effect on Aβ accumulation and clearance. In the present study, insulin resistance was induced in male rats by drinking fructose for 12 weeks. The effect of monotherapy with pioglitazone (10 mg·kg(-1)) and exenatide or their combination on memory dysfunction was determined and some of the probable underlying mechanisms were studied. The current results confirmed that (1) feeding male rats with fructose syrup for 12 weeks resulted in a decline of learning and memory registered in eight-arm radial maze test; (2) treatment with pioglitazone or exenatide enhanced cognition, reduced hippocampal neurodegeneration, and reduced hippocampal microglia expression and beta amyloid oligomer deposition in a manner that is equal to monotherapies. These results may give promise for the use of pioglitazone or exenatide for ameliorating the learning and memory deficits associated with insulin resistance in clinical setting. PMID:27389824

  2. The mechanism of membrane disruption by cytotoxic amyloid oligomers formed by prion protein(106-126) is dependent on bilayer composition.

    PubMed

    Walsh, Patrick; Vanderlee, Gillian; Yau, Jason; Campeau, Jody; Sim, Valerie L; Yip, Christopher M; Sharpe, Simon

    2014-04-11

    The formation of fibrillar aggregates has long been associated with neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer and Parkinson diseases. Although fibrils are still considered important to the pathology of these disorders, it is now widely understood that smaller amyloid oligomers are the toxic entities along the misfolding pathway. One characteristic shared by the majority of amyloid oligomers is the ability to disrupt membranes, a commonality proposed to be responsible for their toxicity, although the mechanisms linking this to cell death are poorly understood. Here, we describe the physical basis for the cytotoxicity of oligomers formed by the prion protein (PrP)-derived amyloid peptide PrP(106-126). We show that oligomers of this peptide kill several mammalian cells lines, as well as mouse cerebellar organotypic cultures, and we also show that they exhibit antimicrobial activity. Physical perturbation of model membranes mimicking bacterial or mammalian cells was investigated using atomic force microscopy, polarized total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy, and NMR spectroscopy. Disruption of anionic membranes proceeds through a carpet or detergent model as proposed for other antimicrobial peptides. By contrast, when added to zwitterionic membranes containing cholesterol-rich ordered domains, PrP(106-126) oligomers induce a loss of domain separation and decreased membrane disorder. Loss of raft-like domains may lead to activation of apoptotic pathways, resulting in cell death. This work sheds new light on the physical mechanisms of amyloid cytotoxicity and is the first to clearly show membrane type-specific modes of action for a cytotoxic peptide.

  3. Systematic analysis of time-dependent neural effects of soluble amyloid β oligomers in culture and in vivo: prevention by scyllo-inositol

    PubMed Central

    Jin, Ming; Selkoe, Dennis J.

    2015-01-01

    Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is currently being addressed by intensive investment in pre-clinical and clinical research on the amyloid hypothesis, but concern remains about the validity of the concept that soluble Aβ oligomers are principally responsible for initiating AD phenotypes. Here, we apply well-defined Aβ oligomers isolated from AD brains or made synthetically to document a systematic accrual of first subtle and then more profound changes in certain synaptic proteins in both primary neuronal cultures and behaving adult mice. Among the first (within hours) synaptic changes are selective decreases in surface levels of certain (e.g., GluA1) but not other (e.g., GluN2B) glutamate receptors and subtle microglial activation. After 4 days, numerous additional synaptic proteins are altered. Moreover, Aβ oligomers induce hyperphosphorylation of tau and subsequent neuritic dystrophy. All changes are prevented by scyllo-inositol in a dose-and stereoisomer-specific manner. Mechanistically, scyllo-inositol interferes quantitatively with the binding of Aβ oligomers to plasma membranes. These comprehensive analyses in culture and in vivo provide direct evidence that diffusible oligomers of human Aβ (without plaques) induce multiple phenotypic changes in healthy neurons, indicating their role as principal endogenous cytotoxins in AD. Our data recommend a re-examination of scyllo-inositol as an anti-oligomer therapeutic in humans with early AD. PMID:26054438

  4. Systematic analysis of time-dependent neural effects of soluble amyloid β oligomers in culture and in vivo: Prevention by scyllo-inositol.

    PubMed

    Jin, Ming; Selkoe, Dennis J

    2015-10-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is currently being addressed by intensive investment in pre-clinical and clinical research on the amyloid hypothesis, but concern remains about the validity of the concept that soluble Aβ oligomers are principally responsible for initiating AD phenotypes. Here, we apply well-defined Aβ oligomers isolated from AD brains or made synthetically to document a systematic accrual of first subtle and then more profound changes in certain synaptic proteins in both primary neuronal cultures and behaving adult mice. Among the first (within hours) synaptic changes are selective decreases in surface levels of certain (e.g., GluA1) but not other (e.g., GluN2B) glutamate receptors and subtle microglial activation. After 4 days, numerous additional synaptic proteins are altered. Moreover, Aβ oligomers induce hyperphosphorylation of tau and subsequent neuritic dystrophy. All changes are prevented by scyllo-inositol in a dose- and stereoisomer-specific manner. Mechanistically, scyllo-inositol interferes quantitatively with the binding of Aβ oligomers to plasma membranes. These comprehensive analyses in culture and in vivo provide direct evidence that diffusible oligomers of human Aβ (without plaques) induce multiple phenotypic changes in healthy neurons, indicating their role as principal endogenous cytotoxins in AD. Our data recommend a re-examination of scyllo-inositol as an anti-oligomer therapeutic in humans with early AD.

  5. A label-free electrical impedimetric biosensor for the specific detection of Alzheimer's amyloid-beta oligomers.

    PubMed

    Rushworth, Jo V; Ahmed, Asif; Griffiths, Heledd H; Pollock, Niall M; Hooper, Nigel M; Millner, Paul A

    2014-06-15

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is the most common form of dementia, with over 37 million sufferers worldwide and a global cost of over $600 billion. There is currently no cure for AD and no reliable method of diagnosis other than post-mortem brain examination. The development of a point-of-care test for AD is an urgent requirement in order to provide earlier diagnosis and, thus, useful therapeutic intervention. Here, we present a novel, label-free impedimetric biosensor for the specific detection of amyloid-beta oligomers (AβO), which are the primary neurotoxic species in AD. AβO have been proposed as the best biomarker for AD and levels of AβO in the blood have been found to correlate with cerebrospinal fluid load. The biorecognition element of our biosensor is a fragment of the cellular prion protein (PrP(C), residues 95-110), a highly expressed synaptic protein which mediates the neuronal binding and toxicity of AβO. During the layer-by-layer sensor construction, biotinylated PrP(C) (95-110) was attached via a biotin/NeutrAvidin bridge to polymer-functionalised gold screen-printed electrodes. Electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS), cyclic voltammetry and scanning electron microscopy were used to validate biosensor assembly and functionality. EIS was employed for biosensor interrogation in the presence of Aβ oligomers or monomers. The biosensor was specific for the detection of synthetic AβO and gave a linear response, without significant detection of monomeric Aβ, down to an equivalent AβO concentration of ~0.5 pM. The biosensor was also able to detect natural, cell-derived AβO present in conditioned medium. The eventual commercialisation of this biosensor system could allow for the early diagnosis and disease monitoring of AD.

  6. Low molecular weight oligomers of amyloid peptides display β-barrel conformations: A replica exchange molecular dynamics study in explicit solvent

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    De Simone, Alfonso; Derreumaux, Philippe

    2010-04-01

    The self-assembly of proteins and peptides into amyloid fibrils is connected to over 40 pathological conditions including neurodegenerative diseases and systemic amyloidosis. Diffusible, low molecular weight protein and peptide oligomers that form in the early steps of aggregation appear to be the harmful cytotoxic species in the molecular etiology of these diseases. So far, the structural characterization of these oligomers has remained elusive owing to their transient and dynamic features. We here address, by means of full atomistic replica exchange molecular dynamics simulations, the energy landscape of heptamers of the amyloidogenic peptide NHVTLSQ from the beta-2 microglobulin protein. The simulations totaling 5 μs show that low molecular weight oligomers in explicit solvent consist of β-barrels in equilibrium with amorphous states and fibril-like assemblies. The results, also accounting for the influence of the pH on the conformational properties, provide a strong evidence of the formation of transient β-barrel assemblies in the early aggregation steps of amyloid-forming systems. Our findings are discussed in terms of oligomers cytotoxicity.

  7. Electrochemical Detection of AmyloidOligomers Based on the Signal Amplification of a Network of Silver Nanoparticles.

    PubMed

    Xia, Ning; Wang, Xin; Zhou, Binbin; Wu, Yangyang; Mao, Wenhui; Liu, Lin

    2016-08-01

    Amyloidoligomers (AβOs) are the most important toxic species in the brain of Alzheimer's disease (AD) patient. AβOs, therefore, are considered reliable molecular biomarkers for the diagnosis of AD. Herein, we reported a simple and sensitive electrochemical method for the selective detection of AβOs using silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) as the redox reporters and PrP(95-110), an AβOs-specific binding peptide, as the receptor. Specifically, adamantine (Ad)-labeled PrP(95-110), denoted as Ad-PrP(95-110), induced the aggregation and color change of AgNPs and the follow-up formation of a network of Ad-PrP(95-110)-AgNPs. Then, Ad-PrP(95-110)-AgNPs were anchored onto a β-cyclodextrin (β-CD)-covered electrode surface through the host-guest interaction between Ad and β-CD, thus producing an amplified electrochemical signal through the solid-state Ag/AgCl reaction by the AgNPs. In the presence of AβOs, Ad-PrP(95-110) interacted specifically with the AβOs, thus losing the capability to bind AgNPs and to induce the formation of an AgNPs-based network on the electrode surface. Consequently, the electrochemical signal decreased with an increase in the concentration of AβOs in the range of 20 pM to 100 nM. The biosensor had a detection limit of 8 pM and showed no response to amyloid-β monomers (AβMs) and fibrils (AβFs). On the basis of the well-defined and amplified electrochemical signal of the AgNPs-based network architecture, these results should be valuable for the design of novel electrochemical biosensors by marrying specific receptors.

  8. Stabilization of native amyloid β-protein oligomers by Copper and Hydrogen peroxide Induced Cross-linking of Unmodified Proteins (CHICUP).

    PubMed

    Williams, Thomas L; Serpell, Louise C; Urbanc, Brigita

    2016-03-01

    Oligomeric assemblies are postulated to be proximate neurotoxic species in human diseases associated with aberrant protein aggregation. Their heterogeneous and transient nature makes their structural characterization difficult. Size distributions of oligomers of several amyloidogenic proteins, including amyloid β-protein (Aβ) relevant to Alzheimer's disease (AD), have been previously characterized in vitro by photo-induced cross-linking of unmodified proteins (PICUP) followed by sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE). Due to non-physiological conditions associated with the PICUP chemistry, Aβ oligomers cross-linked by PICUP may not be representative of in vivo conditions. Here, we examine an alternative Copper and Hydrogen peroxide Induced Cross-linking of Unmodified Proteins (CHICUP), which utilizes naturally occurring divalent copper ions and hydrogen peroxide and does not require photo activation. Our results demonstrate that CHICUP and PICUP applied to the two predominant Aβ alloforms, Aβ40 and Aβ42, result in similar oligomer size distributions. Thioflavin T fluorescence data and atomic force microscopy images demonstrate that both CHICUP and PICUP stabilize Aβ oligomers and attenuate fibril formation. Relative to noncross-linked peptides, CHICUP-treated Aβ40 and Aβ42 cause prolonged disruption to biomimetic lipid vesicles. CHICUP-stabilized Aβ oligomers link the amyloid cascade, metal, and oxidative stress hypotheses of AD into a more comprehensive understanding of the molecular basis of AD pathology. Because copper and hydrogen peroxide are elevated in the AD brain, CHICUP-stabilized Aβ oligomers are biologically relevant and should be further explored as a new therapeutic target.

  9. Heme stabilization of α-Synuclein oligomers during amyloid fibril formation

    PubMed Central

    Hayden, Eric Y.; Kaur, Prerna; Williams, Thomas L.; Matsui, Hiroshi; Yeh, Syun-Ru; Rousseau, Denis L.

    2015-01-01

    Alpha-Synuclein (αSyn), which forms amyloid fibrils, is linked to the neuronal pathology of Parkinson’s disease, as it is the major fibrillar component of Lewy bodies, the inclusions that are characteristic of the disease. Oligomeric structures, common to many neurodegenerative disease-related proteins, may in fact be the primary toxic species, while the amyloid fibrils exist as either a less toxic dead-end species, or even as a beneficial mechanism to clear damaged proteins. In order to alter the progression of the aggregation and gain insights into the pre-fibrillar structures, the effect of heme on αSyn oligomerization was determined by several different techniques including native (non-denaturing) polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis, thioflavin T fluorescence, transmission electron microscopy, atomic force microscopy, circular dichroism and membrane permeation using a calcein release assay. During aggregation, heme is able to bind the αSyn in a specific fashion, stabilizing distinct oligomeric conformations and promoting the formation of αSyn into annular structures, thereby delaying and/or inhibiting the fibrillation process. These results indicate that heme may play a regulatory role in the progression of Parkinson’s disease; in addition, they provide insights of how the aggregation process may be altered, which may be applicable to the understanding of many neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:26161848

  10. Disruption of Amyloid Plaques Integrity Affects the Soluble Oligomers Content from Alzheimer Disease Brains

    PubMed Central

    Moyano, Javier; Sanchez-Mico, María; Torres, Manuel; Davila, Jose Carlos; Vizuete, Marisa; Gutierrez, Antonia; Vitorica, Javier

    2014-01-01

    The implication of soluble Abeta in the Alzheimer’s disease (AD) pathology is currently accepted. In fact, the content of soluble extracellular Abeta species, such as monomeric and/or oligomeric Abeta, seems to correlate with the clinico-pathological dysfunction observed in AD patients. However, the nature (monomeric, dimeric or other oligomers), the relative abundance, and the origin (extra-/intraneuronal or plaque-associated), of these soluble species are actually under debate. In this work we have characterized the soluble (defined as soluble in Tris-buffered saline after ultracentrifugation) Abeta, obtained from hippocampal samples of Braak II, Braak III–IV and Braak V–VI patients. Although the content of both Abeta40 and Abeta42 peptides displayed significant increase with pathology progression, our results demonstrated the presence of low, pg/µg protein, amount of both peptides. This low content could explain the absence (or below detection limits) of soluble Abeta peptides detected by western blots or by immunoprecipitation-western blot analysis. These data were in clear contrast to those published recently by different groups. Aiming to explain the reasons that determine these substantial differences, we also investigated whether the initial homogenization could mobilize Abeta from plaques, using 12-month-old PS1xAPP cortical samples. Our data demonstrated that manual homogenization (using Dounce) preserved the integrity of Abeta plaques whereas strong homogenization procedures (such as sonication) produced a vast redistribution of the Abeta species in all soluble and insoluble fractions. This artifact could explain the dissimilar and somehow controversial data between different groups analyzing human AD samples. PMID:25485545

  11. Atomistic mechanism of polyphenol amyloid aggregation inhibitors: molecular dynamics study of Curcumin, Exifone, and Myricetin interaction with the segment of tau peptide oligomer.

    PubMed

    Berhanu, Workalemahu M; Masunov, Artëm E

    2015-01-01

    Amyloid fibrils are highly ordered protein aggregates associated with many diseases affecting millions of people worldwide. Polyphenols such as Curcumin, Exifone, and Myricetin exhibit modest inhibition toward fibril formation of tau peptide which is associated with Alzheimer's disease. However, the molecular mechanisms of this inhibition remain elusive. We investigated the binding of three polyphenol molecules to the protofibrils of an amyloidogenic fragment VQIVYK of tau peptide by molecular dynamics simulations in explicit solvent. We find that polyphenols induce conformational changes in the oligomer aggregate. These changes disrupt the amyloid H bonding, perturbing the aggregate. While the structural evolution of the control oligomer with no ligand is limited to the twisting of the β-sheets without their disassembly, the presence of polyphenol molecule pushes the β-sheets apart, and leads to a loosely packed structure where two of four β-sheets dissociate in each of the three cases considered here. The H-bonding capacity of polyphenols is responsible for the observed behavior. The calculated binding free energies and its individual components enabled better understanding of the binding. Results indicated that the contribution from Van der Waals interactions is more significant than electrostatic contribution to the binding. The findings from this study are expected to assist in the development of aggregation inhibitors. Significant binding between polyphenols and aggregate oligomer identified in our simulations confirms the previous experimental observations in which polyphenols refold the tau peptide without forming covalent bonds. PMID:25093402

  12. Molecular insight into amyloid oligomer destabilizing mechanism of flavonoid derivative 2-(4' benzyloxyphenyl)-3-hydroxy-chromen-4-one through docking and molecular dynamics simulations.

    PubMed

    Kumar, Akhil; Srivastava, Swati; Tripathi, Shubhandra; Singh, Sandeep Kumar; Srikrishna, Saripella; Sharma, Ashok

    2016-06-01

    Aggregation of amyloid peptide (Aβ) has been shown to be directly related to progression of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Aβ is neurotoxic and its deposition and aggregation ultimately lead to cell death. In our previous work, we reported flavonoid derivative (compound 1) showing promising result in transgenic AD model of Drosophila. Compound 1 showed prevention of Aβ-induced neurotoxicity and neuroprotective efficacy in Drosophila system. However, mechanism of action of compound 1 and its effect on the amyloid is not known. We therefore performed molecular docking and atomistic, explicit-solvent molecular dynamics simulations to investigate the process of Aβ interaction, inhibition, and destabilizing mechanism. Results showed different preferred binding sites of compound 1 and good affinity toward the target. Through the course of 35 ns molecular dynamics simulation, conformations_5 of compound 1 intercalates into the hydrophobic core near the salt bridge and showed major structural changes as compared to other conformations. Compound 1 showed interference with the salt bridge and thus reducing the inter strand hydrogen bound network. This minimizes the side chain interaction between the chains A-B leading to disorder in oligomer. Contact map analysis of amino acid residues between chains A and B also showed lesser interaction with adjacent amino acids in the presence of compound 1 (conformations_5). The study provides an insight into how compound 1 interferes and disorders the Aβ peptide. These findings will further help to design better inhibitors for aggregation of the amyloid oligomer.

  13. Molecular mechanism of the inhibition and remodeling of human islet amyloid polypeptide (hIAPP(1-37)) oligomer by resveratrol from molecular dynamics simulation.

    PubMed

    Wang, Qianqian; Ning, Lulu; Niu, Yuzhen; Liu, Huanxiang; Yao, Xiaojun

    2015-01-01

    Natural polyphenols are one of the most actively investigated categories of amyloid inhibitors, and resveratrol has recently been reported to inhibit and remodel the human islet amyloid polypeptide (hIAPP) oligomers and fibrils. However, the exact mechanism of its action is still unknown, especially for the full-length hIAPP1-37. To this end, we performed all-atom molecular dynamics simulations for hIAPP1-37 pentamer with and without resveratrol. The obtained results show that the binding of resveratrol is able to cause remarkable conformational changes of hIAPP1-37 pentamer, in terms of secondary structures, order degree, and morphology. By clustering analysis, two possible binding sites of resveratrol on the hIAPP1-37 pentamer were found, located at the grooves of the top and bottom surfaces of β-sheet layer, respectively. After the binding free energy calculation and residue energy decomposition, it can be concluded that the bottom site is the more possible one, and that the nonpolar interactions act as the driving force for the binding of hIAPP1-37 to resveratrol. In addition, Arg11 is the most important residue for the binding of resveratrol. The full understanding of inhibitory mechanism of resveratrol on the hIAPP1-37 oligomer, and the identification of its binding sites on this protein are helpful for the future design and discovery of new amyloid inhibitors. PMID:25494644

  14. Structure of ring-shaped Aβ42 oligomers determined by conformational selection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tran, Linh; Basdevant, Nathalie; Prévost, Chantal; Ha-Duong, Tâp

    2016-02-01

    The oligomerization of amyloid beta (Aβ) peptides into soluble non-fibrillar species plays a critical role in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer’s disease. However, it has been challenging to characterize the tertiary and quaternary structures of Aβ peptides due to their disordered nature and high aggregation propensity. In this work, replica exchange molecular dynamics simulations were used to explore the conformational space of Aβ42 monomer. Among the most populated transient states, we identified a particular conformation which was able to generate ring-shaped pentamers and hexamers, when docked onto itself. The structures of these aggregates were stable during microsecond all-atom MD simulations in explicit solvent. In addition to high resolution models of these oligomers, this study provides support for the conformational selection mechanism of Aβ peptide self-assembly.

  15. EPPS rescues hippocampus-dependent cognitive deficits in APP/PS1 mice by disaggregation of amyloidoligomers and plaques

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Hye Yun; Kim, Hyunjin Vincent; Jo, Seonmi; Lee, C. Justin; Choi, Seon Young; Kim, Dong Jin; Kim, YoungSoo

    2015-01-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is characterized by the transition of amyloid-β (Aβ) monomers into toxic oligomers and plaques. Given that Aβ abnormality typically precedes the development of clinical symptoms, an agent capable of disaggregating existing Aβ aggregates may be advantageous. Here we report that a small molecule, 4-(2-hydroxyethyl)-1-piperazinepropanesulphonic acid (EPPS), binds to Aβ aggregates and converts them into monomers. The oral administration of EPPS substantially reduces hippocampus-dependent behavioural deficits, brain Aβ oligomer and plaque deposits, glial γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) release and brain inflammation in an Aβ-overexpressing, APP/PS1 transgenic mouse model when initiated after the development of severe AD-like phenotypes. The ability of EPPS to rescue Aβ aggregation and behavioural deficits provides strong support for the view that the accumulation of Aβ is an important mechanism underlying AD. PMID:26646366

  16. Molecular Structure of Aggregated Amyloid-β: Insights from Solid State Nuclear Magnetic Resonance

    PubMed Central

    Tycko, Robert

    2016-01-01

    Amyloid-β (Aβ) peptides aggregate to form polymorphic amyloid fibrils and a variety of intermediate assemblies, including oligomers and protofibrils, both in vitro and in human brain tissue. Since the beginning of the 21st century, considerable progress has been made on characterization of the molecular structures of Aβ aggregates. Full molecular structural models that are based primarily on data from solid state nuclear magnetic resonance measurements have been developed for several in vitro Aβ fibrils and one metastable protofibril. Partial structural characterization of other aggregation intermediates has been achieved. One full structural model for fibrils derived from brain tissue has also been reported. Future work is likely to focus on additional structures from brain tissue and on further clarification of nonfibrillar Aβ aggregates. PMID:27481836

  17. Peripherally administered sera antibodies recognizing amyloidoligomers mitigate Alzheimer's disease-like pathology and cognitive decline in aged 3× Tg-AD mice.

    PubMed

    Wang, Hai-Chao; Yu, Yun-Zhou; Liu, Si; Zhao, Meng; Xu, Qing

    2016-04-01

    Active and passive immunotherapy targeting amyloid-β (Aβ) may be the most promising strategy to prevent or treat Alzheimer's disease (AD). Previously, immunization with the recombinant 6Aβ15-T antigen generated robust anti-Aβ serum antibodies that strongly recognized Aβ42 oligomers in different mice, markedly reduced the amyloid burden, and improved behavioral performance of immunized older AD mice. Here, we further determined that these anti-6Aβ15-T serum antibodies from different strains of mice displayed anti-Aβ antibody responses against the same epitopes in the Aβ1-15 region. Peripheral administration of anti-6Aβ15-T serum antibodies was also effective to mitigate AD-like pathology and cognitive decline in aged 3× Tg-AD mice. Specifically, the levels of Aβ and tau in the brains of 3× Tg-AD mice were significantly reduced after passive immunotherapy, which seemed necessary or beneficial to ameliorate memory impairment. In addition, our results showed that this immunotherapy also prevented presynaptic dynamin 1 degradation, which might help to further protect synaptic functions and allow functional recovery of cognition. Moreover, immunization with 6Aβ15-T in rabbits induced a similar antibody response as that in mice, and the rabbit serum antibodies reacted strongly with Aβ42 oligomers and inhibited oligomer-mediated neurotoxicity. We concluded that passive immunization with Aβ42 oligomer conformation-sensitive anti-6Aβ15-T serum antibodies is effective in providing potentially therapeutic effects in aged 3× Tg-AD mice by reducing Aβ and tau.

  18. Absence of amyloid β oligomers at the postsynapse and regulated synaptic Zn2+ in cognitively intact aged individuals with Alzheimer’s disease neuropathology

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Early cognitive impairment in Alzheimer Disease (AD) is thought to result from the dysfunctional effect of amyloid beta (Aβ) oligomers targeting the synapses. Some individuals, however, escape cognitive decline despite the presence of the neuropathologic features of AD (Aβ plaques and neurofibrillary tangles). We term this group Non-Demented with AD Neuropathology or NDAN. The present study illustrates one putative resistance mechanism involved in NDAN cases which may suggest targets for the effective treatment of AD. Results Here we describe the localization of Aβ oligomers at the postsynapse in hippocampi from AD cases. Notably, however, we also found that while present in soluble fractions, Aβ oligomers are absent from hippocampal postsynapses in NDAN cases. In addition, levels of phosphorylated (active) CREB, a transcription factor important for synaptic plasticity, are normal in NDAN individuals, suggesting that their synapses are functionally intact. Analysis of Zn2+ showed that levels were increased in both soluble fractions and synaptic vesicles in AD hippocampi, paralleled by a decrease of expression of the synaptic vesicle Zn2+ transporter, ZnT3. Conversely, in NDAN individuals, levels of Zn2+ in soluble fractions were significantly lower than in AD, whereas in synaptic vesicles the levels of Zn2+ were similar to AD, but accompanied by preserved expression of the ZnT3. Conclusions Taken together, these data illustrate that despite substantial AD neuropathology, Aβ oligomers, and increased synaptic vesicle Zn2+, susceptible brain tissue in these aged NDAN individuals features, as compared to symptomatic AD subjects, significantly lower total Zn2+ levels and no association of Aβ oligomers with the postsynapse, which collectively may promote the maintenance of intact cognitive function. PMID:22640423

  19. Probing the Efficacy of Peptide-Based Inhibitors against Acid- and Zinc-Promoted Oligomerization of Amyloid-β Peptide via Single-Oligomer Spectroscopy

    PubMed Central

    Powell, Lyndsey R.; Dukes, Kyle D.; Lammi, Robin K.

    2011-01-01

    One avenue for prevention and treatment of Alzheimer's disease involves inhibiting the aggregation of amyloid-β peptide (Aβ). Given the deleterious effects reported for Aβ dimers and trimers, it is important to investigate inhibition of the earliest association steps. We have employed quantized photobleaching of dye-labeled Aβ peptides to characterize four peptide-based inhibitors of fibrillogenesis and/or cytotoxicity, assessing their ability to inhibit association in the smallest oligomers (n = 2–5). Inhibitors were tested at acidic pH and in the presence of zinc, conditions that may promote oligomerization in vivo. Distributions of peptide species were constructed by examining dozens of surface-tethered monomers and oligomers, one at a time. Results show that all four inhibitors shift the distribution of Aβ species toward monomers; however, efficacies vary for each compound and sample environment. Collectively, these studies highlight promising design strategies for future oligomerization inhibitors, affording insight into oligomer structures and inhibition mechanisms in two physiologically significant environments. PMID:21945664

  20. Alpha-tocopherol quinine ameliorates spatial memory deficits by reducing beta-amyloid oligomers, neuroinflammation and oxidative stress in transgenic mice with Alzheimer's disease.

    PubMed

    Wang, Shao-Wei; Yang, Shi-Gao; Liu, Wen; Zhang, Yang-Xin; Xu, Peng-Xin; Wang, Teng; Ling, Tie-Jun; Liu, Rui-Tian

    2016-01-01

    The pathologies of Alzheimer's disease (AD) is associated with soluble beta-amyloid (Aβ) oligomers, neuroinflammation and oxidative stress. Decreasing the levels of Aβ oligomer, glial activation and oxidative stress are potential therapeutic approaches for AD treatment. We previously found alpha-tocopherol quinine (α-TQ) inhibited Aβ aggregation and cytotoxicity, decreased the release of inflammatory cytokines and reactive oxygen species (ROS) in vitro. However, whether α-TQ ameliorates memory deficits and other neuropathologies in mice or patients with AD remains unknown. In this study, we reported that orally administered α-TQ ameliorated memory impairment in APPswe/PS1dE9 transgenic mice, decreased oxidative stress and the levels of Aβ oligomer in the brains of mice, prevented the production of inducible nitric oxide synthase and inflammatory mediators, such as interleukin-6 and interleukin-1β, and inhibited microglial activation by inhibiting NF-κB signaling pathway. These findings suggest that α-TQ has potential therapeutic value for AD treatment.

  1. Keampferol-3-O-rhamnoside abrogates amyloid beta toxicity by modulating monomers and remodeling oligomers and fibrils to non-toxic aggregates

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Aggregation of soluble, monomeric β- amyloid (Aβ) to oligomeric and then insoluble fibrillar Aβ is a key pathogenic feature in development of Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Increasing evidence suggests that toxicity is linked to diffusible Aβ oligomers, rather than to insoluble fibrils. The use of naturally occurring small molecules for inhibition of Aβ aggregation has recently attracted significant interest for development of effective therapeutic strategies against the disease. A natural polyphenolic flavone, Kaempferol-3-O-rhamnoside (K-3-rh), was utilized to investigate its effects on aggregation and cytotoxic effects of Aβ42 peptide. Several biochemical techniques were used to determine the conformational changes and cytotoxic effect of the peptide in the presence and absence of K-3-rh. Results K-3-rh showed a dose-dependent effect against Aβ42 mediated cytotoxicity. Anti-amyloidogenic properties of K-3-rh were found to be efficient in inhibiting fibrilogenesis and secondary structural transformation of the peptide. The consequence of these inhibitions was the accumulation of oligomeric structural species. The accumulated aggregates were smaller, soluble, non-β-sheet and non-toxic aggregates, compared to preformed toxic Aβ oligomers. K-3-rh was also found to have the remodeling properties of preformed soluble oligomers and fibrils. Both of these conformers were found to remodel into non-toxic aggregates. The results showed that K-3-rh interacts with different Aβ conformers, which affects fibril formation, oligomeric maturation and fibrillar stabilization. Conclusion K-3-rh is an efficient molecule to hinder the self assembly and to abrogate the cytotoxic effects of Aβ42 peptide. Hence, K-3-rh and small molecules with similar structure might be considered for therapeutic development against AD. PMID:23259691

  2. Glial reactions and the clearance of amyloid beta protein in the brains of patients with hereditary cerebral hemorrhage with amyloidosis-Dutch type.

    PubMed

    Maat-Schieman, Marion L C; Yamaguchi, Haruyasu; Hegeman-Kleinn, Ingrid M; Welling-Graafland, Corrie; Natté, Remco; Roos, Raymund A C; van Duinen, Sjoerd G

    2004-05-01

    Although the amyloid beta protein (Abeta) E693Q mutation enhances Abeta fibrillization in vitro and cerebral amyloid angiopathy (CAA) in vivo, brain parenchymal Abeta deposition and tau pathology in hereditary cerebral hemorrhage with amyloidosis-Dutch type (HCHWA-D) are limited. To evaluate whether clearance of Abeta by glial cells may play a role in this regard, this immunohistochemical study of frontal cortex of 14 HCHWA-D autopsy brains was performed using double staining with glial markers and end-specific antibodies to Abetax-42 (Abeta42) and Abetax-40 (Abeta40). Tau pathology was also assessed. Numerous microglia and/or astrocytes carrying cytoplasmic Abeta42(+)40(-) granules were scattered among non-fibrillar (Congo red-negative) Abeta deposits, i.e., clouds, fine diffuse plaques, and Abeta42(+)40(-) dense diffuse plaques. On the other hand, activated microglia and reactive astrocytes associated with fibrillar (Congo red-positive) Abeta deposition, i.e., Abeta42(+)40(+) dense diffuse plaques and CAA invading the parenchyma, were virtually devoid of Abeta granules. Tau pathology was scant and most frequently associated with CAA. These results suggest that relatively non-fibrillar parenchymal Abeta deposits may be liable to glial clearance. Abeta sequestration by glial cells may be a factor limiting the levels of neurotoxic soluble Abeta oligomers in HCHWA-D brain.

  3. Droplet-based magnetic bead immunoassay using microchannel-connected multiwell plates (μCHAMPs) for the detection of amyloid beta oligomers.

    PubMed

    Park, Min Cheol; Kim, Moojong; Lim, Gun Taek; Kang, Sung Min; An, Seong Soo A; Kim, Tae Song; Kang, Ji Yoon

    2016-06-21

    Multiwell plates are regularly used in analytical research and clinical diagnosis but often require laborious washing steps and large sample or reagent volumes (typically, 100 μL per well). To overcome such drawbacks in the conventional multiwell plate, we present a novel microchannel-connected multiwell plate (μCHAMP) that can be used for automated disease biomarker detection in a small sample volume by performing droplet-based magnetic bead immunoassay inside the plate. In this μCHAMP-based immunoassay platform, small volumes (30-50 μL) of aqueous-phase working droplets are stably confined within each well by the simple microchannel structure (200-300 μm in height and 0.5-1 mm in width), and magnetic beads are exclusively transported into an adjacent droplet through the oil-filled microchannels assisted by a magnet array aligned beneath and controlled by a XY-motorized stage. Using this μCHAMP-based platform, we were able to perform parallel detection of synthetic amyloid beta (Aβ) oligomers as a model analyte for the early diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease (AD). This platform easily simplified the laborious and consumptive immunoassay procedure by achieving automated parallel immunoassay (32 assays per operation in 3-well connected 96-well plate) within 1 hour and at low sample consumption (less than 10 μL per assay) with no cumbersome manual washing step. Moreover, it could detect synthetic Aβ oligomers even below 10 pg mL(-1) concentration with a calculated detection limit of ∼3 pg mL(-1). Therefore, the μCHAMP and droplet-based magnetic bead immunoassay, with the combination of XY-motorized magnet array, would be a useful platform in the diagnosis of human disease, including AD, which requires low consumption of the patient's body fluid sample and automation of the entire immunoassay procedure for high processing capacity. PMID:27185215

  4. Extracellular Tau Oligomers Produce An Immediate Impairment of LTP and Memory

    PubMed Central

    Fá, M.; Puzzo, D.; Piacentini, R.; Staniszewski, A.; Zhang, H.; Baltrons, M. A.; Li Puma, D. D.; Chatterjee, I.; Li, J.; Saeed, F.; Berman, H. L.; Ripoli, C.; Gulisano, W.; Gonzalez, J.; Tian, H.; Costa, J. A.; Lopez, P.; Davidowitz, E.; Yu, W. H.; Haroutunian, V.; Brown, L. M.; Palmeri, A.; Sigurdsson, E. M.; Duff, K. E.; Teich, A. F.; Honig, L. S.; Sierks, M.; Moe, J. G.; D’Adamio, L.; Grassi, C.; Kanaan, N. M.; Fraser, P. E.; Arancio, O.

    2016-01-01

    Non-fibrillar soluble oligomeric forms of amyloid-β peptide (oAβ) and tau proteins are likely to play a major role in Alzheimer’s disease (AD). The prevailing hypothesis on the disease etiopathogenesis is that oAβ initiates tau pathology that slowly spreads throughout the medial temporal cortex and neocortices independently of Aβ, eventually leading to memory loss. Here we show that a brief exposure to extracellular recombinant human tau oligomers (oTau), but not monomers, produces an impairment of long-term potentiation (LTP) and memory, independent of the presence of high oAβ levels. The impairment is immediate as it raises as soon as 20 min after exposure to the oligomers. These effects are reproduced either by oTau extracted from AD human specimens, or naturally produced in mice overexpressing human tau. Finally, we found that oTau could also act in combination with oAβ to produce these effects, as sub-toxic doses of the two peptides combined lead to LTP and memory impairment. These findings provide a novel view of the effects of tau and Aβ on memory loss, offering new therapeutic opportunities in the therapy of AD and other neurodegenerative diseases associated with Aβ and tau pathology. PMID:26786552

  5. Extracellular Tau Oligomers Produce An Immediate Impairment of LTP and Memory.

    PubMed

    Fá, M; Puzzo, D; Piacentini, R; Staniszewski, A; Zhang, H; Baltrons, M A; Li Puma, D D; Chatterjee, I; Li, J; Saeed, F; Berman, H L; Ripoli, C; Gulisano, W; Gonzalez, J; Tian, H; Costa, J A; Lopez, P; Davidowitz, E; Yu, W H; Haroutunian, V; Brown, L M; Palmeri, A; Sigurdsson, E M; Duff, K E; Teich, A F; Honig, L S; Sierks, M; Moe, J G; D'Adamio, L; Grassi, C; Kanaan, N M; Fraser, P E; Arancio, O

    2016-01-20

    Non-fibrillar soluble oligomeric forms of amyloid-β peptide (oAβ) and tau proteins are likely to play a major role in Alzheimer's disease (AD). The prevailing hypothesis on the disease etiopathogenesis is that oAβ initiates tau pathology that slowly spreads throughout the medial temporal cortex and neocortices independently of Aβ, eventually leading to memory loss. Here we show that a brief exposure to extracellular recombinant human tau oligomers (oTau), but not monomers, produces an impairment of long-term potentiation (LTP) and memory, independent of the presence of high oAβ levels. The impairment is immediate as it raises as soon as 20 min after exposure to the oligomers. These effects are reproduced either by oTau extracted from AD human specimens, or naturally produced in mice overexpressing human tau. Finally, we found that oTau could also act in combination with oAβ to produce these effects, as sub-toxic doses of the two peptides combined lead to LTP and memory impairment. These findings provide a novel view of the effects of tau and Aβ on memory loss, offering new therapeutic opportunities in the therapy of AD and other neurodegenerative diseases associated with Aβ and tau pathology.

  6. Extracellular Tau Oligomers Produce An Immediate Impairment of LTP and Memory.

    PubMed

    Fá, M; Puzzo, D; Piacentini, R; Staniszewski, A; Zhang, H; Baltrons, M A; Li Puma, D D; Chatterjee, I; Li, J; Saeed, F; Berman, H L; Ripoli, C; Gulisano, W; Gonzalez, J; Tian, H; Costa, J A; Lopez, P; Davidowitz, E; Yu, W H; Haroutunian, V; Brown, L M; Palmeri, A; Sigurdsson, E M; Duff, K E; Teich, A F; Honig, L S; Sierks, M; Moe, J G; D'Adamio, L; Grassi, C; Kanaan, N M; Fraser, P E; Arancio, O

    2016-01-01

    Non-fibrillar soluble oligomeric forms of amyloid-β peptide (oAβ) and tau proteins are likely to play a major role in Alzheimer's disease (AD). The prevailing hypothesis on the disease etiopathogenesis is that oAβ initiates tau pathology that slowly spreads throughout the medial temporal cortex and neocortices independently of Aβ, eventually leading to memory loss. Here we show that a brief exposure to extracellular recombinant human tau oligomers (oTau), but not monomers, produces an impairment of long-term potentiation (LTP) and memory, independent of the presence of high oAβ levels. The impairment is immediate as it raises as soon as 20 min after exposure to the oligomers. These effects are reproduced either by oTau extracted from AD human specimens, or naturally produced in mice overexpressing human tau. Finally, we found that oTau could also act in combination with oAβ to produce these effects, as sub-toxic doses of the two peptides combined lead to LTP and memory impairment. These findings provide a novel view of the effects of tau and Aβ on memory loss, offering new therapeutic opportunities in the therapy of AD and other neurodegenerative diseases associated with Aβ and tau pathology. PMID:26786552

  7. Amyloid beta oligomers induce neuronal elasticity changes in age-dependent manner: a force spectroscopy study on living hippocampal neurons.

    PubMed

    Ungureanu, Andreea-Alexandra; Benilova, Iryna; Krylychkina, Olga; Braeken, Dries; De Strooper, Bart; Van Haesendonck, Chris; Dotti, Carlos G; Bartic, Carmen

    2016-01-01

    Small soluble species of amyloid-beta (Aβ) formed during early peptide aggregation stages are responsible for several neurotoxic mechanisms relevant to the pathology of Alzheimer's disease (AD), although their interaction with the neuronal membrane is not completely understood. This study quantifies the changes in the neuronal membrane elasticity induced by treatment with the two most common Aβ isoforms found in AD brains: Aβ40 and Aβ42. Using quantitative atomic force microscopy (AFM), we measured for the first time the static elastic modulus of living primary hippocampal neurons treated with pre-aggregated Aβ40 and Aβ42 soluble species. Our AFM results demonstrate changes in the elasticity of young, mature and aged neurons treated for a short time with the two Aβ species pre-aggregated for 2 hours. Neurons aging under stress conditions, showing aging hallmarks, are the most susceptible to amyloid binding and show the largest decrease in membrane stiffness upon Aβ treatment. Membrane stiffness defines the way in which cells respond to mechanical forces in their environment and has been shown to be important for processes such as gene expression, ion-channel gating and neurotransmitter vesicle transport. Thus, one can expect that changes in neuronal membrane elasticity might directly induce functional changes related to neurodegeneration.

  8. Amyloid beta oligomers induce neuronal elasticity changes in age-dependent manner: a force spectroscopy study on living hippocampal neurons

    PubMed Central

    Ungureanu, Andreea-Alexandra; Benilova, Iryna; Krylychkina, Olga; Braeken, Dries; De Strooper, Bart; Van Haesendonck, Chris; Dotti, Carlos G.; Bartic, Carmen

    2016-01-01

    Small soluble species of amyloid-beta (Aβ) formed during early peptide aggregation stages are responsible for several neurotoxic mechanisms relevant to the pathology of Alzheimer’s disease (AD), although their interaction with the neuronal membrane is not completely understood. This study quantifies the changes in the neuronal membrane elasticity induced by treatment with the two most common Aβ isoforms found in AD brains: Aβ40 and Aβ42. Using quantitative atomic force microscopy (AFM), we measured for the first time the static elastic modulus of living primary hippocampal neurons treated with pre-aggregated Aβ40 and Aβ42 soluble species. Our AFM results demonstrate changes in the elasticity of young, mature and aged neurons treated for a short time with the two Aβ species pre-aggregated for 2 hours. Neurons aging under stress conditions, showing aging hallmarks, are the most susceptible to amyloid binding and show the largest decrease in membrane stiffness upon Aβ treatment. Membrane stiffness defines the way in which cells respond to mechanical forces in their environment and has been shown to be important for processes such as gene expression, ion-channel gating and neurotransmitter vesicle transport. Thus, one can expect that changes in neuronal membrane elasticity might directly induce functional changes related to neurodegeneration. PMID:27173984

  9. Brain Transit and Ameliorative Effects of Intranasally Delivered Anti-AmyloidOligomer Antibody in 5XFAD Mice

    PubMed Central

    Xiao, Chun; Davis, Francesca J.; Chauhan, Balwantsinh C.; Viola, Kirsten L.; Lacor, Pascale N.; Velasco, Pauline T.; Klein, William L.; Chauhan, Neelima B.

    2013-01-01

    Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is a global health crisis with limited treatment options. Despite major advances in neurotherapeutics, poor brain penetration due to the blood-brain barrier continues to pose a big challenge in overcoming the access of therapeutics to the central nervous system. In that regard, the non-invasive intranasal route of brain targeting is gaining considerable attention. The nasal mucosa offers a large surface area, rapid absorption, and avoidance of first-pass metabolism increasing drug bioavailability with less systemic side effects. Intranasal delivery is known to utilize olfactory, rostral migratory stream, and trigeminal routes to reach the brain. This investigation confirmed that intranasal delivery of oligomeric amyloid-β antibody (NU4) utilized all three routes to enter the brain with a resident time of 96 hours post single bolus intranasal administration, and showed evidence of perikaryal and parenchymal uptake of NU4 in 5XFAD mouse brain, confirming the intranasal route as a non-invasive and efficient way of delivering therapeutics to the brain. In addition, this study demonstrated that intranasal delivery of NU4 antibody lowered cerebral amyloid-β and improved spatial learning in 5XFAD mice. PMID:23542865

  10. Soluble amyloid beta oligomers block the learning-induced increase in hippocampal sharp wave-ripple rate and impair spatial memory formation.

    PubMed

    Nicole, Olivier; Hadzibegovic, Senka; Gajda, Judyta; Bontempi, Bruno; Bem, Tiaza; Meyrand, Pierre

    2016-01-01

    Post-learning hippocampal sharp wave-ripples (SWRs) generated during slow wave sleep are thought to play a crucial role in memory formation. While in Alzheimer's disease, abnormal hippocampal oscillations have been reported, the functional contribution of SWRs to the typically observed spatial memory impairments remains unclear. These impairments have been related to degenerative synaptic changes produced by soluble amyloid beta oligomers (Aβos) which, surprisingly, seem to spare the SWR dynamics during routine behavior. To unravel a potential effect of Aβos on SWRs in cognitively-challenged animals, we submitted vehicle- and Aβo-injected mice to spatial recognition memory testing. While capable of forming short-term recognition memory, Aβ mice exhibited faster forgetting, suggesting successful encoding but an inability to adequately stabilize and/or retrieve previously acquired information. Without prior cognitive requirements, similar properties of SWRs were observed in both groups. In contrast, when cognitively challenged, the post-encoding and -recognition peaks in SWR occurrence observed in controls were abolished in Aβ mice, indicating impaired hippocampal processing of spatial information. These results point to a crucial involvement of SWRs in spatial memory formation and identify the Aβ-induced impairment in SWRs dynamics as a disruptive mechanism responsible for the spatial memory deficits associated with Alzheimer's disease. PMID:26947247

  11. Soluble amyloid beta oligomers block the learning-induced increase in hippocampal sharp wave-ripple rate and impair spatial memory formation

    PubMed Central

    Nicole, Olivier; Hadzibegovic, Senka; Gajda, Judyta; Bontempi, Bruno; Bem, Tiaza; Meyrand, Pierre

    2016-01-01

    Post-learning hippocampal sharp wave-ripples (SWRs) generated during slow wave sleep are thought to play a crucial role in memory formation. While in Alzheimer’s disease, abnormal hippocampal oscillations have been reported, the functional contribution of SWRs to the typically observed spatial memory impairments remains unclear. These impairments have been related to degenerative synaptic changes produced by soluble amyloid beta oligomers (Aβos) which, surprisingly, seem to spare the SWR dynamics during routine behavior. To unravel a potential effect of Aβos on SWRs in cognitively-challenged animals, we submitted vehicle- and Aβo-injected mice to spatial recognition memory testing. While capable of forming short-term recognition memory, Aβ mice exhibited faster forgetting, suggesting successful encoding but an inability to adequately stabilize and/or retrieve previously acquired information. Without prior cognitive requirements, similar properties of SWRs were observed in both groups. In contrast, when cognitively challenged, the post-encoding and -recognition peaks in SWR occurrence observed in controls were abolished in Aβ mice, indicating impaired hippocampal processing of spatial information. These results point to a crucial involvement of SWRs in spatial memory formation and identify the Aβ-induced impairment in SWRs dynamics as a disruptive mechanism responsible for the spatial memory deficits associated with Alzheimer’s disease. PMID:26947247

  12. Prion-Protein-interacting AmyloidOligomers of High Molecular Weight Are Tightly Correlated with Memory Impairment in Multiple Alzheimer Mouse Models*

    PubMed Central

    Kostylev, Mikhail A.; Kaufman, Adam C.; Nygaard, Haakon B.; Patel, Pujan; Haas, Laura T.; Gunther, Erik C.; Vortmeyer, Alexander; Strittmatter, Stephen M.

    2015-01-01

    Alzheimer disease (AD) is characterized by amyloid-β accumulation, with soluble oligomers (Aβo) being the most synaptotoxic. However, the multivalent and unstable nature of Aβo limits molecular characterization and hinders research reproducibility. Here, we characterized multiple Aβo forms throughout the life span of various AD mice and in post-mortem human brain. Aβo exists in several populations, where prion protein (PrPC)-interacting Aβo is a high molecular weight Aβ assembly present in multiple mice and humans with AD. Levels of PrPC-interacting Aβo match closely with mouse memory and are equal or superior to other Aβ measures in predicting behavioral impairment. However, Aβo metrics vary considerably between mouse strains. Deleting PrPC expression in mice with relatively low PrPC-interacting Aβo (Tg2576) results in partial rescue of cognitive performance as opposed to complete recovery in animals with a high percentage of PrPC-interacting Aβo (APP/PSEN1). These findings highlight the relative contributions and interplay of Aβo forms in AD. PMID:26018073

  13. Proteolytically Inactive Insulin-Degrading Enzyme Inhibits Amyloid Formation Yielding Non-Neurotoxic Aβ Peptide Aggregates

    PubMed Central

    de Tullio, Matias B.; Castelletto, Valeria; Hamley, Ian W.; Martino Adami, Pamela V.; Morelli, Laura; Castaño, Eduardo M.

    2013-01-01

    Insulin-degrading enzyme (IDE) is a neutral Zn2+ peptidase that degrades short peptides based on substrate conformation, size and charge. Some of these substrates, including amyloid β (Aβ) are capable of self-assembling into cytotoxic oligomers. Based on IDE recognition mechanism and our previous report of the formation of a stable complex between IDE and intact Aβ in vitro and in vivo, we analyzed the possibility of a chaperone-like function of IDE. A proteolytically inactive recombinant IDE with Glu111 replaced by Gln (IDEQ) was used. IDEQ blocked the amyloidogenic pathway of Aβ yielding non-fibrillar structures as assessed by electron microscopy. Measurements of the kinetics of Aβ aggregation by light scattering showed that 1) IDEQ effect was promoted by ATP independent of its hydrolysis, 2) end products of Aβ-IDEQ co-incubation were incapable of “seeding” the assembly of monomeric Aβ and 3) IDEQ was ineffective in reversing Aβ aggregation. Moreover, Aβ aggregates formed in the presence of IDEQ were non-neurotoxic. IDEQ had no conformational effects upon insulin (a non-amyloidogenic protein under physiological conditions) and did not disturb insulin receptor activation in cultured cells. Our results suggest that IDE has a chaperone-like activity upon amyloid-forming peptides. It remains to be explored whether other highly conserved metallopeptidases have a dual protease-chaperone function to prevent the formation of toxic peptide oligomers from bacteria to mammals. PMID:23593132

  14. Aging Enables Ca2+ Overload and Apoptosis Induced by AmyloidOligomers in Rat Hippocampal Neurons: Neuroprotection by Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs and R-Flurbiprofen in Aging Neurons.

    PubMed

    Calvo-Rodríguez, María; García-Durillo, Mónica; Villalobos, Carlos; Núñez, Lucía

    2016-07-22

    The most important risk factor for Alzheimer's disease (AD) is aging. Neurotoxicity in AD has been linked to dyshomeostasis of intracellular Ca2+ induced by small aggregates of the amyloid-β peptide 1-42 (Aβ42 oligomers). However, how aging influences susceptibility to neurotoxicity induced by Aβ42 oligomers is unknown. In this study, we used long-term cultures of rat hippocampal neurons, a model of neuronal in vitro aging, to investigate the contribution of aging to Ca2+ dishomeostasis and neuron cell death induced by Aβ42 oligomers. In addition, we tested whether non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and R-flurbiprofen prevent apoptosis acting on subcellular Ca2+ in aged neurons. We found that Aβ42 oligomers have no effect on young hippocampal neurons cultured for 2 days in vitro (2 DIV). However, they promoted apoptosis modestly in mature neurons (8 DIV) and these effects increased dramatically after 13 DIV, when neurons display many hallmarks of in vivo aging. Consistently, cytosolic and mitochondrial Ca2+ responses induced by Aβ42 oligomers increased dramatically with culture age. At low concentrations, NSAIDs and the enantiomer R-flurbiprofen lacking anti-inflammatory activity prevent Ca2+ overload and neuron cell death induced by Aβ42 oligomers in aged neurons. However, at high concentrations R-flurbiprofen induces apoptosis. Thus, Aβ42 oligomers promote Ca2+ overload and neuron cell death only in aged rat hippocampal neurons. These effects are prevented by low concentrations of NSAIDs and R-flurbiprofen acting on mitochondrial Ca2+ overload.

  15. The antineoplastic drug flavopiridol reverses memory impairment induced by Amyloid-ß1-42 oligomers in mice.

    PubMed

    Leggio, Gian Marco; Catania, Maria Vincenza; Puzzo, Daniela; Spatuzza, Michela; Pellitteri, Rosalia; Gulisano, Walter; Torrisi, Sebastiano Alfio; Giurdanella, Giovanni; Piazza, Cateno; Impellizzeri, Agata Rita; Gozzo, Lucia; Navarria, Andrea; Bucolo, Claudio; Nicoletti, Ferdinando; Palmeri, Agostino; Salomone, Salvatore; Copani, Agata; Caraci, Filippo; Drago, Filippo

    2016-04-01

    The ectopic re-activation of cell cycle in neurons is an early event in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease (AD), which could lead to synaptic failure and ensuing cognitive deficits before frank neuronal death. Cytostatic drugs that act as cyclin-dependent kinase (CDK) inhibitors have been poorly investigated in animal models of AD. In the present study, we examined the effects of flavopiridol, an inhibitor of CDKs currently used as antineoplastic drug, against cell cycle reactivation and memory loss induced by intracerebroventricular injection of Aß1-42 oligomers in CD1 mice. Cycling neurons, scored as NeuN-positive cells expressing cyclin A, were found both in the frontal cortex and in the hippocampus of Aβ-injected mice, paralleling memory deficits. Starting from three days after Aβ injection, flavopiridol (0.5, 1 and 3mg/kg) was intraperitoneally injected daily, for eleven days. Here we show that a treatment with flavopiridol (0.5 and 1mg/kg) was able to rescue the loss of memory induced by Aβ1-42, and to prevent the occurrence of ectopic cell-cycle events in the mouse frontal cortex and hippocampus. This is the first evidence that a cytostatic drug can prevent cognitive deficits in a non-transgenic animal model of AD. PMID:26875816

  16. Magnetic bead droplet immunoassay of oligomer amyloid β for the diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease using micro-pillars to enhance the stability of the oil-water interface.

    PubMed

    Kim, Jeong Ah; Kim, Moojong; Kang, Sung Min; Lim, Kun Taek; Kim, Tae Song; Kang, Ji Yoon

    2015-05-15

    Despite scientific progress in the study of Alzheimer's disease (AD), it is still challenging to develop a robust and sensitive methodology for the early diagnosis of AD due to the lack of a decisive biomarker in blood. Recent reports on the oligomer amyloid β (Aβ) as a biomarker demonstrated its possibility for identifying early onset of AD in patients, but its low concentration in blood requires highly reliable detection techniques. To overcome the low reliability and labor-intensive procedures of conventional enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), we present a magnetic bead-droplet immunoassay platform for simple and highly sensitive detection of oligomer Aβ for the diagnosis of AD. This microchip consists of chambers that contain water-based reagents or oil for consecutive assay procedures, and there are arrays of micro-pillars fabricated between the two adjacent chambers to form robust water-oil interfaces. With the aid of these micro-pillars, magnetic beads can stably pass through each chamber by linearly actuating a magnet along the microchip. The robust water-oil interface and simple procedures of the assay make it possible to obtain reliable results from this microchip. The intensity of the fluorescence at the read-out chamber increased quantitatively and linearly, depending on the amount of serially-diluted standard Aβ solution. The results of the assay indicated that the limit of detection was about 10 pg/mL even though it was done with manual manipulation of the magnet. This platform simplified the complicated ELISA procedure and achieved high sensitivity that was no lower than that of the conventional magnetic bead immunoassay. The magnetic bead-droplet platform reduced the assay time to 45 min, and it also reduced the amount of antibody usage in a single diagnosis significantly (10-30 ng of antibody per single assay). Consequently, this microfluidic chip has strong potential as a feasible system for use in the diagnosis of AD with a fast and

  17. Magnetic bead droplet immunoassay of oligomer amyloid β for the diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease using micro-pillars to enhance the stability of the oil-water interface.

    PubMed

    Kim, Jeong Ah; Kim, Moojong; Kang, Sung Min; Lim, Kun Taek; Kim, Tae Song; Kang, Ji Yoon

    2015-05-15

    Despite scientific progress in the study of Alzheimer's disease (AD), it is still challenging to develop a robust and sensitive methodology for the early diagnosis of AD due to the lack of a decisive biomarker in blood. Recent reports on the oligomer amyloid β (Aβ) as a biomarker demonstrated its possibility for identifying early onset of AD in patients, but its low concentration in blood requires highly reliable detection techniques. To overcome the low reliability and labor-intensive procedures of conventional enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), we present a magnetic bead-droplet immunoassay platform for simple and highly sensitive detection of oligomer Aβ for the diagnosis of AD. This microchip consists of chambers that contain water-based reagents or oil for consecutive assay procedures, and there are arrays of micro-pillars fabricated between the two adjacent chambers to form robust water-oil interfaces. With the aid of these micro-pillars, magnetic beads can stably pass through each chamber by linearly actuating a magnet along the microchip. The robust water-oil interface and simple procedures of the assay make it possible to obtain reliable results from this microchip. The intensity of the fluorescence at the read-out chamber increased quantitatively and linearly, depending on the amount of serially-diluted standard Aβ solution. The results of the assay indicated that the limit of detection was about 10 pg/mL even though it was done with manual manipulation of the magnet. This platform simplified the complicated ELISA procedure and achieved high sensitivity that was no lower than that of the conventional magnetic bead immunoassay. The magnetic bead-droplet platform reduced the assay time to 45 min, and it also reduced the amount of antibody usage in a single diagnosis significantly (10-30 ng of antibody per single assay). Consequently, this microfluidic chip has strong potential as a feasible system for use in the diagnosis of AD with a fast and

  18. EphA4 Activation of c-Abl Mediates Synaptic Loss and LTP Blockade Caused by AmyloidOligomers

    PubMed Central

    M. Vargas, Lina; Leal, Nancy; Estrada, Lisbell D.; González, Adrian; Serrano, Felipe; Araya, Katherine; Gysling, Katia; Inestrosa, Nibaldo C.; Pasquale, Elena B.; Alvarez, Alejandra R.

    2014-01-01

    The early stages of Alzheimer's disease are characterised by impaired synaptic plasticity and synapse loss. Here, we show that amyloidoligomers (AβOs) activate the c-Abl kinase in dendritic spines of cultured hippocampal neurons and that c-Abl kinase activity is required for AβOs-induced synaptic loss. We also show that the EphA4 receptor tyrosine kinase is upstream of c-Abl activation by AβOs. EphA4 tyrosine phosphorylation (activation) is increased in cultured neurons and synaptoneurosomes exposed to AβOs, and in Alzheimer-transgenic mice brain. We do not detect c-Abl activation in EphA4-knockout neurons exposed to AβOs. More interestingly, we demonstrate EphA4/c-Abl activation is a key-signalling event that mediates the synaptic damage induced by AβOs. According to this results, the EphA4 antagonistic peptide KYL and c-Abl inhibitor STI prevented i) dendritic spine reduction, ii) the blocking of LTP induction and iii) neuronal apoptosis caused by AβOs. Moreover, EphA4-/- neurons or sh-EphA4-transfected neurons showed reduced synaptotoxicity by AβOs. Our results are consistent with EphA4 being a novel receptor that mediates synaptic damage induced by AβOs. EphA4/c-Abl signalling could be a relevant pathway involved in the early cognitive decline observed in Alzheimer's disease patients. PMID:24658113

  19. Oligomers of Amyloid β Prevent Physiological Activation of the Cellular Prion Protein-Metabotropic Glutamate Receptor 5 Complex by Glutamate in Alzheimer Disease.

    PubMed

    Haas, Laura T; Strittmatter, Stephen M

    2016-08-12

    The dysfunction and loss of synapses in Alzheimer disease are central to dementia symptoms. We have recently demonstrated that pathological Amyloid β oligomer (Aβo) regulates the association between intracellular protein mediators and the synaptic receptor complex composed of cellular prion protein (PrP(C)) and metabotropic glutamate receptor 5 (mGluR5). Here we sought to determine whether Aβo alters the physiological signaling of the PrP(C)-mGluR5 complex upon glutamate activation. We provide evidence that acute exposure to Aβo as well as chronic expression of familial Alzheimer disease mutant transgenes in model mice prevents protein-protein interaction changes of the complex induced by the glutamate analog 3,5-dihydroxyphenylglycine. We further show that 3,5-dihydroxyphenylglycine triggers the phosphorylation and activation of protein-tyrosine kinase 2-β (PTK2B, also referred to as Pyk2) and of calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II in wild-type brain slices but not in Alzheimer disease transgenic brain slices or wild-type slices incubated with Aβo. This study further distinguishes two separate Aβo-dependent signaling cascades, one dependent on extracellular Ca(2+) and Fyn kinase activation and the other dependent on the release of Ca(2+) from intracellular stores. Thus, Aβo triggers multiple distinct PrP(C)-mGluR5-dependent events implicated in neurodegeneration and dementia. We propose that targeting the PrP(C)-mGluR5 complex will reverse aberrant Aβo-triggered states of the complex to allow physiological fluctuations of glutamate signaling.

  20. Neurodegeneration in an Animal Model of Chronic Amyloid-beta Oligomer Infusion Is Counteracted by Antibody Treatment Infused with Osmotic Pumps.

    PubMed

    Sajadi, Ahmadali; Provost, Chloé; Pham, Brendon; Brouillette, Jonathan

    2016-01-01

    Decline in hippocampal-dependent explicit memory (memory for facts and events) is one of the earliest clinical symptom of Alzheimer's disease (AD). It is well established that synapse loss and ensuing neurodegeneration are the best predictors for memory impairments in AD. Latest studies have emphasized the neurotoxic role of soluble amyloid-beta oligomers (Aβo) that begin to accumulate in the human brain approximately 10 to 15 yr before the clinical symptoms become apparent. Many reports indicate that soluble Aβo correlate with memory deficits in AD models and humans. The Aβo-induced neurodegeneration observed in neuronal and brain slice cultures has been more challenging to reproduce in many animal models. The model of repeated Aβo infusions shown here overcome this issue and allow addressing two key domains for developing new disease modifying therapies: identify biological markers to diagnose early AD, and determine the molecular mechanisms underpinning Aβo-induced memory deficits at the onset of AD. Since soluble Aβo aggregate relatively fast into insoluble Aβ fibrils that correlate poorly with the clinical state of patients, soluble Aβo are prepared freshly and injected once per day during six days to produce marked cell death in the hippocampus. We used cannula specially design for simultaneous infusions of Aβo and continuous infusion of Aβo antibody (6E10) in the hippocampus using osmotic pumps. This innovative in vivo method can now be used in preclinical studies to validate the efficiency of new AD therapies that might prevent the deposition and neurotoxicity of Aβo in pre-dementia patients. PMID:27585306

  1. Proteolytically inactive insulin-degrading enzyme inhibits amyloid formation yielding non-neurotoxic aβ peptide aggregates.

    PubMed

    de Tullio, Matias B; Castelletto, Valeria; Hamley, Ian W; Martino Adami, Pamela V; Morelli, Laura; Castaño, Eduardo M

    2013-01-01

    Insulin-degrading enzyme (IDE) is a neutral Zn(2+) peptidase that degrades short peptides based on substrate conformation, size and charge. Some of these substrates, including amyloid β (Aβ) are capable of self-assembling into cytotoxic oligomers. Based on IDE recognition mechanism and our previous report of the formation of a stable complex between IDE and intact Aβ in vitro and in vivo, we analyzed the possibility of a chaperone-like function of IDE. A proteolytically inactive recombinant IDE with Glu111 replaced by Gln (IDEQ) was used. IDEQ blocked the amyloidogenic pathway of Aβ yielding non-fibrillar structures as assessed by electron microscopy. Measurements of the kinetics of Aβ aggregation by light scattering showed that 1) IDEQ effect was promoted by ATP independent of its hydrolysis, 2) end products of Aβ-IDEQ co-incubation were incapable of "seeding" the assembly of monomeric Aβ and 3) IDEQ was ineffective in reversing Aβ aggregation. Moreover, Aβ aggregates formed in the presence of IDEQ were non-neurotoxic. IDEQ had no conformational effects upon insulin (a non-amyloidogenic protein under physiological conditions) and did not disturb insulin receptor activation in cultured cells. Our results suggest that IDE has a chaperone-like activity upon amyloid-forming peptides. It remains to be explored whether other highly conserved metallopeptidases have a dual protease-chaperone function to prevent the formation of toxic peptide oligomers from bacteria to mammals. PMID:23593132

  2. Exploring the influence of EGCG on the β-sheet-rich oligomers of human islet amyloid polypeptide (hIAPP1-37) and identifying its possible binding sites from molecular dynamics simulation.

    PubMed

    Wang, Qianqian; Guo, Jingjing; Jiao, Pingzu; Liu, Huanxiang; Yao, Xiaojun

    2014-01-01

    EGCG possesses the ability of disaggregating the existing amyloid fibrils which were associated with many age-related degenerative diseases. However, the molecular mechanism of EGCG to disaggregate these fibrils is poorly known. In this work, to study the influence of EGCG on the full-length human islet amyloid polypeptide 1-37 (hIAPP1-37) oligomers, molecular dynamics simulations of hIAPP1-37 pentamer and decamer with EGCG were performed, respectively. The obtained results indicate that EGCG indeed destabilized the hIAPP1-37 oligomers. The nematic order parameter and secondary structure calculations coupled with the free-energy landscape indicate that EGCG broke the initial ordered pattern of two polymers, greatly reduced their β-sheet content and enlarged their conformational space. On this basis, three possible target sites were identified with the binding capacity order of S1>S2>S3. After a deeper analysis of each site, we found that S1 was the most possible site on which residues B-Ile26/Ala25, A-Phe23, B/C-Leu27 and E-Tyr37 played an important role for their binding. The proposal of this molecular mechanism can not only provide a prospective interaction figure between EGCG and β-sheet-rich fibrils of hIAPP1-37, but also is useful for further discovering other potential inhibitors.

  3. Experience-dependent reduction of soluble β-amyloid oligomers and rescue of cognitive abilities in middle-age Ts65Dn mice, a model of Down syndrome.

    PubMed

    Sansevero, Gabriele; Begenisic, Tatjana; Mainardi, Marco; Sale, Alessandro

    2016-09-01

    Down syndrome (DS) is the most diffused genetic cause of intellectual disability and, after the age of forty, is invariantly associated with Alzheimer's disease (AD). In the last years, the prolongation of life expectancy in people with DS renders the need for intervention paradigms aimed at improving mental disability and counteracting AD pathology particularly urgent. At present, however, there are no effective therapeutic strategies for DS and concomitant AD in mid-life people. The most intensively studied mouse model of DS is the Ts65Dn line, which summarizes the main hallmarks of the DS phenotype, included severe learning and memory deficits and age-dependent AD-like pathology. Here we report for the first time that middle-age Ts65Dn mice display a marked increase in soluble Aβ oligomer levels in their hippocampus. Moreover, we found that long-term exposure to environmental enrichment (EE), a widely used paradigm that increases sensory-motor stimulation, reduces Aβ oligomers and rescues spatial memory abilities in trisomic mice. Our findings underscore the potential of EE procedures as a non-invasive paradigm for counteracting brain aging processes in DS subjects. PMID:27288239

  4. Polyglutamine Amyloid Core Boundaries and Flanking Domain Dynamics in Huntingtin Fragment Fibrils Determined by Solid-State Nuclear Magnetic Resonance

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    In Huntington’s disease, expansion of a polyglutamine (polyQ) domain in the huntingtin (htt) protein leads to misfolding and aggregation. There is much interest in the molecular features that distinguish monomeric, oligomeric, and fibrillar species that populate the aggregation pathway and likely differ in cytotoxicity. The mechanism and rate of aggregation are greatly affected by the domains flanking the polyQ segment within exon 1 of htt. A “protective” C-terminal proline-rich flanking domain inhibits aggregation by inducing polyproline II structure (PPII) within an extended portion of polyQ. The N-terminal flanking segment (httNT) adopts an α-helical structure as it drives aggregation, helps stabilize oligomers and fibrils, and is seemingly integral to their supramolecular assembly. Via solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance (ssNMR), we probe how, in the mature fibrils, the htt flanking domains impact the polyQ domain and in particular the localization of the β-structured amyloid core. Using residue-specific and uniformly labeled samples, we find that the amyloid core occupies most of the polyQ domain but ends just prior to the prolines. We probe the structural and dynamical features of the remarkably abrupt β-sheet to PPII transition and discuss the potential connections to certain htt-binding proteins. We also examine the httNT α-helix outside the polyQ amyloid core. Despite its presumed structural and demonstrated stabilizing roles in the fibrils, quantitative ssNMR measurements of residue-specific dynamics show that it undergoes distinct solvent-coupled motion. This dynamical feature seems reminiscent of molten-globule-like α-helix-rich features attributed to the nonfibrillar oligomeric species of various amyloidogenic proteins. PMID:25280367

  5. Carbon nanotube inhibits the formation of β-sheet-rich oligomers of the Alzheimer's amyloid-β(16-22) peptide.

    PubMed

    Li, Huiyu; Luo, Yin; Derreumaux, Philippe; Wei, Guanghong

    2011-11-01

    Alzheimer's disease is associated with the abnormal self-assembly of the amyloid-β (Aβ) peptide into toxic β-rich aggregates. Experimental studies have shown that hydrophobic nanoparticles retard Aβ fibrillation by slowing down the nucleation process; however, the effects of nanoparticles on Aβ oligomeric structures remain elusive. In this study, we investigate the conformations of Aβ(16-22) octamers in the absence and presence of a single-walled carbon nanotube (SWCNT) by performing extensive all-atom replica exchange molecular-dynamics simulations in explicit solvent. Our simulations starting from eight random chains demonstrate that the addition of SWCNT into Aβ(16-22) solution prevents β-sheet formation. Simulation starting from a prefibrillar β-sheet octamer shows that SWCNT destabilizes the β-sheet structure. A detailed analysis of the Aβ(16-22)/SWCNT/water interactions reveals that both the inhibition of β-sheet formation and the destabilization of prefibrillar β-sheets by SWCNT result from the same physical forces: hydrophobic and π-stacking interactions (with the latter playing a more important role). By analyzing the stacking patterns between the Phe aromatic rings and the SWCNT carbon rings, we find that short ring-centroid distances mostly favor parallel orientation, whereas large distances allow all other orientations to be populated. Overall, our computational study provides evidence that SWCNT is likely to inhibit Aβ(16-22) and full-length Aβ fibrillation.

  6. Amyloid β-peptide oligomers stimulate RyR-mediated Ca2+ release inducing mitochondrial fragmentation in hippocampal neurons and prevent RyR-mediated dendritic spine remodeling produced by BDNF.

    PubMed

    Paula-Lima, Andrea C; Adasme, Tatiana; SanMartín, Carol; Sebollela, Adriano; Hetz, Claudio; Carrasco, M Angélica; Ferreira, Sergio T; Hidalgo, Cecilia

    2011-04-01

    Soluble amyloid β-peptide oligomers (AβOs), increasingly recognized as causative agents of Alzheimer's disease (AD), disrupt neuronal Ca(2+) homeostasis and synaptic function. Here, we report that AβOs at sublethal concentrations generate prolonged Ca(2+) signals in primary hippocampal neurons; incubation in Ca(2+)-free solutions, inhibition of ryanodine receptors (RyRs) or N-methyl-d-aspartate receptors (NMDARs), or preincubation with N-acetyl-l-cysteine abolished these signals. AβOs decreased (6 h) RyR2 and RyR3 mRNA and RyR2 protein, and promoted mitochondrial fragmentation after 24 h. NMDAR inhibition abolished the RyR2 decrease, whereas RyR inhibition prevented significantly the RyR2 protein decrease and mitochondrial fragmentation induced by AβOs. Incubation with AβOs (6 h) eliminated the RyR2 increase induced by brain-derived nerve factor (BDNF) and the dendritic spine remodeling induced within minutes by BDNF or the RyR agonist caffeine. Addition of BDNF to neurons incubated with AβOs for 24 h, which had RyR2 similar to and slightly higher RyR3 protein content than those of controls, induced dendritic spine growth but at slower rates than in controls. These combined effects of sublethal AβOs concentrations (which include redox-sensitive stimulation of RyR-mediated Ca(2+) release, decreased RyR2 protein expression, mitochondrial fragmentation, and prevention of RyR-mediated spine remodeling) may contribute to impairing the synaptic plasticity in AD. PMID:20712397

  7. Preparation of Amyloid Fibrils Seeded from Brain and Meninges.

    PubMed

    Scherpelz, Kathryn P; Lu, Jun-Xia; Tycko, Robert; Meredith, Stephen C

    2016-01-01

    Seeding of amyloid fibrils into fresh solutions of the same peptide or protein in disaggregated form leads to the formation of replicate fibrils, with close structural similarity or identity to the original fibrillar seeds. Here we describe procedures for isolating fibrils composed mainly of β-amyloid (Aβ) from human brain and from leptomeninges, a source of cerebral blood vessels, for investigating Alzheimer's disease and cerebral amyloid angiopathy. We also describe methods for seeding isotopically labeled, disaggregated Aβ peptide solutions for study using solid-state NMR and other techniques. These methods should be applicable to other types of amyloid fibrils, to Aβ fibrils from mice or other species, tissues other than brain, and to some non-fibrillar aggregates. These procedures allow for the examination of authentic amyloid fibrils and other protein aggregates from biological tissues without the need for labeling the tissue.

  8. Mechanism of amyloid-β fibril elongation.

    PubMed

    Gurry, Thomas; Stultz, Collin M

    2014-11-11

    Amyloid-β is an intrinsically disordered protein that forms fibrils in the brains of patients with Alzheimer's disease. To explore factors that affect the process of fibril growth, we computed the free energy associated with disordered amyloid-β monomers being added to growing amyloid fibrils using extensive molecular dynamics simulations coupled with umbrella sampling. We find that the mechanisms of Aβ40 and Aβ42 fibril elongation have many features in common, including the formation of an obligate on-pathway β-hairpin intermediate that hydrogen bonds to the fibril core. In addition, our data lead to new hypotheses for how fibrils may serve as secondary nucleation sites that can catalyze the formation of soluble oligomers, a finding in agreement with recent experimental observations. These data provide a detailed mechanistic description of amyloid-β fibril elongation and a structural link between the disordered free monomer and the growth of amyloid fibrils and soluble oligomers.

  9. Phenylethynyl terminated imide oligomers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hergenrother, Paul M. (Inventor); Bryant, Robert G. (Inventor); Jensen, Brian J. (Inventor); Havens, Stephen J. (Inventor)

    1995-01-01

    Four phenylethynyl amine compounds - 3 and 4-aminophenoxy-4'-phenylethynylbenzophenone, and 3 and 4-amino-4'-phenylethynylbenzophenone - were readily prepared and were used to endcap imide oligomers. Phenylethynyl-terminated amide acid oligomers and phenylethynyl-terminated imide oligomers with various molecular weights and compositions were prepared and characterized. These oligomers were cured at 300 to 400 C to provide crosslinked polyimides with excellent solvent resistance, high strength and modulus, and good high temperature properties. Adhesive panels, composites, films, and moldings from these phenylethynyl terminated imide oligomers gave excellent mechanical performance.

  10. Towards a Pharmacophore for Amyloid

    SciTech Connect

    Landau, Meytal; Sawaya, Michael R.; Faull, Kym F.; Laganowsky, Arthur; Jiang, Lin; Sievers, Stuart A.; Liu, Jie; Barrio, Jorge R.; Eisenberg, David

    2011-09-16

    Diagnosing and treating Alzheimer's and other diseases associated with amyloid fibers remains a great challenge despite intensive research. To aid in this effort, we present atomic structures of fiber-forming segments of proteins involved in Alzheimer's disease in complex with small molecule binders, determined by X-ray microcrystallography. The fiber-like complexes consist of pairs of {beta}-sheets, with small molecules binding between the sheets, roughly parallel to the fiber axis. The structures suggest that apolar molecules drift along the fiber, consistent with the observation of nonspecific binding to a variety of amyloid proteins. In contrast, negatively charged orange-G binds specifically to lysine side chains of adjacent sheets. These structures provide molecular frameworks for the design of diagnostics and drugs for protein aggregation diseases. The devastating and incurable dementia known as Alzheimer's disease affects the thinking, memory, and behavior of dozens of millions of people worldwide. Although amyloid fibers and oligomers of two proteins, tau and amyloid-{beta}, have been identified in association with this disease, the development of diagnostics and therapeutics has proceeded to date in a near vacuum of information about their structures. Here we report the first atomic structures of small molecules bound to amyloid. These are of the dye orange-G, the natural compound curcumin, and the Alzheimer's diagnostic compound DDNP bound to amyloid-like segments of tau and amyloid-{beta}. The structures reveal the molecular framework of small-molecule binding, within cylindrical cavities running along the {beta}-spines of the fibers. Negatively charged orange-G wedges into a specific binding site between two sheets of the fiber, combining apolar binding with electrostatic interactions, whereas uncharged compounds slide along the cavity. We observed that different amyloid polymorphs bind different small molecules, revealing that a cocktail of compounds

  11. Elucidating Molecular Mass and Shape of a Neurotoxic Aβ Oligomer

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD), the most prevalent type of dementia, has been associated with the accumulation of amyloid β oligomers (AβOs) in the central nervous system. AβOs vary widely in size, ranging from dimers to larger than 100 kDa. Evidence indicates that not all oligomers are toxic, and there is yet no consensus on the size of the actual toxic oligomer. Here we used NU4, a conformation-dependent anti-AβO monoclonal antibody, to investigate size and shape of a toxic AβO assembly. By using size-exclusion chromatography and immuno-based detection, we isolated an AβO-NU4 complex amenable for biochemical and morphological studies. The apparent molecular mass of the NU4-targeted oligomer was 80 kDa. Atomic force microscopy imaging of the AβO-NU4 complex showed a size distribution centered at 5.37 nm, an increment of 1.5 nm compared to the size of AβOs (3.85 nm). This increment was compatible with the size of NU4 (1.3 nm), suggesting a 1:1 oligomer to NU4 ratio. NU4-reactive oligomers extracted from AD human brain concentrated in a molecular mass range similar to that found for in vitro prepared oligomers, supporting the relevance of the species herein studied. These results represent an important step toward understanding the connection between AβO size and toxicity. PMID:25343357

  12. Soluble Aβ oligomer production and toxicity.

    PubMed

    Larson, Megan E; Lesné, Sylvain E

    2012-01-01

    For nearly 100 years following the first description of this neurological disorder by Dr Alois Alzheimer, amyloid plaques and neurofibrillary tangles have been hypothesized to cause neuronal loss. With evidence that the extent of insoluble, deposited amyloid poorly correlated with cognitive impairment, research efforts focused on soluble forms of Aβ, also referred as Aβ oligomers. Following a decade of studies, soluble oligomeric forms of Aβ are now believed to induce the deleterious cascade(s) involved in the pathophysiology of Alzheimer's disease. In this review, we will discuss our current understanding about endogenous oligomeric Aβ production, their relative toxicity in vivo and in vitro, and explore the potential future directions needed for the field.

  13. A brief overview of amyloids and Alzheimer’s disease

    PubMed Central

    Ow, Sian-Yang; Dunstan, Dave E

    2014-01-01

    Amyloid fibrils are self-assembled fibrous protein aggregates that are associated with a number of presently incurable diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease. Millions of people worldwide suffer from amyloid diseases. This review summarizes the unique cross-β structure of amyloid fibrils, morphological variations, the kinetics of amyloid fibril formation, and the cytotoxic effects of these fibrils and oligomers. Alzheimer’s disease is also explored as an example of an amyloid disease to show the various approaches to treat these amyloid diseases. Finally, this review investigates the nanotechnological and biological applications of amyloid fibrils; as well as a summary of the typical biological pathways involved in the disposal of amyloid fibrils and their precursors. PMID:25042050

  14. Stable, Metastable, and Kinetically Trapped Amyloid Aggregate Phases

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Self-assembly of proteins into amyloid fibrils plays a key role in a multitude of human disorders that range from Alzheimer’s disease to type II diabetes. Compact oligomeric species, observed early during amyloid formation, are reported as the molecular entities responsible for the toxic effects of amyloid self-assembly. However, the relation between early-stage oligomeric aggregates and late-stage rigid fibrils, which are the hallmark structure of amyloid plaques, has remained unclear. We show that these different structures occupy well-defined regions in a peculiar phase diagram. Lysozyme amyloid oligomers and their curvilinear fibrils only form after they cross a salt and protein concentration-dependent threshold. We also determine a boundary for the onset of amyloid oligomer precipitation. The oligomeric aggregates are structurally distinct from rigid fibrils and are metastable against nucleation and growth of rigid fibrils. These experimentally determined boundaries match well with colloidal model predictions that account for salt-modulated charge repulsion. The model also incorporates the metastable and kinetic character of oligomer phases. Similarities and differences of amyloid oligomer assembly to metastable liquid–liquid phase separation of proteins and to surfactant aggregation are discussed. PMID:25469942

  15. Individual aggregates of amyloid beta induce temporary calcium influx through the cell membrane of neuronal cells

    PubMed Central

    Drews, Anna; Flint, Jennie; Shivji, Nadia; Jönsson, Peter; Wirthensohn, David; De Genst, Erwin; Vincke, Cécile; Muyldermans, Serge; Dobson, Chris; Klenerman, David

    2016-01-01

    Local delivery of amyloid beta oligomers from the tip of a nanopipette, controlled over the cell surface, has been used to deliver physiological picomolar oligomer concentrations to primary astrocytes or neurons. Calcium influx was observed when as few as 2000 oligomers were delivered to the cell surface. When the dosing of oligomers was stopped the intracellular calcium returned to basal levels or below. Calcium influx was prevented by the presence in the pipette of the extracellular chaperone clusterin, which is known to selectively bind oligomers, and by the presence a specific nanobody to amyloid beta. These data are consistent with individual oligomers larger than trimers inducing calcium entry as they cross the cell membrane, a result supported by imaging experiments in bilayers, and suggest that the initial molecular event that leads to neuronal damage does not involve any cellular receptors, in contrast to work performed at much higher oligomer concentrations. PMID:27553885

  16. Individual aggregates of amyloid beta induce temporary calcium influx through the cell membrane of neuronal cells.

    PubMed

    Drews, Anna; Flint, Jennie; Shivji, Nadia; Jönsson, Peter; Wirthensohn, David; De Genst, Erwin; Vincke, Cécile; Muyldermans, Serge; Dobson, Chris; Klenerman, David

    2016-01-01

    Local delivery of amyloid beta oligomers from the tip of a nanopipette, controlled over the cell surface, has been used to deliver physiological picomolar oligomer concentrations to primary astrocytes or neurons. Calcium influx was observed when as few as 2000 oligomers were delivered to the cell surface. When the dosing of oligomers was stopped the intracellular calcium returned to basal levels or below. Calcium influx was prevented by the presence in the pipette of the extracellular chaperone clusterin, which is known to selectively bind oligomers, and by the presence a specific nanobody to amyloid beta. These data are consistent with individual oligomers larger than trimers inducing calcium entry as they cross the cell membrane, a result supported by imaging experiments in bilayers, and suggest that the initial molecular event that leads to neuronal damage does not involve any cellular receptors, in contrast to work performed at much higher oligomer concentrations. PMID:27553885

  17. Biophysical characterization data on Aβ soluble oligomers produced through a method enabling prolonged oligomer stability and biological buffer conditions

    PubMed Central

    Crisostomo, Amanda C.; Dang, Loan; Digambaranath, Jyothi L.; Klaver, Andrea C.; Loeffler, David A.; Payne, Jeremiah J.; Smith, Lynnae M.; Yokom, Adam L.; Finke, John M.

    2015-01-01

    The data here consists of time-dependent experimental parameters from chemical and biophysical methods used to characterize Aβ monomeric reactants as well as soluble oligomer and amyloid fibril products from a slow (3–4 week) assembly reaction under biologically-relevant solvent conditions. The data of this reaction are both of a qualitative and quantitative nature, including gel images from chemical cross-linking and Western blots, fractional solubility, thioflavin T binding, size exclusion chromatograms, transmission electron microscopy images, circular dichroism spectra, and fluorescence resonance energy transfer efficiencies of donor–acceptor pair labels in the Aβ chain. This data enables future efforts to produce the initial monomer and eventual soluble oligomer and amyloid fibril states by providing reference benchmarks of these states pertaining to physical properties (solubility), ligand-binding (thioflavin T binding), mesoscopic structure (electron microscopy, size exclusion chromatography, cross-linking products, SDS and native gels) and molecular structure (circular dichroism, FRET donor-acceptor distance). Aβ1-40 soluble oligomers are produced that are suitable for biophysical studies requiring sufficient transient stability to exist in their “native” conformation in biological phosphate-saline buffers for extended periods of time. The production involves an initial preparation of highly monomeric Aβ in a phosphate saline buffer that transitions to fibrils and oligomers through time incubation alone, without added detergents or non-aqueous chemicals. This criteria ensures that the only difference between initial monomeric Aβ reactant and subsequent Aβ oligomer products is their degree of peptide assembly. A number of chemical and biophysical methods were used to characterize the monomeric reactants and soluble oligomer and amyloid fibril products, including chemical cross-linking, Western blots, fraction solubility, thioflvain T binding

  18. Amyloid fibrils compared to peptide nanotubes.

    PubMed

    Zganec, Matjaž; Zerovnik, Eva

    2014-09-01

    Prefibrillar oligomeric states and amyloid fibrils of amyloid-forming proteins qualify as nanoparticles. We aim to predict what biophysical and biochemical properties they could share in common with better researched peptide nanotubes. We first describe what is known of amyloid fibrils and prefibrillar aggregates (oligomers and protofibrils): their structure, mechanisms of formation and putative mechanism of cytotoxicity. In distinction from other neuronal fibrillar constituents, amyloid fibrils are believed to cause pathology, however, some can also be functional. Second, we give a review of known biophysical properties of peptide nanotubes. Finally, we compare properties of these two macromolecular states side by side and discuss which measurements that have already been done with peptide nanotubes could be done with amyloid fibrils as well.

  19. Exploring the assembly mechanism of tetrapeptide oligomers using the Activation-Relaxation Technique

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wei, Guanghong; Mousseau, Normand; Derreumaux, Philippe

    2004-03-01

    Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease are associated with formation of amyloid fibrils. All amyloid fibrils seem to share a common cross β-sheet structure. Experimental studies have shown that peptides as short as 4 amino acids can form amyloid fibrils. It has also been shown that the oligomers that form early in the aggregation process of even non-disease-related proteins may be cytotoxic. We report a detailed study of the assembly mechanisms of the tetrapeptides into different size oligomers: trimers, hexamers and more. The assembly of the oligomers, in which the peptides form β-sheets through interpeptide interactions, are studied using the activation-relaxation technique (ART) in combination with a reduced off-lattice energy model (OPEP). We also describe the multiple pathways of oligomerization as well as categorize the various oligomeric intermediates, providing information of the early events of β-sheet formation.

  20. Exendin-4 protects Aβ(1-42) oligomer-induced PC12 cell apoptosis

    PubMed Central

    Qiu, Chen; Wang, Yan-Ping; Pan, Xiao-Dong; Liu, Xiao-Ying; Chen, Zhou; Liu, Li-Bin

    2016-01-01

    Background: Type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) increases the risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease. Most recently, GLP-1 analogs have been shown to have a significant neuroprotective role in several neurodegenerative diseases. However, few are known on its potential mechanism. Objective: In this study, we report the effect of exendin-4 (Ex-4), a GLP-1 receptor agonist, on amyloid-β(1-42) peptide oligomer-induced apoptosis in a PC12 neuronal cell model. Methods: MTT, DAPI and Annexin-V/PI assays revealed that the viability of PC12 cells decreased in a dose- and time-dependent manner after exposure to amyloid-β(1-42) oligomers. This apoptotic effect could be attenuated by Ex-4 (100-300 nM) pre-treatment, compared with the PC12 cells treated with amyloid-β(1-42) oligomers alone. Moreover, treatment with amyloid-β(1-42) oligomers (10 μM) resulted in a decrease in active- and pro-caspase-3 expression, as well as in Bcl-2 protein expression; suggesting that amyloid-β(1-42) oligomers impaired neuronal cells via the apoptosis signaling pathway. A further study of this mechanism revealed that amyloidoligomers (AβOs) decreased the phosphorylation of Akt and CREB. As expected, pre-treatment with Ex-4 (300 nM) increased the expression of anti-apoptotic protein Bcl-2 and reduced active caspase-3 expression levels. In addition, Ex-4 upregulated the phosphorylation levels of Akt and CREB. Conclusions: These findings indicate that GLP-1 analogue Ex-4 has a neuroprotective effect against AβO-induced PC12 cell apoptosis through reversing the impairment of the neuronal survival signaling pathway. This strongly suggests that Ex-4 is a potential therapeutic option for ameliorating AβO-induced neurotoxicity in the clinical application of Ex-4 for AD treatment, particularly when associated with diabetes. PMID:27648144

  1. Exendin-4 protects Aβ(1-42) oligomer-induced PC12 cell apoptosis

    PubMed Central

    Qiu, Chen; Wang, Yan-Ping; Pan, Xiao-Dong; Liu, Xiao-Ying; Chen, Zhou; Liu, Li-Bin

    2016-01-01

    Background: Type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) increases the risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease. Most recently, GLP-1 analogs have been shown to have a significant neuroprotective role in several neurodegenerative diseases. However, few are known on its potential mechanism. Objective: In this study, we report the effect of exendin-4 (Ex-4), a GLP-1 receptor agonist, on amyloid-β(1-42) peptide oligomer-induced apoptosis in a PC12 neuronal cell model. Methods: MTT, DAPI and Annexin-V/PI assays revealed that the viability of PC12 cells decreased in a dose- and time-dependent manner after exposure to amyloid-β(1-42) oligomers. This apoptotic effect could be attenuated by Ex-4 (100-300 nM) pre-treatment, compared with the PC12 cells treated with amyloid-β(1-42) oligomers alone. Moreover, treatment with amyloid-β(1-42) oligomers (10 μM) resulted in a decrease in active- and pro-caspase-3 expression, as well as in Bcl-2 protein expression; suggesting that amyloid-β(1-42) oligomers impaired neuronal cells via the apoptosis signaling pathway. A further study of this mechanism revealed that amyloidoligomers (AβOs) decreased the phosphorylation of Akt and CREB. As expected, pre-treatment with Ex-4 (300 nM) increased the expression of anti-apoptotic protein Bcl-2 and reduced active caspase-3 expression levels. In addition, Ex-4 upregulated the phosphorylation levels of Akt and CREB. Conclusions: These findings indicate that GLP-1 analogue Ex-4 has a neuroprotective effect against AβO-induced PC12 cell apoptosis through reversing the impairment of the neuronal survival signaling pathway. This strongly suggests that Ex-4 is a potential therapeutic option for ameliorating AβO-induced neurotoxicity in the clinical application of Ex-4 for AD treatment, particularly when associated with diabetes.

  2. Fiber-Dependent and -Independent Toxicity of Islet Amyloid Polypeptide

    PubMed Central

    Schlamadinger, Diana E.; Miranker, Andrew D.

    2014-01-01

    The 37-residue peptide hormone islet amyloid polypeptide (IAPP) plays a central role in diabetes pathology. Although its amyloid fiber aggregation kinetics and cytotoxicity to β-cells are well documented, few reports have directly assessed the role of fibers in cell-based toxicity experiments. Here, we report that amyloid formation of IAPP can be strongly inhibited by the extracellular environment of live cells. For example, fiber formation is more strongly suppressed in cell culture medium than in aqueous buffer. The serum component of the medium is responsible for this inhibition. Although amyloid formation was previously shown to be catalyzed by both synthetic and chloroform-extracted phospholipid surfaces, it is instead inhibited by membrane surfaces prepared directly from the plasma membranes of an immortal β-cell line. This disparity is reconciled by direct assessment of fibers in cell-culture-based toxicity experiments. We discovered that fibers are nontoxic if they are washed free of adsorbed nonfibrillar components. Moreover, toxicity is not only rescued when monomers are added back to fibers but is greater than what is observed from the precursor alone. Our results are interpreted in light of the capacity of the fiber surface to template amyloid nucleation. PMID:25468335

  3. Natural polyphenols binding to amyloid: a broad class of compounds to treat different human amyloid diseases.

    PubMed

    Ngoungoure, Viviane L Ndam; Schluesener, Jan; Moundipa, Paul F; Schluesener, Hermann

    2015-01-01

    Polyphenols are a large group of phytonutrients found in herbal beverages and foods. They have manifold biological activities, including antioxidative, antimicrobial, and anti-inflammatory properties. Interestingly, some polyphenols bind to amyloid and substantially ameliorate amyloid diseases. Misfolding, aggregation, and accumulation of amyloid fibrils in tissues or organs leads to a group of disorders, called amyloidoses. Prominent diseases are Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, and Huntington's disease, but there are other, less well-known diseases wherein accumulation of misfolded protein is a prominent feature. Amyloidoses are a major burden to public health. In particular, Alzheimer's disease shows a strong increase in patient numbers. Accelerated development of effective therapies for amyloidoses is a necessity. A viable strategy can be the prevention or reduction of protein misfolding, thus reducing amyloid build-up by restoring the cellular aggretome. Amyloid-binding polyphenols affect amyloid formation on various levels, e.g. by inhibiting fibril formation or steering oligomer formation into unstructured, nontoxic pathways. Consequently, preclinical studies demonstrate reduction of amyloid-formation by polyphenols. Amyloid-binding polyphenols might be suitable lead structures for development of imaging agents for early detection of disease and monitoring amyloid deposition. Intake of dietary polyphenols might be relevant to the prevention of amyloidoses. Nutraceutical strategies might be a way to reduce amyloid diseases.

  4. Difference in aggregation between functional and toxic amyloids studied by atomistic simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carballo Pacheco, Martin; Ismail, Ahmed E.; Strodel, Birgit

    Amyloids are highly structured protein aggregates, normally associated with neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's disease. In recent years, a number of nontoxic amyloids with physiologically normal functions, called functional amyloids, have been found. It is known that soluble small oligomers are more toxic than large fibrils. Thus, we study with atomistic explicit-solvent molecular dynamics simulations the oligomer formation of the amyloid- β peptide Aβ25 - 35, associated with Alzheimer's disease, and two functional amyloid-forming tachykinin peptides: kassinin and neuromedin K. Our simulations show that monomeric peptides in extended conformations aggregate faster than those in collapsed hairpin-like conformations. In addition, we observe faster aggregation by functional amyloids than toxic amyloids, which could explain their lack of toxicity.

  5. The new β amyloid-derived peptide Aβ1-6A2V-TAT(D) prevents Aβ oligomer formation and protects transgenic C. elegans from Aβ toxicity.

    PubMed

    Diomede, Luisa; Romeo, Margherita; Cagnotto, Alfredo; Rossi, Alessandro; Beeg, Marten; Stravalaci, Matteo; Tagliavini, Fabrizio; Di Fede, Giuseppe; Gobbi, Marco; Salmona, Mario

    2016-04-01

    One attractive pharmacological strategy for Alzheimer's disease (AD) is to design small peptides to interact with amyloid-β (Aβ) protein reducing its aggregation and toxicity. Starting from clinical observations indicating that patients coding a mutated Aβ variant (AβA2V) in the heterozygous state do not develop AD, we developed AβA2V synthetic peptides, as well as a small peptide homologous to residues 1-6. These hindered the amyloidogenesis of Aβ and its neurotoxicity in vitro, suggesting a basis for the design of a new small peptide in D-isomeric form, linked to the arginine-rich TAT sequence [Aβ1-6A2V-TAT(D)], to allow translocation across biological membranes and the blood-brain barrier. Aβ1-6A2V-TAT(D) was resistant to protease degradation, stable in serum and specifically able to interfere with Aβ aggregation in vitro, reducing the appearance of toxic soluble species and protecting transgenic C. elegans from toxicity related to the muscular expression of human Aβ. These observations offer a proof of concept for future pharmacological studies in mouse models of AD, providing a foundation for the design of AβA2V-based peptidomimetic molecules for therapeutic purposes. PMID:26792398

  6. Detection of TDP-43 Oligomers in Frontotemporal Lobar Degeneration–TDP

    PubMed Central

    Kao, Patricia F.; Chen, Yun-Ru; Liu, Xiao-Bo; DeCarli, Charles; Seeley, William W.; Jin, Lee-Way

    2016-01-01

    Objective The proteinaceous inclusions in TDP-43 proteinopathies such as frontotemporal lobar degeneration (FTLD)-TDP are made of high–molecular-weight aggregates of TDP-43. These aggregates have not been classified as amyloids, as prior amyloid staining results were not conclusive. Here we used a specific TDP-43 amyloid oligomer antibody called TDP-O to determine the presence and abundance of TDP-43 oligomers among different subtypes of FTLD-TDP as well as in hippocampal sclerosis (HS), which represents a non-FTLD pathology with TDP-43 inclusions. Methods Postmortem tissue from the hippocampus and anterior orbital gyrus from 54 prospectively assessed and diagnosed subjects was used for immunostaining with TDP-O. Electron microscopy was used to assess the subcellular locations of TDP-O–decorated structures. Results TDP-43 inclusions staining with TDP-O were present in FTLD-TDP and were most conspicuous for FTLD-TDP type C, the subtype seen in most patients with semantic variant primary progressive aphasia. TDP-O immunoreactivity was absent in the hippocampus of HS patients despite abundant TDP-43 inclusions. Ultrastructurally, TDP-43 oligomers resided in granular or tubular structures, frequently in close proximity to, but not within, neuronal lysosomes. Interpretation TDP-43 forms amyloid oligomers in the human brain, which may cause neurotoxicity in a manner similar to other amyloid oligomers. Oligomer formation may contribute to the conformational heterogeneity of TDP-43 aggregates and mark the different properties of TDP-43 inclusions between FTLD-TDP and HS. PMID:25921485

  7. Transmissible amyloid.

    PubMed

    Tjernberg, L O; Rising, A; Johansson, J; Jaudzems, K; Westermark, P

    2016-08-01

    There are around 30 human diseases associated with protein misfolding and amyloid formation, each one caused by a certain protein or peptide. Many of these diseases are lethal and together they pose an enormous burden to society. The prion protein has attracted particular interest as being shown to be the pathogenic agent in transmissible diseases such as kuru, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease and bovine spongiform encephalopathy. Whether similar transmission could occur also in other amyloidoses such as Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease and serum amyloid A amyloidosis is a matter of intense research and debate. Furthermore, it has been suggested that novel biomaterials such as artificial spider silk are potentially amyloidogenic. Here, we provide a brief introduction to amyloid, prions and other proteins involved in amyloid disease and review recent evidence for their potential transmission. We discuss the similarities and differences between amyloid and silk, as well as the potential hazards associated with protein-based biomaterials. PMID:27002185

  8. Size Effect of Graphene Oxide on Modulating Amyloid Peptide Assembly.

    PubMed

    Wang, Jie; Cao, Yunpeng; Li, Qiang; Liu, Lei; Dong, Mingdong

    2015-06-26

    Protein misfolding and abnormal assembly could lead to aggregates such as oligomer, proto-fibril, mature fibril, and senior amyloid plaques, which are associated with the pathogenesis of many amyloid diseases. These irreversible amyloid aggregates typically form in vivo and researchers have been endeavoring to find new modulators to invert the aggregation propensity in vitro, which could increase understanding in the mechanism of the aggregation of amyloid protein and pave the way to potential clinical treatment. Graphene oxide (GO) was shown to be a good modulator, which could strongly control the amyloidosis of Aβ (33-42). In particular, quartz crystal microbalance (QCM), circular dichroism (CD) spectroscopy, and atomic force microscopy (AFM) measurements revealed the size-dependent manner of GO on modulating the assembly of amyloid peptides, which could be a possible way to regulate the self-assembled nanostructure of amyloid peptide in a predictable manner. PMID:26031933

  9. Destroying activity of magnetoferritin on lysozyme amyloid fibrils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kopcansky, Peter; Siposova, Katarina; Melnikova, Lucia; Bednarikova, Zuzana; Timko, Milan; Mitroova, Zuzana; Antosova, Andrea; Garamus, Vasil M.; Petrenko, Viktor I.; Avdeev, Mikhail V.; Gazova, Zuzana

    2015-03-01

    Presence of protein amyloid aggregates (oligomers, protofilaments, fibrils) is associated with many diseases as diabetes mellitus or Alzheimer's disease. The interaction between lysozyme amyloid fibrils and magnetoferritin loaded with different amount of iron atoms (168 or 532 atoms) has been investigated by small-angle X-rays scattering and thioflavin T fluorescence measurements. Results suggest that magnetoferritin caused an iron atom-concentration dependent reduction of lysozyme fibril size.

  10. Therapeutic approaches against common structural features of toxic oligomers shared by multiple amyloidogenic proteins.

    PubMed

    Guerrero-Muñoz, Marcos J; Castillo-Carranza, Diana L; Kayed, Rakez

    2014-04-15

    Impaired proteostasis is one of the main features of all amyloid diseases, which are associated with the formation of insoluble aggregates from amyloidogenic proteins. The aggregation process can be caused by overproduction or poor clearance of these proteins. However, numerous reports suggest that amyloid oligomers are the most toxic species, rather than insoluble fibrillar material, in Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, and Prion diseases, among others. Although the exact protein that aggregates varies between amyloid disorders, they all share common structural features that can be used as therapeutic targets. In this review, we focus on therapeutic approaches against shared features of toxic oligomeric structures and future directions.

  11. Phenylethynyl terminated reactive oligomer

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bryant, Robert G. (Inventor); Jensen, Brian J. (Inventor); Hergenrother, Paul M. (Inventor)

    1995-01-01

    A composition of matter having the general structure: ##STR1## (wherein X is F, Cl, or NO.sub.2, and Y is CO, SO.sub.2 or C(CF.sub.3).sub.2) is employed to terminate a nucleophilic reagent, resulting in the exclusive production of phenylethynyl terminated reactive oligomers which display unique thermal characteristics. A reactive diluent having the general structure: ##STR2## (wherein R is any aliphatic or aromatic moiety) is employed to decrease the melt viscosity of a phenylethynyl terminated reactive oligomer and to subsequently react therewith to provide a thermosetting material of enhanced density. These materials have features which make them attractive candidates for use as composite matrices and adhesives.

  12. Antibody against Small Aggregated Peptide Specifically Recognizes Toxic Aβ-42 Oligomers in Alzheimer's Disease.

    PubMed

    Bodani, Riddhi U; Sengupta, Urmi; Castillo-Carranza, Diana L; Guerrero-Muñoz, Marcos J; Gerson, Julia E; Rudra, Jai; Kayed, Rakez

    2015-12-16

    Amyloid-beta (Aβ) oligomers have emerged as the most toxic species in Alzheimer's disease (AD) and other amyloid pathologies. Also, Aβ-42 peptide is more aggregation-prone compared to other Aβ isoforms. Thus, we synthesized a small peptide of repeated sequence containing the last three amino acids, Val-40, Ile-41, and Ala-42 of Aβ-42 that was subsequently aggregated and used to generate a novel antibody, VIA. In this study, we examined human AD and Tg2576 mouse brain samples using VIA in combination with other amyloid-specific antibodies and confirmed the specificity of VIA to oligomeric Aβ-42. Moreover, we found that VIA does not recognize classic amyloid plaques composed of fibrillar Aβ or Aβ-40 ex vivo. Since VIA recognizes a distinct epitope specific to Aβ-42 oligomers, it may have broad use for examining the accumulation of these oligomers in AD and other neurodegenerative diseases. VIA may also be used in immunotherapy studies to prevent neurodegenerative effects associated with Aβ-42 oligomers.

  13. Amyloid fibrils

    PubMed Central

    Rambaran, Roma N

    2008-01-01

    Amyloid refers to the abnormal fibrous, extracellular, proteinaceous deposits found in organs and tissues. Amyloid is insoluble and is structurally dominated by β-sheet structure. Unlike other fibrous proteins it does not commonly have a structural, supportive or motility role but is associated with the pathology seen in a range of diseases known as the amyloidoses. These diseases include Alzheimer's, the spongiform encephalopathies and type II diabetes, all of which are progressive disorders with associated high morbidity and mortality. Not surprisingly, research into the physicochemical properties of amyloid and its formation is currently intensely pursued. In this chapter we will highlight the key scientific findings and discuss how the stability of amyloid fibrils impacts on bionanotechnology. PMID:19158505

  14. Amyloid β-sheet mimics that antagonize protein aggregation and reduce amyloid toxicity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cheng, Pin-Nan; Liu, Cong; Zhao, Minglei; Eisenberg, David; Nowick, James S.

    2012-11-01

    The amyloid protein aggregation associated with diseases such as Alzheimer's, Parkinson's and type II diabetes (among many others) features a bewildering variety of β-sheet-rich structures in transition from native proteins to ordered oligomers and fibres. The variation in the amino-acid sequences of the β-structures presents a challenge to developing a model system of β-sheets for the study of various amyloid aggregates. Here, we introduce a family of robust β-sheet macrocycles that can serve as a platform to display a variety of heptapeptide sequences from different amyloid proteins. We have tailored these amyloid β-sheet mimics (ABSMs) to antagonize the aggregation of various amyloid proteins, thereby reducing the toxicity of amyloid aggregates. We describe the structures and inhibitory properties of ABSMs containing amyloidogenic peptides from the amyloid-β peptide associated with Alzheimer's disease, β2-microglobulin associated with dialysis-related amyloidosis, α-synuclein associated with Parkinson's disease, islet amyloid polypeptide associated with type II diabetes, human and yeast prion proteins, and Tau, which forms neurofibrillary tangles.

  15. Structural studies on HCN oligomers.

    PubMed

    Ferris, J P; Edelson, E H; Auyeung, J M; Joshi, P C

    1981-01-01

    NMR spectral studies on the HCN oligomers suggest the presence of carboxamide and urea groupings. The release of CO2, H2O, HCN, CH3CN, HCONH2 and pyridine on pyrolysis is consistent with the presence of these groupings as well as carboxylic acid groups. No basic primary amine groupings could be detected with fluorescamine. Hydrazinolysis of the HCN oligomers releases 10% of the amino acids normally released by acid hydrolysis. The oligomers give a positive biuret test but this is not due to the presence of peptide bonds. There is no conclusive evidence for the presence of peptide bonds in the HCN oligomers. No diglycine was detected on partial hydrolysis of the HCN oligomers at pH 8.5 suggesting that HCN oligomers were not a source of prebiotic peptides.

  16. Turn plasticity distinguishes different modes of amyloid-β aggregation.

    PubMed

    Rezaei-Ghaleh, Nasrollah; Amininasab, Mehriar; Giller, Karin; Kumar, Sathish; Stündl, Anne; Schneider, Anja; Becker, Stefan; Walter, Jochen; Zweckstetter, Markus

    2014-04-01

    Pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease (AD) is associated with aggregation of the amyloid-β (Aβ) peptide into oligomeric and fibrillar assemblies; however, little is known about the molecular basis of aggregation of Aβ into distinct assembly states. Here we demonstrate that phosphorylation at serine 26 (S26) impairs Aβ fibrillization while stabilizing its monomers and nontoxic soluble assemblies of nonfibrillar morphology. NMR spectroscopy and replica-exchange molecular dynamics indicate that introduction of a phosphate group or phosphomimetic at position 26 diminishes Aβ's propensity to form a β-hairpin, rigidifies the region around the modification site, and interferes with formation of a fibril-specific salt bridge between aspartic acid 23 and lysine 28. The combined data demonstrate that phosphorylation of S26 prevents a distinct conformational rearrangement that is required for progression of Aβ aggregation toward fibrils and provide a basis for a possible role of phosphorylation at serine 26 in AD.

  17. Metastable Amyloid Phases and their Conversion to Mature Fibrils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muschol, Martin; Miti, Tatiana; Mulaj, Mentor; Schmit, Jeremy

    Self-assembly of proteins into amyloid fibrils plays a key role in both functional biological responses and pathogenic disorders which include Alzheimer's disease and type II diabetes. Amyloid fibril assembly frequently generates compact oligomeric and curvilinear polymeric intermediates which are implicated to be toxic to cells. Yet, the relation between these early-stage oligomeric aggregates and late-stage rigid fibrils, which are the hallmark structure of amyloid plaques, has remained unclear. Our measurements indicate that lysozyme amyloid oligomers and their curvilinear fibrils only form after crossing a salt and protein concentration dependent threshold. These oligomeric aggregates are structurally distinct from rigid fibrils and are metastable against nucleation and growth of rigid fibrils. Our experimental transition boundaries match well with colloidal model predictions accounting for salt-modulated charge repulsion. We also report our preliminary findings on the mechanism by which these metastable oligomeric phases are converted into stable amyloid fibrils.

  18. EGCG remodels mature α-synuclein and amyloid-β fibrils and reduces cellular toxicity

    PubMed Central

    Bieschke, Jan; Russ, Jenny; Friedrich, Ralf P.; Ehrnhoefer, Dagmar E.; Wobst, Heike; Neugebauer, Katja; Wanker, Erich E.

    2010-01-01

    Protein misfolding and formation of β-sheet-rich amyloid fibrils or aggregates is related to cellular toxicity and decay in various human disorders including Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease. Recently, we demonstrated that the polyphenol (-)-epi-gallocatechine gallate (EGCG) inhibits α-synuclein and amyloid-β fibrillogenesis. It associates with natively unfolded polypeptides and promotes the self-assembly of unstructured oligomers of a new type. Whether EGCG disassembles preformed amyloid fibrils, however, remained unclear. Here, we show that EGCG has the ability to convert large, mature α-synuclein and amyloid-β fibrils into smaller, amorphous protein aggregates that are nontoxic to mammalian cells. Mechanistic studies revealed that the compound directly binds to β-sheet-rich aggregates and mediates the conformational change without their disassembly into monomers or small diffusible oligomers. These findings suggest that EGCG is a potent remodeling agent of mature amyloid fibrils. PMID:20385841

  19. Structural characterization of toxic oligomers that are kinetically trapped during α-synuclein fibril formation.

    PubMed

    Chen, Serene W; Drakulic, Srdja; Deas, Emma; Ouberai, Myriam; Aprile, Francesco A; Arranz, Rocío; Ness, Samuel; Roodveldt, Cintia; Guilliams, Tim; De-Genst, Erwin J; Klenerman, David; Wood, Nicholas W; Knowles, Tuomas P J; Alfonso, Carlos; Rivas, Germán; Abramov, Andrey Y; Valpuesta, José María; Dobson, Christopher M; Cremades, Nunilo

    2015-04-21

    We describe the isolation and detailed structural characterization of stable toxic oligomers of α-synuclein that have accumulated during the process of amyloid formation. Our approach has allowed us to identify distinct subgroups of oligomers and to probe their molecular architectures by using cryo-electron microscopy (cryoEM) image reconstruction techniques. Although the oligomers exist in a range of sizes, with different extents and nature of β-sheet content and exposed hydrophobicity, they all possess a hollow cylindrical architecture with similarities to certain types of amyloid fibril, suggesting that the accumulation of at least some forms of amyloid oligomers is likely to be a consequence of very slow rates of rearrangement of their β-sheet structures. Our findings reveal the inherent multiplicity of the process of protein misfolding and the key role the β-sheet geometry acquired in the early stages of the self-assembly process plays in dictating the kinetic stability and the pathological nature of individual oligomeric species.

  20. Structural characterization of toxic oligomers that are kinetically trapped during α-synuclein fibril formation

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Serene W.; Drakulic, Srdja; Deas, Emma; Ouberai, Myriam; Aprile, Francesco A.; Arranz, Rocío; Ness, Samuel; Roodveldt, Cintia; Guilliams, Tim; De-Genst, Erwin J.; Klenerman, David; Wood, Nicholas W.; Knowles, Tuomas P.J.; Alfonso, Carlos; Rivas, Germán; Abramov, Andrey Y.; Valpuesta, José María; Dobson, Christopher M.; Cremades, Nunilo

    2015-01-01

    We describe the isolation and detailed structural characterization of stable toxic oligomers of α-synuclein that have accumulated during the process of amyloid formation. Our approach has allowed us to identify distinct subgroups of oligomers and to probe their molecular architectures by using cryo-electron microscopy (cryoEM) image reconstruction techniques. Although the oligomers exist in a range of sizes, with different extents and nature of β-sheet content and exposed hydrophobicity, they all possess a hollow cylindrical architecture with similarities to certain types of amyloid fibril, suggesting that the accumulation of at least some forms of amyloid oligomers is likely to be a consequence of very slow rates of rearrangement of their β-sheet structures. Our findings reveal the inherent multiplicity of the process of protein misfolding and the key role the β-sheet geometry acquired in the early stages of the self-assembly process plays in dictating the kinetic stability and the pathological nature of individual oligomeric species. PMID:25855634

  1. Alzheimer's disease amyloid peptides interact with DNA, as proved by surface plasmon resonance.

    PubMed

    Barrantes, Alejandro; Camero, Sergio; Garcia-Lucas, Angel; Navarro, Pedro J; Benitez, María J; Jiménez, Juan S

    2012-10-01

    According to the amyloid hypothesis, abnormal processing of the β-amyloid precursor protein in Alzheimer's disease patients increases the production of β-amyloid toxic peptides, which, after forming highly aggregated fibrillar structures, lead to extracellular plaques formation, neuronal loss and dementia. However, a great deal of evidence has point to intracellular small oligomers of amyloid peptides, probably transient intermediates in the process of fibrillar structures formation, as the most toxic species. In order to study the amyloid-DNA interaction, we have selected here three different forms of the amyloid peptide: Aβ1-40, Aβ25-35 and a scrambled form of Aβ25-35. Surface Plasmon Resonance was used together with UV-visible spectroscopy, Electrophoresis and Electronic Microscopy to carry out this study. Our results prove that, similarly to the full length Aβ1-42, all conformations of toxic amyloid peptides, Aβ1-40 and Aβ25-35, may bind DNA. In contrast, the scrambled form of Aβ25-35, a non-aggregating and nontoxic form of this peptide, could not bind DNA. We conclude that although the amyloid-DNA interaction is closely related to the amyloid aggregation proneness, this cannot be the only factor which determines the interaction, since small oligomers of amyloid peptides may also bind DNA if their predominant negatively charged amino acid residues are previously neutralized.

  2. Prefibrillar transthyretin oligomers and cold stored native tetrameric transthyretin are cytotoxic in cell culture

    SciTech Connect

    Soergjerd, Karin; Klingstedt, Therese; Lindgren, Mikael; Kagedal, Katarina; Hammarstroem, Per

    2008-12-26

    Recent studies suggest that soluble, oligomeric species, which are intermediates in the fibril formation process in amyloid disease, might be the key species in amyloid pathogenesis. Soluble oligomers of human wild type transthyretin (TTR) were produced to elucidate oligomer properties. Employing ThT fluorescence, time-resolved fluorescence anisotropy of pyrene-labeled TTR, chemical cross-linking, and electron microscopy we demonstrated that early formed soluble oligomers (within minutes) from A-state TTR comprised on the average 20-30 TTR monomers. When administered to neuroblastoma cells these early oligomers proved highly cytotoxic and induced apoptosis after 48 h of incubation. More mature fibrils (>24 h of fibrillation) were non-toxic. Surprisingly, we also found that native tetrameric TTR, when purified and stored under cold conditions (4 deg. C) was highly cytotoxic. The effect could be partially restored by increasing the temperature of the protein. The cytotoxic effects of native tetrameric TTR likely stems from a hitherto unexplored low temperature induced rearrangement of the tetramer conformation that possibly is related to the conformation of misfolded TTR in amyloigogenic oligomers.

  3. Common molecular mechanism of amyloid pore formation by Alzheimer’s β-amyloid peptide and α-synuclein

    PubMed Central

    Di Scala, Coralie; Yahi, Nouara; Boutemeur, Sonia; Flores, Alessandra; Rodriguez, Léa; Chahinian, Henri; Fantini, Jacques

    2016-01-01

    Calcium-permeable pores formed by small oligomers of amyloid proteins are the primary pathologic species in Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying the assembly of these toxic oligomers in the plasma membrane of brain cells remain unclear. Here we have analyzed and compared the pore-forming capability of a large panel of amyloid proteins including wild-type, variant and truncated forms, as well as synthetic peptides derived from specific domains of Aβ1-42 and α-synuclein. We show that amyloid pore formation involves two membrane lipids, ganglioside and cholesterol, that physically interact with amyloid proteins through specific structural motifs. Mutation or deletion of these motifs abolished pore formation. Moreover, α-synuclein (Parkinson) and Aβ peptide (Alzheimer) did no longer form Ca2+-permeable pores in presence of drugs that target either cholesterol or ganglioside or both membrane lipids. These results indicate that gangliosides and cholesterol cooperate to favor the formation of amyloid pores through a common molecular mechanism that can be jammed at two different steps, suggesting the possibility of a universal therapeutic approach for neurodegenerative diseases. Finally we present the first successful evaluation of such a new therapeutic approach (coined “membrane therapy”) targeting amyloid pores formed by Aβ1-42 and α-synuclein. PMID:27352802

  4. [Amyloid goiter].

    PubMed

    Hrívó, A; Péter, I; Bánkúti, B; Péley, G; Baska, F; Besznyák, I

    1999-03-21

    Amyloid goitre is at an extremely rare occurrence. Authors review the origin of disease and its symptoms, diagnostic and therapeutic tools. The disease may be due to either primary or secondary systemic or local amyloidosis. Diagnosis may be made even before surgery on anamnestic data, on very rapid growth of thyroid glands, on diffuse appearance, on other symptoms of systemic amyloidosis, on findings of iconographic procedures and on detection of amyloid in aspirates. Final diagnosis is based on histology. Surgical therapy is aiming at avoidance of the existing and the threatening consequences of expanding mass. The outcome is independent from thyroid surgery, it is related to other manifestations of amyloidosis. Concerning with the present case the chronic superior vena cava syndrome and chylous pleural effusion as first described symptoms and asymptomatic hyperthyroxinaemia is emphasised. Neither other organ involvement, nor primary amyloidogenous molecula was found during the 18 months follow up, so patient has secondary and localised amyloidosis.

  5. Biochemistry of Amyloid β-Protein and Amyloid Deposits in Alzheimer Disease

    PubMed Central

    Masters, Colin L.; Selkoe, Dennis J.

    2012-01-01

    Progressive cerebral deposition of the amyloid β-protein (Aβ) in brain regions serving memory and cognition is an invariant and defining feature of Alzheimer disease. A highly similar but less robust process accompanies brain aging in many nondemented humans, lower primates, and some other mammals. The discovery of Aβ as the subunit of the amyloid fibrils in meningocerebral blood vessels and parenchymal plaques has led to innumerable studies of its biochemistry and potential cytotoxic properties. Here we will review the discovery of Aβ, numerous aspects of its complex biochemistry, and current attempts to understand how a range of Aβ assemblies, including soluble oligomers and insoluble fibrils, may precipitate and promote neuronal and glial alterations that underlie the development of dementia. Although the role of Aβ as a key molecular factor in the etiology of Alzheimer disease remains controversial, clinical trials of amyloid-lowering agents, reviewed elsewhere in this book, are poised to resolve the question of its pathogenic primacy. PMID:22675658

  6. Tg-SwDI Transgenic Mice Exhibit Novel Alterations in AβPP Processing, Aβ Degradation, and Resilient Amyloid Angiopathy

    PubMed Central

    Van Vickle, Gregory D.; Esh, Chera L.; Daugs, Ian D.; Kokjohn, Tyler A.; Kalback, Walter M.; Patton, R. Lyle; Luehrs, Dean C.; Walker, Douglas G.; Lue, Lih-Fen; Beach, Thomas G.; Davis, Judianne; Van Nostrand, William E.; Castaño, Eduardo M.; Roher, Alex E.

    2008-01-01

    Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is characterized by the accumulation of extracellular insoluble amyloid, primarily derived from polymerized amyloid-β (Aβ) peptides. We characterized the chemical composition of the Aβ peptides deposited in the brain parenchyma and cerebrovascular walls of triple transgenic Tg-SwDI mice that produce a rapid and profuse Aβ accumulation. The processing of the N- and C-terminal regions of mutant AβPP differs substantially from humans because the brain parenchyma accumulates numerous, diffuse, nonfibrillar plaques, whereas the thalamic microvessels harbor overwhelming amounts of compact, fibrillar, thioflavine-S- and apolipoprotein E-positive amyloid deposits. The abundant accretion of vascular amyloid, despite low AβPP transgene expression levels, suggests that inefficient Aβ proteolysis because of conformational changes and dimerization may be key pathogenic factors in this animal model. The disruption of amyloid plaque cores by immunotherapy is accompanied by increased perivascular deposition in both humans and transgenic mice. This analogous susceptibility and response to the disruption of amyloid deposits suggests that Tg-SwDI mice provide an excellent model in which to study the functional aftermath of immunotherapeutic interventions. These mice might also reveal new avenues to promote amyloidogenic AβPP processing and fundamental insights into the faulty degradation and clearance of Aβ in AD, pivotal issues in understanding AD pathophysiology and the assessment of new therapeutic agents. PMID:18599612

  7. Structural study of metastable amyloidogenic protein oligomers by photo-induced cross-linking of unmodified proteins.

    PubMed

    Bitan, Gal

    2006-01-01

    Oligomers of amyloidogenic proteins are believed to be key effectors of cytotoxicity and cause a variety of amyloid-related diseases. Dissociation or inhibition of formation of the toxic oligomers is thus an attractive strategy for the prevention and treatment of these diseases. In order to develop reagents capable of inhibiting protein oligomerization, the structures and mechanisms of oligomer formation must be understood. However, structural studies of oligomers are difficult because of the metastable nature of the oligomers and their existence in mixtures with monomers and other assemblies. A useful method for characterization of oligomer size distributions in vitro is photo-induced cross-linking of unmodified proteins (PICUP) (Fancy and Kodadek, 1999). By providing "snapshots" of dynamic oligomer mixtures, PICUP enables quantitative analysis of the relations between primary and quaternary structures, offering insights into the molecular organization of the oligomers. This chapter discusses the photochemical mechanism; reviews the scope, usefulness, and limitations of PICUP for characterizing metastable protein assemblies; and provides detailed experimental instructions for performing PICUP experiments.

  8. Aβ42 assembles into specific β-barrel pore-forming oligomers in membrane-mimicking environments

    PubMed Central

    Serra-Batiste, Montserrat; Ninot-Pedrosa, Martí; Bayoumi, Mariam; Gairí, Margarida; Maglia, Giovanni; Carulla, Natàlia

    2016-01-01

    The formation of amyloid-β peptide (Aβ) oligomers at the cellular membrane is considered to be a crucial process underlying neurotoxicity in Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Therefore, it is critical to characterize the oligomers that form within a membrane environment. To contribute to this characterization, we have applied strategies widely used to examine the structure of membrane proteins to study the two major Aβ variants, Aβ40 and Aβ42. Accordingly, various types of detergent micelles were extensively screened to identify one that preserved the properties of Aβ in lipid environments—namely the formation of oligomers that function as pores. Remarkably, under the optimized detergent micelle conditions, Aβ40 and Aβ42 showed different behavior. Aβ40 aggregated into amyloid fibrils, whereas Aβ42 assembled into oligomers that inserted into lipid bilayers as well-defined pores and adopted a specific structure with characteristics of a β-barrel arrangement that we named β-barrel pore-forming Aβ42 oligomers (βPFOsAβ42). Because Aβ42, relative to Aβ40, has a more prominent role in AD, the higher propensity of Aβ42 to form βPFOs constitutes an indication of their relevance in AD. Moreover, because βPFOsAβ42 adopt a specific structure, this property offers an unprecedented opportunity for testing a hypothesis regarding the involvement of βPFOs and, more generally, membrane-associated Aβ oligomers in AD. PMID:27621459

  9. The Aβ oligomer hypothesis for synapse failure and memory loss in Alzheimer's diseas

    PubMed Central

    Ferreira, Sergio T; Klein, William L

    2015-01-01

    Alzheimer's disease is the 3rd most costly disease and is estimated to be the 6th leading cause of death. Alzheimer's disease (AD) is fatal and affected individuals can sometimes linger many years. Current treatments are palliative and transient, not disease modifying. This article reviews progress in the search to identify the primary AD-causing toxins. We summarize the shift from an initial focus on amyloid plaques to the contemporary concept that AD memory failure is caused by small soluble oligomers of the Aβ peptide, toxins that target and disrupt particular synapses. Evidence is presented that links Aβ oligomers to pathogenesis in animal models and humans, with reference to seminal discoveries from cell biology and new ideas concerning pathogenic mechanisms. These findings have established the oligomer hypothesis as a new molecular basis for the cause, diagnosis, and treatment of AD. PMID:21914486

  10. Stabilizing Off-pathway Oligomers by Polyphenol Nanoassemblies for IAPP Aggregation Inhibition.

    PubMed

    Nedumpully-Govindan, Praveen; Kakinen, Aleksandr; Pilkington, Emily H; Davis, Thomas P; Chun Ke, Pu; Ding, Feng

    2016-01-01

    Experimental studies have shown that many naturally occurring polyphenols have inhibitory effect on the aggregation of several proteins. Here, we use discrete molecular dynamics (DMD) simulations and high-throughput dynamic light scattering (DLS) experiments to study the anti-aggregation effects of two polyphenols, curcumin and resveratrol, on the aggregation of islet amyloid polypeptide (IAPP or amylin). Our DMD simulations suggest that the aggregation inhibition is caused by stabilization of small molecular weight IAPP off-pathway oligomers by the polyphenols. Our analysis indicates that IAPP-polyphenol hydrogen bonds and π-π stacking combined with hydrophobic interactions are responsible for the stabilization of oligomers. The presence of small oligomers is confirmed with DLS measurements in which nanometer-sized oligomers are found to be stable for up to 7.5 hours, the time frame within which IAPP aggregates in the absence of polyphenols. Our study offers a general anti-aggregation mechanism for polyphenols, and further provides a computational framework for the future design of anti-amyloid aggregation therapeutics. PMID:26763863

  11. Stabilizing Off-pathway Oligomers by Polyphenol Nanoassemblies for IAPP Aggregation Inhibition

    PubMed Central

    Nedumpully-Govindan, Praveen; Kakinen, Aleksandr; Pilkington, Emily H.; Davis, Thomas P.; Chun Ke, Pu; Ding, Feng

    2016-01-01

    Experimental studies have shown that many naturally occurring polyphenols have inhibitory effect on the aggregation of several proteins. Here, we use discrete molecular dynamics (DMD) simulations and high-throughput dynamic light scattering (DLS) experiments to study the anti-aggregation effects of two polyphenols, curcumin and resveratrol, on the aggregation of islet amyloid polypeptide (IAPP or amylin). Our DMD simulations suggest that the aggregation inhibition is caused by stabilization of small molecular weight IAPP off-pathway oligomers by the polyphenols. Our analysis indicates that IAPP-polyphenol hydrogen bonds and π-π stacking combined with hydrophobic interactions are responsible for the stabilization of oligomers. The presence of small oligomers is confirmed with DLS measurements in which nanometer-sized oligomers are found to be stable for up to 7.5 hours, the time frame within which IAPP aggregates in the absence of polyphenols. Our study offers a general anti-aggregation mechanism for polyphenols, and further provides a computational framework for the future design of anti-amyloid aggregation therapeutics. PMID:26763863

  12. Protein Folding and Aggregation into Amyloid: The Interference by Natural Phenolic Compounds

    PubMed Central

    Stefani, Massimo; Rigacci, Stefania

    2013-01-01

    Amyloid aggregation is a hallmark of several degenerative diseases affecting the brain or peripheral tissues, whose intermediates (oligomers, protofibrils) and final mature fibrils display different toxicity. Consequently, compounds counteracting amyloid aggregation have been investigated for their ability (i) to stabilize toxic amyloid precursors; (ii) to prevent the growth of toxic oligomers or speed that of fibrils; (iii) to inhibit fibril growth and deposition; (iv) to disassemble preformed fibrils; and (v) to favor amyloid clearance. Natural phenols, a wide panel of plant molecules, are one of the most actively investigated categories of potential amyloid inhibitors. They are considered responsible for the beneficial effects of several traditional diets being present in green tea, extra virgin olive oil, red wine, spices, berries and aromatic herbs. Accordingly, it has been proposed that some natural phenols could be exploited to prevent and to treat amyloid diseases, and recent studies have provided significant information on their ability to inhibit peptide/protein aggregation in various ways and to stimulate cell defenses, leading to identify shared or specific mechanisms. In the first part of this review, we will overview the significance and mechanisms of amyloid aggregation and aggregate toxicity; then, we will summarize the recent achievements on protection against amyloid diseases by many natural phenols. PMID:23765219

  13. Surface plasmon resonance for the label-free detection of Alzheimer's β-amyloid peptide aggregation.

    PubMed

    Palladino, Pasquale; Aura, Angela M; Spoto, Giuseppe

    2016-01-01

    Amyloid peptide oligomers and fibrils are studied as targets for therapy and diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease. They are usually detected by amyloid incubation, but such method is necessarily associated with Aβ1-42 depletion and dye binding or conjugation, which have a complex influence on fibril growth, provide information about fibril elongation over long time periods only, and might lead to false-positive results in amyloid inhibition assay. Surface plasmon resonance (SPR) is used to study with no labelling and in real time the aggregation of Aβ1-42 amyloid on specific antibodies. SPR data show, for the first time by using SPR, a multi-phase association behavior for Aβ1-42 oligomers accounting for a sigmoidal growth of amyloid as a function of time, with two antibody-dependent aggregation patterns. The new method represents an advantageous alternative to traditional procedures for investigating amyloid self-assembly and inhibition from early-stage oligomer association, on the time scale of seconds to minutes, to long-term polymerization, on the time scale of hours to days. PMID:26558762

  14. De novo Amyloid Proteins from Designed Combinatorial Libraries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    West, Michael W.; Wang, Weixun; Patterson, Jennifer; Mancias, Joseph D.; Beasley, James R.; Hecht, Michael H.

    1999-09-01

    Amyloid deposits are associated with several neurodegenerative diseases, including Alzheimer's disease and the prion diseases. The amyloid fibrils isolated from these different diseases share similar structural features. However, the protein sequences that assemble into these fibrils differ substantially from one disease to another. To probe the relationship between amino acid sequence and the propensity to form amyloid, we studied a combinatorial library of sequences designed de novo. All sequences in the library were designed to share an identical pattern of alternating polar and nonpolar residues, but the precise identities of these side chains were not constrained and were varied combinatorially. The resulting proteins self-assemble into large oligomers visible by electron microscopy as amyloid-like fibrils. Like natural amyloid, the de novo fibrils are composed of β -sheet secondary structure and bind the diagnostic dye, Congo red. Thus, binary patterning of polar and nonpolar residues arranged in alternating periodicity can direct protein sequences to form fibrils resembling amyloid. The model amyloid fibrils assemble and disassemble reversibly, providing a tractable system for both basic studies into the mechanisms of fibril assembly and the development of molecular therapies that interfere with this assembly.

  15. Intracellular selection of peptide inhibitors that target disulphide-bridged Aβ42 oligomers

    PubMed Central

    Acerra, Nicola; Kad, Neil M; Cheruvara, Harish; Mason, Jody M

    2014-01-01

    The β-amyloid (Aβ) peptide aggregates into a number of soluble and insoluble forms, with soluble oligomers thought to be the primary factor implicated in Alzheimer's disease pathology. As a result, a wide range of potential aggregation inhibitors have been developed. However, in addition to problems with solubility and protease susceptibility, many have inadvertently raised the concentration of these soluble neurotoxic species. Sandberg et al. previously reported a β-hairpin stabilized variant of Aβ42 that results from an intramolecular disulphide bridge (A21C/A31C; Aβ42cc), which generates highly toxic oligomeric species incapable of converting into mature fibrils. Using an intracellular protein-fragment complementation (PCA) approach, we have screened peptide libraries using E. coli that harbor an oxidizing environment to permit cytoplasmic disulphide bond formation. Peptides designed to target either the first or second β-strand have been demonstrated to bind to Aβ42cc, lower amyloid cytotoxicity, and confer bacterial cell survival. Peptides have consequently been tested using wild-type Aβ42 via ThT binding assays, circular dichroism, MTT cytotoxicity assays, fluorescence microscopy, and atomic force microscopy. Results demonstrate that amyloid-PCA selected peptides function by both removing amyloid oligomers as well as inhibiting their formation. These data further support the use of semirational design combined with intracellular PCA methodology to develop Aβ antagonists as candidates for modification into drugs capable of slowing or even preventing the onset of AD. PMID:24947815

  16. Regional brain hypometabolism is unrelated to regional amyloid plaque burden.

    PubMed

    Altmann, Andre; Ng, Bernard; Landau, Susan M; Jagust, William J; Greicius, Michael D

    2015-12-01

    In its original form, the amyloid cascade hypothesis of Alzheimer's disease holds that fibrillar deposits of amyloid are an early, driving force in pathological events leading ultimately to neuronal death. Early clinicopathological investigations highlighted a number of inconsistencies leading to an updated hypothesis in which amyloid plaques give way to amyloid oligomers as the driving force in pathogenesis. Rather than focusing on the inconsistencies, amyloid imaging studies have tended to highlight the overlap between regions that show early amyloid plaque signal on positron emission tomography and that also happen to be affected early in Alzheimer's disease. Recent imaging studies investigating the regional dependency between metabolism and amyloid plaque deposition have arrived at conflicting results, with some showing regional associations and other not. We extracted multimodal neuroimaging data from the Alzheimer's disease neuroimaging database for 227 healthy controls and 434 subjects with mild cognitive impairment. We analysed regional patterns of amyloid deposition, regional glucose metabolism and regional atrophy using florbetapir ((18)F) positron emission tomography, (18)F-fluordeoxyglucose positron emission tomography and T1-weighted magnetic resonance imaging, respectively. Specifically, we derived grey matter density and standardized uptake value ratios for both positron emission tomography tracers in 404 functionally defined regions of interest. We examined the relation between regional glucose metabolism and amyloid plaques using linear models. For each region of interest, correcting for regional grey matter density, age, education and disease status, we tested the association of regional glucose metabolism with (i) cortex-wide florbetapir uptake; (ii) regional (i.e. in the same region of interest) florbetapir uptake; and (iii) regional florbetapir uptake while correcting in addition for cortex-wide florbetapir uptake. P-values for each setting

  17. Amyloid β Oligomeric Species Present in the Lag Phase of Amyloid Formation

    PubMed Central

    Wolff, Martin; Unuchek, Dmitry; Zhang, Bo; Gordeliy, Valentin; Willbold, Dieter; Nagel-Steger, Luitgard

    2015-01-01

    Alzheimer’s disease (AD)-associated amyloid β peptide (Aβ) is one of the main actors in AD pathogenesis. Aβ is characterized by its high tendency to self-associate, leading to the generation of oligomers and amyloid fibrils. The elucidation of pathways and intermediates is crucial for the understanding of protein assembly mechanisms in general and in conjunction with neurodegenerative diseases, e.g., for the identification of new therapeutic targets. Our study focused on Aβ42 and its oligomeric assemblies in the lag phase of amyloid formation, as studied by sedimentation velocity (SV) centrifugation. The assembly state of Aβ during the lag phase, the time required by an Aβ solution to reach the exponential growth phase of aggregation, was characterized by a dominant monomer fraction below 1 S and a population of oligomeric species between 4 and 16 S. From the oligomer population, two major species close to a 12-mer and an 18-mer with a globular shape were identified. The recurrence of these two species at different initial concentrations and experimental conditions as the smallest assemblies present in solution supports the existence of distinct, energetically favored assemblies in solution. The sizes of the two species suggest an Aβ42 aggregation pathway that is based on a basic hexameric building block. The study demonstrates the potential of SV analysis for the evaluation of protein aggregation pathways. PMID:26024352

  18. Study of neurotoxic intracellular calcium signalling triggered by amyloids.

    PubMed

    Villalobos, Carlos; Caballero, Erica; Sanz-Blasco, Sara; Núñez, Lucía

    2012-01-01

    Neurotoxicity in Alzheimer's disease (AD) is associated to dishomeostasis of intracellular Ca(2+) induced by amyloid β peptide (Aβ) species. Understanding of the effects of Aβ on intracellular Ca(2+) homeostasis requires preparation of the different Aβ assemblies including oligomers and fibrils and the testing of their effects on cytosolic and mitochondrial Ca(2+) in neurons. Procedures for cerebellar granule cell culture, preparation of Aβ species as well as fluorescence and bioluminescence imaging of cytosolic and mitochondrial Ca(2+) in neurons are described.

  19. Targeting Cancer with Antisense Oligomers

    SciTech Connect

    Hnatowich, DJ

    2008-10-28

    With financial assistance from the Department of Energy, we have shown definitively that radiolabeled antisense DNAs and other oligomers will accumulate in target cancer cells in vitro and in vivo by an antisense mechanism. We have also shown that the number of mRNA targets for our antisense oligomers in the cancer cell types that we have investigated so far is sufficient to provide and antisense image and/or radiotherapy of cancer in mice. These studies have been reported in about 10 publications. However our observation over the past several years has shown that radiolabeled antisense oligomers administered intravenously in their native and naked form will accumulate and be retained in target xenografts by an antisense mechanism but will also accumulate at high levels in normal organs such as liver, spleen and kidneys. We have investigated unsuccessfully several commercially available vectors. Thus the use of radiolabeled antisense oligomers for the imaging of cancer must await novel approaches to delivery. This laboratory has therefore pursued two new paths, optical imaging of tumor and Auger radiotherapy. We are developing a novel method of optical imaging tumor using antisense oligomers with a fluorophore is administered while hybridized with a shorter complementary oligomer with an inhibitor. In culture and in tumored mice that the duplex remains intact and thus nonfluorescent until it encounters its target mRNA at which time it dissociates and the antisense oligomer binds along with its fluorophore to the target. Simultaneous with the above, we have also observed, as have others, that antisense oligomers migrate rapidly and quantitatively to the nucleus upon crossing cell membranes. The Auger electron radiotherapy path results from this observation since the nuclear migration properties could be used effectively to bring and to retain in the nucleus an Auger emitting radionuclide such as 111In or 125I bound to the antisense oligomer. Since the object becomes

  20. Mitochondrial Ca2+ Overload Underlies Aβ Oligomers Neurotoxicity Providing an Unexpected Mechanism of Neuroprotection by NSAIDs

    PubMed Central

    Sanz-Blasco, Sara; Valero, Ruth A.; Rodríguez-Crespo, Ignacio; Villalobos, Carlos; Núñez, Lucía

    2008-01-01

    Dysregulation of intracellular Ca2+ homeostasis may underlie amyloid β peptide (Aβ) toxicity in Alzheimer's Disease (AD) but the mechanism is unknown. In search for this mechanism we found that Aβ1–42 oligomers, the assembly state correlating best with cognitive decline in AD, but not Aβ fibrils, induce a massive entry of Ca2+ in neurons and promote mitochondrial Ca2+ overload as shown by bioluminescence imaging of targeted aequorin in individual neurons. Aβ oligomers induce also mitochondrial permeability transition, cytochrome c release, apoptosis and cell death. Mitochondrial depolarization prevents mitochondrial Ca2+ overload, cytochrome c release and cell death. In addition, we found that a series of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) including salicylate, sulindac sulfide, indomethacin, ibuprofen and R-flurbiprofen depolarize mitochondria and inhibit mitochondrial Ca2+ overload, cytochrome c release and cell death induced by Aβ oligomers. Our results indicate that i) mitochondrial Ca2+ overload underlies the neurotoxicity induced by Aβ oligomers and ii) inhibition of mitochondrial Ca2+ overload provides a novel mechanism of neuroprotection by NSAIDs against Aβ oligomers and AD. PMID:18648507

  1. Diaryl hydrazones as multifunctional inhibitors of amyloid self-assembly.

    PubMed

    Török, Béla; Sood, Abha; Bag, Seema; Tulsan, Rekha; Ghosh, Sanjukta; Borkin, Dmitry; Kennedy, Arleen R; Melanson, Michelle; Madden, Richard; Zhou, Weihong; Levine, Harry; Török, Marianna

    2013-02-19

    The design and application of an effective, new class of multifunctional small molecule inhibitors of amyloid self-assembly are described. Several compounds based on the diaryl hydrazone scaffold were designed. Forty-four substituted derivatives of this core structure were synthesized using a variety of benzaldehydes and phenylhydrazines and characterized. The inhibitor candidates were evaluated in multiple assays, including the inhibition of amyloid β (Aβ) fibrillogenesis and oligomer formation and the reverse processes, the disassembly of preformed fibrils and oligomers. Because the structure of the hydrazone-based inhibitors mimics the redox features of the antioxidant resveratrol, the radical scavenging effect of the compounds was evaluated by colorimetric assays against 2,2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl and superoxide radicals. The hydrazone scaffold was active in all of the different assays. The structure-activity relationship revealed that the substituents on the aromatic rings had a considerable effect on the overall activity of the compounds. The inhibitors showed strong activity in fibrillogenesis inhibition and disassembly, and even greater potency in the inhibition of oligomer formation and oligomer disassembly. Supporting the quantitative fluorometric and colorimetric assays, size exclusion chromatographic studies indicated that the best compounds practically eliminated or substantially inhibited the formation of soluble, aggregated Aβ species, as well. Atomic force microscopy was also applied to monitor the morphology of Aβ deposits. The compounds also possessed the predicted antioxidant properties; approximately 30% of the synthesized compounds showed a radical scavenging effect equal to or better than that of resveratrol or ascorbic acid.

  2. Ca(2+) -dependent endoplasmic reticulum stress correlates with astrogliosis in oligomeric amyloid β-treated astrocytes and in a model of Alzheimer's disease.

    PubMed

    Alberdi, Elena; Wyssenbach, Ane; Alberdi, María; Sánchez-Gómez, M V; Cavaliere, Fabio; Rodríguez, José J; Verkhratsky, Alexei; Matute, Carlos

    2013-04-01

    Neurotoxic effects of amyloid β peptides are mediated through deregulation of intracellular Ca(2+) homeostasis and signaling, but relatively little is known about amyloid β modulation of Ca(2+) homeostasis and its pathological influence on glia. Here, we found that amyloid β oligomers caused a cytoplasmic Ca(2+) increase in cultured astrocytes, which was reduced by inhibitors of PLC and ER Ca(2+) release. Furthermore, amyloid β peptides triggered increased expression of glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP), as well as oxidative and ER stress, as indicated by eIF2α phosphorylation and overexpression of chaperone GRP78. These effects were decreased by ryanodine and 2APB, inhibitors of ryanodine receptors and InsP3 receptors, respectively, in both primary cultured astrocytes and organotypic cultures of hippocampus and entorhinal cortex. Importantly, intracerebroventricular injection of amyloid β oligomers triggered overexpression of GFAP and GRP78 in astrocytes of the hippocampal dentate gyrus. These data were validated in a triple-transgenic mouse model of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Overexpression of GFAP and GRP78 in the hippocampal astrocytes correlated with the amyloid β oligomer load in 12-month-old mice, suggesting that this parameter drives astrocytic ER stress and astrogliosis in vivo. Together, these results provide evidence that amyloid β oligomers disrupt ER Ca(2+) homeostasis, which induces ER stress that leads to astrogliosis; this mechanism may be relevant to AD pathophysiology.

  3. Out-of-register β-sheets suggest a pathway to toxic amyloid aggregates.

    PubMed

    Liu, Cong; Zhao, Minglei; Jiang, Lin; Cheng, Pin-Nan; Park, Jiyong; Sawaya, Michael R; Pensalfini, Anna; Gou, Dawei; Berk, Arnold J; Glabe, Charles G; Nowick, James; Eisenberg, David

    2012-12-18

    Although aberrant protein aggregation has been conclusively linked to dozens of devastating amyloid diseases, scientists remain puzzled about the molecular features that render amyloid fibrils or small oligomers toxic. Here, we report a previously unobserved type of amyloid fibril that tests as cytotoxic: one in which the strands of the contributing β-sheets are out of register. In all amyloid fibrils previously characterized at the molecular level, only in-register β-sheets have been observed, in which each strand makes its full complement of hydrogen bonds with the strands above and below it in the fibril. In out-of-register sheets, strands are sheared relative to one another, leaving dangling hydrogen bonds. Based on this finding, we designed out-of-register β-sheet amyloid mimics, which form both cylindrin-like oligomers and fibrils, and these mimics are cytotoxic. Structural and energetic considerations suggest that out-of-register fibrils can readily convert to toxic cylindrins. We propose that out-of-register β-sheets and their related cylindrins are part of a toxic amyloid pathway, which is distinct from the more energetically favored in-register amyloid pathway.

  4. Transthyretin as both Sensor and Scavenger of Aβ Oligomers

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Dennis T.; Joshi, Gururaj; Cho, Patricia Y.; Johnson, Jeffrey A.; Murphy, Regina M.

    2013-01-01

    Transthyretin (TTR) is a homotetrameric transport protein, assembled from monomers that each contains two four-stranded β-sheets and a short α-helix and loop. In the tetramer, the ‘inner’ β-sheet forms a hydrophobic pocket while the helix and loop are solvent-exposed. Beta-amyloid (Aβ) aggregates bind to TTR, and the binding is significantly reduced in mutants L82A (on the loop) and L110A (on the inner β-sheet). Protection against Aβ toxicity was demonstrated for wild-type TTR but not L82A or L110A, providing a direct link between TTR-Aβ binding, and TTR-mediated cytoprotection. Protection is afforded at substoichiometric (1:100) TTR:Aβ molar ratios, and binding of Aβ to TTR is highest for partially aggregated materials and decreased for freshly-prepared or heavily aggregated Aβ, suggesting that TTR binds selectively to soluble toxic Aβ aggregates. A novel technique, nanoparticle tracking, is used to show that TTR arrests Aβ aggregation by both preventing formation of new aggregates and inhibiting growth of existing aggregates. TTR tetramers are normally quite stable; tetrameric structure is necessary for the protein’s transport functions, and mutations that decrease tetramer stability have been linked to TTR amyloid diseases. However, TTR monomers bind more Aβ than do tetramers, presumably because the hydrophobic ‘inner’ sheet is solvent-exposed upon tetramer disassembly. Wild-type and L110A tetramers, but not L82A, were destabilized when co-incubated with Aβ, suggesting that Aβ binding to L82 triggers tetramer dissociation. Taken together, these results suggest a novel mechanism of action for TTR: the EF helix/loop ‘senses’ the presence of soluble toxic Aβ oligomers, triggering destabilization of TTR tetramers and exposure of the hydrophobic inner sheet, which then ‘scavenges’ these toxic oligomers and prevents them from causing cell death PMID:23570378

  5. Accumulation of murine amyloid-β mimics early Alzheimer's disease.

    PubMed

    Krohn, Markus; Bracke, Alexander; Avchalumov, Yosef; Schumacher, Toni; Hofrichter, Jacqueline; Paarmann, Kristin; Fröhlich, Christina; Lange, Cathleen; Brüning, Thomas; von Bohlen Und Halbach, Oliver; Pahnke, Jens

    2015-08-01

    Amyloidosis mouse models of Alzheimer's disease are generally established by transgenic approaches leading to an overexpression of mutated human genes that are known to be involved in the generation of amyloid-β in Alzheimer's families. Although these models made substantial contributions to the current knowledge about the 'amyloid hypothesis' of Alzheimer's disease, the overproduction of amyloid-β peptides mimics only inherited (familiar) Alzheimer's disease, which accounts for <1% of all patients with Alzheimer's disease. The inherited form is even regarded a 'rare' disease according to the regulations for funding of the European Union (www.erare.eu). Here, we show that mice that are double-deficient for neprilysin (encoded by Mme), one major amyloid-β-degrading enzyme, and the ABC transporter ABCC1, a major contributor to amyloid-β clearance from the brain, develop various aspects of sporadic Alzheimer's disease mimicking the clinical stage of mild cognitive impairment. Using behavioural tests, electrophysiology and morphological analyses, we compared different ABC transporter-deficient animals and found that alterations are most prominent in neprilysin × ABCC1 double-deficient mice. We show that these mice have a reduced probability to survive, show increased anxiety in new environments, and have a reduced working memory performance. Furthermore, we detected morphological changes in the hippocampus and amygdala, e.g. astrogliosis and reduced numbers of synapses, leading to defective long-term potentiation in functional measurements. Compared to human, murine amyloid-β is poorly aggregating, due to changes in three amino acids at N-terminal positions 5, 10, and 13. Interestingly, our findings account for the action of early occurring amyloid-β species/aggregates, i.e. monomers and small amyloidoligomers. Thus, neprilysin × ABCC1 double-deficient mice present a new model for early effects of amyloid-β-related mild cognitive impairment that allows

  6. Detection of β-Amyloid Peptide Dimer in Solution by Fluorescence Resonance Energy Transfer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Han, Jun; Mei, Erwen; Kung, Mei-Ping; Kung, Hank; Dai, Hai-Lung

    2006-03-01

    Studies have suggested that there is a connection between ß-amyloid-derived diffusible ligands (ADDLs), small oligomers formed from clustering of peptides with 39-42 amino acid units, and pathogenicity of Alzheimer's disease. It is believed that the soluble ADDL oligomers eventually coagulate and precipitate into fibrils that cause neurotoxicity. Although there have been studies characterizing the fibrils structure and the large coagulate formation kinetics, little experimental information exists for the oligomers in the solution phase. We report here the use of fluorescence resonance energy transfer detected through a confocal microscope under single molecule conditions for the detection of the β-amyloid (1-40) peptide dimer in solution. The structure of the dimer is characterized in terms of the distance of the two N-terminals.

  7. Single-Molecule Imaging of Individual Amyloid Protein Aggregates in Human Biofluids

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    The misfolding and aggregation of proteins into amyloid fibrils characterizes many neurodegenerative disorders such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases. We report here a method, termed SAVE (single aggregate visualization by enhancement) imaging, for the ultrasensitive detection of individual amyloid fibrils and oligomers using single-molecule fluorescence microscopy. We demonstrate that this method is able to detect the presence of amyloid aggregates of α-synuclein, tau, and amyloid-β. In addition, we show that aggregates can also be identified in human cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). Significantly, we see a twofold increase in the average aggregate concentration in CSF from Parkinson’s disease patients compared to age-matched controls. Taken together, we conclude that this method provides an opportunity to characterize the structural nature of amyloid aggregates in a key biofluid, and therefore has the potential to study disease progression in both animal models and humans to enhance our understanding of neurodegenerative disorders. PMID:26800462

  8. Complexation of amyloid fibrils with charged conjugated polymers.

    PubMed

    Ghosh, Dhiman; Dutta, Paulami; Chakraborty, Chanchal; Singh, Pradeep K; Anoop, A; Jha, Narendra Nath; Jacob, Reeba S; Mondal, Mrityunjoy; Mankar, Shruti; Das, Subhadeep; Malik, Sudip; Maji, Samir K

    2014-04-01

    It has been suggested that conjugated charged polymers are amyloid imaging agents and promising therapeutic candidates for neurological disorders. However, very less is known about their efficacy in modulating the amyloid aggregation pathway. Here, we studied the modulation of Parkinson's disease associated α-synuclein (AS) amyloid assembly kinetics using conjugated polyfluorene polymers (PF, cationic; PFS, anionic). We also explored the complexation of these charged polymers with the various AS aggregated species including amyloid fibrils and oligomers using multidisciplinary biophysical techniques. Our data suggests that both polymers irrespective of their different charges in the side chains increase the fibrilization kinetics of AS and also remarkably change the morphology of the resultant amyloid fibrils. Both polymers were incorporated/aligned onto the AS amyloid fibrils as evident from electron microscopy (EM) and atomic force microscopy (AFM), and the resultant complexes were structurally distinct from their pristine form of both polymers and AS supported by FTIR study. Additionally, we observed that the mechanism of interactions between the polymers with different species of AS aggregates were markedly different.

  9. Current and future treatment of amyloid diseases.

    PubMed

    Ankarcrona, M; Winblad, B; Monteiro, C; Fearns, C; Powers, E T; Johansson, J; Westermark, G T; Presto, J; Ericzon, B-G; Kelly, J W

    2016-08-01

    There are more than 30 human proteins whose aggregation appears to cause degenerative maladies referred to as amyloid diseases or amyloidoses. These disorders are named after the characteristic cross-β-sheet amyloid fibrils that accumulate systemically or are localized to specific organs. In most cases, current treatment is limited to symptomatic approaches and thus disease-modifying therapies are needed. Alzheimer's disease is a neurodegenerative disorder with extracellular amyloid β-peptide (Aβ) fibrils and intracellular tau neurofibrillary tangles as pathological hallmarks. Numerous clinical trials have been conducted with passive and active immunotherapy, and small molecules to inhibit Aβ formation and aggregation or to enhance Aβ clearance; so far such clinical trials have been unsuccessful. Novel strategies are therefore required and here we will discuss the possibility of utilizing the chaperone BRICHOS to prevent Aβ aggregation and toxicity. Type 2 diabetes mellitus is symptomatically treated with insulin. However, the underlying pathology is linked to the aggregation and progressive accumulation of islet amyloid polypeptide as fibrils and oligomers, which are cytotoxic. Several compounds have been shown to inhibit islet amyloid aggregation and cytotoxicity in vitro. Future animal studies and clinical trials have to be conducted to determine their efficacy in vivo. The transthyretin (TTR) amyloidoses are a group of systemic degenerative diseases compromising multiple organ systems, caused by TTR aggregation. Liver transplantation decreases the generation of misfolded TTR and improves the quality of life for a subgroup of this patient population. Compounds that stabilize the natively folded, nonamyloidogenic, tetrameric conformation of TTR have been developed and the drug tafamidis is available as a promising treatment. PMID:27165517

  10. Conserved features of intermediates in amyloid assembly determine their benign or toxic states.

    PubMed

    Krishnan, Rajaraman; Goodman, Jessica L; Mukhopadhyay, Samrat; Pacheco, Chris D; Lemke, Edward A; Deniz, Ashok A; Lindquist, Susan

    2012-07-10

    Some amyloid-forming polypeptides are associated with devastating human diseases and others provide important biological functions. For both, oligomeric intermediates appear during amyloid assembly. Currently we have few tools for characterizing these conformationally labile intermediates and discerning what governs their benign versus toxic states. Here, we examine intermediates in the assembly of a normal, functional amyloid, the prion-determining region of yeast Sup35 (NM). During assembly, NM formed a variety of oligomers with different sizes and conformation-specific antibody reactivities. Earlier oligomers were less compact and reacted with the conformational antibody A11. More mature oligomers were more compact and reacted with conformational antibody OC. We found we could arrest NM in either of these two distinct oligomeric states with small molecules or crosslinking. The A11-reactive oligomers were more hydrophobic (as measured by Nile Red binding) and were highly toxic to neuronal cells, while OC-reactive oligomers were less hydrophobic and were not toxic. The A11 and OC antibodies were originally raised against oligomers of Aβ, an amyloidogenic peptide implicated in Alzheimer's disease (AD) that is completely unrelated to NM in sequence. Thus, this natural yeast prion samples two conformational states similar to those sampled by Aβ, and when assembly stalls at one of these two states, but not the other, it becomes extremely toxic. Our results have implications for selective pressures operating on the evolution of amyloid folds across a billion years of evolution. Understanding the features that govern such conformational transitions will shed light on human disease and evolution alike.

  11. Conserved features of intermediates in amyloid assembly determine their benign or toxic states

    PubMed Central

    Krishnan, Rajaraman; Goodman, Jessica L.; Mukhopadhyay, Samrat; Pacheco, Chris D.; Lemke, Edward A.; Deniz, Ashok A.; Lindquist, Susan

    2012-01-01

    Some amyloid-forming polypeptides are associated with devastating human diseases and others provide important biological functions. For both, oligomeric intermediates appear during amyloid assembly. Currently we have few tools for characterizing these conformationally labile intermediates and discerning what governs their benign versus toxic states. Here, we examine intermediates in the assembly of a normal, functional amyloid, the prion-determining region of yeast Sup35 (NM). During assembly, NM formed a variety of oligomers with different sizes and conformation-specific antibody reactivities. Earlier oligomers were less compact and reacted with the conformational antibody A11. More mature oligomers were more compact and reacted with conformational antibody OC. We found we could arrest NM in either of these two distinct oligomeric states with small molecules or crosslinking. The A11-reactive oligomers were more hydrophobic (as measured by Nile Red binding) and were highly toxic to neuronal cells, while OC-reactive oligomers were less hydrophobic and were not toxic. The A11 and OC antibodies were originally raised against oligomers of Aβ, an amyloidogenic peptide implicated in Alzheimer’s disease (AD) that is completely unrelated to NM in sequence. Thus, this natural yeast prion samples two conformational states similar to those sampled by Aβ, and when assembly stalls at one of these two states, but not the other, it becomes extremely toxic. Our results have implications for selective pressures operating on the evolution of amyloid folds across a billion years of evolution. Understanding the features that govern such conformational transitions will shed light on human disease and evolution alike. PMID:22745165

  12. Lipid rafts participate in aberrant degradative autophagic-lysosomal pathway of amyloid-beta peptide in Alzheimer's disease

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Xin; Yang, Chun; Liu, Yufeng; Li, Peng; Yang, Huiying; Dai, Jingxing; Qu, Rongmei; Yuan, Lin

    2014-01-01

    Amyloid-beta peptide is the main component of amyloid plaques, which are found in Alzheimer's disease. The generation and deposition of amyloid-beta is one of the crucial factors for the onset and progression of Alzheimer's disease. Lipid rafts are glycolipid-rich liquid domains of the plasma membrane, where certain types of protein tend to aggregate and intercalate. Lipid rafts are involved in the generation of amyloid-beta oligomers and the formation of amyloid-beta peptides. In this paper, we review the mechanism by which lipid rafts disturb the aberrant degradative autophagic-lysosomal pathway of amyloid-beta, which plays an important role in the pathological process of Alzheimer's disease. Moreover, we describe this mechanism from the view of the Two-system Theory of fasciology and thus, suggest that lipid rafts may be a new target of Alzheimer's disease treatment. PMID:25206748

  13. Aβ(1–40) forms five distinct amyloid structures whose β-sheet contents and fibril stabilities are correlated

    PubMed Central

    Kodali, Ravindra; Williams, Angela D.; Chemuru, Saketh; Wetzel, Ronald

    2010-01-01

    The ability of a single polypeptide sequence to grow into multiple stable amyloid fibrils sets these aggregates apart from most native globular proteins. The existence of multiple amyloid forms is the basis for strain effects in yeast prion biology, and may also contribute to variations in Alzheimer’s disease pathology. However, the structural basis for amyloid polymorphism is poorly understood. We report here five structurally distinct fibrillar aggregates of the Alzheimer’s plaque peptide Aβ(1–40), as well as a non-fibrillar aggregate induced by Zn+2. Each of these conformational forms exhibits a unique profile of physical properties, and all the fibrillar forms “breed true” in elongation reactions at a common set of growth conditions. Consistent with their defining cross-β structure, we find that in this series the amyloid fibrils containing more extensive β-sheet exhibit greater stability. At the same time, side chain packing outside of the β-sheet regions also contributes to stability, and to stability differences between polymorphic forms. Stability comparison is facilitated by the unique feature that the free energy of the monomer (equivalent to the unfolded state in a protein folding reaction) does not vary, and hence can be ignored, in the comparison of ΔG° of elongation values for each polymorphic fibril obtained at a single set of conditions. PMID:20600131

  14. Role of water in Protein Aggregation and Amyloid Polymorphism

    PubMed Central

    Thirumalai, D.; Reddy, Govardhan; Straub, John E.

    2011-01-01

    Conspectus The link between oligomers and amyloid fibrils and a variety of neurodegenerative diseases raises the need to decipher the principles governing protein aggregation. Mechanisms of in vivo amyloid formation involve a number of coconspirators and complex interactions with membranes. Nevertheless, it is believed that understanding the biophysical basis of in vitro amyloid formation in well-defined systems is important in discovering ligands that preferentially bind to regions that harbor amyloidogenic tendencies. Determination of structures of fibrils of a variety of peptides has set the stage for probing the dynamics of oligomer formation and amyloid growth using computer simulations. Most experimental and simulation studies have been interpreted largely from the perspective of proteins without much consideration of the role of solvent in enabling or inhibiting oligomer formation and assembly to protofilaments and amyloid fibrils. Here, we provide a perspective on how interactions with water affect folding landscapes of Aβ monomers, oligomer formation in Aβ16–22 fragment, protofilament formation in a peptide from yeast prion Sup35. Explicit molecular dynamics simulations of these systems illustrate how water controls the self-assembly of higher order structures and provide a structural basis for understanding the kinetics of oligomer and fibril growth. Simulations show that monomers of Aβ-peptides sample a number of compact conformations. Population of aggregation-prone structures (N*) with salt-bridge, which bear a striking similarity to the peptide structure in the fibril, requires overcoming a high desolvation barrier. In general, sequences for which N* structures are not significantly populated are unlikely to aggregate. Generically oligomers and fibrils form in two steps. In the first stage water is expelled from the region between peptides rich in hydrophobic residues (for example Aβ16–22) resulting in the disordered oligomers. In the second

  15. Assembly of amyloid β peptides in the presence of fibril seeds: one-pot coarse-grained molecular dynamics simulations.

    PubMed

    Xu, Liang; Chen, Yonggang; Wang, Xiaojuan

    2014-08-01

    The identification of a secondary nucleation pathway in the early aggregation of amyloid peptides suggests that the generation of toxic oligomers involves both monomers and preformed fibril seeds. To elucidate the underlying molecular mechanism, a set of one-pot coarse-grained molecular dynamics simulations was performed to investigate the self-assembly of amyloid β peptides in the presence of fibril seeds. It was observed that fibril seeds alone randomly assemble into an elongated protofibril, whereas monomers alone form an elongated globular oligomer with various morphologies. In the mixture of monomers and fibril seeds, both the self-assembly of monomers into small oligomers and the association of monomers and oligomers on the surface of fibril seeds are primarily driven by hydrophobic interactions. The cooperativity of conformational selection and competition leads to different binding propensity of two hydrophobic surfaces of fibril seeds. The molecular architecture of the final aggregate shows that the fibril seeds establish the elongated framework, and oligomers cover them. Oligomers exposed to the solvent are less compact and unstable and can be disassociated from the fibril seeds, providing an origin for oligomers generated from the secondary nucleation pathway.

  16. Optimization of the All-D Peptide D3 for Aβ Oligomer Elimination.

    PubMed

    Klein, Antonia Nicole; Ziehm, Tamar; Tusche, Markus; Buitenhuis, Johan; Bartnik, Dirk; Boeddrich, Annett; Wiglenda, Thomas; Wanker, Erich; Funke, Susanne Aileen; Brener, Oleksandr; Gremer, Lothar; Kutzsche, Janine; Willbold, Dieter

    2016-01-01

    The aggregation of amyloid-β (Aβ) is postulated to be the crucial event in Alzheimer's disease (AD). In particular, small neurotoxic Aβ oligomers are considered to be responsible for the development and progression of AD. Therefore, elimination of thesis oligomers represents a potential causal therapy of AD. Starting from the well-characterized d-enantiomeric peptide D3, we identified D3 derivatives that bind monomeric Aβ. The underlying hypothesis is that ligands bind monomeric Aβ and stabilize these species within the various equilibria with Aβ assemblies, leading ultimately to the elimination of Aβ oligomers. One of the hereby identified d-peptides, DB3, and a head-to-tail tandem of DB3, DB3DB3, were studied in detail. Both peptides were found to: (i) inhibit the formation of Thioflavin T-positive fibrils; (ii) bind to Aβ monomers with micromolar affinities; (iii) eliminate Aβ oligomers; (iv) reduce Aβ-induced cytotoxicity; and (v) disassemble preformed Aβ aggregates. The beneficial effects of DB3 were improved by DB3DB3, which showed highly enhanced efficacy. Our approach yielded Aβ monomer-stabilizing ligands that can be investigated as a suitable therapeutic strategy against AD. PMID:27105346

  17. Optimization of the All-D Peptide D3 for Aβ Oligomer Elimination

    PubMed Central

    Klein, Antonia Nicole; Ziehm, Tamar; Tusche, Markus; Buitenhuis, Johan; Bartnik, Dirk; Boeddrich, Annett; Wiglenda, Thomas; Wanker, Erich; Funke, Susanne Aileen; Brener, Oleksandr; Gremer, Lothar; Kutzsche, Janine; Willbold, Dieter

    2016-01-01

    The aggregation of amyloid-β (Aβ) is postulated to be the crucial event in Alzheimer’s disease (AD). In particular, small neurotoxic Aβ oligomers are considered to be responsible for the development and progression of AD. Therefore, elimination of thesis oligomers represents a potential causal therapy of AD. Starting from the well-characterized d-enantiomeric peptide D3, we identified D3 derivatives that bind monomeric Aβ. The underlying hypothesis is that ligands bind monomeric Aβ and stabilize these species within the various equilibria with Aβ assemblies, leading ultimately to the elimination of Aβ oligomers. One of the hereby identified d-peptides, DB3, and a head-to-tail tandem of DB3, DB3DB3, were studied in detail. Both peptides were found to: (i) inhibit the formation of Thioflavin T-positive fibrils; (ii) bind to Aβ monomers with micromolar affinities; (iii) eliminate Aβ oligomers; (iv) reduce Aβ-induced cytotoxicity; and (v) disassemble preformed Aβ aggregates. The beneficial effects of DB3 were improved by DB3DB3, which showed highly enhanced efficacy. Our approach yielded Aβ monomer-stabilizing ligands that can be investigated as a suitable therapeutic strategy against AD. PMID:27105346

  18. The Aβ peptide forms non-amyloid fibrils in the presence of carbon nanotubes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Luo, Jinghui; Wärmländer, Sebastian K. T. S.; Yu, Chien-Hung; Muhammad, Kamran; Gräslund, Astrid; Pieter Abrahams, Jan

    2014-05-01

    Carbon nanotubes have specific properties that make them potentially useful in biomedicine and biotechnology. However, carbon nanotubes may themselves be toxic, making it imperative to understand how carbon nanotubes interact with biomolecules such as proteins. Here, we used NMR, CD, and ThT/fluorescence spectroscopy together with AFM imaging to study pH-dependent molecular interactions between single walled carbon nanotubes (SWNTs) and the amyloid-beta (Aβ) peptide. The aggregation of the Aβ peptide, first into oligomers and later into amyloid fibrils, is considered to be the toxic mechanism behind Alzheimer's disease. We found that SWNTs direct the Aβ peptides to form a new class of β-sheet-rich yet non-amyloid fibrils.Carbon nanotubes have specific properties that make them potentially useful in biomedicine and biotechnology. However, carbon nanotubes may themselves be toxic, making it imperative to understand how carbon nanotubes interact with biomolecules such as proteins. Here, we used NMR, CD, and ThT/fluorescence spectroscopy together with AFM imaging to study pH-dependent molecular interactions between single walled carbon nanotubes (SWNTs) and the amyloid-beta (Aβ) peptide. The aggregation of the Aβ peptide, first into oligomers and later into amyloid fibrils, is considered to be the toxic mechanism behind Alzheimer's disease. We found that SWNTs direct the Aβ peptides to form a new class of β-sheet-rich yet non-amyloid fibrils. Electronic supplementary information (ESI) available. See DOI: 10.1039/c4nr00291a

  19. Key Points Concerning Amyloid Infectivity and Prion-Like Neuronal Invasion.

    PubMed

    Espargaró, Alba; Busquets, Maria Antònia; Estelrich, Joan; Sabate, Raimon

    2016-01-01

    Amyloid aggregation has been related to an increasing number of human illnesses, from Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases (AD/PD) to Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease. Commonly, only prions have been considered as infectious agents with a high capacity of propagation. However, recent publications have shown that many amyloid proteins, including amyloid β-peptide, α-synuclein (α-syn) and tau protein, also propagate in a "prion-like" manner. Meanwhile, no link between propagation of pathological proteins and neurotoxicity has been demonstrated. The extremely low infectivity under natural conditions of most non-prion amyloids is far below the capacity to spread exhibited by prions. Nonetheless, it is important to elucidate the key factors that cause non-prion amyloids to become infectious agents. In recent years, important advances in our understanding of the amyloid processes of amyloid-like proteins and unrelated prions (i.e., yeast and fungal prions) have yielded essential information that can shed light on the prion phenomenon in mammals and humans. As shown in this review, recent evidence suggests that there are key factors that could dramatically modulate the prion capacity of proteins in the amyloid conformation. The concentration of nuclei, the presence of oligomers, and the toxicity, resistance and localization of these aggregates could all be key factors affecting their spread. In short, those factors that favor the high concentration of extracellular nuclei or oligomers, characterized by small size, with a low toxicity could dramatically increase prion propensity; whereas low concentrations of highly toxic intracellular amyloids, with a large size, would effectively prevent infectivity. PMID:27147962

  20. Key Points Concerning Amyloid Infectivity and Prion-Like Neuronal Invasion

    PubMed Central

    Espargaró, Alba; Busquets, Maria Antònia; Estelrich, Joan; Sabate, Raimon

    2016-01-01

    Amyloid aggregation has been related to an increasing number of human illnesses, from Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases (AD/PD) to Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease. Commonly, only prions have been considered as infectious agents with a high capacity of propagation. However, recent publications have shown that many amyloid proteins, including amyloid β-peptide, α-synuclein (α-syn) and tau protein, also propagate in a “prion-like” manner. Meanwhile, no link between propagation of pathological proteins and neurotoxicity has been demonstrated. The extremely low infectivity under natural conditions of most non-prion amyloids is far below the capacity to spread exhibited by prions. Nonetheless, it is important to elucidate the key factors that cause non-prion amyloids to become infectious agents. In recent years, important advances in our understanding of the amyloid processes of amyloid-like proteins and unrelated prions (i.e., yeast and fungal prions) have yielded essential information that can shed light on the prion phenomenon in mammals and humans. As shown in this review, recent evidence suggests that there are key factors that could dramatically modulate the prion capacity of proteins in the amyloid conformation. The concentration of nuclei, the presence of oligomers, and the toxicity, resistance and localization of these aggregates could all be key factors affecting their spread. In short, those factors that favor the high concentration of extracellular nuclei or oligomers, characterized by small size, with a low toxicity could dramatically increase prion propensity; whereas low concentrations of highly toxic intracellular amyloids, with a large size, would effectively prevent infectivity. PMID:27147962

  1. Interactions between amyloid-β and Tau fragments promote aberrant aggregates: implications for amyloid toxicity.

    PubMed

    Do, Thanh D; Economou, Nicholas J; Chamas, Ali; Buratto, Steven K; Shea, Joan-Emma; Bowers, Michael T

    2014-09-25

    We have investigated at the oligomeric level interactions between Aβ(25-35) and Tau(273-284), two important fragments of the amyloid-β and Tau proteins, implicated in Alzheimer's disease. We are able to directly observe the coaggregation of these two peptides by probing the conformations of early heteroligomers and the macroscopic morphologies of the aggregates. Ion-mobility experiment and theoretical modeling indicate that the interactions of the two fragments affect the self-assembly processes of both peptides. Tau(273-284) shows a high affinity to form heteroligomers with existing Aβ(25-35) monomer and oligomers in solution. The configurations and characteristics of the heteroligomers are determined by whether the population of Aβ(25-35) or Tau(273-284) is dominant. As a result, two types of aggregates are observed in the mixture with distinct morphologies and dimensions from those of pure Aβ(25-35) fibrils. The incorporation of some Tau into β-rich Aβ(25-35) oligomers reduces the aggregation propensity of Aβ(25-35) but does not fully abolish fibril formation. On the other hand, by forming complexes with Aβ(25-35), Tau monomers and dimers can advance to larger oligomers and form granular aggregates. These heteroligomers may contribute to toxicity through loss of normal function of Tau or inherent toxicity of the aggregates themselves. PMID:25153942

  2. Interactions between Amyloid-β and Tau Fragments Promote Aberrant Aggregates: Implications for Amyloid Toxicity

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    We have investigated at the oligomeric level interactions between Aβ(25–35) and Tau(273–284), two important fragments of the amyloid-β and Tau proteins, implicated in Alzheimer’s disease. We are able to directly observe the coaggregation of these two peptides by probing the conformations of early heteroligomers and the macroscopic morphologies of the aggregates. Ion-mobility experiment and theoretical modeling indicate that the interactions of the two fragments affect the self-assembly processes of both peptides. Tau(273–284) shows a high affinity to form heteroligomers with existing Aβ(25–35) monomer and oligomers in solution. The configurations and characteristics of the heteroligomers are determined by whether the population of Aβ(25–35) or Tau(273–284) is dominant. As a result, two types of aggregates are observed in the mixture with distinct morphologies and dimensions from those of pure Aβ(25–35) fibrils. The incorporation of some Tau into β-rich Aβ(25–35) oligomers reduces the aggregation propensity of Aβ(25–35) but does not fully abolish fibril formation. On the other hand, by forming complexes with Aβ(25–35), Tau monomers and dimers can advance to larger oligomers and form granular aggregates. These heteroligomers may contribute to toxicity through loss of normal function of Tau or inherent toxicity of the aggregates themselves. PMID:25153942

  3. The effect of tachykinin neuropeptides on amyloid {beta} aggregation

    SciTech Connect

    Flashner, Efrat; Raviv, Uri; Friedler, Assaf

    2011-04-01

    Research highlights: {yields} Mechanistic explanation of how tachykinin neuropeptides reduce A{beta}-induced neurotoxicity. {yields} Biophysical studies suggest that tachykinins do not modulate the distribution of A{beta} oligomeric states, but rather may incorporate into the fibrils. {yields} A possible strategy to inhibit toxicity of amyloid fibrils. -- Abstract: A hallmark of Alzheimer's disease is production of amyloid {beta} peptides resulting from aberrant cleavage of the amyloid precursor protein. Amyloid {beta} assembles into fibrils under physiological conditions, through formation of neurotoxic intermediate oligomers. Tachykinin peptides are known to affect amyloid {beta} neurotoxicity in cells. To understand the mechanism of this effect, we studied how tachykinins affect A{beta}(1-40) aggregation in vitro. Fibrils grown in the presence of tachykinins exhibited reduced thioflavin T (ThT) fluorescence, while their morphology, observed in transmission electron microscopy (TEM), did not alter. Cross linking studies revealed that the distribution of low molecular weight species was not affected by tachykinins. Our results suggest that there may be a specific interaction between tachykinins and A{beta}(1-40) that allows them to co-assemble. This effect may explain the reduction of A{beta}(1-40) neurotoxicity in cells treated with tachykinins.

  4. Amyloid structure and assembly: insights from scanning transmission electron microscopy.

    PubMed

    Goldsbury, Claire; Baxa, Ulrich; Simon, Martha N; Steven, Alasdair C; Engel, Andreas; Wall, Joseph S; Aebi, Ueli; Müller, Shirley A

    2011-01-01

    Amyloid fibrils are filamentous protein aggregates implicated in several common diseases such as Alzheimer's disease and type II diabetes. Similar structures are also the molecular principle of the infectious spongiform encephalopathies such as Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease in humans, scrapie in sheep, and of the so-called yeast prions, inherited non-chromosomal elements found in yeast and fungi. Scanning transmission electron microscopy (STEM) is often used to delineate the assembly mechanism and structural properties of amyloid aggregates. In this review we consider specifically contributions and limitations of STEM for the investigation of amyloid assembly pathways, fibril polymorphisms and structural models of amyloid fibrils. This type of microscopy provides the only method to directly measure the mass-per-length (MPL) of individual filaments. Made on both in vitro assembled and ex vivo samples, STEM mass measurements have illuminated the hierarchical relationships between amyloid fibrils and revealed that polymorphic fibrils and various globular oligomers can assemble simultaneously from a single polypeptide. The MPLs also impose strong constraints on possible packing schemes, assisting in molecular model building when combined with high-resolution methods like solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) and electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR).

  5. Amyloid Structure and Assembly: Insights from Scanning Transmission Electron Microscopy

    SciTech Connect

    Goldsbury, C.; Wall, J.; Baxa, U.; Simon, M. N.; Steven, A. C.; Engel, A.; Aebi, U.; Muller, S. A.

    2011-01-01

    Amyloid fibrils are filamentous protein aggregates implicated in several common diseases such as Alzheimer's disease and type II diabetes. Similar structures are also the molecular principle of the infectious spongiform encephalopathies such as Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease in humans, scrapie in sheep, and of the so-called yeast prions, inherited non-chromosomal elements found in yeast and fungi. Scanning transmission electron microscopy (STEM) is often used to delineate the assembly mechanism and structural properties of amyloid aggregates. In this review we consider specifically contributions and limitations of STEM for the investigation of amyloid assembly pathways, fibril polymorphisms and structural models of amyloid fibrils. This type of microscopy provides the only method to directly measure the mass-per-length (MPL) of individual filaments. Made on both in vitro assembled and ex vivo samples, STEM mass measurements have illuminated the hierarchical relationships between amyloid fibrils and revealed that polymorphic fibrils and various globular oligomers can assemble simultaneously from a single polypeptide. The MPLs also impose strong constraints on possible packing schemes, assisting in molecular model building when combined with high-resolution methods like solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) and electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR).

  6. Surface Mediated Self-Assembly of Amyloid Peptides

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fakhraai, Zahra

    2015-03-01

    Amyloid fibrils have been considered as causative agents in many neurodegenerative diseases, including Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, type II diabetes and amyloidosis. Amyloid fibrils form when proteins or peptides misfold into one dimensional crystals of stacked beta-sheets. In solution, amyloid fibrils form through a nucleation and growth mechanism. The rate limiting nucleation step requires a critical concentration much larger than those measured in physiological conditions. As such the exact origins of the seeds or oligomers that result in the formation of fully mature fibrils in the body remain topic intense studies. It has been suggested that surfaces and interfaces can enhance the fibrillization rate. However, studies of the mechanism and kinetics of the surface-mediated fibrillization are technologically challenging due to the small size of the oligomer and protofibril species. Using smart sample preparation technique to dry the samples after various incubation times we are able to study the kinetics of fibril formation both in solution and in the vicinity of various surfaces using high-resolution atomic force microscopy. These studies elucidate the role of surfaces in catalyzing amyloid peptide formation through a nucleation-free process. The nucleation free self-assembly is rapid and requires much smaller concentrations of peptides or proteins. We show that this process resembles diffusion limited aggregation and is governed by the peptide adhesion rate, two -dimensional diffusion of the peptides on the surface, and preferential interactions between the peptides. These studies suggest an alternative pathway for amyloid formation may exist, which could lead to new criteria for disease prevention and alternative therapies. Research was partially supported by a seed grant from the National Institute of Aging of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) under Award Number P30AG010124 (PI: John Trojanowski) and the University of Pennsylvania.

  7. Brazilin inhibits amyloid β-protein fibrillogenesis, remodels amyloid fibrils and reduces amyloid cytotoxicity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Du, Wen-Jie; Guo, Jing-Jing; Gao, Ming-Tao; Hu, Sheng-Quan; Dong, Xiao-Yan; Han, Yi-Fan; Liu, Fu-Feng; Jiang, Shaoyi; Sun, Yan

    2015-01-01

    Soluble amyloid β-protein (Aβ) oligomers, the main neurotoxic species, are predominantly formed from monomers through a fibril-catalyzed secondary nucleation. Herein, we virtually screened an in-house library of natural compounds and discovered brazilin as a dual functional compound in both Aβ42 fibrillogenesis inhibition and mature fibril remodeling, leading to significant reduction in Aβ42 cytotoxicity. The potent inhibitory effect of brazilin was proven by an IC50 of 1.5 +/- 0.3 μM, which was smaller than that of (-)-epigallocatechin gallate in Phase III clinical trials and about one order of magnitude smaller than those of curcumin and resveratrol. Most importantly, it was found that brazilin redirected Aβ42 monomers and its mature fibrils into unstructured Aβ aggregates with some β-sheet structures, which could prevent both the primary nucleation and the fibril-catalyzed secondary nucleation. Molecular simulations demonstrated that brazilin inhibited Aβ42 fibrillogenesis by directly binding to Aβ42 species via hydrophobic interactions and hydrogen bonding and remodeled mature fibrils by disrupting the intermolecular salt bridge Asp23-Lys28 via hydrogen bonding. Both experimental and computational studies revealed a different working mechanism of brazilin from that of known inhibitors. These findings indicate that brazilin is of great potential as a neuroprotective and therapeutic agent for Alzheimer's disease.

  8. [Physico-chemical methods for studing β-amyloid aggregation].

    PubMed

    Radko, S P; Khmeleva, S A; Suprun, E V; Kozin, S A; Bodoev, N V; Makarov, A A; Archakov, A I; Shumyantseva, V V

    2015-01-01

    Alzheimer's disease is the most prevalent neurodegenerative pathology. According to the amyloid cascade hypothesis, a key event of the Alzheimer's disease pathogenesis is a transition of the β-amyloid peptide (Аβ) from the monomeric form to the aggregated state. The mechanism of Аβ aggregation is intensively studied in vitro, by means of synthetic peptides and various physico-chemical methods allowing evaluation of size, molecular structure, and morphology of the formed aggregates. The paper reviews both the well-known and recently introduced physico-chemical methods for analysis of Аβ aggregation, including microscopу, optical and fluorescent methods, method of electron paramagnetic resonance, electrochemical and electrophoretic methods, gel-filtration, and mass spectrometric methods. Merits and drawbacks of the methods are discussed. The unique possibility to simultaneously observe Аβ monomers as well oligomers and large aggregates by means of atomic force microscopy or fluorescence correlation spectroscopy is emphasized. The high detection sensitivity of the latter method, monitoring the aggregation process in Аβ solutions at low peptide concentrations is underlined. Among mass spectrometric methods, the ion mobility mass spectrometry is marked out as a method enabling to obtain information about both the spectrum of Аβ oligomers and their structure. It is pointed out that the use of several methods giving the complementary data about Аβ aggregates is the best experimental approach to studying the process of b-amyloid peptide aggregation in vitro.

  9. Ballistic Energy Transport in Oligomers.

    PubMed

    Rubtsova, Natalia I; Qasim, Layla N; Kurnosov, Arkady A; Burin, Alexander L; Rubtsov, Igor V

    2015-09-15

    The development of nanocomposite materials with desired heat management properties, including nanowires, layered semiconductor structures, and self-assembled monolayer (SAM) junctions, attracts broad interest. Such materials often involve polymeric/oligomeric components and can feature high or low thermal conductivity, depending on their design. For example, in SAM junctions made of alkane chains sandwiched between metal layers, the thermal conductivity can be very low, whereas the fibers of ordered polyethylene chains feature high thermal conductivity, exceeding that of many pure metals. The thermal conductivity of nanostructured materials is determined by the energy transport between and within each component of the material, which all need to be understood for optimizing the properties. For example, in the SAM junctions, the energy transport across the metal-chain interface as well as the transport through the chains both determine the overall heat conductivity, however, to separate these contributions is difficult. Recently developed relaxation-assisted two-dimensional infrared (RA 2DIR) spectroscopy is capable of studying energy transport in individual molecules in the time domain. The transport in a molecule is initiated by exciting an IR-active group (a tag); the method records the influence of the excess energy on another mode in the molecule (a reporter). The energy transport time can be measured for different reporters, and the transport speed through the molecule is evaluated. Various molecules were interrogated by RA 2DIR: in molecules without repeating units (disordered), the transport mechanism was expected and found to be diffusive. The transport via an oligomer backbone can potentially be ballistic, as the chain offers delocalized vibrational states. Indeed, the transport regime via three tested types of oligomers, alkanes, polyethyleneglycols, and perfluoroalkanes was found to be ballistic, whereas the transport within the end groups was diffusive

  10. An azobenzene photoswitch sheds light on turn nucleation in amyloid-β self-assembly.

    PubMed

    Doran, Todd M; Anderson, Elizabeth A; Latchney, Sarah E; Opanashuk, Lisa A; Nilsson, Bradley L

    2012-03-21

    Amyloid-β (Aβ) self-assembly into cross-β amyloid fibrils is implicated in a causative role in Alzheimer's disease pathology. Uncertainties persist regarding the mechanisms of amyloid self-assembly and the role of metastable prefibrillar aggregates. Aβ fibrils feature a sheet-turn-sheet motif in the constituent β-strands; as such, turn nucleation has been proposed as a rate-limiting step in the self-assembly pathway. Herein, we report the use of an azobenzene β-hairpin mimetic to study the role turn nucleation plays on Aβ self-assembly. [3-(3-Aminomethyl)phenylazo]phenylacetic acid (AMPP) was incorporated into the putative turn region of Aβ42 to elicit temporal control over Aβ42 turn nucleation; it was hypothesized that self-assembly would be favored in the cis-AMPP conformation if β-hairpin formation occurs during Aβ self-assembly and that the trans-AMPP conformer would display attenuated fibrillization propensity. It was unexpectedly observed that the trans-AMPP Aβ42 conformer forms fibrillar constructs that are similar in almost all characteristics, including cytotoxicity, to wild-type Aβ42. Conversely, the cis-AMPP Aβ42 congeners formed nonfibrillar, amorphous aggregates that exhibited no cytotoxicity. Additionally, cis-trans photoisomerization resulted in rapid formation of native-like amyloid fibrils and trans-cis conversion in the fibril state reduced the population of native-like fibrils. Thus, temporal photocontrol over Aβ turn conformation provides significant insight into Aβ self-assembly. Specifically, Aβ mutants that adopt stable β-turns form aggregate structures that are unable to enter folding pathways leading to cross-β fibrils and cytotoxic prefibrillar intermediates.

  11. Plasticity of amyloid fibrils†

    PubMed Central

    Wetzel, Ronald; Shivaprasad, Shankaramma; Williams, Angela D.

    2008-01-01

    In experiments designed to characterize the basis of amyloid fibril stability through mutational analysis of the Aβ(1-40) molecule, fibrils exhibit consistent, significant structural malleability. In these results, and in other properties, amyloid fibrils appear to more resemble plastic materials generated from synthetic polymers than they do globular proteins. Thus, like synthetic polymers and plastics, amyloid fibrils exhibit both polymorphism, the ability of one polypeptide to form aggregates of different morphologies, and isomorphism, the ability of different polypeptides to grow into a fibrillar amyloid morphology. This view links amyloid with the prehistorical and 20th Century use of proteins as starting materials to make films, fibers, and plastics, and with the classic protein fiber stretching experiments of the Astbury group. Viewing amyloid from the point of view of the polymer chemist may shed new light on issues such as the role of protofibrils in the mechanism of amyloid formation, the biological potency of fibrils, and the prospects for discovering inhibitors of amyloid fibril formation. PMID:17198370

  12. Insight into the stability of cross-β amyloid fibril from VEALYL short peptide with molecular dynamics simulation.

    PubMed

    Ye, Wei; Chen, Yue; Wang, Wei; Yu, Qingfen; Li, Yixue; Zhang, Jian; Chen, Hai-Feng

    2012-01-01

    Amyloid fibrils are found in many fatal neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, type II diabetes, and prion disease. The VEALYL short peptide from insulin has been confirmed to aggregate amyloid-like fibrils. However, the aggregation mechanism of amyloid fibril is poorly understood. Here, we utilized molecular dynamics simulation to analyse the stability of VEALYL hexamer. The statistical results indicate that hydrophobic residues play key roles in stabilizing VEALYL hexamer. Single point and two linkage mutants confirmed that Val1, Leu4, and Tyr5 of VEALYL are key residues. The consistency of the results for the VEALYL oligomer suggests that the intermediate states might be trimer (3-0) and pentamer(3-2). These results can help us to obtain an insight into the aggregation mechanism of amyloid fibril. These methods can be used to study the stability of amyloid fibril from other short peptides.

  13. Amyloid Beta Peptide Slows Down Sensory-Induced Hippocampal Oscillations

    PubMed Central

    Peña-Ortega, Fernando; Bernal-Pedraza, Ramón

    2012-01-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) progresses with a deterioration of hippocampal function that is likely induced by amyloid beta (Aβ) oligomers. Hippocampal function is strongly dependent on theta rhythm, and disruptions in this rhythm have been related to the reduction of cognitive performance in AD. Accordingly, both AD patients and AD-transgenic mice show an increase in theta rhythm at rest but a reduction in cognitive-induced theta rhythm. We have previously found that monomers of the short sequence of Aβ (peptide 25–35) reduce sensory-induced theta oscillations. However, considering on the one hand that different Aβ sequences differentially affect hippocampal oscillations and on the other hand that Aβ oligomers seem to be responsible for the cognitive decline observed in AD, here we aimed to explore the effect of Aβ oligomers on sensory-induced theta rhythm. Our results show that intracisternal injection of Aβ1–42 oligomers, which has no significant effect on spontaneous hippocampal activity, disrupts the induction of theta rhythm upon sensory stimulation. Instead of increasing the power in the theta band, the hippocampus of Aβ-treated animals responds to sensory stimulation (tail pinch) with an increase in lower frequencies. These findings demonstrate that Aβ alters induced theta rhythm, providing an in vivo model to test for therapeutic approaches to overcome Aβ-induced hippocampal and cognitive dysfunctions. PMID:22611415

  14. Turn nucleation perturbs amyloid β self-assembly and cytotoxicity.

    PubMed

    Doran, Todd M; Anderson, Elizabeth A; Latchney, Sarah E; Opanashuk, Lisa A; Nilsson, Bradley L

    2012-08-10

    The accumulation of senile plaques composed of amyloid β (Aβ) fibrils is a hallmark of Alzheimer's disease, although prefibrillar oligomeric species are believed to be the primary neurotoxic congeners in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease. Uncertainty regarding the mechanistic relationship between Aβ oligomer and fibril formation and the cytotoxicity of these aggregate species persists. β-Turn formation has been proposed to be a potential rate-limiting step during Aβ fibrillogenesis. The effect of turn nucleation on Aβ self-assembly was probed by systematically replacing amino acid pairs in the putative turn region of Aβ (residues 24-27) with d-ProGly ((D)PG), an effective turn-nucleating motif. The kinetic, thermodynamic, and cytotoxic effects of these mutations were characterized. It was found that turn formation dramatically accelerated Aβ fibril self-assembly dependent on the site of turn nucleation. The cytotoxicity of the three (D)PG-containing Aβ variants was significantly lower than that of wild-type Aβ40, presumably due to decreased oligomer populations as a function of a more rapid progression to mature fibrils; oligomer populations were not eliminated, however, suggesting that turn formation is also a feature of oligomer structures. These results indicate that turn nucleation is a critical step in Aβ40 fibril formation.

  15. The amyloid precursor protein: beyond amyloid

    PubMed Central

    Zheng, Hui; Koo, Edward H

    2006-01-01

    The amyloid precursor protein (APP) takes a central position in Alzheimer's disease (AD) pathogenesis: APP processing generates the β-amyloid (Aβ) peptides, which are deposited as the amyloid plaques in brains of AD individuals; Point mutations and duplications of APP are causal for a subset of early onset of familial Alzheimer's disease (FAD). Not surprisingly, the production and pathogenic effect of Aβ has been the central focus in AD field. Nevertheless, the biological properties of APP have also been the subject of intense investigation since its identification nearly 20 years ago as it demonstrates a number of interesting putative physiological roles. Several attractive models of APP function have been put forward recently based on in vitro biochemical studies. Genetic analyses of gain- and loss-of-function mutants in Drosophila and mouse have also revealed important insights into its biological activities in vivo. This article will review the current understanding of APP physiological functions. PMID:16930452

  16. Alzheimer's-associated Abeta oligomers show altered structure, immunoreactivity and synaptotoxicity with low doses of oleocanthal.

    PubMed

    Pitt, Jason; Roth, William; Lacor, Pascale; Smith, Amos B; Blankenship, Matthew; Velasco, Pauline; De Felice, Fernanda; Breslin, Paul; Klein, William L

    2009-10-15

    It now appears likely that soluble oligomers of amyloid-beta1-42 peptide, rather than insoluble fibrils, act as the primary neurotoxin in Alzheimer's disease (AD). Consequently, compounds capable of altering the assembly state of these oligomers (referred to as ADDLs) may have potential for AD therapeutics. Phenolic compounds are of particular interest for their ability to disrupt Abeta oligomerization and reduce pathogenicity. This study has focused on oleocanthal (OC), a naturally-occurring phenolic compound found in extra-virgin olive oil. OC increased the immunoreactivity of soluble Abeta species, when assayed with both sequence- and conformation-specific Abeta antibodies, indicating changes in oligomer structure. Analysis of oligomers in the presence of OC showed an upward shift in MW and a ladder-like distribution of SDS-stable ADDL subspecies. In comparison with control ADDLs, oligomers formed in the presence of OC (Abeta-OC) showed equivalent colocalization at synapses but exhibited greater immunofluorescence as a result of increased antibody recognition. The enhanced signal at synapses was not due to increased synaptic binding, as direct detection of fluorescently-labeled ADDLs showed an overall reduction in ADDL signal in the presence of OC. Decreased binding to synapses was accompanied by significantly less synaptic deterioration assayed by drebrin loss. Additionally, treatment with OC improved antibody clearance of ADDLs. These results indicate oleocanthal is capable of altering the oligomerization state of ADDLs while protecting neurons from the synaptopathological effects of ADDLs and suggest OC as a lead compound for development in AD therapeutics. PMID:19631677

  17. Conformational Dynamics of Specific Aβ Oligomers Govern Their Ability To Replicate and Induce Neuronal Apoptosis.

    PubMed

    Dean, Dexter N; Pate, Kayla M; Moss, Melissa A; Rangachari, Vijayaraghavan

    2016-04-19

    Oligomers of amyloid-β (Aβ) have emerged as the primary toxic agents responsible for early synaptic dysfunction and neuronal death in Alzheimer's disease (AD). Characterization of oligomers is an important step in the progress toward delineating the complex molecular mechanisms involved in AD pathogenesis. In our previous reports, we established that a distinct 12-24mer neurotoxic oligomer of Aβ42, called Large Fatty Acid derived Oligomers (LFAOs), exhibits a unique property of replication in which LFAOs directly duplicate to quantitatively larger amounts upon interacting with monomers. This self-propagative process of replication is somewhat reminiscent of prion propagation. In this report, we sought to investigate the concentration-dependent conformational dynamics LFAOs undergo and how such transitions manifest in their ability to replicate and induce neuronal apoptosis. The results indicate that LFAOs undergo a concentration-dependent transition between 12mers and disperse 12-24mers with a dissociation constant (Kd) of 0.1 μM. The two species differ in their respective tertiary/quaternary structures but not their secondary structures. This conformational dynamics of LFAOs correlates with their ability to replicate and to induce apoptosis in SH-SY5Y human neuroblastoma cells, with 12mers being more neurotoxic and prone to replication than 12-24mers. The latter result implicates the replication process dominates at low physiological concentrations. The observations made in this report may have profound significance in deciphering the elusive roles of Aβ oligomer phenotypes and in determining their prion-type behavior in AD pathology.

  18. Brain oligomeric β-amyloid but not total amyloid plaque burden correlates with neuronal loss and astrocyte inflammatory response in amyloid precursor protein/tau transgenic mice.

    PubMed

    DaRocha-Souto, Bibiana; Scotton, Thomas C; Coma, Mireia; Serrano-Pozo, Alberto; Hashimoto, Tadafumi; Serenó, Lidia; Rodríguez, Marta; Sánchez, Belen; Hyman, Bradley T; Gómez-Isla, Teresa

    2011-05-01

    It has long been assumed that β-amyloid (Aβ) had to assemble into fibrillar amyloid plaques to exert its neurotoxic effects in Alzheimer disease. An alternative hypothesis is that soluble oligomers ofAβ play a much larger role in neuronal damage than the insoluble component. We have tested these competing hypotheses in vivo by studying the clinicopathologic correlates of oligomeric Aβ species and classic fibrillar amyloid plaques in the brains of double-transgenic APP-tau mice up to 17 months of age. Biochemical and immunohistochemical measures of brain oligomeric Aβ exponentially increased with age. Oligomeric Aβ load correlated with morphological markers of fibrillar Aβ deposition. In contrast to total amyloid plaque burden, the amount of oligomeric Aβ deposits labeled by the conformational epitope-specific antibody Nab61 closely correlated with neuronal loss and numbers of astrocytes in the entorhinal cortex and the CA1 hippocampal subfield. However, like other morphological Aβ measurements, brain oligomeric Aβ burden did not correlate well with memory deficits in these mice. The number of glial fibrillary acidic protein-positive astrocytes in entorhinal cortex and CA1 most tightly correlated with memory impairment and neuronal cell loss. Based on these findings, we hypothesize that the astrocyte response, which is likely triggered by brain oligomeric Aβ accumulation, adversely affects cognition and might also contribute to neuronal cell death in this model.

  19. Inhibiting nucleation of amyloid structure in a huntingtin fragment by targeting α-helix rich oligomeric intermediates

    PubMed Central

    Mishra, Rakesh; Jayaraman, Murali; Roland, Bartholomew P.; Landrum, Elizabeth; Fullam, Timothy; Kodali, Ravindra; Thakur, Ashwani K.; Arduini, Irene; Wetzel, Ronald

    2011-01-01

    Although oligomeric intermediates are transiently formed in almost all known amyloid assembly reactions, their mechanistic roles are poorly understood. Recently we demonstrated a critical role for the 17 amino acid N-terminal segment (httNT) of huntingtin (htt) in oligomer-mediated amyloid assembly of htt N-terminal fragments. In this mechanism, the httNT segment forms the α-helix rich core of the oligomers, leaving most or all of each polyglutamine (polyQ) segment disordered and solvent-exposed. Nucleation of amyloid structure occurs within this local high concentration of disordered polyQ. Here we demonstrate the kinetic importance of httNT self-assembly by describing inhibitory httNT-containing peptides that appear to work by targeting nucleation within the oligomer fraction. These molecules inhibit amyloid nucleation by forming mixed oligomers with the httNT domains of polyQ-containing htt N-terminal fragments. In one class of inhibitor, nucleation is passively suppressed due to the reduced local concentration of polyQ within the mixed oligomer. In the other class, nucleation is actively suppressed by a proline-rich polyQ segment covalently attached to httNT. Studies with D-amino acid and scrambled sequence versions of httNT suggest that inhibition activity is strongly linked to the propensity of inhibitory peptides to make amphipathic α-helices. HttNT derivatives with C-terminal cell penetrating peptide segments, also exhibit excellent inhibitory activity. The httNT-based peptides described here, especially those with protease-resistant D-amino acids and/or with cell penetrating sequences, may prove useful as lead therapeutics for inhibiting nucleation of amyloid formation in Huntington’s disease. PMID:22178478

  20. What does make an amyloid toxic: morphology, structure or interaction with membrane?

    PubMed

    Berthelot, Karine; Cullin, Christophe; Lecomte, Sophie

    2013-01-01

    The toxicity of amyloids is a subject under intense scrutiny. Many studies link this toxicity to the existence of various intermediate structures prior to the fiber formation and/or their specific interaction with membranes. Membranes can also be a catalyst of amyloidogenesis and the composition or the charge of membrane lipids may be of particular importance. Despite intensive research in the field, such intermediates are not yet fully characterized probably because of the lack of adapted methods for their analyses, and the mechanisms of interaction with the membrane are far to be understood. The purpose of this mini-review is to highlight some in vitro characteristics that seem to be convergent to explain the toxicity observed for some amyloids. Based on a comparison between the behavior of a model non-toxic amyloid (the Prion Forming Domain of HET-s) and its toxic mutant (M8), we could establish that short oligomers and/or fibers assembled in antiparallel β-sheets strongly interact with membrane leading to its disruption. Many recent evidences are in favor of the formation of antiparallel toxic oligomers assembled in β-helices able to form pores. We may also propose a new model of amyloid interaction with membranes by a "raft-like" mode of insertion that could explain important destabilization of membranes and thus amyloid toxicity.

  1. Microglial activation and beta -amyloid deposit reduction caused by a nitric oxide-releasing nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug in amyloid precursor protein plus presenilin-1 transgenic mice.

    PubMed

    Jantzen, Paul T; Connor, Karen E; DiCarlo, Giovanni; Wenk, Gary L; Wallace, John L; Rojiani, Amyn M; Coppola, Domenico; Morgan, Dave; Gordon, Marcia N

    2002-03-15

    3-4-(2-Fluoro-alpha-methyl-[1,1'-biphenyl]-4-acetyloxy)-3-methoxyphenyl]-2-propenoic acid 4-nitrooxy butyl ester (NCX-2216), a nitric oxide (NO)-releasing derivative of the cyclooxygenase-1-preferring nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) flurbiprofen, dramatically reduced both beta-amyloid (Abeta) loads and Congo red staining in doubly transgenic (Tg) amyloid precursor protein plus presenilin-1 mice when administered at 375 ppm in diet between 7 and 12 months of age. This reduction was associated with a dramatic increase in the number of microglia expressing major histocompatibility complex-II antigen, a marker for microglial activation. In contrast, ibuprofen at 375 ppm in diet caused modest reductions in Abeta load but not Congo red staining, suggesting that the effects of this nonselective NSAID were restricted primarily to nonfibrillar deposits. We detected no effects of the cyclooxygenase-2-selective NSAID celecoxib at 175 ppm on amyloid deposition. In short-term studies of 12-month-old Tg mice, we found that the microglia-activating properties of NCX-2216 (7.5 mg small middle dot kg(-1) small middle dot d(-1), s.c.) were present after 2 weeks of treatment. Microglia were not activated by NCX-2216 in non-Tg mice lacking Abeta deposits, nor were microglia activated in Tg animals by flurbiprofen (5 mg small middle dot kg(-1) small middle dot d(-1)) alone. These data are consistent with the argument that activated microglia can clear Abeta deposits. We conclude that the NO-generating component of NCX-2216 confers biological actions that go beyond those of typical NSAIDs. In conclusion, NCX-2216 is more efficacious than ibuprofen or celecoxib in clearing Abeta deposits from the brains of Tg mice, implying potential benefit in the treatment of Alzheimer's dementia.

  2. Molecular Dynamics Simulations on the Oligomer-Formation Process of the GNNQQNY Peptide from Yeast Prion Protein Sup35

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Zhuqing; Chen, Hao; Bai, Hongjun; Lai, Luhua

    2007-01-01

    Oligomeric intermediates are possible cytotoxic species in diseases associated with amyloid deposits. Understanding the early steps of fibril formation at atomic details may provide useful information for the rational therapeutic design. In this study, using the heptapeptide GNNQQNY from the yeast prion-like protein Sup35 as a model system, for which a detailed atomic structure of the fibril formed has been determined by x-ray microcrystallography, we investigated its oligomer-formation process from monomer to tetramer at the atomistic level by means of a molecular dynamics simulation with explicit water. Although the number of simulations was limited, the qualitative statistical data gave some interesting results, which indicated that the oligomer formation might start from antiparallel β-sheet-like dimers. When a new single peptide strand was added to the preformed dimers to form trimers and then tetramers, the transition time from disorder aggregates to regular ones for the parallel alignment was found to be obviously much less than for the antiparallel one. Moreover, the parallel pattern also statistically stayed longer, providing more chances for oligomer extending, although the number of parallel stack events was almost equal to antiparallel ones. Therefore, our simulations showed that new strands might prefer to extend in a parallel arrangement to form oligomers, which agrees with the microcrystal structure of the amyloid fibril formed by this peptide. In addition, analysis of the π-π stacking of aromatic residues showed that this type of interaction did not play an important role in giving directionality for β-strand alignment but played a great influence on stabilizing the structures formed in the oligomer-formation process. PMID:17483185

  3. Inhibition of beta-amyloid aggregation by fluorescent dye labels

    SciTech Connect

    Amaro, Mariana; Wellbrock, Thorben; Birch, David J. S.; Rolinski, Olaf J.

    2014-02-10

    The fluorescence decay of beta-amyloid's (Aβ) intrinsic fluorophore tyrosine has been used for sensing the oligomer formation of dye-labelled Aβ monomers and the results compared with previously studied oligomerization of the non-labelled Aβ peptides. It has been demonstrated that two different sized, covalently bound probes 7-diethylaminocoumarin-3-carbonyl and Hilyte Fluor 488 (HLF), alter the rate and character of oligomerization to different extents. The ability of HLF to inhibit formation of highly ordered structures containing beta-sheets was also shown. The implications of our findings for using fluorescence methods in amyloidosis research are discussed and the advantages of this auto-fluorescence approach highlighted.

  4. Inhibition of beta-amyloid aggregation by fluorescent dye labels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Amaro, Mariana; Wellbrock, Thorben; Birch, David J. S.; Rolinski, Olaf J.

    2014-02-01

    The fluorescence decay of beta-amyloid's (Aβ) intrinsic fluorophore tyrosine has been used for sensing the oligomer formation of dye-labelled Aβ monomers and the results compared with previously studied oligomerization of the non-labelled Aβ peptides. It has been demonstrated that two different sized, covalently bound probes 7-diethylaminocoumarin-3-carbonyl and Hilyte Fluor 488 (HLF), alter the rate and character of oligomerization to different extents. The ability of HLF to inhibit formation of highly ordered structures containing beta-sheets was also shown. The implications of our findings for using fluorescence methods in amyloidosis research are discussed and the advantages of this auto-fluorescence approach highlighted.

  5. Nanophotonics of protein amyloids

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bhattacharya, Mily; Mukhopadhyay, Samrat

    2014-04-01

    Technological breakthroughs in the super-resolution optical imaging techniques have enriched our current understanding of a range of biological systems and biomolecular processes at the nanoscopic spatial resolution. Protein amyloids are an important class of ordered protein assemblies consisting of misfolded proteins that are implicated in a wide range of devastating human diseases. In order to decipher the structural basis of the supramolecular protein assembly in amyloids and their detrimental interactions with the cell membranes, it is important to employ high-resolution optical imaging techniques. Additionally, amyloids could serve as novel biological nanomaterials for a variety of potential applications. In this review, we summarize a few examples of the utility of near-field scanning optical imaging methodologies to obtain a wealth of structural information into the nanoscale amyloid assembly. Although the near-field technologies were developed several decades ago, it is only recently that these methodologies are being applied and adapted for amyloid research to yield novel information pertaining to the exciting nanoscopic world of protein aggregates. We believe that the account on the nanophotonics of amyloids described in this review will be useful for the future studies on the biophysics of amyloids.

  6. Amyloid fibrils trigger the release of neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs), causing fibril fragmentation by NET-associated elastase.

    PubMed

    Azevedo, Estefania P C; Guimarães-Costa, Anderson B; Torezani, Guilherme S; Braga, Carolina A; Palhano, Fernando L; Kelly, Jeffery W; Saraiva, Elvira M; Foguel, Debora

    2012-10-26

    The accumulation of amyloid fibrils is a feature of amyloid diseases, where cell toxicity is due to soluble oligomeric species that precede fibril formation or are formed by fibril fragmentation, but the mechanism(s) of fragmentation is still unclear. Neutrophil-derived elastase and histones were found in amyloid deposits from patients with different systemic amyloidoses. Neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs) are key players in a death mechanism in which neutrophils release DNA traps decorated with proteins such as elastase and histones to entangle pathogens. Here, we asked whether NETs are triggered by amyloid fibrils, reasoning that because proteases are present in NETs, protease digestion of amyloid may generate soluble, cytotoxic species. We show that amyloid fibrils from three different sources (α-synuclein, Sup35, and transthyretin) induced NADPH oxidase-dependent NETs in vitro from human neutrophils. Surprisingly, NET-associated elastase digested amyloid fibrils into short species that were cytotoxic for BHK-21 and HepG2 cells. In tissue sections from patients with primary amyloidosis, we also observed the co-localization of NETs with amyloid deposits as well as with oligomers, which are probably derived from elastase-induced fibril degradation (amyloidolysis). These data reveal that release of NETs, so far described to be elicited by pathogens, can also be triggered by amyloid fibrils. Moreover, the involvement of NETs in amyloidoses might be crucial for the production of toxic species derived from fibril fragmentation.

  7. Amyloid-Like Fibril Elongation Follows Michaelis-Menten Kinetics

    PubMed Central

    Milto, Katazyna; Botyriute, Akvile; Smirnovas, Vytautas

    2013-01-01

    A number of proteins can aggregate into amyloid-like fibrils. It was noted that fibril elongation has similarities to an enzymatic reaction, where monomers or oligomers would play a role of substrate and nuclei/fibrils would play a role of enzyme. The question is how similar these processes really are. We obtained experimental data on insulin amyloid-like fibril elongation at the conditions where other processes which may impact kinetics of fibril formation are minor and fitted it using Michaelis-Menten equation. The correlation of the fit is very good and repeatable. It speaks in favour of enzyme-like model of fibril elongation. In addition, obtained and values at different conditions may help in better understanding influence of environmental factors on the process of fibril elongation. PMID:23874721

  8. Anti-amyloid Aggregation Activity of Natural Compounds: Implications for Alzheimer's Drug Discovery.

    PubMed

    Bu, Xian-Le; Rao, Praveen P N; Wang, Yan-Jiang

    2016-08-01

    Several plant-derived natural compounds are known to exhibit anti-amyloid aggregation activity which makes them attractive as potential therapies to treat Alzheimer's disease. The mechanisms of their anti-amyloid activity are not well known. In this regard, many natural compounds are known to exhibit direct binding to various amyloid species including oligomers and fibrils, which in turn can lead to conformational change in the beta-sheet assembly to form nontoxic aggregates. This review discusses the mechanism of anti-amyloid activity of 16 natural compounds and gives structural details on their direct binding interactions with amyloid aggregates. Our computational investigations show that the physicochemical properties of natural products do fit Lipinski's criteria and that catechol and catechol-type moieties present in natural compounds act as lysine site-specific inhibitors of amyloid aggregation. Based on these observations, we propose a structural template to design novel small molecules containing site-specific ring scaffolds, planar aromatic and nonaromatic linkers with suitably substituted hydrogen bond acceptors and donors. These studies will have significant implications in the design and development of novel amyloid aggregation inhibitors with superior metabolic stability and blood-brain barrier penetration as potential agents to treat Alzheimer's disease.

  9. Cross-Seeding Interaction between β-Amyloid and Human Islet Amyloid Polypeptide.

    PubMed

    Hu, Rundong; Zhang, Mingzhen; Chen, Hong; Jiang, Binbo; Zheng, Jie

    2015-10-21

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) and type 2 diabetes (T2D) are two common protein misfolding diseases. Increasing evidence suggests that these two diseases may be correlated with each other via cross-sequence interactions between β-amyloid peptide (Aβ) associated with AD and human islet amyloid polypeptide (hIAPP) associated with T2D. However, little is known about how these two peptides work and how they interact with each other to induce amyloidogenesis. In this work, we study the effect of cross-sequence interactions between Aβ and hIAPP peptides on hybrid amyloid structures, conformational changes, and aggregation kinetics using combined experimental and simulation approaches. Experimental results confirm that Aβ and hIAPP can interact with each other to aggregate into hybrid amyloid fibrils containing β-sheet-rich structures morphologically similar to pure Aβ and hIAPP. The cross-seeding of Aβ and hIAPP leads to the coexistence of both a retarded process at the initial nucleation stage and an accelerated process at the fibrillization stage, in conjunction with a conformational transition from random structures to α-helix to β-sheet. Further molecular dynamics simulations reveal that Aβ and hIAPP oligomers can efficiently cross-seed each other via the association of two highly similar U-shaped β-sheet structures; thus, conformational compatibility between Aβ and hIAPP aggregates appears to play a key role in determining barriers to cross-seeding. The cross-seeding effects in this work may provide new insights into the molecular mechanisms of interactions between AD and T2D.

  10. Early oligomerization stages for the non-amyloid component of α-synuclein amyloid

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eugene, Cindie; Laghaei, Rozita; Mousseau, Normand

    2014-10-01

    In recent years, much effort has focused on the early stages of aggregation and the formation of amyloid oligomers. Aggregation processes for these proteins are complex and their non-equilibrium nature makes any experimental study very difficult. Under these conditions, simulations provide a useful alternative for understanding the dynamics of the early stages of oligomerization. Here, we focus on the non-Aβ amyloid component (NAC) of the monomer, dimer, and trimer of α-synuclein, an important 35-residue sequence involved in the aggregation and fibrillation of this protein associated with Parkinson's disease. Using Hamiltonian and temperature replica exchange molecular dynamics simulations combined with the coarse grained Optimized Potential for Efficient peptide structure Prediction potential, we identify the role of the various regions and the secondary structures for the onset of oligomerization. For this sequence, we clearly observe the passage from α-helix to β-sheet, a characteristic transition of amyloid proteins. More precisely, we find that the NAC monomer is highly structured with two α-helical regions, between residues 2-13 and 19-25. As the dimer and trimer form, β-sheet structures between residues 2-14 and 26-34 appear and rapidly structure the system. The resulting conformations are much more structured than similar dimers and trimers of β-amyloid and amylin proteins and yet display a strong polymorphism at these early stages of aggregation. In addition to its inherent experimental interest, comparison with other sequences shows that NAC could be a very useful numerical model for understanding the onset of aggregation.

  11. Competitive Mirror Image Phage Display Derived Peptide Modulates Amyloid Beta Aggregation and Toxicity

    PubMed Central

    Rudolph, Stephan; Klein, Antonia Nicole; Tusche, Markus; Schlosser, Christine; Elfgen, Anne; Brener, Oleksandr; Teunissen, Charlotte; Gremer, Lothar; Funke, Susanne Aileen; Kutzsche, Janine; Willbold, Dieter

    2016-01-01

    Alzheimer´s disease is the most prominent type of dementia and currently no causative treatment is available. According to recent studies, oligomeric species of the amyloid beta (Aβ) peptide appear to be the most toxic Aβ assemblies. Aβ monomers, however, may be not toxic per se and may even have a neuroprotective role. Here we describe a competitive mirror image phage display procedure that allowed us to identify preferentially Aβ1–42 monomer binding and thereby stabilizing peptides, which destabilize and thereby eliminate toxic oligomer species. One of the peptides, called Mosd1 (monomer specific d-peptide 1), was characterized in more detail. Mosd1 abolished oligomers from a mixture of Aβ1–42 species, reduced Aβ1–42 toxicity in cell culture, and restored the physiological phenotype in neuronal cells stably transfected with the gene coding for human amyloid precursor protein. PMID:26840229

  12. Proneurogenic Group II mGluR antagonist improves learning and reduces anxiety in Alzheimer Aβ oligomer mouse.

    PubMed

    Kim, S H; Steele, J W; Lee, S W; Clemenson, G D; Carter, T A; Treuner, K; Gadient, R; Wedel, P; Glabe, C; Barlow, C; Ehrlich, M E; Gage, F H; Gandy, S

    2014-11-01

    Proneurogenic compounds have recently shown promise in some mouse models of Alzheimer's pathology. Antagonists at Group II metabotropic glutamate receptors (Group II mGluR: mGlu2, mGlu3) are reported to stimulate neurogenesis. Agonists at those receptors trigger γ-secretase-inhibitor-sensitive biogenesis of Aβ42 peptides from isolated synaptic terminals, which is selectively suppressed by antagonist pretreatment. We have assessed the therapeutic potential of chronic pharmacological inhibition of Group II mGluR in Dutch APP (Alzheimer's amyloid precursor protein E693Q) transgenic mice that accumulate Dutch amyloid-β (Aβ) oligomers but never develop Aβ plaques. BCI-838 is a clinically well-tolerated, orally bioavailable, investigational prodrug that delivers to the brain BCI-632, the active Group II mGluR antagonist metabolite. Dutch Aβ-oligomer-forming APP transgenic mice (APP E693Q) were dosed with BCI-838 for 3 months. Chronic treatment with BCI-838 was associated with reversal of transgene-related amnestic behavior, reduction in anxiety, reduction in levels of brain Aβ monomers and oligomers, and stimulation of hippocampal neurogenesis. Group II mGluR inhibition may offer a unique package of relevant properties as an Alzheimer's disease therapeutic or prophylactic by providing both attenuation of neuropathology and stimulation of repair. PMID:25113378

  13. Proneurogenic Group II mGluR antagonist improves learning and reduces anxiety in Alzheimer Aβ oligomer mouse

    PubMed Central

    Kim, S H; Steele, J W; Lee, S W; Clemenson, G D; Carter, T A; Treuner, K; Gadient, R; Wedel, P; Glabe, C; Barlow, C; Ehrlich, M E; Gage, F H; Gandy, S

    2014-01-01

    Proneurogenic compounds have recently shown promise in some mouse models of Alzheimer's pathology. Antagonists at Group II metabotropic glutamate receptors (Group II mGluR: mGlu2, mGlu3) are reported to stimulate neurogenesis. Agonists at those receptors trigger γ-secretase-inhibitor-sensitive biogenesis of Aβ42 peptides from isolated synaptic terminals, which is selectively suppressed by antagonist pretreatment. We have assessed the therapeutic potential of chronic pharmacological inhibition of Group II mGluR in Dutch APP (Alzheimer's amyloid precursor protein E693Q) transgenic mice that accumulate Dutch amyloid-β (Aβ) oligomers but never develop Aβ plaques. BCI-838 is a clinically well-tolerated, orally bioavailable, investigational prodrug that delivers to the brain BCI-632, the active Group II mGluR antagonist metabolite. Dutch Aβ-oligomer-forming APP transgenic mice (APP E693Q) were dosed with BCI-838 for 3 months. Chronic treatment with BCI-838 was associated with reversal of transgene-related amnestic behavior, reduction in anxiety, reduction in levels of brain Aβ monomers and oligomers, and stimulation of hippocampal neurogenesis. Group II mGluR inhibition may offer a unique package of relevant properties as an Alzheimer's disease therapeutic or prophylactic by providing both attenuation of neuropathology and stimulation of repair. PMID:25113378

  14. Aβ1-42 monomers or oligomers have different effects on autophagy and apoptosis.

    PubMed

    Guglielmotto, Michela; Monteleone, Debora; Piras, Antonio; Valsecchi, Valeria; Tropiano, Marta; Ariano, Stefania; Fornaro, Michele; Vercelli, Alessandro; Puyal, Julien; Arancio, Ottavio; Tabaton, Massimo; Tamagno, Elena

    2014-10-01

    The role of autophagy and its relationship with apoptosis in Alzheimer disease (AD) pathogenesis is poorly understood. Disruption of autophagy leads to buildup of incompletely digested substrates, amyloid-β (Aβ) peptide accumulation in vacuoles and cell death. Aβ, in turn, has been found to affect autophagy. Thus, Aβ might be part of a loop in which it is both the substrate of altered autophagy and its cause. Given the relevance of different soluble forms of Aβ1-42 in AD, we have investigated whether monomers and oligomers of the peptide have a differential role in causing altered autophagy and cell death. Using differentiated SK-N-BE neuroblastoma cells, we found that monomers hamper the formation of the autophagic BCL2-BECN1/Beclin 1 complex and activate the MAPK8/JNK1-MAPK9/JNK2 pathway phosphorylating BCL2. Monomers also inhibit apoptosis and allow autophagy with intracellular accumulation of autophagosomes and elevation of levels of BECN1 and LC3-II, resulting in an inhibition of substrate degradation due to an inhibitory action on lysosomal activity. Oligomers, in turn, favor the formation of the BCL2-BECN1 complex favoring apoptosis. In addition, they cause a less profound increase in BECN1 and LC3-II levels than monomers without affecting the autophagic flux. Thus, data presented in this work show a link for autophagy and apoptosis with monomers and oligomers, respectively. These studies are likely to help the design of novel disease modifying therapies.

  15. When amyloids become prions

    PubMed Central

    Sabate, Raimon

    2014-01-01

    The conformational diseases, linked to protein aggregation into amyloid conformations, range from non-infectious neurodegenerative disorders, such as Alzheimer's disease (AD), to highly infectious ones, such as human transmissible spongiform encephalopathies (TSEs). They are commonly known as prion diseases. However, since all amyloids could be considered prions (from those involved in cell-to-cell transmission to those responsible for real neuronal invasion), it is necessary to find an underlying cause of the different capacity to infect that each of the proteins prone to form amyloids has. As proposed here, both the intrinsic cytotoxicity and the number of nuclei of aggregation per cell could be key factors in this transmission capacity of each amyloid. PMID:24831240

  16. SDS-PAGE analysis of Aβ oligomers is disserving research into Alzheimer´s disease: appealing for ESI-IM-MS

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pujol-Pina, Rosa; Vilaprinyó-Pascual, Sílvia; Mazzucato, Roberta; Arcella, Annalisa; Vilaseca, Marta; Orozco, Modesto; Carulla, Natàlia

    2015-10-01

    The characterization of amyloid-beta peptide (Aβ) oligomer forms and structures is crucial to the advancement in the field of Alzheimer´s disease (AD). Here we report a critical evaluation of two methods used for this purpose, namely sodium dodecyl sulfate polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE), extensively used in the field, and ion mobility coupled to electrospray ionization mass spectrometry (ESI-IM-MS), an emerging technique with great potential for oligomer characterization. To evaluate their performance, we first obtained pure cross-linked Aβ40 and Aβ42 oligomers of well-defined order. Analysis of these samples by SDS-PAGE revealed that SDS affects the oligomerization state of Aβ42 oligomers, thus providing flawed information on their order and distribution. In contrast, ESI-IM-MS provided accurate information, while also reported on the chemical nature and on the structure of the oligomers. Our findings have important implications as they challenge scientific paradigms in the AD field built upon SDS-PAGE characterization of Aβ oligomer samples.

  17. SDS-PAGE analysis of Aβ oligomers is disserving research into Alzheimer´s disease: appealing for ESI-IM-MS

    PubMed Central

    Pujol-Pina, Rosa; Vilaprinyó-Pascual, Sílvia; Mazzucato, Roberta; Arcella, Annalisa; Vilaseca, Marta; Orozco, Modesto; Carulla, Natàlia

    2015-01-01

    The characterization of amyloid-beta peptide (Aβ) oligomer forms and structures is crucial to the advancement in the field of Alzheimer´s disease (AD). Here we report a critical evaluation of two methods used for this purpose, namely sodium dodecyl sulfate polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE), extensively used in the field, and ion mobility coupled to electrospray ionization mass spectrometry (ESI-IM-MS), an emerging technique with great potential for oligomer characterization. To evaluate their performance, we first obtained pure cross-linked Aβ40 and Aβ42 oligomers of well-defined order. Analysis of these samples by SDS-PAGE revealed that SDS affects the oligomerization state of Aβ42 oligomers, thus providing flawed information on their order and distribution. In contrast, ESI-IM-MS provided accurate information, while also reported on the chemical nature and on the structure of the oligomers. Our findings have important implications as they challenge scientific paradigms in the AD field built upon SDS-PAGE characterization of Aβ oligomer samples. PMID:26450154

  18. Lipid Rafts: Linking Alzheimer's Amyloid-β Production, Aggregation, and Toxicity at Neuronal Membranes

    PubMed Central

    Rushworth, Jo V.; Hooper, Nigel M.

    2011-01-01

    Lipid rafts are membrane microdomains, enriched in cholesterol and sphingolipids, into which specific subsets of proteins and lipids partition, creating cell-signalling platforms that are vital for neuronal functions. Lipid rafts play at least three crucial roles in Alzheimer's Disease (AD), namely, in promoting the generation of the amyloid-β (Aβ) peptide, facilitating its aggregation upon neuronal membranes to form toxic oligomers and hosting specific neuronal receptors through which the AD-related neurotoxicity and memory impairments of the Aβ oligomers are transduced. Recent evidence suggests that Aβ oligomers may exert their deleterious effects through binding to, and causing the aberrant clustering of, lipid raft proteins including the cellular prion protein and glutamate receptors. The formation of these pathogenic lipid raft-based platforms may be critical for the toxic signalling mechanisms that underlie synaptic dysfunction and neuropathology in AD. PMID:21234417

  19. The cellular prion protein traps Alzheimer's Aβ in an oligomeric form and disassembles amyloid fibers

    PubMed Central

    Younan, Nadine D.; Sarell, Claire J.; Davies, Paul; Brown, David R.; Viles, John H.

    2013-01-01

    There is now strong evidence to show that the presence of the cellular prion protein (PrPC) mediates amyloid-β (Aβ) neurotoxicity in Alzheimer's disease (AD). Here, we probe the molecular details of the interaction between PrPC and Aβ and discover that substoichiometric amounts of PrPC, as little as 1/20, relative to Aβ will strongly inhibit amyloid fibril formation. This effect is specific to the unstructured N-terminal domain of PrPC. Electron microscopy indicates PrPC is able to trap Aβ in an oligomeric form. Unlike fibers, this oligomeric Aβ contains antiparallel β sheet and binds to a oligomer specific conformational antibody. Our NMR studies show that a specific region of PrPC, notably residues 95–113, binds to Aβ oligomers, but only once Aβ misfolds. The ability of PrPC to trap and concentrate Aβ in an oligomeric form and disassemble mature fibers suggests a mechanism by which PrPC might confer Aβ toxicity in AD, as oligomers are thought to be the toxic form of Aβ. Identification of a specific recognition site on PrPC that traps Aβ in an oligomeric form is potentially a therapeutic target for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease.—Younan, N. D., Sarell, C. J., Davies, P., Brown, D. R., Viles, J. H. The cellular prion protein traps Alzheimer's Aβ in an oligomeric form and disassembles amyloid fibers. PMID:23335053

  20. Amyloid-β peptides in interaction with raft-mime model membranes: a neutron reflectivity insight.

    PubMed

    Rondelli, Valeria; Brocca, Paola; Motta, Simona; Messa, Massimo; Colombo, Laura; Salmona, Mario; Fragneto, Giovanna; Cantù, Laura; Del Favero, Elena

    2016-01-01

    The role of first-stage β-amyloid aggregation in the development of the Alzheimer disease, is widely accepted but still unclear. Intimate interaction with the cell membrane is invoked. We designed Neutron Reflectometry experiments to reveal the existence and extent of the interaction between β-amyloid (Aβ) peptides and a lone customized biomimetic membrane, and their dependence on the aggregation state of the peptide. The membrane, asymmetrically containing phospholipids, GM1 and cholesterol in biosimilar proportion, is a model for a raft, a putative site for amyloid-cell membrane interaction. We found that the structured-oligomer of Aβ(1-42), its most acknowledged membrane-active state, is embedded as such into the external leaflet of the membrane. Conversely, the Aβ(1-42) unstructured early-oligomers deeply penetrate the membrane, likely mimicking the interaction at neuronal cell surfaces, when the Aβ(1-42) is cleaved from APP protein and the membrane constitutes a template for its further structural evolution. Moreover, the smaller Aβ(1-6) fragment, the N-terminal portion of Aβ, was also used. Aβ N-terminal is usually considered as involved in oligomer stabilization but not in the peptide-membrane interaction. Instead, it was seen to remove lipids from the bilayer, thus suggesting its role, once in the whole peptide, in membrane leakage, favouring peptide recruitment. PMID:26880066

  1. Effect of Synthetic Aβ Peptide Oligomers and Fluorinated Solvents on Kv1.3 Channel Properties and Membrane Conductance

    PubMed Central

    Lioudyno, Maria I.; Broccio, Matteo; Sokolov, Yuri; Rasool, Suhail; Wu, Jessica; Alkire, Michael T.; Liu, Virginia; Kozak, J. Ashot; Dennison, Philip R.; Glabe, Charles G.; Lösche, Mathias; Hall, James E.

    2012-01-01

    The impact of synthetic amyloid β (1–42) (Aβ1–42) oligomers on biophysical properties of voltage-gated potassium channels Kv 1.3 and lipid bilayer membranes (BLMs) was quantified for protocols using hexafluoroisopropanol (HFIP) or sodium hydroxide (NaOH) as solvents prior to initiating the oligomer formation. Regardless of the solvent used Aβ1–42 samples contained oligomers that reacted with the conformation-specific antibodies A11 and OC and had similar size distributions as determined by dynamic light scattering. Patch-clamp recordings of the potassium currents showed that synthetic Aβ1–42 oligomers accelerate the activation and inactivation kinetics of Kv 1.3 current with no significant effect on current amplitude. In contrast to oligomeric samples, freshly prepared, presumably monomeric, Aβ1–42 solutions had no effect on Kv 1.3 channel properties. Aβ1–42 oligomers had no effect on the steady-state current (at −80 mV) recorded from Kv 1.3-expressing cells but increased the conductance of artificial BLMs in a dose-dependent fashion. Formation of amyloid channels, however, was not observed due to conditions of the experiments. To exclude the effects of HFIP (used to dissolve lyophilized Aβ1–42 peptide), and trifluoroacetic acid (TFA) (used during Aβ1–42 synthesis), we determined concentrations of these fluorinated compounds in the stock Aβ1–42 solutions by 19F NMR. After extensive evaporation, the concentration of HFIP in the 100× stock Aβ1–42 solutions was ∼1.7 μM. The concentration of residual TFA in the 70× stock Aβ1–42 solutions was ∼20 μM. Even at the stock concentrations neither HFIP nor TFA alone had any effect on potassium currents or BLMs. The Aβ1–42 oligomers prepared with HFIP as solvent, however, were more potent in the electrophysiological tests, suggesting that fluorinated compounds, such as HFIP or structurally-related inhalational anesthetics, may affect Aβ1–42 aggregation and potentially enhance

  2. Apolipoprotein E, especially apolipoprotein E4, increases the oligomerization of amyloid β peptide.

    PubMed

    Hashimoto, Tadafumi; Serrano-Pozo, Alberto; Hori, Yukiko; Adams, Kenneth W; Takeda, Shuko; Banerji, Adrian Olaf; Mitani, Akinori; Joyner, Daniel; Thyssen, Diana H; Bacskai, Brian J; Frosch, Matthew P; Spires-Jones, Tara L; Finn, Mary Beth; Holtzman, David M; Hyman, Bradley T

    2012-10-24

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is the most common progressive neurodegenerative disorder causing dementia. Massive deposition of amyloid β peptide (Aβ) as senile plaques in the brain is the pathological hallmark of AD, but oligomeric, soluble forms of Aβ have been implicated as the synaptotoxic component. The apolipoprotein E ε 4 (apoE ε4) allele is known to be a genetic risk factor for developing AD. However, it is still unknown how apoE impacts the process of Aβ oligomerization. Here, we found that the level of Aβ oligomers in APOE ε4/ε4 AD patient brains is 2.7 times higher than those in APOE ε3/ε3 AD patient brains, matched for total plaque burden, suggesting that apoE4 impacts the metabolism of Aβ oligomers. To test this hypothesis, we examined the effect of apoE on Aβ oligomer formation. Using both synthetic Aβ and a split-luciferase method for monitoring Aβ oligomers, we observed that apoE increased the level of Aβ oligomers in an isoform-dependent manner (E2 < E3 < E4). This effect appears to be dependent on the ApoE C-terminal domain. Moreover, these results were confirmed using endogenous apoE isolated from the TBS-soluble fraction of human brain, which increased the formation of Aβ oligomers. Together, these data show that lipidated apoE, especially apoE4, increases Aβ oligomers in the brain. Higher levels of Aβ oligomers in the brains of APOE ε4/ε4 carriers compared with APOE ε3/ε3 carriers may increase the loss of dendritic spines and accelerate memory impairments, leading to earlier cognitive decline in AD.

  3. Alpha-Synuclein Oligomers Interact with Metal Ions to Induce Oxidative Stress and Neuronal Death in Parkinson's Disease

    PubMed Central

    Deas, Emma; Cremades, Nunilo; Angelova, Plamena R.; Ludtmann, Marthe H.R.; Yao, Zhi; Chen, Serene; Horrocks, Mathew H.; Banushi, Blerida; Little, Daniel; Devine, Michael J.; Gissen, Paul; Klenerman, David; Dobson, Christopher M.; Wood, Nicholas W.

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Aims: Protein aggregation and oxidative stress are both key pathogenic processes in Parkinson's disease, although the mechanism by which misfolded proteins induce oxidative stress and neuronal death remains unknown. In this study, we describe how aggregation of alpha-synuclein (α-S) from its monomeric form to its soluble oligomeric state results in aberrant free radical production and neuronal toxicity. Results: We first demonstrate excessive free radical production in a human induced pluripotent stem-derived α-S triplication model at basal levels and on application of picomolar doses of β-sheet-rich α-S oligomers. We probed the effects of different structural species of α-S in wild-type rat neuronal cultures and show that both oligomeric and fibrillar forms of α-S are capable of generating free radical production, but that only the oligomeric form results in reduction of endogenous glutathione and subsequent neuronal toxicity. We dissected the mechanism of oligomer-induced free radical production and found that it was interestingly independent of several known cellular enzymatic sources. Innovation: The oligomer-induced reactive oxygen species (ROS) production was entirely dependent on the presence of free metal ions as addition of metal chelators was able to block oligomer-induced ROS production and prevent oligomer-induced neuronal death. Conclusion: Our findings further support the causative role of soluble amyloid oligomers in triggering neurodegeneration and shed light into the mechanisms by which these species cause neuronal damage, which, we show here, can be amenable to modulation through the use of metal chelation. Antioxid. Redox Signal. 24, 376–391. PMID:26564470

  4. Congenital Myasthenic Syndrome Type 19 Is Caused by Mutations in COL13A1, Encoding the Atypical Non-fibrillar Collagen Type XIII α1 Chain

    PubMed Central

    Logan, Clare V.; Cossins, Judith; Rodríguez Cruz, Pedro M.; Parry, David A.; Maxwell, Susan; Martínez-Martínez, Pilar; Riepsaame, Joey; Abdelhamed, Zakia A.; Lake, Alice V.R.; Moran, Maria; Robb, Stephanie; Chow, Gabriel; Sewry, Caroline; Hopkins, Philip M.; Sheridan, Eamonn; Jayawant, Sandeep; Palace, Jacqueline; Johnson, Colin A.; Beeson, David

    2015-01-01

    The neuromuscular junction (NMJ) consists of a tripartite synapse with a presynaptic nerve terminal, Schwann cells that ensheathe the terminal bouton, and a highly specialized postsynaptic membrane. Synaptic structural integrity is crucial for efficient signal transmission. Congenital myasthenic syndromes (CMSs) are a heterogeneous group of inherited disorders that result from impaired neuromuscular transmission, caused by mutations in genes encoding proteins that are involved in synaptic transmission and in forming and maintaining the structural integrity of NMJs. To identify further causes of CMSs, we performed whole-exome sequencing (WES) in families without an identified mutation in known CMS-associated genes. In two families affected by a previously undefined CMS, we identified homozygous loss-of-function mutations in COL13A1, which encodes the alpha chain of an atypical non-fibrillar collagen with a single transmembrane domain. COL13A1 localized to the human muscle motor endplate. Using CRISPR-Cas9 genome editing, modeling of the COL13A1 c.1171delG (p.Leu392Sfs∗71) frameshift mutation in the C2C12 cell line reduced acetylcholine receptor (AChR) clustering during myotube differentiation. This highlights the crucial role of collagen XIII in the formation and maintenance of the NMJ. Our results therefore delineate a myasthenic disorder that is caused by loss-of-function mutations in COL13A1, encoding a protein involved in organization of the NMJ, and emphasize the importance of appropriate symptomatic treatment for these individuals. PMID:26626625

  5. Congenital Myasthenic Syndrome Type 19 Is Caused by Mutations in COL13A1, Encoding the Atypical Non-fibrillar Collagen Type XIII α1 Chain.

    PubMed

    Logan, Clare V; Cossins, Judith; Rodríguez Cruz, Pedro M; Parry, David A; Maxwell, Susan; Martínez-Martínez, Pilar; Riepsaame, Joey; Abdelhamed, Zakia A; Lake, Alice V R; Moran, Maria; Robb, Stephanie; Chow, Gabriel; Sewry, Caroline; Hopkins, Philip M; Sheridan, Eamonn; Jayawant, Sandeep; Palace, Jacqueline; Johnson, Colin A; Beeson, David

    2015-12-01

    The neuromuscular junction (NMJ) consists of a tripartite synapse with a presynaptic nerve terminal, Schwann cells that ensheathe the terminal bouton, and a highly specialized postsynaptic membrane. Synaptic structural integrity is crucial for efficient signal transmission. Congenital myasthenic syndromes (CMSs) are a heterogeneous group of inherited disorders that result from impaired neuromuscular transmission, caused by mutations in genes encoding proteins that are involved in synaptic transmission and in forming and maintaining the structural integrity of NMJs. To identify further causes of CMSs, we performed whole-exome sequencing (WES) in families without an identified mutation in known CMS-associated genes. In two families affected by a previously undefined CMS, we identified homozygous loss-of-function mutations in COL13A1, which encodes the alpha chain of an atypical non-fibrillar collagen with a single transmembrane domain. COL13A1 localized to the human muscle motor endplate. Using CRISPR-Cas9 genome editing, modeling of the COL13A1 c.1171delG (p.Leu392Sfs(∗)71) frameshift mutation in the C2C12 cell line reduced acetylcholine receptor (AChR) clustering during myotube differentiation. This highlights the crucial role of collagen XIII in the formation and maintenance of the NMJ. Our results therefore delineate a myasthenic disorder that is caused by loss-of-function mutations in COL13A1, encoding a protein involved in organization of the NMJ, and emphasize the importance of appropriate symptomatic treatment for these individuals. PMID:26626625

  6. Polyalanine and Abeta Aggregation Kinetics: Probing Intermediate Oligomer Formation and Structure Using Computer Simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Phelps, Erin Melissa

    2011-12-01

    The aggregation of proteins into stable, well-ordered structures known as amyloid fibrils has been associated with many neurodegenerative diseases. Amyloid fibrils are long straight, and un-branched structures containing several proto-filaments, each of which exhibits "cross beta structure," -- ribbon-like layers of large beta sheets whose strands run perpendicular to the fibril axis. It has been suggested in the literature that the pathway to fibril formation has the following steps: unfolded monomers associate into transient unstable oligomers, the oligomers undergo a rearrangement into the cross-beta structure and form into proto-filaments, these proto-filaments then associate and grow into fully formed fibrils. Recent experimental studies have determined that the unstable intermediate structures are toxic to cells and that their presence may play a key role in the pathogenesis of the amyloid diseases. Many efforts have been made to determine the structure of intermediate oligomer aggregates that form during the fibrillization process. The goal of this work is to provide details about the structure and formation kinetics of the unstable oligomers that appear in the fibril formation pathway. The specific aims of this work are to determine the steps in the fibril formation pathway and how the kinetics of fibrillization changes with variations in temperature and concentration. The method used is the application of discontinuous molecular dynamics to large systems of peptides represented with an intermediate resolution model, PRIME, that was previously developed in our group. Three different peptide sequences are simulated: polyalanine (KA14K), Abeta17-40, and Abeta17-42; the latter two are truncated sequences of the Alzheimer's peptide. We simulate the spontaneous assembly of these peptide chains from a random initial configuration of random coils. We investigate aggregation kinetics and oligomer formation of a system of 192 polyalanine (KA14K) chains over a

  7. Neuroprotective and nootropic drug noopept rescues α-synuclein amyloid cytotoxicity.

    PubMed

    Jia, Xueen; Gharibyan, Anna L; Öhman, Anders; Liu, Yonggang; Olofsson, Anders; Morozova-Roche, Ludmilla A

    2011-12-16

    Parkinson's disease is a common neurodegenerative disorder characterized by α-synuclein (α-Syn)-containing Lewy body formation and selective loss of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra. We have demonstrated the modulating effect of noopept, a novel proline-containing dipeptide drug with nootropic and neuroprotective properties, on α-Syn oligomerization and fibrillation by using thioflavin T fluorescence, far-UV CD, and atomic force microscopy techniques. Noopept does not bind to a sterically specific site in the α-Syn molecule as revealed by heteronuclear two-dimensional NMR analysis, but due to hydrophobic interactions with toxic amyloid oligomers, it prompts their rapid sequestration into larger fibrillar amyloid aggregates. Consequently, this process rescues the cytotoxic effect of amyloid oligomers on neuroblastoma SH-SY5Y cells as demonstrated by using cell viability assays and fluorescent staining of apoptotic and necrotic cells and by assessing the level of intracellular oxidative stress. The mitigating effect of noopept against amyloid oligomeric cytotoxicity may offer additional benefits to the already well-established therapeutic functions of this new pharmaceutical. PMID:21986202

  8. Connecting Macroscopic Observables and Microscopic Assembly Events in Amyloid Formation Using Coarse Grained Simulations

    PubMed Central

    Bieler, Noah S.; Knowles, Tuomas P. J.; Frenkel, Daan; Vácha, Robert

    2012-01-01

    The pre-fibrillar stages of amyloid formation have been implicated in cellular toxicity, but have proved to be challenging to study directly in experiments and simulations. Rational strategies to suppress the formation of toxic amyloid oligomers require a better understanding of the mechanisms by which they are generated. We report Dynamical Monte Carlo simulations that allow us to study the early stages of amyloid formation. We use a generic, coarse-grained model of an amyloidogenic peptide that has two internal states: the first one representing the soluble random coil structure and the second one the -sheet conformation. We find that this system exhibits a propensity towards fibrillar self-assembly following the formation of a critical nucleus. Our calculations establish connections between the early nucleation events and the kinetic information available in the later stages of the aggregation process that are commonly probed in experiments. We analyze the kinetic behaviour in our simulations within the framework of the theory of classical nucleated polymerisation, and are able to connect the structural events at the early stages in amyloid growth with the resulting macroscopic observables such as the effective nucleus size. Furthermore, the free-energy landscapes that emerge from these simulations allow us to identify pertinent properties of the monomeric state that could be targeted to suppress oligomer formation. PMID:23071427

  9. Amyloid Beta Mediates Memory Formation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Garcia-Osta, Ana; Alberini, Cristina M.

    2009-01-01

    The amyloid precursor protein (APP) undergoes sequential cleavages to generate various polypeptides, including the amyloid [beta] (1-42) peptide (A[beta][1-42]), which is believed to play a major role in amyloid plaque formation in Alzheimer's disease (AD). Here we provide evidence that, in contrast with its pathological role when accumulated,…

  10. Glycines from the APP GXXXG/GXXXA Transmembrane Motifs Promote Formation of Pathogenic Aβ Oligomers in Cells

    PubMed Central

    Decock, Marie; Stanga, Serena; Octave, Jean-Noël; Dewachter, Ilse; Smith, Steven O.; Constantinescu, Stefan N.; Kienlen-Campard, Pascal

    2016-01-01

    Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is the most common neurodegenerative disorder characterized by progressive cognitive decline leading to dementia. The amyloid precursor protein (APP) is a ubiquitous type I transmembrane (TM) protein sequentially processed to generate the β-amyloid peptide (Aβ), the major constituent of senile plaques that are typical AD lesions. There is a growing body of evidence that soluble Aβ oligomers correlate with clinical symptoms associated with the disease. The Aβ sequence begins in the extracellular juxtamembrane region of APP and includes roughly half of the TM domain. This region contains GXXXG and GXXXA motifs, which are critical for both TM protein interactions and fibrillogenic properties of peptides derived from TM α-helices. Glycine-to-leucine mutations of these motifs were previously shown to affect APP processing and Aβ production in cells. However, the detailed contribution of these motifs to APP dimerization, their relation to processing, and the conformational changes they can induce within Aβ species remains undefined. Here, we describe highly resistant Aβ42 oligomers that are produced in cellular membrane compartments. They are formed in cells by processing of the APP amyloidogenic C-terminal fragment (C99), or by direct expression of a peptide corresponding to Aβ42, but not to Aβ40. By a point-mutation approach, we demonstrate that glycine-to-leucine mutations in the G29XXXG33 and G38XXXA42 motifs dramatically affect the Aβ oligomerization process. G33 and G38 in these motifs are specifically involved in Aβ oligomerization; the G33L mutation strongly promotes oligomerization, while G38L blocks it with a dominant effect on G33 residue modification. Finally, we report that the secreted Aβ42 oligomers display pathological properties consistent with their suggested role in AD, but do not induce toxicity in survival assays with neuronal cells. Exposure of neurons to these Aβ42 oligomers dramatically affects neuronal

  11. Effects of the English (H6R) and Tottori (D7N) Familial Alzheimer Disease Mutations on Amyloid β-Protein Assembly and Toxicity*

    PubMed Central

    Ono, Kenjiro; Condron, Margaret M.; Teplow, David B.

    2010-01-01

    Mutations in the amyloid β-protein (Aβ) precursor gene cause autosomal dominant Alzheimer disease in a number of kindreds. In two such kindreds, the English and the Tottori, the mutations produce amyloid β-proteins containing amino acid substitutions, H6R and D7N, respectively, at the peptide N terminus. To elucidate the structural and biological effects of the mutations, we began by examining monomer conformational dynamics and oligomerization. Relative to their wild type homologues, and in both the Aβ40 and Aβ42 systems, the English and Tottori substitutions accelerated the kinetics of secondary structure change from statistical coil → α/β → β and produced oligomer size distributions skewed to higher order. This skewing was reflected in increases in average oligomer size, as measured using electron microscopy and atomic force microscopy. Stabilization of peptide oligomers using in situ chemical cross-linking allowed detailed study of their properties. Each substitution produced an oligomer that displayed substantial β-strand (H6R) or α/β (D7N) structure, in contrast to the predominately statistical coil structure of wild type Aβ oligomers. Mutant oligomers functioned as fibril seeds, and with efficiencies significantly higher than those of their wild type homologues. Importantly, the mutant forms of both native and chemically stabilized oligomers were significantly more toxic in assays of cell physiology and death. The results show that the English and Tottori mutations alter Aβ assembly at its earliest stages, monomer folding and oligomerization, and produce oligomers that are more toxic to cultured neuronal cells than are wild type oligomers. PMID:20452980

  12. Gold-Induced Fibril Growth: The Mechanism of Surface-Facilitated Amyloid Aggregation.

    PubMed

    Gladytz, Anika; Abel, Bernd; Risselada, Herre Jelger

    2016-09-01

    The question of how amyloid fibril formation is influenced by surfaces is crucial for a detailed understanding of the process in vivo. We applied a combination of kinetic experiments and molecular dynamics simulations to elucidate how (model) surfaces influence fibril formation of the amyloid-forming sequences of prion protein SUP35 and human islet amyloid polypeptide. The kinetic data suggest that structural reorganization of the initial peptide corona around colloidal gold nanoparticles is the rate-limiting step. The molecular dynamics simulations reveal that partial physisorption to the surface results in the formation of aligned monolayers, which stimulate the formation of parallel, critical oligomers. The general mechanism implies that the competition between the underlying peptide-peptide and peptide-surface interactions must strike a balance to accelerate fibril formation. PMID:27513605

  13. The Aβ peptide forms non-amyloid fibrils in the presence of carbon nanotubes.

    PubMed

    Luo, Jinghui; Wärmländer, Sebastian K T S; Yu, Chien-Hung; Muhammad, Kamran; Gräslund, Astrid; Pieter Abrahams, Jan

    2014-06-21

    Carbon nanotubes have specific properties that make them potentially useful in biomedicine and biotechnology. However, carbon nanotubes may themselves be toxic, making it imperative to understand how carbon nanotubes interact with biomolecules such as proteins. Here, we used NMR, CD, and ThT/fluorescence spectroscopy together with AFM imaging to study pH-dependent molecular interactions between single walled carbon nanotubes (SWNTs) and the amyloid-beta (Aβ) peptide. The aggregation of the Aβ peptide, first into oligomers and later into amyloid fibrils, is considered to be the toxic mechanism behind Alzheimer's disease. We found that SWNTs direct the Aβ peptides to form a new class of β-sheet-rich yet non-amyloid fibrils.

  14. Molecular Structure, Membrane Interactions, and Toxicity of the Islet Amyloid Polypeptide in Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus

    PubMed Central

    Caillon, Lucie; Hoffmann, Anais R. F.; Botz, Alexandra; Khemtemourian, Lucie

    2016-01-01

    Human islet amyloid polypeptide (hIAPP) is the major component of the amyloid deposits found in the pancreatic islets of patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). Mature hIAPP, a 37-aa peptide, is natively unfolded in its monomeric state but forms islet amyloid in T2DM. In common with other misfolded and aggregated proteins, amyloid formation involves aggregation of monomers of hIAPP into oligomers, fibrils, and ultimately mature amyloid deposits. hIAPP is coproduced and stored with insulin by the pancreatic islet β-cells and is released in response to the stimuli that lead to insulin secretion. Accumulating evidence suggests that hIAPP amyloid deposits that accompany T2DM are not just an insignificant phenomenon derived from the disease progression but that hIAPP aggregation induces processes that impair the functionality and the viability of β-cells. In this review, we particularly focus on hIAPP structure, hIAPP aggregation, and hIAPP-membrane interactions. We will also discuss recent findings on the mechanism of hIAPP-membrane damage and on hIAPP-induced cell death. Finally, the development of successful antiamyloidogenic agents that prevent hIAPP fibril formation will be examined. PMID:26636105

  15. Amyloid Fibril Solubility.

    PubMed

    Rizzi, L G; Auer, S

    2015-11-19

    It is well established that amyloid fibril solubility is protein specific, but how solubility depends on the interactions between the fibril building blocks is not clear. Here we use a simple protein model and perform Monte Carlo simulations to directly measure the solubility of amyloid fibrils as a function of the interaction between the fibril building blocks. Our simulations confirms that the fibril solubility depends on the fibril thickness and that the relationship between the interactions and the solubility can be described by a simple analytical formula. The results presented in this study reveal general rules how side-chain-side-chain interactions, backbone hydrogen bonding, and temperature affect amyloid fibril solubility, which might prove to be a powerful tool to design protein fibrils with desired solubility and aggregation properties in general. PMID:26496385

  16. Amyloid Fibril Solubility.

    PubMed

    Rizzi, L G; Auer, S

    2015-11-19

    It is well established that amyloid fibril solubility is protein specific, but how solubility depends on the interactions between the fibril building blocks is not clear. Here we use a simple protein model and perform Monte Carlo simulations to directly measure the solubility of amyloid fibrils as a function of the interaction between the fibril building blocks. Our simulations confirms that the fibril solubility depends on the fibril thickness and that the relationship between the interactions and the solubility can be described by a simple analytical formula. The results presented in this study reveal general rules how side-chain-side-chain interactions, backbone hydrogen bonding, and temperature affect amyloid fibril solubility, which might prove to be a powerful tool to design protein fibrils with desired solubility and aggregation properties in general.

  17. Neuronal amyloid-β accumulation within cholinergic basal forebrain in ageing and Alzheimer's disease.

    PubMed

    Baker-Nigh, Alaina; Vahedi, Shahrooz; Davis, Elena Goetz; Weintraub, Sandra; Bigio, Eileen H; Klein, William L; Geula, Changiz

    2015-06-01

    The mechanisms that contribute to selective vulnerability of the magnocellular basal forebrain cholinergic neurons in neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's disease, are not fully understood. Because age is the primary risk factor for Alzheimer's disease, mechanisms of interest must include age-related alterations in protein expression, cell type-specific markers and pathology. The present study explored the extent and characteristics of intraneuronal amyloid-β accumulation, particularly of the fibrillogenic 42-amino acid isoform, within basal forebrain cholinergic neurons in normal young, normal aged and Alzheimer's disease brains as a potential contributor to the selective vulnerability of these neurons using immunohistochemistry and western blot analysis. Amyloid-β1-42 immunoreactivity was observed in the entire cholinergic neuronal population regardless of age or Alzheimer's disease diagnosis. The magnitude of this accumulation as revealed by optical density measures was significantly greater than that in cortical pyramidal neurons, and magnocellular neurons in the globus pallidus did not demonstrate a similar extent of amyloid immunoreactivity. Immunoblot analysis with a panel of amyloid-β antibodies confirmed accumulation of high concentration of amyloid-β in basal forebrain early in adult life. There was no age- or Alzheimer-related alteration in total amyloid-β content within this region. In contrast, an increase in the large molecular weight soluble oligomer species was observed with a highly oligomer-specific antibody in aged and Alzheimer brains when compared with the young. Similarly, intermediate molecular weight oligomeric species displayed an increase in aged and Alzheimer brains when compared with the young using two amyloid-β42 antibodies. Compared to cortical homogenates, small molecular weight oligomeric species were lower and intermediate species were enriched in basal forebrain in ageing and Alzheimer's disease. Regional and age

  18. Structural Polymorphism in Amyloids

    PubMed Central

    Jones, Eric M.; Wu, Bo; Surewicz, Krystyna; Nadaud, Philippe S.; Helmus, Jonathan J.; Chen, Shugui; Jaroniec, Christopher P.; Surewicz, Witold K.

    2011-01-01

    The C-terminally-truncated human prion protein variant Y145Stop (or PrP23–144), associated with a familial prion disease, provides a valuable model for studying the fundamental properties of protein amyloids. In previous solid-state NMR experiments, we established that the β-sheet core of the PrP23–144 amyloid is composed of two β-strand regions encompassing residues ∼113–125 and ∼130–140. The former segment contains a highly conserved hydrophobic palindrome sequence, 113AGAAAAGA120, which has been considered essential to PrP conformational conversion. Here, we examine the role of this segment in fibrillization of PrP23–144 using a deletion variant, Δ113–120 PrP23–144, in which the palindrome sequence is missing. Surprisingly, we find that deletion of the palindrome sequence affects neither the amyloidogenicity nor the polymerization kinetics of PrP23–144, although it does alter amyloid conformation and morphology. Using two-dimensional and three-dimensional solid-state NMR methods, we find that Δ113–120 PrP23–144 fibrils contain an altered β-core extended N-terminally to residue ∼106, encompassing residues not present in the core of wild-type PrP23–144 fibrils. The C-terminal β-strand of the core, however, is similar in both fibril types. Collectively, these data indicate that amyloid cores of PrP23–144 variants contain “essential” (i.e. nucleation-determining) and “nonessential” regions, with the latter being “movable” in amino acid sequence space. These findings reveal an intriguing new mechanism for structural polymorphism in amyloids and suggest a potential means for modulating the physicochemical properties of amyloid fibrils without compromising their polymerization characteristics. PMID:22002245

  19. Opposing Effects of Cucurbit[7]uril and 1,2,3,4,6-Penta-O-galloyl-β-d-glucopyranose on Amyloid β25-35 Assembly.

    PubMed

    de Almeida, Natália E C; Do, Thanh D; Tro, Michael; LaPointe, Nichole E; Feinstein, Stuart C; Shea, Joan-Emma; Bowers, Michael T

    2016-02-17

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a neurodegenerative disease characterized by extracellular deposits of amyloid β protein (Aβ) in the brain. The conversion of soluble monomers to amyloid Aβ fibrils is a complicated process and involves several transient oligomeric species, which are widely believed to be highly toxic and play a crucial role in the etiology of AD. The development of inhibitors to prevent formation of small and midsized oligomers is a promising strategy for AD treatment. In this work, we employ ion mobility spectrometry (IMS), transmission electron microscopy (TEM), and molecular dynamics (MD) simulations to elucidate the structural modulation promoted by two potential inhibitors of Aβ oligomerization, cucurbit[7]uril (CB[7]) and 1,2,3,4,6-penta-O-galloyl-β-d-glucopyranose (PGG), on early oligomer and fibril formation of the Aβ25-35 fragment. One and two CB[7] molecules bind to Aβ25-35 monomers and dimers, respectively, and suppress aggregation by remodeling early oligomer structures and inhibiting the formation of higher-order oligomers. On the other hand, nonselective binding was observed between PGG and Aβ25-35. The interactions between PGG and Aβ25-35, surprisingly, enhanced the formation of Aβ aggregates by promoting extended Aβ25-35 conformations in both homo- and hetero-oligomers. When both ligands were present, the inhibitory effect of CB[7] overrode the stimulatory effect of PGG on Aβ25-35 aggregation, suppressing the formation of large amyloid oligomers and eliminating the structural conversion from isotropic to β-rich topologies induced by PGG. Our results provide mechanistic insights into CB[7] and PGG action on Aβ oligomerization. They also demonstrate the power of the IMS technique to investigate mechanisms of multiple small-molecule agents on the amyloid formation process. PMID:26629788

  20. Structure-Based Peptide Design to Modulate Amyloid Beta Aggregation and Reduce Cytotoxicity

    PubMed Central

    Kumar, Jitendra; Namsechi, Risa; Sim, Valerie L.

    2015-01-01

    The deposition of Aβ peptide in the brain is the key event in Alzheimer disease progression. Therefore, the prevention of Aβ self assembly into disease-associated oligomers is a logical strategy for treatment. π stacking is known to provide structural stability to many amyloids; two phenylalanine residues within the Aβ 14–23 self recognition element are in such an arrangement in many solved structures. Therefore, we targeted this structural stacking by substituting these two phenylalanine residues with their D-enantiomers. The resulting peptides were able to modulate Aβ aggregation in vitro and reduce Aβ cytotoxicity in primary neuronal cultures. Using kinetic analysis of fibril formation, electron microscopy and dynamic light scattering characterization of oligomer size distributions, we demonstrate that, in addition to altering fibril structural characteristics, these peptides can induce the formation of larger amorphous aggregates which are protective against toxic oligomers, possibly because they are able to sequester the toxic oligomers during co-incubation. Alternatively, they may alter the surface structure of the oligomers such that they can no longer interact with cells to induce toxic pathways. PMID:26070139

  1. Structure-activity relationships of organofluorine inhibitors of β-amyloid self-assembly.

    PubMed

    Török, Béla; Sood, Abha; Bag, Seema; Kulkarni, Aditya; Borkin, Dmitry; Lawler, Elizabeth; Dasgupta, Sujaya; Landge, Shainaz; Abid, Mohammed; Zhou, Weihong; Foster, Michelle; LeVine, Harry; Török, Marianna

    2012-05-01

    A broad group of structurally diverse small organofluorine compounds were synthesized and evaluated as inhibitors of β-amyloid (Aβ) self-assembly. The main goal was to generate a diverse library of compounds with the same functional group and to observe general structural features that characterize inhibitors of Aβ oligomer and fibril formation, ultimately identifying structures for further focused inhibitor design. The common structural motifs in these compounds are CF(3) -C-OH and CF(3) -C-NH groups that were proposed to be binding units in our previous studies. A broad range of potential small-molecule inhibitors were synthesized by combining various carbocyclic and heteroaromatic rings with an array of substituents, generating a total of 106 molecules. The compounds were tested by standard methods such as thioflavin-T fluorescence spectroscopy for monitoring fibril formation, biotinyl Aβ(1-42) single-site streptavidin-based assays for observing oligomer formation, and atomic force microscopy for morphological studies. These assays revealed a number of structures that show significant inhibition against either Aβ fibril or oligomer formation. A detailed analysis of the structure-activity relationship of anti-fibril and -oligomer properties is provided. These data present further experimental evidence for the distinct nature of fibril versus oligomer formation and indicate that the interaction of the Aβ peptide with chiral small molecules is not stereospecific in nature.

  2. Brain propagation of transduced α-synuclein involves non-fibrillar protein species and is enhanced in α-synuclein null mice.

    PubMed

    Helwig, Michael; Klinkenberg, Michael; Rusconi, Raffaella; Musgrove, Ruth E; Majbour, Nour K; El-Agnaf, Omar M A; Ulusoy, Ayse; Di Monte, Donato A

    2016-03-01

    oligomeric, fibrillar and/or total (monomeric and aggregated) α-synuclein. Following viral vector transduction, monomeric, oligomeric and fibrillar protein was detected within donor neurons in the medulla oblongata. In contrast, recipient axons in the pons were devoid of immunoreactivity for fibrillar α-synuclein, indicating that non-fibrillar forms of α-synuclein were primarily transferred from one neuron to the other, diffused within the brain and led to initial neuronal injury. This study elucidates a paradigm of α-synuclein propagation that may play a particularly important role under pathophysiological conditions associated with enhanced α-synuclein expression. Rapid long-distance diffusion and accumulation of monomeric and oligomeric α-synuclein does not necessarily involve pathological seeding but could still result in a significant neuronal burden during the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:26719384

  3. Brain propagation of transduced α-synuclein involves non-fibrillar protein species and is enhanced in α-synuclein null mice.

    PubMed

    Helwig, Michael; Klinkenberg, Michael; Rusconi, Raffaella; Musgrove, Ruth E; Majbour, Nour K; El-Agnaf, Omar M A; Ulusoy, Ayse; Di Monte, Donato A

    2016-03-01

    oligomeric, fibrillar and/or total (monomeric and aggregated) α-synuclein. Following viral vector transduction, monomeric, oligomeric and fibrillar protein was detected within donor neurons in the medulla oblongata. In contrast, recipient axons in the pons were devoid of immunoreactivity for fibrillar α-synuclein, indicating that non-fibrillar forms of α-synuclein were primarily transferred from one neuron to the other, diffused within the brain and led to initial neuronal injury. This study elucidates a paradigm of α-synuclein propagation that may play a particularly important role under pathophysiological conditions associated with enhanced α-synuclein expression. Rapid long-distance diffusion and accumulation of monomeric and oligomeric α-synuclein does not necessarily involve pathological seeding but could still result in a significant neuronal burden during the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative diseases.

  4. Common interruptions in the repeating tripeptide sequence of non-fibrillar collagens: sequence analysis and structural studies on triple-helix peptide models.

    PubMed

    Thiagarajan, Geetha; Li, Yingjie; Mohs, Angela; Strafaci, Christopher; Popiel, Magdalena; Baum, Jean; Brodsky, Barbara

    2008-02-22

    Interruptions in the repeating (Gly-X1-X2)(n) amino acid sequence pattern are found in the triple-helix domains of all non-fibrillar collagens, and perturbations to the triple-helix at such sites are likely to play a role in collagen higher-order structure and function. This study defines the sequence features and structural consequences of the most common interruption, where one residue is missing from the tripeptide pattern, Gly-X1-X2-Gly-AA(1)-Gly-X1-X2, designated G1G interruptions. Residues found within G1G interruptions are predominantly hydrophobic (70%), followed by a significant amount of charged residues (16%), and the Gly-X1-X2 triplets flanking the interruption are atypical. Studies on peptide models indicate the degree of destabilization is much greater when Pro is in the interruption, GP, than when hydrophobic residues (GF, GY) are present, and a rigid Gly-Pro-Hyp tripeptide adjacent to the interruption leads to greater destabilization than a flexible Gly-Ala-Ala sequence. Modeling based on NMR data indicates the Phe residue within a GF interruption is located on the outside of the triple helix. The G1G interruptions resemble a previously studied collagen interruption GPOGAAVMGPO, designated G4G-type, in that both are destabilizing, but allow continuation of rod-like triple helices and maintenance of the single residue stagger throughout the imperfection, with a loss of axial register of the superhelix on both sides. Both kinds of interruptions result in a highly localized perturbation in hydrogen bonding and dihedral angles, but the hydrophobic residue of a G4G interruption packs near the central axis of the superhelix, while the hydrophobic residue of a G1G interruption is located on the triple-helix surface. The different structural consequences of G1G and G4G interruptions in the repeating tripeptide sequence pattern suggest a physical basis for their differential susceptibility to matrix metalloproteinases in type X collagen.

  5. Reelin protects against amyloid β toxicity in vivo.

    PubMed

    Lane-Donovan, Courtney; Philips, Gary T; Wasser, Catherine R; Durakoglugil, Murat S; Masiulis, Irene; Upadhaya, Ajeet; Pohlkamp, Theresa; Coskun, Cagil; Kotti, Tiina; Steller, Laura; Hammer, Robert E; Frotscher, Michael; Bock, Hans H; Herz, Joachim

    2015-07-07

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a currently incurable neurodegenerative disorder and is the most common form of dementia in people over the age of 65 years. The predominant genetic risk factor for AD is the ε4 allele encoding apolipoprotein E (ApoE4). The secreted glycoprotein Reelin enhances synaptic plasticity by binding to the multifunctional ApoE receptors apolipoprotein E receptor 2 (Apoer2) and very low density lipoprotein receptor (Vldlr). We have previously shown that the presence of ApoE4 renders neurons unresponsive to Reelin by impairing the recycling of the receptors, thereby decreasing its protective effects against amyloid β (Aβ) oligomer-induced synaptic toxicity in vitro. We showed that when Reelin was knocked out in adult mice, these mice behaved normally without overt learning or memory deficits. However, they were strikingly sensitive to amyloid-induced synaptic suppression and had profound memory and learning disabilities with very low amounts of amyloid deposition. Our findings highlight the physiological importance of Reelin in protecting the brain against Aβ-induced synaptic dysfunction and memory impairment.

  6. Reelin protects against amyloid β toxicity in vivo

    PubMed Central

    Lane-Donovan, Courtney; Philips, Gary T.; Wasser, Catherine R.; Durakoglugil, Murat S.; Masiulis, Irene; Upadhaya, Ajeet; Pohlkamp, Theresa; Coskun, Cagil; Kotti, Tiina; Steller, Laura; Hammer, Robert E.; Frotscher, Michael; Bock, Hans H.; Herz, Joachim

    2015-01-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a currently incurable neurodegenerative disorder and the most common form of dementia in people over the age of 65. The predominant genetic risk factor for AD is the ε4 allele encoding apolipoprotein E (ApoE4). The secreted glycoprotein Reelin, which is a physiological ligand for the multifunctional ApoE receptors Apolipoprotein E receptor 2 (Apoer2) and very low-density lipoprotein receptor (Vldlr), enhances synaptic plasticity. We have previously shown that the presence of ApoE4 renders neurons unresponsive to Reelin by impairing the recycling of the receptors, thereby decreasing its protective effects against amyloid β (Aβ) oligomer-induced synaptic toxicity in vitro. Here, we show that when Reelin was knocked out in adult mice, these mice behaved normally without overt learning or memory deficits. However, they were strikingly sensitive to amyloid-induced synaptic suppression, and had profound memory and learning disabilities at very low amounts of amyloid deposition. Our findings highlight the physiological importance of Reelin in protecting the brain against Aβ-induced synaptic dysfunction and memory impairment. PMID:26152694

  7. Curcumin Binding to Beta Amyloid: A Computational Study.

    PubMed

    Rao, Praveen P N; Mohamed, Tarek; Teckwani, Karan; Tin, Gary

    2015-10-01

    Curcumin, a chemical constituent present in the spice turmeric, is known to prevent the aggregation of amyloid peptide implicated in the pathophysiology of Alzheimer's disease. While curcumin is known to bind directly to various amyloid aggregates, no systematic investigations have been carried out to understand its ability to bind to the amyloid aggregates including oligomers and fibrils. In this study, we constructed computational models of (i) Aβ hexapeptide (16) KLVFFA(21) octamer steric-zipper β-sheet assembly and (ii) full-length Aβ fibril β-sheet assembly. Curcumin binding in these models was evaluated by molecular docking and molecular dynamics (MD) simulation studies. In both the models, curcumin was oriented in a linear extended conformation parallel to fiber axis and exhibited better stability in the Aβ hexapeptide (16) KLVFFA(21) octamer steric-zipper model (Ebinding  = -10.05 kcal/mol) compared to full-length Aβ fibril model (Ebinding  = -3.47 kcal/mol). Analysis of MD trajectories of curcumin bound to full-length Aβ fibril shows good stability with minimum Cα-atom RMSD shifts. Interestingly, curcumin binding led to marked fluctuations in the (14) HQKLVFFA(21) region that constitute the fibril spine with RMSF values ranging from 1.4 to 3.6 Å. These results show that curcumin binding to Aβ shifts the equilibrium in the aggregation pathway by promoting the formation of non-toxic aggregates.

  8. Alzheimer's-associated A{beta} oligomers show altered structure, immunoreactivity and synaptotoxicity with low doses of oleocanthal

    SciTech Connect

    Pitt, Jason Roth, William; Lacor, Pascale; Smith, Amos B.; Blankenship, Matthew; Velasco, Pauline; De Felice, Fernanda; Breslin, Paul Klein, William L.

    2009-10-15

    It now appears likely that soluble oligomers of amyloid-{beta}{sub 1-42} peptide, rather than insoluble fibrils, act as the primary neurotoxin in Alzheimer's disease (AD). Consequently, compounds capable of altering the assembly state of these oligomers (referred to as ADDLs) may have potential for AD therapeutics. Phenolic compounds are of particular interest for their ability to disrupt A{beta} oligomerization and reduce pathogenicity. This study has focused on oleocanthal (OC), a naturally-occurring phenolic compound found in extra-virgin olive oil. OC increased the immunoreactivity of soluble A{beta} species, when assayed with both sequence- and conformation-specific A{beta} antibodies, indicating changes in oligomer structure. Analysis of oligomers in the presence of OC showed an upward shift in MW and a ladder-like distribution of SDS-stable ADDL subspecies. In comparison with control ADDLs, oligomers formed in the presence of OC (A{beta}-OC) showed equivalent colocalization at synapses but exhibited greater immunofluorescence as a result of increased antibody recognition. The enhanced signal at synapses was not due to increased synaptic binding, as direct detection of fluorescently-labeled ADDLs showed an overall reduction in ADDL signal in the presence of OC. Decreased binding to synapses was accompanied by significantly less synaptic deterioration assayed by drebrin loss. Additionally, treatment with OC improved antibody clearance of ADDLs. These results indicate oleocanthal is capable of altering the oligomerization state of ADDLs while protecting neurons from the synaptopathological effects of ADDLs and suggest OC as a lead compound for development in AD therapeutics.

  9. Shear-Induced Amyloid Formation in the Brain: I. Potential Vascular and Parenchymal Processes

    PubMed Central

    Trumbore, Conrad N.

    2016-01-01

    Shear distortion of amyloid-beta (Aβ) solutions accelerates amyloid cascade reactions that may yield different toxic oligomers than those formed in quiescent solutions. Recent experiments indicate that cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) and interstitial fluid (ISF) containing Aβ flow through narrow brain perivascular pathways and brain parenchyma. This paper suggests that such flow causes shear distortion of Aβ molecules involving conformation changes that may be one of the initiating events in the etiology of Alzheimer’s disease. Aβ shearing can occur in or around brain arteries and arterioles and is suggested as the origin of cerebral amyloid angiopathy deposits in cerebrovascular walls. Comparatively low flow rates of ISF within the narrow extracellular spaces (ECS) of the brain parenchyma are suggested as a possible initiating factor in both the formation of neurotoxic Aβ42 oligomers and amyloid fibrils. Aβ42 in slow-flowing ISF can gain significant shear energy at or near the walls of tortuous brain ECS flow paths, promoting the formation of a shear-distorted, excited state hydrophobic Aβ42* conformation. This Aβ42* molecule could possibly be involved in one of two paths, one involving rapid adsorption to a brain membrane surface, ultimately forming neurotoxic oligomers on membranes, and the other ultimately forming plaque within the ECS flow pathways. Rising Aβ concentrations combined with shear at or near critical brain membranes are proposed as contributing factors to Alzheimer’s disease neurotoxicity. These hypotheses may be applicable in other neurodegenerative diseases, including tauopathies and alpha-synucleinopathies, in which shear-distorted proteins also may form in the brain ECS. PMID:27567812

  10. Nanoscale Heterogeneity of the Molecular Structure of Individual hIAPP Amyloid Fibrils Revealed with Tip-Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy.

    PubMed

    vandenAkker, Corianne C; Deckert-Gaudig, Tanja; Schleeger, Michael; Velikov, Krassimir P; Deckert, Volker; Bonn, Mischa; Koenderink, Gijsje H

    2015-09-01

    Type 2 diabetes mellitus is characterized by the pathological deposition of fibrillized protein, known as amyloids. It is thought that oligomers and/or amyloid fibrils formed from human islet amyloid polypeptide (hIAPP or amylin) cause cell death by membrane damage. The molecular structure of hIAPP amyloid fibrils is dominated by β-sheet structure, as probed with conventional infrared and Raman vibrational spectroscopy. However, with these techniques it is not possible to distinguish between the core and the surface structure of the fibrils. Since the fibril surface crucially affects amyloid toxicity, it is essential to know its structure. Here the surface molecular structure and amino acid residue composition of hIAPP fibrils are specifically probed with nanoscale resolution using tip-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (TERS). The fibril surface mainly contains unordered or α-helical structures, in contrast to the β-sheet-rich core. This experimentally validates recent models of hIAPP amyloids based on NMR measurements. Spatial mapping of the surface structure reveals a highly heterogeneous surface structure. Finally, TERS can probe fibrils formed on a lipid interface, which is more representative of amyloids in vivo.

  11. A molecular chaperone breaks the catalytic cycle that generates toxic Aβ oligomers.

    PubMed

    Cohen, Samuel I A; Arosio, Paolo; Presto, Jenny; Kurudenkandy, Firoz Roshan; Biverstål, Henrik; Dolfe, Lisa; Dunning, Christopher; Yang, Xiaoting; Frohm, Birgitta; Vendruscolo, Michele; Johansson, Jan; Dobson, Christopher M; Fisahn, André; Knowles, Tuomas P J; Linse, Sara

    2015-03-01

    Alzheimer's disease is an increasingly prevalent neurodegenerative disorder whose pathogenesis has been associated with aggregation of the amyloid-β peptide (Aβ42). Recent studies have revealed that once Aβ42 fibrils are generated, their surfaces effectively catalyze the formation of neurotoxic oligomers. Here we show that a molecular chaperone, a human Brichos domain, can specifically inhibit this catalytic cycle and limit human Aβ42 toxicity. We demonstrate in vitro that Brichos achieves this inhibition by binding to the surfaces of fibrils, thereby redirecting the aggregation reaction to a pathway that involves minimal formation of toxic oligomeric intermediates. We verify that this mechanism occurs in living mouse brain tissue by cytotoxicity and electrophysiology experiments. These results reveal that molecular chaperones can help maintain protein homeostasis by selectively suppressing critical microscopic steps within the complex reaction pathways responsible for the toxic effects of protein misfolding and aggregation. PMID:25686087

  12. Tau Oligomers: The Toxic Player at Synapses in Alzheimer’s Disease

    PubMed Central

    Guerrero-Muñoz, Marcos J.; Gerson, Julia; Castillo-Carranza, Diana L.

    2015-01-01

    Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is a progressive disorder in which the most noticeable symptoms are cognitive impairment and memory loss. However, the precise mechanism by which those symptoms develop remains unknown. Of note, neuronal loss occurs at sites where synaptic dysfunction is observed earlier, suggesting that altered synaptic connections precede neuronal loss. The abnormal accumulation of amyloid-β (Aβ) and tau protein is the main histopathological feature of the disease. Several lines of evidence suggest that the small oligomeric forms of Aβ and tau may act synergistically to promote synaptic dysfunction in AD. Remarkably, tau pathology correlates better with the progression of the disease than Aβ. Recently, a growing number of studies have begun to suggest that missorting of tau protein from the axon to the dendrites is required to mediate the detrimental effects of Aβ. In this review we discuss the novel findings regarding the potential mechanisms by which tau oligomers contribute to synaptic dysfunction in AD. PMID:26696824

  13. The molecular chaperone Brichos breaks the catalytic cycle that generates toxic Aβ oligomers

    PubMed Central

    Kurudenkandy, Firoz Roshan; Biverstal, Henrik; Dolfe, Lisa; Dunning, Christopher; Yang, Xiaoting; Frohm, Birgitta; Vendruscolo, Michele; Johansson, Jan; Dobson, Christopher M.; Fisahn, André; Knowles, Tuomas P. J.; Linse, Sara

    2015-01-01

    Alzheimer’s disease is an increasingly prevalent neurodegenerative disorder whose pathogenesis has been associated with aggregation of the amyloid-β peptide (Aβ42). Recent studies have revealed that once Aβ42 fibrils are generated, their surfaces strongly catalyse the formation of neurotoxic oligomers. Here we show that a molecular chaperone, a Brichos domain, can specifically inhibit this catalytic cycle and limit Aβ42 toxicity. We demonstrate in vitro that Brichos achieves this inhibition by binding to the surfaces of fibrils, thereby redirecting the aggregation reaction to a pathway that involves minimal formation of toxic oligomeric intermediates. We verify that this mechanism occurs in living brain tissue by means of cytotoxicity and electrophysiology experiments. These results reveal that molecular chaperones can help maintain protein homeostasis by selectively suppressing critical microscopic steps within the complex reaction pathways responsible for the toxic effects of protein misfolding and aggregation. PMID:25686087

  14. Amyloid Aggregation and Membrane Disruption by Amyloid Proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ramamoorthy, Ayyalusamy

    2013-03-01

    Amyloidogenesis has been the focus of intense basic and clinical research, as an increasing number of amyloidogenic proteins have been linked to common and incurable degenerative diseases including Alzheimer's, type II diabetes, and Parkinson's. Recent studies suggest that the cell toxicity is mainly due to intermediates generated during the assembly process of amyloid fibers, which have been proposed to attack cells in a variety of ways. Disruption of cell membranes is believed to be one of the key components of amyloid toxicity. However, the mechanism by which this occurs is not fully understood. Our research in this area is focused on the investigation of the early events in the aggregation and membrane disruption of amyloid proteins, Islet amyloid polypeptide protein (IAPP, also known as amylin) and amyloid-beta peptide, on the molecular level. Structural insights into the mechanisms of membrane disruption by these amyloid proteins and the role of membrane components on the membrane disruption will be presented.

  15. Cure Chemistry of Phenylethynyl Terminated Oligomers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wood, Karen H.; Orwoll, Robert A.; Young, Philip R.; Jensen, Brian J.; McNair, Harold M.

    1997-01-01

    The ability to process high performance polymers into quality, void-free composites has been significantly advanced using oligomers terminated with reactive groups which cure or crosslink at elevated temperature without the evolution of volatile byproducts. Several matrix resin systems of considerable interest to the aerospace community utilize phenylethynyl-terminated imide (PETI) technology to achieve this advantage. The present paper addresses the cure chemistry of PETI oligomers. The thermal cure of a low molecular weight model compound was studied using a variety of analytical techniques including differential scanning calorimetry, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, and liquid chromatography-mass spectroscopy. The studies indicate an extremely complex cure process. Many stable products were isolated and this paper reports current work on identification of those products. The intent of this research is to provide fundamental insight into the molecular structure of the cured PETI engineering materials so that performance and durability can be more fully assessed.

  16. Monte Carlo Simulation of Endlinking Oligomers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hinkley, Jeffrey A.; Young, Jennifer A.

    1998-01-01

    This report describes initial efforts to model the endlinking reaction of phenylethynyl-terminated oligomers. Several different molecular weights were simulated using the Bond Fluctuation Monte Carlo technique on a 20 x 20 x 20 unit lattice with periodic boundary conditions. After a monodisperse "melt" was equilibrated, chain ends were linked whenever they came within the allowed bond distance. Ends remained reactive throughout, so that multiple links were permitted. Even under these very liberal crosslinking assumptions, geometrical factors limited the degree of crosslinking. Average crosslink functionalities were 2.3 to 2.6; surprisingly, they did not depend strongly on the chain length. These results agreed well with the degrees of crosslinking inferred from experiment in a cured phenylethynyl-terminated polyimide oligomer.

  17. Oligomer functionalized nanotubes and composites formed therewith

    DOEpatents

    Zettl, Alexander K; Sainsbury, Toby; Frechet, Jean M.J.

    2014-03-18

    Disclosed herein is a sequential functionalization methodology for the covalent modification of nanotubes with between one and four repeat units of a polymer. Covalent attachment of oligomer units to the surface of nanotubes results in oligomer units forming an organic sheath around the nanotubes, polymer-functionalized-nanotubes (P-NTs). P-NTs possess chemical functionality identical to that of the functionalizing polymer, and thus provide nanoscale scaffolds which may be readily dispersed within a monomer solution and participate in the polymerization reaction to form a polymer-nanotube/polymer composite. Formation of polymer in the presence of P-NTs leads to a uniform dispersion of nanotubes within the polymer matrix, in contrast to aggregated masses of nanotubes in the case of pristine-NTs. The covalent attachment of oligomeric units to the surface of nanotubes represents the formation of a functional nanoscale building block which can be readily dispersed and integrated within the polymer to form a novel composite material.

  18. Ethynyl terminated ester oligomers and polymers therefrom

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hergenrother, Paul M. (Inventor); hesives and composite matrices. (Inventor)

    1987-01-01

    A new class of ethynyl-terminated oligomers and the process for preparing same are disclosed. Upon the application of heat, with or without a catalyst, the ethynyl groups react to provide crosslinking and chain extension to increase the polymer use temperature and improve the polymer solvent resistance. These improved polyesters are potentially useful in packaging, magnetic tapes, capacitors, industrial belting, protective coatings, structural adhesives and composite matrices.

  19. Formation of domain-swapped oligomer of cytochrome C from its molten globule state oligomer.

    PubMed

    Deshpande, Megha Subhash; Parui, Partha Pratim; Kamikubo, Hironari; Yamanaka, Masaru; Nagao, Satoshi; Komori, Hirofumi; Kataoka, Mikio; Higuchi, Yoshiki; Hirota, Shun

    2014-07-22

    Many proteins, including cytochrome c (cyt c), have been shown to form domain-swapped oligomers, but the factors governing the oligomerization process remain unrevealed. We obtained oligomers of cyt c by refolding cyt c from its acid molten globule state to neutral pH state under high protein and ion concentrations. The amount of oligomeric cyt c obtained depended on the nature of the anion (chaotropic or kosmotropic) in the solution: ClO4(-) (oligomers, 11% ± 2% (heme unit)), SCN(-) (10% ± 2%), I(-) (6% ± 2%), NO3(-) (3% ± 1%), Br(-) (2% ± 1%), Cl(-) (2% ± 1%), and SO4(2-) (3% ± 1%) for refolding of 2 mM cyt c (anion concentration 125 mM). Dimeric cyt c obtained by refolding from the molten globule state exhibited a domain-swapped structure, in which the C-terminal α-helices were exchanged between protomers. According to small-angle X-ray scattering measurements, approximately 25% of the cyt c molecules were dimerized in the molten globule state containing 125 mM ClO4(-). These results indicate that a certain amount of molten globule state oligomers of cyt c convert to domain-swapped oligomers during refolding and that the intermolecular interactions necessary for domain swapping are present in the molten globule state. PMID:24981551

  20. Kinetics of ligation of fibrin oligomers.

    PubMed

    Nelb, G W; Kamykowski, G W; Ferry, J D

    1980-07-10

    Human fibrinogen was treated with thrombin in the presence of fibrinoligase and calcium ion at pH 8.5, ionic strength 0.45, and the ensuring polymerization was interrupted at various time intervals (t) both before and after the clotting time (tc) by solubilization with a solution of sodium dodecyl sulfate and urea. Aliquots of the solubilized protein were subjected to gel electrophoresis on polyacrylamide gels after disulfide reduction by dithiothreitol and on agarose gels without reduction. The degree of gamma-gamma ligation was determined from the former and the size distribution of ligated oligomers, for degree of polymerization x from 1 to 10, from the latter. The degree of gamma-gamma ligation was calculated independently from the size distribution with the assumption that every junction between two fibrin monomers remaining intact after solubilization is ligated, and this agreed well with the direct determination. The size distribution at t/tc = 1.3 to 1.6 differed somewhat from that calculated by the classical theory of linear polycondensation on the assumption that all reactive sites react with equal probability and rate. Analysis of the difference suggests that ligation of a fibrin digomer is not a random process; the probability of ligation of a given junction between two monomers increases with the oligomer length. The number-average degree of polymerization, xn, of ligated oligomers increases approximately linearly with time up to a value of 1.6. PMID:7391026

  1. Cellular uptake of neutral phosphorodiamidate morpholino oligomers.

    PubMed

    Iversen, Patrick L; Aird, Katherine M; Wu, Rebecca; Morse, Michael M; Devi, Gayathri R

    2009-09-01

    Phosphorodiamidate morpholino oligomers (PMO), which have a neutral chemistry, are extensively being used as tools for selective inhibition of gene expression in cell culture models and are currently in human clinical trials. Unlike phosphorothioates (PS ODN) and other charged oligonucleotides, little is known about the uptake characteristics of neutral oligomers. The purpose of this study was to understand the kinetics of PMO transport in cells and correlate with antisense activity. In contrast to primary cells and some transformed cell lines which were uptake permissive, established cancer cell lines showed very poor uptake with an occasional diffuse intracellular pattern. Differential PMO uptake was also observed in immune cells, with dendritic cells and monocytes showing highest uptake compared to T and B cells. In addition, PMO localization was observed to be heterogeneous within a population of uptake permissive cells. Unassisted PMO delivery targeting specific genes was correlated with functional antisense efficacy in experiments showing correction of pre-mRNA missplicing and inhibition of target enzyme activity in cells in culture. PMO internalization in uptake-permissive cells was identified to be specific, saturable, and energy-dependent, suggesting a receptor mediated uptake mechanism. Understanding PMO transport should facilitate the design of more effective synthetic antisense oligomers as therapeutic agents.

  2. Using optical profilometry to characterize cell membrane roughness influenced by amyloid-beta 42 aggregates and electric fields

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pan, Huei-Jyuan; Wang, Ruei-Lin; Xiao, Jian-Long; Chang, Yu-Jen; Cheng, Ji-Yen; Chen, Yun-Ru; Lee, Chau-Hwang

    2014-01-01

    The membrane roughness of Neuro-2a neroblastoma cells is measured by using noninterferometric wide-field optical profilometry. The cells are treated with the fibril and oligomer conformers of amyloid-beta (Aβ) 42, which is a peptide of 42 amino acids related to the development of Alzheimer's disease. We find that both the Aβ42 fibrils and Aβ42 oligomers reduced the cell membrane roughness, but the effect of Aβ42 oligomers was faster and stronger than that of the fibrils. We also apply direct-current electric field (dcEF) stimulations on the cells. A dcEF of 300 mV/mm can increase the membrane roughness under the treatment of Aβ42. These results suggest that Aβ42 can decrease the membrane compliance of live neuroblastoma cells, and dcEFs may counteract this effect.

  3. Z-Phe-Ala-diazomethylketone (PADK) disrupts and remodels early oligomer states of the Alzheimer disease Aβ42 protein.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Xueyun; Gessel, Megan M; Wisniewski, Meagan L; Viswanathan, Kishore; Wright, Dennis L; Bahr, Ben A; Bowers, Michael T

    2012-02-24

    The oligomerization of the amyloid-β protein (Aβ) is an important event in Alzheimer disease (AD) pathology. Developing small molecules that disrupt formation of early oligomeric states of Aβ and thereby reduce the effective amount of toxic oligomers is a promising therapeutic strategy for AD. Here, mass spectrometry and ion mobility spectrometry were used to investigate the effects of a small molecule, Z-Phe-Ala-diazomethylketone (PADK), on the Aβ42 form of the protein. The mass spectrum of a mixture of PADK and Aβ42 clearly shows that PADK binds directly to Aβ42 monomers and small oligomers. Ion mobility results indicate that PADK not only inhibits the formation of Aβ42 dodecamers, but also removes preformed Aβ42 dodecamers from the solution. Electron microscopy images show that PADK inhibits Aβ42 fibril formation in the solution. These results are consistent with a previous study that found that PADK has protective effects in an AD transgenic mouse model. The study of PADK and Aβ42 provides an example of small molecule therapeutic development for AD and other amyloid diseases.

  4. Z-Phe-Ala-diazomethylketone (PADK) Disrupts and Remodels Early Oligomer States of the Alzheimer Disease Aβ42 Protein*

    PubMed Central

    Zheng, Xueyun; Gessel, Megan M.; Wisniewski, Meagan L.; Viswanathan, Kishore; Wright, Dennis L.; Bahr, Ben A.; Bowers, Michael T.

    2012-01-01

    The oligomerization of the amyloid-β protein (Aβ) is an important event in Alzheimer disease (AD) pathology. Developing small molecules that disrupt formation of early oligomeric states of Aβ and thereby reduce the effective amount of toxic oligomers is a promising therapeutic strategy for AD. Here, mass spectrometry and ion mobility spectrometry were used to investigate the effects of a small molecule, Z-Phe-Ala-diazomethylketone (PADK), on the Aβ42 form of the protein. The mass spectrum of a mixture of PADK and Aβ42 clearly shows that PADK binds directly to Aβ42 monomers and small oligomers. Ion mobility results indicate that PADK not only inhibits the formation of Aβ42 dodecamers, but also removes preformed Aβ42 dodecamers from the solution. Electron microscopy images show that PADK inhibits Aβ42 fibril formation in the solution. These results are consistent with a previous study that found that PADK has protective effects in an AD transgenic mouse model. The study of PADK and Aβ42 provides an example of small molecule therapeutic development for AD and other amyloid diseases. PMID:22253440

  5. Time-lapse atomic force microscopy in the characterization of amyloid-like fibril assembly and oligomeric intermediates.

    PubMed

    Goldsbury, Claire; Green, Janelle

    2005-01-01

    The atomic force microscope (AFM) images the topography of biological structures adsorbed to surfaces with nanometer to angstrom scale resolution. Amyloid-like fibrils and oligomers can be imaged in buffer solutions, allowing the samples to retain physiological-like properties while temporal changes in structure are monitored, e.g., the elongation of fibrils or the growth of single oligomers. These qualities distinguish AFM from conventional imaging techniques of comparable resolution, i.e., electron microscopy (EM). However, AFM is limited in that the specimen must be firmly attached to a solid support for measurement and that time-lapse imaging of individual assemblies can thus only be achieved for fibrils and oligomers growing on this support. Nevertheless, AFM has provided several insights into the in vitro assembly mechanism and structures of amyloid-like fibrils. The first section of this chapter provides a methodological introduction to AFM, whilst the second details the application of this technique to the investigation of amyloidogenic proteins, specifically amylin and amyloid-beta (Abeta) peptides. PMID:15980598

  6. Molecular basis for amyloid-[beta] polymorphism

    SciTech Connect

    Colletier, Jacques-Philippe; Laganowsky, Arthur; Landau, Meytal; Zhao, Minglei; Soriaga, Angela B.; Goldschmidt, Lukasz; Flot, David; Cascio, Duilio; Sawaya, Michael R.; Eisenberga, David

    2011-10-19

    Amyloid-beta (A{beta}) aggregates are the main constituent of senile plaques, the histological hallmark of Alzheimer's disease. A{beta} molecules form {beta}-sheet containing structures that assemble into a variety of polymorphic oligomers, protofibers, and fibers that exhibit a range of lifetimes and cellular toxicities. This polymorphic nature of A{beta} has frustrated its biophysical characterization, its structural determination, and our understanding of its pathological mechanism. To elucidate A{beta} polymorphism in atomic detail, we determined eight new microcrystal structures of fiber-forming segments of A{beta}. These structures, all of short, self-complementing pairs of {beta}-sheets termed steric zippers, reveal a variety of modes of self-association of A{beta}. Combining these atomic structures with previous NMR studies allows us to propose several fiber models, offering molecular models for some of the repertoire of polydisperse structures accessible to A{beta}. These structures and molecular models contribute fundamental information for understanding A{beta} polymorphic nature and pathogenesis.

  7. Amyloid peptide channels.

    PubMed

    Kagan, B L; Azimov, R; Azimova, R

    2004-11-01

    At least 16 distinct clinical syndromes including Alzheimer's disease (AD), Parkinson's disease (PD), rheumatoid arthritis, type II diabetes mellitus (DM), and spongiform encephelopathies (prion diseases), are characterized by the deposition of amorphous, Congo red-staining deposits known as amyloid. These "misfolded" proteins adopt beta-sheet structures and aggregate spontaneously into similar extended fibrils despite their widely divergent primary sequences. Many, if not all, of these peptides are capable of forming ion-permeable channels in vitro and possibly in vivo. Common channel properties include irreversible, spontaneous insertion into membranes, relatively large, heterogeneous single-channel conductances, inhibition of channel formation by Congo red, and blockade of inserted channels by Zn2+. Physiologic effects of amyloid, including Ca2+ dysregulation, membrane depolarization, mitochondrial dysfunction, inhibition of long-term potentiation (LTP), and cytotoxicity, suggest that channel formation in plasma and intracellular membranes may play a key role in the pathophysiology of the amyloidoses. PMID:15702375

  8. Coenzyme Q10 restores amyloid beta-inhibited proliferation of neural stem cells by activating the PI3K pathway.

    PubMed

    Choi, Hojin; Park, Hyun-Hee; Lee, Kyu-Yong; Choi, Na-Young; Yu, Hyun-Jeung; Lee, Young Joo; Park, Jinse; Huh, Yong-Min; Lee, Sang-Hun; Koh, Seong-Ho

    2013-08-01

    Neurogenesis in the adult brain is important for memory and learning, and the alterations in neural stem cells (NSCs) may be an important part of Alzheimer's disease pathogenesis. The phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K) pathway has been suggested to play an important role in neuronal cell survival and is highly involved in adult neurogenesis. Recently, coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) was found to affect the PI3K pathway. We investigated whether CoQ10 could restore amyloid β (Aβ)25-35 oligomer-inhibited proliferation of NSCs by focusing on the PI3K pathway. To evaluate the effects of CoQ10 on Aβ25-35 oligomer-inhibited proliferation of NSCs, NSCs were treated with several concentrations of CoQ10 and/or Aβ25-35 oligomers. BrdU labeling, Colony Formation Assays, and immunoreactivity of Ki-67, a marker of proliferative activity, showed that NSC proliferation decreased with Aβ25-35 oligomer treatment, but combined treatment with CoQ10 restored it. Western blotting showed that CoQ10 treatment increased the expression levels of p85α PI3K, phosphorylated Akt (Ser473), phosphorylated glycogen synthase kinase-3β (Ser9), and heat shock transcription factor, which are proteins related to the PI3K pathway in Aβ25-35 oligomers-treated NSCs. To confirm a direct role for the PI3K pathway in CoQ10-induced restoration of proliferation of NSCs inhibited by Aβ25-35 oligomers, NSCs were pretreated with a PI3K inhibitor, LY294002; the effects of CoQ10 on the proliferation of NSCs inhibited by Aβ25-35 oligomers were almost completely blocked. Together, these results suggest that CoQ10 restores Aβ25-35 oligomer-inhibited proliferation of NSCs by activating the PI3K pathway.

  9. Amyloid Templated Gold Aerogels.

    PubMed

    Nyström, Gustav; Fernández-Ronco, María P; Bolisetty, Sreenath; Mazzotti, Marco; Mezzenga, Raffaele

    2016-01-20

    Amyloid fibril-based ultralow-density aerogels are designed by functionalization with gold nanoparticles and microcrystals, leading to hybrids of unprecedented lightness and functionality. By changing the colloidal gold shape, size, and concentration, the gold composition can be tuned to reach contents ≥20 kt equivalent, yet at densities ≈10(3) lighter than any equivalent gold alloys, and combining unique features such as porosity, catalytic properties, pressure sensing, and autofluorescence.

  10. Amyloids: from Pathogenesis to Function.

    PubMed

    Nizhnikov, A A; Antonets, K S; Inge-Vechtomov, S G

    2015-09-01

    The term "amyloids" refers to fibrillar protein aggregates with cross-β structure. They have been a subject of intense scrutiny since the middle of the previous century. First, this interest is due to association of amyloids with dozens of incurable human diseases called amyloidoses, which affect hundreds of millions of people. However, during the last decade the paradigm of amyloids as pathogens has changed due to an increase in understanding of their role as a specific variant of quaternary protein structure essential for the living cell. Thus, functional amyloids are found in all domains of the living world, and they fulfill a variety of roles ranging from biofilm formation in bacteria to long-term memory regulation in higher eukaryotes. Prions, which are proteins capable of existing under the same conditions in two or more conformations at least one of which having infective properties, also typically have amyloid features. There are weighty reasons to believe that the currently known amyloids are only a minority of their real number. This review provides a retrospective analysis of stages in the development of amyloid biology that during the last decade resulted, on one hand, in reinterpretation of the biological role of amyloids, and on the other hand, in the development of systems biology of amyloids, or amyloidomics.

  11. Amyloids: from Pathogenesis to Function.

    PubMed

    Nizhnikov, A A; Antonets, K S; Inge-Vechtomov, S G

    2015-09-01

    The term "amyloids" refers to fibrillar protein aggregates with cross-β structure. They have been a subject of intense scrutiny since the middle of the previous century. First, this interest is due to association of amyloids with dozens of incurable human diseases called amyloidoses, which affect hundreds of millions of people. However, during the last decade the paradigm of amyloids as pathogens has changed due to an increase in understanding of their role as a specific variant of quaternary protein structure essential for the living cell. Thus, functional amyloids are found in all domains of the living world, and they fulfill a variety of roles ranging from biofilm formation in bacteria to long-term memory regulation in higher eukaryotes. Prions, which are proteins capable of existing under the same conditions in two or more conformations at least one of which having infective properties, also typically have amyloid features. There are weighty reasons to believe that the currently known amyloids are only a minority of their real number. This review provides a retrospective analysis of stages in the development of amyloid biology that during the last decade resulted, on one hand, in reinterpretation of the biological role of amyloids, and on the other hand, in the development of systems biology of amyloids, or amyloidomics. PMID:26555466

  12. Antimicrobial Properties of Amyloid Peptides

    PubMed Central

    Kagan, Bruce L.; Jang, Hyunbum; Capone, Ricardo; Arce, Fernando Teran; Ramachandran, Srinivasan; Lal, Ratnesh; Nussinov, Ruth

    2011-01-01

    More than two dozen clinical syndromes known as amyloid diseases are characterized by the buildup of extended insoluble fibrillar deposits in tissues. These amorphous Congo red staining deposits known as amyloids exhibit a characteristic green birefringence and cross-β structure. Substantial evidence implicates oligomeric intermediates of amyloids as toxic species in the pathogenesis of these chronic disease states. A growing body of data has suggested that these toxic species form ion channels in cellular membranes causing disruption of calcium homeostasis, membrane depolarization, energy drainage, and in some cases apoptosis. Amyloid peptide channels exhibit a number of common biological properties including the universal U-shape β-strand-turn-β-strand structure, irreversible and spontaneous insertion into membranes, production of large heterogeneous single-channel conductances, relatively poor ion selectivity, inhibition by Congo red, and channel blockade by zinc. Recent evidence has suggested that increased amounts of amyloids are not only toxic to its host target cells but also possess antimicrobial activity. Furthermore, at least one human antimicrobial peptide, protegrin-1, which kills microbes by a channel-forming mechanism, has been shown to possess the ability to form extended amyloid fibrils very similar to those of classic disease-forming amyloids. In this paper, we will review the reported antimicrobial properties of amyloids and the implications of these discoveries for our understanding of amyloid structure and function. PMID:22081976

  13. Analysis of Toxic Amyloid Fibril Interactions at Natively Derived Membranes by Ellipsometry

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Rachel A. S.; Nabok, Aleksey; Blakeman, Ben J. F.; Xue, Wei-Feng; Abell, Benjamin; Smith, David P.

    2015-01-01

    There is an ongoing debate regarding the culprits of cytotoxicity associated with amyloid disorders. Although small pre-fibrillar amyloid oligomers have been implicated as the primary toxic species, the fibrillar amyloid material itself can also induce cytotoxicity. To investigate membrane disruption and cytotoxic effects associated with intact and fragmented fibrils, the novel in situ spectroscopic technique of Total Internal Reflection Ellipsometry (TIRE) was used. Fibril lipid interactions were monitored using natively derived whole cell membranes as a model of the in vivo environment. We show that fragmented fibrils have an increased ability to disrupt these natively derived membranes by causing a loss of material from the deposited surface when compared with unfragmented fibrils. This effect was corroborated by observations of membrane disruption in live cells, and by dye release assay using synthetic liposomes. Through these studies we demonstrate the use of TIRE for the analysis of protein-lipid interactions on natively derived lipid surfaces, and provide an explanation on how amyloid fibrils can cause a toxic gain of function, while entangled amyloid plaques exert minimal biological activity. PMID:26172440

  14. Investigating the binding interactions of galantamine with β-amyloid peptide.

    PubMed

    Rao, Praveen P N; Mohamed, Tarek; Osman, Wesseem

    2013-01-01

    The anti-Alzheimer's agent galantamine is known to possess anti-amyloid properties. However the exact mechanisms are not clear. We studied the binding interactions of galantamine with amyloid peptide dimer (Aβ(1-40)) through molecular docking and molecular dynamics simulations. Galantamine's binding site within the amyloid peptide dimer was identified by docking experiments and the most stable complex was analyzed by molecular dynamics simulation. These studies show that galantamine was interacting with the central region of the amyloid dimer (Lys16-Ala21) and the C-terminal region (Ile31-Val36) with minimum structural drift of Cα atom in those regions. Strikingly, a significant drift was observed at the turn region from Asp23-Gly29 (Cα atom RMSD=9.2 Å and 11.6 Å at 50 fs and 100 fs respectively). Furthermore, galantamine's binding mode disrupts the key pi-pi stacking interaction between aromatic rings of Phe19 (chain A) and Phe19 (chain B) and intermolecular hydrogen bonds seen in unbound peptide dimer. Noticeably, the azepine tertiary nitrogen of galantamine was in close proximity to backbone CO of Leu34 (distance <3.5 Å) to stabilize the dimer conformation. In summary, the results indicate that galantamine binding to amyloid peptide dimer leads to a significant conformational change at the turn region (Asp23-Gly29) that disrupts interactions between individual β-strands and promotes a nontoxic conformation of Aβ(1-40) to prevent the formation of neurotoxic oligomers.

  15. Analysis of Toxic Amyloid Fibril Interactions at Natively Derived Membranes by Ellipsometry.

    PubMed

    Smith, Rachel A S; Nabok, Aleksey; Blakeman, Ben J F; Xue, Wei-Feng; Abell, Benjamin; Smith, David P

    2015-01-01

    There is an ongoing debate regarding the culprits of cytotoxicity associated with amyloid disorders. Although small pre-fibrillar amyloid oligomers have been implicated as the primary toxic species, the fibrillar amyloid material itself can also induce cytotoxicity. To investigate membrane disruption and cytotoxic effects associated with intact and fragmented fibrils, the novel in situ spectroscopic technique of Total Internal Reflection Ellipsometry (TIRE) was used. Fibril lipid interactions were monitored using natively derived whole cell membranes as a model of the in vivo environment. We show that fragmented fibrils have an increased ability to disrupt these natively derived membranes by causing a loss of material from the deposited surface when compared with unfragmented fibrils. This effect was corroborated by observations of membrane disruption in live cells, and by dye release assay using synthetic liposomes. Through these studies we demonstrate the use of TIRE for the analysis of protein-lipid interactions on natively derived lipid surfaces, and provide an explanation on how amyloid fibrils can cause a toxic gain of function, while entangled amyloid plaques exert minimal biological activity.

  16. The Effect of Milk Constituents and Crowding Agents on Amyloid Fibril Formation by κ-Casein.

    PubMed

    Liu, Jihua; Dehle, Francis C; Liu, Yanqin; Bahraminejad, Elmira; Ecroyd, Heath; Thorn, David C; Carver, John A

    2016-02-17

    When not incorporated into the casein micelle, κ-casein, a major milk protein, rapidly forms amyloid fibrils at physiological pH and temperature. In this study, the effects of milk components (calcium, lactose, lipids, and heparan sulfate) and crowding agents on reduced and carboxymethylated (RCM) κ-casein fibril formation was investigated using far-UV circular dichroism spectroscopy, thioflavin T binding assays, and transmission electron microscopy. Longer-chain phosphatidylcholine lipids, which form the lining of milk ducts and milk fat globules, enhanced RCM κ-casein fibril formation irrespective of whether the lipids were in a monomeric or micellar state, whereas shorter-chain phospholipids and triglycerides had little effect. Heparan sulfate, a component of the milk fat globule membrane and catalyst of amyloid deposition in extracellular tissue, had little effect on the kinetics of RCM κ-casein fibril formation. Major nutritional components such as calcium and lactose also had no significant effect. Macromolecular crowding enhances protein-protein interactions, but in contrast to other fibril-forming species, the extent of RCM κ-casein fibril formation was reduced by the presence of a variety of crowding agents. These data are consistent with a mechanism of κ-casein fibril formation in which the rate-determining step is dissociation from the oligomer to give the highly amyloidogenic monomer. We conclude that the interaction of κ-casein with membrane-associated phospholipids along its secretory pathway may contribute to the development of amyloid deposits in mammary tissue. However, the formation of spherical oligomers such as casein micelles is favored over amyloid fibrils in the crowded environment of milk, within which the occurrence of amyloid fibrils is low. PMID:26807595

  17. The Effects of Endogenous Non-Peptide Molecule Isatin and Hydrogen Peroxide on Proteomic Profiling of Rat Brain Amyloid-β Binding Proteins: Relevance to Alzheimer’s Disease?

    PubMed Central

    Medvedev, Alexei E.; Buneeva, Olga A.; Kopylov, Arthur T.; Gnedenko, Oksana V.; Medvedeva, Marina V.; Kozin, Sergey A.; Ivanov, Alexis S.; Zgoda, Victor G.; Makarov, Alexander A.

    2014-01-01

    The amyloid-β peptide is considered as a key player in the development and progression of Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Although good evidence exists that amyloid-β accumulates inside cells, intracellular brain amyloid-binding proteins remain poorly characterized. Proteomic profiling of rat brain homogenates, performed in this study, resulted in identification of 89 individual intracellular amyloid-binding proteins, and approximately 25% of them were proteins that we had previously identified as specifically binding to isatin, an endogenous neuroprotector molecule. A significant proportion of the amyloid-binding proteins (more than 30%) are differentially expressed or altered/oxidatively modified in AD patients. Incubation of brain homogenates with 70 µM hydrogen peroxide significantly influenced the profile of amyloid-β binding proteins and 0.1 mM isatin decreased the number of identified amyloid-β binding proteins both in control and hydrogen peroxide treated brain homogenates. The effects of hydrogen peroxide and isatin have been confirmed in optical biosensor experiments with purified glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase, one of the known crucial amyloid-β binding proteins (also identified in this study). Data obtained suggest that isatin protects crucial intracellular protein targets against amyloid binding, and possibly favors intracellular degradation of this protein via preventing formation of amyloidoligomers described in the literature for some isatin derivatives. PMID:25551598

  18. Anti-Aβ antibodies incapable of reducing cerebral Aβ oligomers fail to attenuate spatial reference memory deficits in J20 mice.

    PubMed

    Mably, Alexandra J; Liu, Wen; Mc Donald, Jessica M; Dodart, Jean-Cosme; Bard, Frédérique; Lemere, Cynthia A; O'Nuallain, Brian; Walsh, Dominic M

    2015-10-01

    Compelling genetic evidence links the amyloid precursor protein (APP) to Alzheimer's disease (AD). A leading hypothesis proposes that a small amphipathic fragment of APP, the amyloid β-protein (Aβ), self-associates to form soluble assemblies loosely referred to as "oligomers" and that these are primary mediators of synaptic dysfunction. As such, Aβ, and specifically Aβ oligomers, are targets for disease modifying therapies. Currently, the most advanced experimental treatment for AD relies on the use of anti-Aβ antibodies. In this study, we tested the ability of the monomer-preferring antibody, m266 and a novel aggregate-preferring antibody, 1C22, to attenuate spatial reference memory impairments in J20 mice. Chronic treatment with m266 resulted in a ~70-fold increase in Aβ detected in the bloodstream, and a ~50% increase in water-soluble brain Aβ--and in both cases Aβ was bound to m266. In contrast, 1C22 increased the levels of free Aβ in the bloodstream, and bound to amyloid deposits in J20 brain. However, neither 1C22 nor m266 attenuated the cognitive deficits evident in 12month old J20 mice. Moreover, both antibodies failed to alter the levels of soluble Aβ oligomers in J20 brain. These results suggest that Aβ oligomers may mediate the behavioral deficits seen in J20 mice and highlight the need for the development of aggregate-preferring antibodies that can reach the brain in sufficient levels to neutralize bioactive Aβ oligomers. Aside from the lack of positive effect of m266 and 1C22 on cognition, a substantial number of deaths occurred in m266- and 1C22-immunized J20 mice. These fatalities were specific to anti-Aβ antibodies and to the J20 mouse line since treatment of wild type or PDAPP mice with these antibodies did not cause any deaths. These and other recent results indicate that J20 mice are particularly susceptible to targeting of the APP/Aβ/tau axis. Notwithstanding the specificity of fatalities for J20 mice, it is worrying that the

  19. Structural studies on HCN oligomers. [catalysts for prebiotic processes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ferris, J. P.; Edelson, E. H.; Auyeung, J. M.; Joshi, P. C.

    1981-01-01

    NMR spectral studies on the HCN oligomers suggest the presence of carboxamide and urea groupings. The release of CO2, H2O, HCN, CH3CN, HCONH2 and pyridine on pyrolysis is consistent with the presence of these groupings as well as carboxylic acid groups. No basic primary amine groupings could be detected with fluorescamine. Hydrazinolysis of the HCN oligomers releases 10% of the amino acids normally released by acid hydrolysis. The oligomers give a positive biuret test but this is not due to the presence of peptide bonds. There is no conclusive evidence for the presence of peptide bonds in the HCN oligomers. No diglycine was detected on partial hydrolysis of the HCN oligomers at pH 8.5 suggesting that HCN oligomers were not a source of prebiotic peptides.

  20. Tabersonine inhibits amyloid fibril formation and cytotoxicity of Aβ(1-42).

    PubMed

    Kai, Tianhan; Zhang, Lin; Wang, Xiaoying; Jing, Aihua; Zhao, Bingqing; Yu, Xiang; Zheng, Jie; Zhou, Feimeng

    2015-06-17

    The misfolding and aggregation of amyloid beta (Aβ) peptides into amyloid fibrils are key events in the amyloid cascade hypothesis for the etiology of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Using thioflavin-T (ThT) fluorescence assay, atomic force microscopy, circular dichroism, size exclusion chromatography, surface plasmon resonance (SPR), and cytotoxicity tests, we demonstrate that tabersonine, an ingredient extracted from the bean of Voacanga africana, disrupts Aβ(1-42) aggregation and ameliorates Aβ aggregate-induced cytotoxicity. A small amount of tabersonine (e.g., 10 μM) can effectively inhibit the formation of Aβ(1-42) (e.g., 80 μM) fibrils or convert mature fibrils into largely innocuous amorphous aggregates. SPR results indicate that tabersonine binds to Aβ(1-42) oligomers in a dose-dependent way. Molecular dynamics (MD) simulations further confirm that tabersonine can bind to oligomers such as the pentamer of Aβ(1-42). Tabersonine preferentially interact with the β-sheet grooves of Aβ(1-42) containing aromatic and hydrophobic residues. The various binding sites and modes explain the diverse inhibitory effects of tabersonine on Aβ aggregation. Given that tabersonine is a natural product and a precursor for vincristine used in cancer chemotherapy, the biocompatibility and small size essential for permeating the blood-brain barrier make it a potential therapeutic drug candidate for treating AD.

  1. DNA sequence similarity recognition by hybridization to short oligomers

    DOEpatents

    Milosavljevic, Aleksandar

    1999-01-01

    Methods are disclosed for the comparison of nucleic acid sequences. Data is generated by hybridizing sets of oligomers with target nucleic acids. The data thus generated is manipulated simultaneously with respect to both (i) matching between oligomers and (ii) matching between oligomers and putative reference sequences available in databases. Using data compression methods to manipulate this mutual information, sequences for the target can be constructed.

  2. Spatial Relation between Microbleeds and Amyloid Deposits in Amyloid Angiopathy

    PubMed Central

    Dierksen, Gregory A; Skehan, Maureen E; Khan, Muhammad A; Jeng, Jed; Nandigam, RN Kaveer; Becker, John A; Kumar, Ashok; Neal, Krista L; Betensky, Rebecca A; Frosch, Matthew P; Rosand, Jonathan; Johnson, Keith A; Viswanathan, Anand; Salat, David H; Greenberg, Steven M

    2010-01-01

    Advanced cerebrovascular β-amyloid deposition (cerebral amyloid angiopathy, CAA) is associated with cerebral microbleeds, but the precise relationship between CAA burden and microbleeds is undefined. We used T2*-weighted MRI and noninvasive amyloid imaging with Pittsburgh Compound B (PiB) to analyze the spatial relationship between CAA and microbleeds. On co-registered PET and MRI images, PiB retention was increased at microbleed sites compared to simulated control lesions (p=0.002) and declined with increasing distance from the microbleed (p<0.0001). These findings indicate that microbleeds occur preferentially in local regions of concentrated amyloid and support therapeutic strategies aimed at reducing vascular amyloid deposition. PMID:20865701

  3. Amyloid-β-induced Synapse Damage Is Mediated via Cross-linkage of Cellular Prion Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Bate, Clive; Williams, Alun

    2011-01-01

    The cellular prion protein (PrPC), which is highly expressed at synapses, was identified as a receptor for the amyloid-β (Aβ) oligomers that are associated with dementia in Alzheimer disease. Here, we report that Aβ oligomers secreted by 7PA2 cells caused synapse damage in cultured neurons via a PrPC-dependent process. Exogenous PrPC added to Prnp knock-out(0/0) neurons was targeted to synapses and significantly increased Aβ-induced synapse damage. In contrast, the synapse damage induced by a phospholipase A2-activating peptide was independent of PrPC. In Prnp wild-type(+/+) neurons Aβ oligomers activated synaptic cytoplasmic phospholipase A2 (cPLA2). In these cells, the addition of Aβ oligomers triggered the translocation of cPLA2 in synapses to cholesterol dense membranes (lipid rafts) where it formed a complex also containing Aβ and PrPC. In contrast, the addition of Aβ to Prnp(0/0) neurons did not activate synaptic cPLA2, which remained in the cytoplasm and was not associated with Aβ. Filtration assays and non-denaturing gels demonstrated that Aβ oligomers cross-link PrPC. We propose that it is the cross-linkage of PrPC by Aβ oligomers that triggers abnormal activation of cPLA2 and synapse damage. This hypothesis was supported by our observation that monoclonal antibody mediated cross-linkage of PrPC also activated synaptic cPLA2 and caused synapse damage. PMID:21900234

  4. Anharmonic Vibrational Dynamics of DNA Oligomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kühn, O.; Došlić, N.; Krishnan, G. M.; Fidder, H.; Heyne, K.

    Combining two-color infared pump-probe spectroscopy and anharmonic force field calculations we characterize the anharmonic coupling patterns between fingerprint modes and the hydrogen-bonded symmetric vNH2 stretching vibration in adenine-thymine dA20-dT20 DNA oligomers. Specifically, it is shown that the anharmonic coupling between the δNH2 bending and the vC4=O4 stretching vibration, both absorbing around 1665 cm-1, can be used to assign the vNH2 fundamental transition at 3215 cm-1 despite the broad background absorption of water.

  5. Mx oligomer: a novel capsid pattern sensor?

    PubMed

    Kong, Jia; Ma, Min; He, Shuangyi; Qin, Xiaohong

    2016-08-01

    Myxovirus resistance proteins represent a family of interferon-induced restriction factors of the innate and adaptive immune system. Human MxB acts as a novel restriction factor with antiviral activity against a range of HIV-1 and other retroviruses mainly by inhibiting the uncoating process after reverse transcription but prior to integration. Based on published data and conservation analysis, we propose a novel hypothesis, in which MxB dimers form higher order oligomers that restrict retroviral replication by binding to the viral capsid. Insights into the mechanistic basis of structural and functional characteristics of MxB will greatly advance our understanding of MxB. PMID:27492442

  6. Macrocyclic 2,7-Anthrylene Oligomers.

    PubMed

    Yamamoto, Yuta; Wakamatsu, Kan; Iwanaga, Tetsuo; Sato, Hiroyasu; Toyota, Shinji

    2016-05-01

    A macrocyclic compound consisting of six 2,7-anthrylene units was successfully synthesized by Ni-mediated coupling of the corresponding dibromo precursor as a novel π-conjugated compound. This compound was sufficiently stable and soluble in organic solvents due to the presence of mesityl groups. X-ray analysis showed that the molecule had a nonplanar and hexagonal wheel-shaped framework of approximately S6 symmetry. The dynamic process between two S6 structures was observed by using the dynamic NMR technique, the barrier being 58 kJ mol(-1) . The spectroscopic properties of the hexamer were compared with those of analogous linear oligomers.

  7. Familial Alzheimer’s Disease Mutations Differentially Alter Amyloid β-Protein Oligomerization

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Although most cases of Alzheimer’s disease (AD) are sporadic, ∼5% of cases are genetic in origin. These cases, known as familial Alzheimer’s disease (FAD), are caused by mutations that alter the rate of production or the primary structure of the amyloid β-protein (Aβ). Changes in the primary structure of Aβ alter the peptide’s assembly and toxic activity. Recently, a primary working hypothesis for AD has evolved where causation has been attributed to early, soluble peptide oligomer states. Here we posit that both experimental and pathological differences between FAD-related mutants and wild-type Aβ could be reflected in the early oligomer distributions of these peptides. We use ion mobility-based mass spectrometry to probe the structure and early aggregation states of three mutant forms of Aβ40 and Aβ42: Tottori (D7N), Flemish (A21G), and Arctic (E22G). Our results indicate that the FAD-related amino acid substitutions have no noticeable effect on Aβ monomer cross section, indicating there are no major structural changes in the monomers. However, we observe significant changes to the aggregation states populated by the various Aβ mutants, indicating that structural changes present in the monomers are reflected in the oligomers. Moreover, the early oligomer distributions differ for each mutant, suggesting a possible structural basis for the varied pathogenesis of different forms of FAD. PMID:23173071

  8. Familial Alzheimer's disease mutations differentially alter amyloid β-protein oligomerization.

    PubMed

    Gessel, Megan Murray; Bernstein, Summer; Kemper, Martin; Teplow, David B; Bowers, Michael T

    2012-11-21

    Although most cases of Alzheimer's disease (AD) are sporadic, ∼5% of cases are genetic in origin. These cases, known as familial Alzheimer's disease (FAD), are caused by mutations that alter the rate of production or the primary structure of the amyloid β-protein (Aβ). Changes in the primary structure of Aβ alter the peptide's assembly and toxic activity. Recently, a primary working hypothesis for AD has evolved where causation has been attributed to early, soluble peptide oligomer states. Here we posit that both experimental and pathological differences between FAD-related mutants and wild-type Aβ could be reflected in the early oligomer distributions of these peptides. We use ion mobility-based mass spectrometry to probe the structure and early aggregation states of three mutant forms of Aβ40 and Aβ42: Tottori (D7N), Flemish (A21G), and Arctic (E22G). Our results indicate that the FAD-related amino acid substitutions have no noticeable effect on Aβ monomer cross section, indicating there are no major structural changes in the monomers. However, we observe significant changes to the aggregation states populated by the various Aβ mutants, indicating that structural changes present in the monomers are reflected in the oligomers. Moreover, the early oligomer distributions differ for each mutant, suggesting a possible structural basis for the varied pathogenesis of different forms of FAD.

  9. A Cu-amyloid β complex activating Fenton chemistry in Alzheimer's disease: Learning with multiple first-principles simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    La Penna, Giovanni; Hureau, Christelle; Faller, Peter

    2014-10-01

    Amyloid β peptides form complexes with copper, both in vitro and in vivo, relatively soluble in water as oligomers and active as catalysts for oxidation of organic substrates by hydrogen peroxide, a species always present in cells and in their aerobic environment. All these species are present in the synapse, thus making a connection between the amyloid cascade hypothesis and the oxidative damages by reactive oxygen species in neurons, when pathological dishomeostasis of amyloid peptides and metal ions occur. In order to understand the structural features of these toxic complexes, we built several models of Cu-Aβ peptides in monomeric and dimeric forms and we found, performing multiple first-principles molecular dynamics simulations, that Cu-induced dimers are more active than monomers in converting hydrogen peroxide into aggressive hydroxyl radicals.

  10. Europium as an inhibitor of Amyloid-β(1-42) induced membrane permeation.

    PubMed

    Williams, Thomas L; Urbanc, Brigita; Marshall, Karen E; Vadukul, Devkee M; Jenkins, A Toby A; Serpell, Louise C

    2015-10-24

    Soluble Amyloid-beta (Aβ) oligomers are a source of cytotoxicity in Alzheimer's disease (AD). The toxicity of Aβ oligomers may arise from their ability to interact with and disrupt cellular membranes mediated by GM1 ganglioside receptors within these membranes. Therefore, inhibition of Aβ-membrane interactions could provide a means of preventing the toxicity associated with Aβ. Here, using Surface Plasmon field-enhanced Fluorescence Spectroscopy, we determine that the lanthanide, Europium III chloride (Eu(3+)), strongly binds to GM1 ganglioside-containing membranes and prevents the interaction with Aβ42 leading to a loss of the peptides ability to cause membrane permeation. Here we discuss the molecular mechanism by which Eu(3+) inhibits Aβ42-membrane interactions and this may lead to protection of membrane integrity against Aβ42 induced toxicity.

  11. Europium as an inhibitor of Amyloid-β(1-42) induced membrane permeation

    PubMed Central

    Williams, Thomas L.; Urbanc, Brigita; Marshall, Karen E.; Vadukul, Devkee M.; Jenkins, A. Toby A.; Serpell, Louise C.

    2015-01-01

    Soluble Amyloid-beta (Aβ) oligomers are a source of cytotoxicity in Alzheimer’s disease (AD). The toxicity of Aβ oligomers may arise from their ability to interact with and disrupt cellular membranes mediated by GM1 ganglioside receptors within these membranes. Therefore, inhibition of Aβ–membrane interactions could provide a means of preventing the toxicity associated with Aβ. Here, using Surface Plasmon field-enhanced Fluorescence Spectroscopy, we determine that the lanthanide, Europium III chloride (Eu3+), strongly binds to GM1 ganglioside-containing membranes and prevents the interaction with Aβ42 leading to a loss of the peptides ability to cause membrane permeation. Here we discuss the molecular mechanism by which Eu3+ inhibits Aβ42-membrane interactions and this may lead to protection of membrane integrity against Aβ42 induced toxicity. PMID:26450778

  12. Extraskeletal problems and amyloid.

    PubMed

    Drüeke, T B

    1999-12-01

    The major clinical manifestations of dialysis-associated A beta 2M amyloidosis are chronic arthralgias, destructive arthropathy and the carpal tunnel syndrome. For dialysis patients who have been maintained on renal replacement therapy for more than 10-15 years, this complication may become a major physical handicap. It may even be life-threatening in some instances due to cervical cord compression. Amyloid deposits in joint areas precede clinical symptoms and signs by several years. Systemic deposits may also occur but their clinical manifestations are infrequent. The diagnosis of dialysis arthropathy associated with beta 2-microglobulin-associated (A beta 2M) amyloidosis mostly relies on indirect clinical and radiological evidence. Histologic proof is rarely obtained in vivo. The pathogenesis of the disease is complex. It includes reduced elimination of beta 2M and potentially also as impaired degradation of A beta 2M as well as enhanced production of A beta 2M amyloid fibrils. Non enzymatic modifications of beta 2M probably play a role, including beta 2M protein modification with advanced glycation end-products (AGE) and advanced oxidation protein products. Modified beta 2M, collagen and proteoglycans appear actively involved in the induction of a local inflammatory response and beta 2M amyloid formation. There is also evidence in favor of treatment-related factors such as the type of hemodialysis membrane and the purity of dialysis water. Hopefully, the translation of our improving knowledge of all the factors involved will lead to a better treatment and eventually to the prevention of this dramatic complication of dialysis.

  13. Hacking the code of amyloid formation: the amyloid stretch hypothesis.

    PubMed

    Pastor, M Teresa; Esteras-Chopo, Alexandra; Serrano, Luis

    2007-01-01

    Many research efforts in the last years have been directed towards understanding the factors determining protein misfolding and amyloid formation. Protein stability and amino acid composition have been identified as the two major factors in vitro. The research of our group has been focused on understanding the relationship between amino acid sequence and amyloid formation. Our approach has been the design of simple model systems that reproduce the biophysical properties of natural amyloids. An amyloid sequence pattern was extracted that can be used to detect amyloidogenic hexapeptide stretches in proteins. We have added evidence supporting that these amyloidogenic stretches can trigger amyloid formation by nonamyloidogenic proteins. Some experimental results in other amyloid proteins will be analyzed under the conclusions obtained in these studies. Our conclusions together with evidences from other groups suggest that amyloid formation is the result of the interplay between a decrease of protein stability, and the presence of highly amyloidogenic regions in proteins. As many of these results have been obtained in vitro, the challenge for the next years will be to demonstrate their validity in in vivo systems.

  14. Shaking Alone Induces De Novo Conversion of Recombinant Prion Proteins to β-Sheet Rich Oligomers and Fibrils

    PubMed Central

    Ladner-Keay, Carol L.; Griffith, Bethany J.; Wishart, David S.

    2014-01-01

    The formation of β-sheet rich prion oligomers and fibrils from native prion protein (PrP) is thought to be a key step in the development of prion diseases. Many methods are available to convert recombinant prion protein into β-sheet rich fibrils using various chemical denaturants (urea, SDS, GdnHCl), high temperature, phospholipids, or mildly acidic conditions (pH 4). Many of these methods also require shaking or another form of agitation to complete the conversion process. We have identified that shaking alone causes the conversion of recombinant PrP to β-sheet rich oligomers and fibrils at near physiological pH (pH 5.5 to pH 6.2) and temperature. This conversion does not require any denaturant, detergent, or any other chemical cofactor. Interestingly, this conversion does not occur when the water-air interface is eliminated in the shaken sample. We have analyzed shaking-induced conversion using circular dichroism, resolution enhanced native acidic gel electrophoresis (RENAGE), electron microscopy, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, thioflavin T fluorescence and proteinase K resistance. Our results show that shaking causes the formation of β-sheet rich oligomers with a population distribution ranging from octamers to dodecamers and that further shaking causes a transition to β-sheet fibrils. In addition, we show that shaking-induced conversion occurs for a wide range of full-length and truncated constructs of mouse, hamster and cervid prion proteins. We propose that this method of conversion provides a robust, reproducible and easily accessible model for scrapie-like amyloid formation, allowing the generation of milligram quantities of physiologically stable β-sheet rich oligomers and fibrils. These results may also have interesting implications regarding our understanding of prion conversion and propagation both within the brain and via techniques such as protein misfolding cyclic amplification (PMCA) and quaking induced conversion (QuIC). PMID

  15. On the subject of rigor in the study of amyloid β-protein assembly

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    According to Thomas Kuhn, the success of ‘normal science,’ the science we all practice on a daily basis, depends on the adherence to, and practice of, a paradigm accepted by the scientific community. When great scientific upheavals occur, they involve the rejection of the current paradigm in favor of a new paradigm that better integrates the facts available and better predicts the behavior of a particular scientific system. In the field of Alzheimer’s disease, a recent example of such a paradigm shift has been the apparent rejection of the ‘amyloid cascade hypothesis,’ promulgated by Hardy and Higgins in 1992 to explain the etiology of Alzheimer’s disease, in favor of what has been referred to as the ‘oligomer cascade hypothesis’. This paradigm shift has been breathtaking in its rapidity, its pervasiveness in the Alzheimer’s disease field, and its adoption in an increasing number of other fields, including those of Parkinson’s disease, Huntington’s disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, and the prionoses. However, these facts do not mean, a priori, that the experiments extant, and any re-interpretation of them, should be accepted by rote as support for the new paradigm. In the discussion that follows, I consider the foundational studies leading to the oligomer cascade hypothesis and evaluate the current state of the paradigm. I argue here that, more often than not, insufficient rigor has been applied in studies upon which this new paradigm has been based. Confusion, rather than clarity, has resulted. If the field is to make progress forward using as its paradigmatic basis amyloid β-protein oligomerization, then an epistemological re-evaluation of the amyloid β-protein oligomer system is required. PMID:23981712

  16. Is Alzheimer's disease a result of presynaptic failure? Synaptic dysfunctions induced by oligomeric beta-amyloid.

    PubMed

    Nimmrich, Volker; Ebert, Ulrich

    2009-01-01

    Since Alois Alzheimer first described morphological alterations associated with his patient's dementia more than 100 years ago, Alzheimer's disease (AD) was defined as neurodegenerative disease caused by extracellular deposits of misfolded proteins. These amyloid plaques and neurofibrillary tangles have been unambiguously considered as hallmarks of this ailment, accompanied by devastating brain atrophy and cell loss. When a 40-42 amino acid peptide, called beta-amyloid (Abeta), was identified as a main component of amyloid plaques and a few genetic cases of AD were linked to Abeta metabolism, the Abeta hypothesis of AD was proposed. It was initially thought that an increase in Abeta42 precipitates plaque formation, which causes the generation of neurofibrillary tangles and ultimately the death of neurons. However, during the last decade it became apparent that soluble rather than deposited Abeta is associated with dementia. Among the constituents of soluble Abeta, small oligomeric forms were increasingly associated with neuropathology. There is now ample evidence that Abeta oligomers do not affect neuronal viability in general, but interfere specifically with synaptic function. Long-term neurophysiological impairment ultimately causes degeneration of synapses, which becomes most apparent on the morphological level by retraction of dendritic spines. Loss of meaningful synaptic connections in the brain of patients with AD will shatter their capacity to encode and retrieve memories. The precise molecular mechanism of Abeta oligomer-induced impairment of synaptic transmission is not fully understood, but there are several independent observations that oligomers interfere with the vesicular release machinery at the presynaptic terminal. While this hypothesis offers a promising avenue to understand the underlying cause of cognition and memory deficits in the AD brain, it also opens a possibility to address new mechanisms for preventing and ultimately curing AD.

  17. Canonical Wnt signaling protects hippocampal neurons from Aβ oligomers: role of non-canonical Wnt-5a/Ca2+ in mitochondrial dynamics

    PubMed Central

    Silva-Alvarez, Carmen; Arrázola, Macarena S.; Godoy, Juan A.; Ordenes, Daniela; Inestrosa, Nibaldo C.

    2013-01-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is the most common type of age-related dementia. The disease is characterized by a progressive loss of cognitive abilities, severe neurodegeneration, synaptic loss and mitochondrial dysfunction. The Wnt signaling pathway participates in the development of the central nervous system and growing evidence indicates that Wnts also regulate the function of the adult nervous system. We report here, that indirect activation of canonical Wnt/β-catenin signaling using Bromoindirubin-30-Oxime (6-BIO), an inhibitor of glycogen synthase kinase-3β, protects hippocampal neurons from amyloid-β (Aβ) oligomers with the concomitant blockade of neuronal apoptosis. More importantly, activation with Wnt-5a, a non-canonical Wnt ligand, results in the modulation of mitochondrial dynamics, preventing the changes induced by Aβ oligomers (Aβo) in mitochondrial fission-fusion dynamics and modulates Bcl-2 increases induced by oligomers. The canonical Wnt-3a ligand neither the secreted Frizzled-Related Protein (sFRP), a Wnt scavenger, did not prevent these effects. In contrast, some of the Aβ oligomer effects were blocked by Ryanodine. We conclude that canonical Wnt/β-catenin signaling controls neuronal survival, and that non-canonical Wnt/Ca2+signaling modulates mitochondrial dysfunction. Since mitochondrial dysfunction is present in neurodegenerative diseases, the therapeutic possibilities of the activation of Wnt signaling are evident. PMID:23805073

  18. SAXS fingerprints of aldehyde dehydrogenase oligomers

    PubMed Central

    Tanner, John J.

    2015-01-01

    Enzymes of the aldehyde dehydrogenase (ALDH) superfamily catalyze the nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide-dependent oxidation of aldehydes to carboxylic acids. ALDHs are important in detoxification of aldehydes, amino acid metabolism, embryogenesis and development, neurotransmission, oxidative stress, and cancer. Mutations in genes encoding ALDHs cause metabolic disorders, including alcohol flush reaction (ALDH2), Sjögren–Larsson syndrome (ALDH3A2), hyperprolinemia type II (ALDH4A1), γ-hydroxybutyric aciduria (ALDH5A1), methylmalonic aciduria (ALDH6A1), pyridoxine dependent epilepsy (ALDH7A1), and hyperammonemia (ALDH18A1). We previously reported crystal structures and small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) analyses of ALDHs exhibiting dimeric, tetrameric, and hexameric oligomeric states (Luo et al., Biochemistry 54 (2015) 5513–5522; Luo et al., J. Mol. Biol. 425 (2013) 3106–3120). Herein I provide the SAXS curves, radii of gyration, and distance distribution functions for the three types of ALDH oligomer. The SAXS curves and associated analysis provide diagnostic fingerprints that allow rapid identification of the type of ALDH oligomer that is present in solution. The data sets provided here serve as a benchmark for characterizing oligomerization of ALDHs. PMID:26693506

  19. Cooperative Switching in Nanofibers of Azobenzene Oligomers

    PubMed Central

    Weber, Christopher; Liebig, Tobias; Gensler, Manuel; Zykov, Anton; Pithan, Linus; Rabe, Jürgen P.; Hecht, Stefan; Bléger, David; Kowarik, Stefan

    2016-01-01

    Next-generation molecular devices and machines demand the integration of molecular switches into hierarchical assemblies to amplify the response of the system from the molecular level to the meso- or macro-scale. Here, we demonstrate that multi-azobenzene oligomers can assemble to form robust supramolecular nanofibers in which they can be switched repeatedly between the E- and Z-configuration. While in isolated oligomers the azobenzene units undergo reversible photoisomerization independently, in the nanofibers they are coupled via intermolecular interactions and switch cooperatively as evidenced by unusual thermal and kinetic behavior. We find that the photoisomerization rate from the Z-isomer to the E-isomer depends on the fraction of Z-azobenzene in the nanofibers, and is increased by more than a factor of 4 in Z-rich fibers when compared to E-rich fibers. This demonstrates the great potential of coupling individual photochromic units for increasing their quantum efficiency in the solid state with potential relevance for actuation and sensing. PMID:27161608

  20. Cooperative Switching in Nanofibers of Azobenzene Oligomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weber, Christopher; Liebig, Tobias; Gensler, Manuel; Zykov, Anton; Pithan, Linus; Rabe, Jürgen P.; Hecht, Stefan; Bléger, David; Kowarik, Stefan

    2016-05-01

    Next-generation molecular devices and machines demand the integration of molecular switches into hierarchical assemblies to amplify the response of the system from the molecular level to the meso- or macro-scale. Here, we demonstrate that multi-azobenzene oligomers can assemble to form robust supramolecular nanofibers in which they can be switched repeatedly between the E- and Z-configuration. While in isolated oligomers the azobenzene units undergo reversible photoisomerization independently, in the nanofibers they are coupled via intermolecular interactions and switch cooperatively as evidenced by unusual thermal and kinetic behavior. We find that the photoisomerization rate from the Z-isomer to the E-isomer depends on the fraction of Z-azobenzene in the nanofibers, and is increased by more than a factor of 4 in Z-rich fibers when compared to E-rich fibers. This demonstrates the great potential of coupling individual photochromic units for increasing their quantum efficiency in the solid state with potential relevance for actuation and sensing.

  1. Equilibrium polymerization of cyclic carbonate oligomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ballone, P.; Jones, R. O.

    2001-08-01

    A model of the polymerization of ring oligomers of bisphenol A polycarbonate (BPA-PC) is used to investigate the influence of dimensionality (2D or 3D), density and temperature on the size distribution of the polymer chains. The polymerization step is catalyzed by a single active particle, conserves the number and type of the chemical bonds, and occurs without a significant gain in either potential energy or configurational entropy. Monte Carlo and molecular dynamics simulations show that polymerization of cyclic oligomers occurs readily at high density and is driven by the entropy associated with the distribution of interparticle bonds. Polymerization competes at lower densities with long range diffusion, which favors small molecular species, and is prevented if the system is sufficiently dilute. Polymerization occurs in 2D via a weakly first order transition as a function of density and is characterized by low hysteresis and large fluctuations in the size of polymer chains. Polymerization occurs more readily in 3D than in 2D, and is favored by increasing temperature, as expected for an entropy-driven process.

  2. SAXS fingerprints of aldehyde dehydrogenase oligomers.

    PubMed

    Tanner, John J

    2015-12-01

    Enzymes of the aldehyde dehydrogenase (ALDH) superfamily catalyze the nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide-dependent oxidation of aldehydes to carboxylic acids. ALDHs are important in detoxification of aldehydes, amino acid metabolism, embryogenesis and development, neurotransmission, oxidative stress, and cancer. Mutations in genes encoding ALDHs cause metabolic disorders, including alcohol flush reaction (ALDH2), Sjögren-Larsson syndrome (ALDH3A2), hyperprolinemia type II (ALDH4A1), γ-hydroxybutyric aciduria (ALDH5A1), methylmalonic aciduria (ALDH6A1), pyridoxine dependent epilepsy (ALDH7A1), and hyperammonemia (ALDH18A1). We previously reported crystal structures and small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) analyses of ALDHs exhibiting dimeric, tetrameric, and hexameric oligomeric states (Luo et al., Biochemistry 54 (2015) 5513-5522; Luo et al., J. Mol. Biol. 425 (2013) 3106-3120). Herein I provide the SAXS curves, radii of gyration, and distance distribution functions for the three types of ALDH oligomer. The SAXS curves and associated analysis provide diagnostic fingerprints that allow rapid identification of the type of ALDH oligomer that is present in solution. The data sets provided here serve as a benchmark for characterizing oligomerization of ALDHs. PMID:26693506

  3. Cooperative Switching in Nanofibers of Azobenzene Oligomers.

    PubMed

    Weber, Christopher; Liebig, Tobias; Gensler, Manuel; Zykov, Anton; Pithan, Linus; Rabe, Jürgen P; Hecht, Stefan; Bléger, David; Kowarik, Stefan

    2016-01-01

    Next-generation molecular devices and machines demand the integration of molecular switches into hierarchical assemblies to amplify the response of the system from the molecular level to the meso- or macro-scale. Here, we demonstrate that multi-azobenzene oligomers can assemble to form robust supramolecular nanofibers in which they can be switched repeatedly between the E- and Z-configuration. While in isolated oligomers the azobenzene units undergo reversible photoisomerization independently, in the nanofibers they are coupled via intermolecular interactions and switch cooperatively as evidenced by unusual thermal and kinetic behavior. We find that the photoisomerization rate from the Z-isomer to the E-isomer depends on the fraction of Z-azobenzene in the nanofibers, and is increased by more than a factor of 4 in Z-rich fibers when compared to E-rich fibers. This demonstrates the great potential of coupling individual photochromic units for increasing their quantum efficiency in the solid state with potential relevance for actuation and sensing. PMID:27161608

  4. Nanomaterials: amyloids reflect their brighter side

    PubMed Central

    Mankar, Shruti; Anoop, A.; Sen, Shamik; Maji, Samir K.

    2011-01-01

    Amyloid fibrils belong to the group of ordered nanostructures that are self-assembled from a wide range of polypeptides/proteins. Amyloids are highly rigid structures possessing a high mechanical strength. Although amyloids have been implicated in the pathogenesis of several human diseases, growing evidence indicates that amyloids may also perform native functions in host organisms. Discovery of such amyloids, referred to as functional amyloids, highlight their possible use in designing novel nanostructure materials. This review summarizes recent advances in the application of amyloids for the development of nanomaterials and prospective applications of such materials in nanotechnology and biomedicine. PMID:22110868

  5. Amyloid β-Protein Assembly and Alzheimer's Disease: Dodecamers of Aβ42, but Not of Aβ40, Seed Fibril Formation.

    PubMed

    Economou, Nicholas J; Giammona, Maxwell J; Do, Thanh D; Zheng, Xueyun; Teplow, David B; Buratto, Steven K; Bowers, Michael T

    2016-02-17

    Evidence suggests that oligomers of the 42-residue form of the amyloid β-protein (Aβ), Aβ42, play a critical role in the etiology of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Here we use high resolution atomic force microscopy to directly image populations of small oligomers of Aβ42 that occur at the earliest stages of aggregation. We observe features that can be attributed to a monomer and to relatively small oligomers, including dimers, hexamers, and dodecamers. We discovered that Aβ42 hexamers and dodecamers quickly become the dominant oligomers after peptide solubilization, even at low (1 μM) concentrations and short (5 min) incubation times. Soon after (≥10 min), dodecamers are observed to seed the formation of extended, linear preprotofibrillar β-sheet structures. The preprotofibrils are a single Aβ42 layer in height and can extend several hundred nanometers in length. To our knowledge this is the first report of structures of this type. In each instance the preprotofibril is associated off center with a single layer of a dodecamer. Protofibril formation continues at longer times, but is accompanied by the formation of large, globular aggregates. Aβ40, by contrast, does not significantly form the hexamer or dodecamer but instead produces a mixture of smaller oligomers. These species lead to the formation of a branched chain-like network rather than discrete structures. PMID:26839237

  6. How do membranes initiate Alzheimer's Disease? Formation of toxic amyloid fibrils by the amyloid β-protein on ganglioside clusters.

    PubMed

    Matsuzaki, Katsumi

    2014-08-19

    Alzheimer's disease (AD), a severe neurodegenerative disorder, causes more than half of dementia cases. According to the popular "Aβ hypothesis" to explain the mechanism of this disease, amyloid β-peptides (Aβ) of 39-43 amino acid residues aggregate and deposit onto neurons, igniting the neurotoxic cascade of the disease. Therefore, researchers studying AD would like to elucidate the mechanisms by which essentially water-soluble but hydrophobic Aβ aggregates under pathological conditions. Most researchers have investigated the aggregation of Aβ in aqueous solution, and they concluded that the final aggregation product, the amyloid fibrils, were less toxic than the component peptide oligomers. They consequently shifted their interests to more toxic "soluble oligomers", structures that form as intermediates or off-pathway products during the aggregation process. Some researchers have also investigated artificial oligomers prepared under nonphysiological conditions. In contrast to these "in solution" studies, we have focused on "membrane-mediated" amyloidogenesis. In an earlier study, other researchers identified a specific form of Aβ that was bound to monosialoganglioside GM1, a sugar lipid, in brains of patients who exhibited the early pathological changes associated with AD. This Account summarizes 15 years of our research on this topic. We have found that Aβ specifically binds to GM1 that occurs in clusters, but not when it is uniformly distributed. Clustering is facilitated by cholesterol. Upon binding, Aβ changes its conformation from a random coil to an α-helix-rich structure. A CH-π interaction between the aromatic side chains of Aβ and carbohydrate moieties appended to GM1 appears to be important for binding. In addition, as Aβ accumulates and reaches its first threshold concentration (Aβ/GM1 = ∼0.013), aggregated β-sheets of ∼15 molecules appear and coexist with the helical form. However, this β-structure is stable and does not form larger

  7. Structural diversity of Alzheimer's disease amyloid-β dimers and their role in oligomerization and fibril formation.

    PubMed

    Tsigelny, Igor F; Sharikov, Yuriy; Kouznetsova, Valentina L; Greenberg, Jerry P; Wrasidlo, Wolfgang; Gonzalez, Tania; Desplats, Paula; Michael, Sarah E; Trejo-Morales, Margarita; Overk, Cassia R; Masliah, Eliezer

    2014-01-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is associated with the formation of toxic amyloid-β (Aβ)42 oligomers, and recent evidence supports a role for Aβ dimers as building blocks for oligomers. Molecular dynamics simulation studies have identified clans for the dominant conformations of Aβ42 forming dimers; however, it is unclear if a larger spectrum of dimers is involved and which set(s) of dimers might evolve to oligomers verse fibrils. Therefore, for this study we generated multiple structural conformations of Aβ42, using explicit all-atom molecular dynamics, and then clustering the different structures based on key conformational similarities. Those matching a selection threshold were then used to model a process of oligomerization. Remarkably, we showed a greater diversity in Aβ dimers than previously described. Depending on the clan family, different types of Aβ dimers were obtained. While some had the tendency to evolve into oligomeric rings, others formed fibrils of diverse characteristics. Then we selected the dimers that would evolve to membranephilic annular oligomers. Nearly one third of the 28 evaluated annular oligomers had the dimer interfaces between the neighboring Aβ42 monomers with possible salt bridges between the residue K28 from one side and either residue E22 or D23 on the other. Based on these results, key amino acids were identified for point mutations that either enhanced or suppressed the formation and toxicity of oligomer rings. Our studies suggest a greater diversity of Aβ dimers. Understanding the structure of Aβ dimers might be important for the rationale design of small molecules that block formation of toxic oligomers.

  8. Microcin Amyloid Fibrils A Are Reservoir of Toxic Oligomeric Species

    PubMed Central

    Shahnawaz, Mohammad; Soto, Claudio

    2012-01-01

    Microcin E492 (Mcc), a low molecular weight bacteriocin produced by Klebsiella pneumoniae RYC492, has been shown to exist in two forms: soluble forms that are believed to be toxic to the bacterial cell by forming pores and non-toxic fibrillar forms that share similar biochemical and biophysical properties with amyloids associated with several human diseases. Here we report that fibrils polymerized in vitro from soluble forms sequester toxic species that can be released upon changing environmental conditions such as pH, ionic strength, and upon dilution. Our results indicate that basic pH (≥8.5), low NaCl concentrations (≤50 mm), and dilution (>10-fold) destabilize Mcc fibrils into more soluble species that are found to be toxic to the target cells. Additionally, we also found a similar conversion of non-toxic fibrils into highly toxic oligomers using Mcc aggregates produced in vivo. Moreover, the soluble protein released from fibrils is able to rapidly polymerize into amyloid fibrils under fibril-forming conditions and to efficiently seed aggregation of monomeric Mcc. Our findings indicate that fibrillar forms of Mcc constitute a reservoir of toxic oligomeric species that is released into the medium upon changing the environmental conditions. These findings may have substantial implications to understand the dynamic process of interconversion between toxic and non-toxic aggregated species implicated in protein misfolding diseases. PMID:22337880

  9. Microcin amyloid fibrils A are reservoir of toxic oligomeric species.

    PubMed

    Shahnawaz, Mohammad; Soto, Claudio

    2012-04-01

    Microcin E492 (Mcc), a low molecular weight bacteriocin produced by Klebsiella pneumoniae RYC492, has been shown to exist in two forms: soluble forms that are believed to be toxic to the bacterial cell by forming pores and non-toxic fibrillar forms that share similar biochemical and biophysical properties with amyloids associated with several human diseases. Here we report that fibrils polymerized in vitro from soluble forms sequester toxic species that can be released upon changing environmental conditions such as pH, ionic strength, and upon dilution. Our results indicate that basic pH (≥8.5), low NaCl concentrations (≤50 mm), and dilution (>10-fold) destabilize Mcc fibrils into more soluble species that are found to be toxic to the target cells. Additionally, we also found a similar conversion of non-toxic fibrils into highly toxic oligomers using Mcc aggregates produced in vivo. Moreover, the soluble protein released from fibrils is able to rapidly polymerize into amyloid fibrils under fibril-forming conditions and to efficiently seed aggregation of monomeric Mcc. Our findings indicate that fibrillar forms of Mcc constitute a reservoir of toxic oligomeric species that is released into the medium upon changing the environmental conditions. These findings may have substantial implications to understand the dynamic process of interconversion between toxic and non-toxic aggregated species implicated in protein misfolding diseases. PMID:22337880

  10. Extended structure of rat islet amyloid polypeptide in solution.

    PubMed

    Wei, Lei; Jiang, Ping; Manimekalai, Malathy Sony Subramanian; Hunke, Cornelia; Grüber, Gerhard; Pervushin, Konstantin; Mu, Yuguang

    2015-01-01

    The process of islet amyloid polypeptide (IAPP) formation and the prefibrillar oligomers are supposed to be one of the pathogenic agents causing pancreatic β-cell dysfunction. The human IAPP (hIAPP) aggregates easily and therefore, it is difficult to characterize its structural features by standard biophysical tools. The rat version of IAPP (rIAPP) that differs by six amino acids when compared with hIAPP, is not prone to aggregation and does not form amyloid fibrils. Similar to hIAPP it also demonstrates random-coiled nature in solution. The structural propensity of rIAPP has been studied as a hIAPP mimic in recent works. However, the overall shape of it in solution still remains elusive. Using small angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) measurements combined with nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) and molecular dynamics simulations (MD) the solution structure of rIAPP was studied. An unambiguously extended structural model with a radius of gyration of 1.83 nm was determined from SAXS data. Consistent with previous studies, an overall random-coiled feature with residual helical propensity in the N-terminus was confirmed. Combined efforts are necessary to unambiguously resolve the structural features of intrinsic disordered proteins.

  11. Curcumin Attenuates Amyloid-β Aggregate Toxicity and Modulates Amyloid-β Aggregation Pathway.

    PubMed

    Thapa, Arjun; Jett, Stephen D; Chi, Eva Y

    2016-01-20

    The abnormal misfolding and aggregation of amyloid-β (Aβ) peptides into β-sheet enriched insoluble deposits initiates a cascade of events leading to pathological processes and culminating in cognitive decline in Alzheimer's disease (AD). In particular, soluble oligomeric/prefibrillar Aβ have been shown to be potent neurotoxins. The naturally occurring polyphenol curcumin has been shown to exert a neuroprotective effect against age-related neurodegenerative diseases such as AD. However, its protective mechanism remains unclear. In this study, we investigated the effects of curcumin on the aggregation of Aβ40 as well as Aβ40 aggregate induced neurotoxicity. Our results show that the curcumin does not inhibit Aβ fibril formation, but rather enriches the population of "off-pathway" soluble oligomers and prefibrillar aggregates that were nontoxic. Curcumin also exerted a nonspecific neuroprotective effect, reducing toxicities induced by a range of Aβ conformers, including monomeric, oligomeric, prefibrillar, and fibrillar Aβ. The neuroprotective effect is possibly membrane-mediated, as curcumin reduced the extent of cell membrane permeabilization induced by Aβ aggregates. Taken together, our study shows that curcumin exerts its neuroprotective effect against Aβ induced toxicity through at least two concerted pathways, modifying the Aβ aggregation pathway toward the formation of nontoxic aggregates and ameliorating Aβ-induced toxicity possibly through a nonspecific pathway.

  12. Anti-Aβ antibodies incapable of reducing cerebral Aβ oligomers fail to attenuate spatial reference memory deficits in J20 mice

    PubMed Central

    Mably, Alexandra J.; Liu, Wen; Mc Donald, Jessica M.; Dodart, Jean-Cosme; Bard, Frédérique; Lemere, Cynthia A.; O’Nuallain, Brian; Walsh, Dominic M.

    2015-01-01

    Compelling genetic evidence links the amyloid precursor protein (APP) to Alzheimer’s disease (AD). A leading hypothesis proposes that a small amphipathic fragment of APP, the amyloid β-protein (Aβ), self-associates to form soluble assemblies loosely referred to as “oligomers” and that these are primary mediators of synaptic dysfunction. As such, Aβ, and specifically Aβ oligomers, are targets for disease modifying therapies. Currently, the most advanced experimental treatment for AD relies on the use of anti-Aβ antibodies. In this study, we tested the ability of the monomer-preferring antibody, m266 and a novel aggregate-preferring antibody, 1C22, to attenuate spatial reference memory impairments in J20 mice. Chronic treatment with m266 resulted in a ~70-fold increase in Aβ detected in the bloodstream, and a ~50% increase in water-soluble brain Aβ – and in both cases Aβ was bound to m266. In contrast, 1C22 increased the levels of free Aβ in the bloodstream, and bound to amyloid deposits in J20 brain. However, neither 1C22 nor m266 attenuated the cognitive deficits evident in 12 month old J20 mice. Moreover, both antibodies failed to alter the levels of soluble Aβ oligomers in J20 brain. These results suggest that Aβ oligomers may mediate the behavioral deficits seen in J20 mice and highlight the need for the development of aggregate-preferring antibodies that can reach the brain in sufficient levels to neutralize bioactive Aβ oligomers. Aside from the lack of positive effect of m266 and 1C22 on cognition a substantial number of deaths occurred in m266- and 1C22-immunized J20 mice. These fatalities were specific to anti-Aβ antibodies and to the J20 mouse line since treatment of wild type or PDAPP mice with these antibodies did not cause any deaths. These and other recent results indicate that J20 mice are particularly susceptible to targeting of the APP/Aβ/tau axis. Notwithstanding the specificity of fatalities for J20 mice, it is worrying that

  13. Aftins Increase Amyloid-β42, Lower Amyloid-β38, and Do Not Alter Amyloid-β40 Extracellular Production in vitro: Toward a Chemical Model of Alzheimer’s Disease?

    PubMed Central

    Hochard, Arnaud; Oumata, Nassima; Bettayeb, Karima; Gloulou, Olfa; Fant, Xavier; Durieu, Emilie; Buron, Nelly; Porceddu, Mathieu; Borgne-Sanchez, Annie; Galons, Hervé; Flajolet, Marc; Meijer, Laurent

    2016-01-01

    Increased production of amyloid-β (Aβ)42 peptide, derived from the amyloid-β protein precursor, and its subsequent aggregation into oligomers and plaques constitutes a hallmark of Alzheimer’s disease (AD). We here report on a family of low molecular weight molecules, the Aftins (Amyloid-β Forty-Two Inducers), which, in cultured cells, dramatically affect the production of extracellular/secreted amyloid peptides. Aftins trigger β-secretase inhibitor and γ-secretase inhibitors (GSIs) sensitive, robust upregulation of Aβ42, and parallel down-regulation of Aβ38, while Aβ40 levels remain stable. In contrast, intracellular levels of these amyloids appear to remain stable. In terms of their effects on Aβ38/Aβ40/Aβ42 relative abundance, Aftins act opposite to γ-secretase modulators (GSMs). Aβ42 upregulation induced by Aftin-5 is unlikely to originate from reduced proteolytic degradation or diminished autophagy. Aftin-5 has little effects on mitochondrial functional parameters (swelling, transmembrane potential loss, cytochrome c release, oxygen consumption) but reversibly alters the ultrastructure of mitochondria. Aftins thus alter the Aβ levels in a fashion similar to that described in the brain of AD patients. Aftins therefore constitute new pharmacological tools to investigate this essential aspect of AD, in cell cultures, allowing (1) the detection of inhibitors of Aftin induced action (potential ‘anti-AD compounds’, including GSIs and GSMs) but also (2) the identification, in the human chemical exposome, of compounds that, like Aftins, might trigger sustained Aβ42 production and Aβ38 down-regulation (potential ‘pro-AD compounds’). PMID:23364140

  14. Rectification mechanism in diblock oligomer molecular diodes.

    PubMed

    Oleynik, I I; Kozhushner, M A; Posvyanskii, V S; Yu, L

    2006-03-10

    We investigated a mechanism of rectification in diblock oligomer diode molecules that have recently been synthesized and showed a pronounced asymmetry in the measured I-V spectrum. The observed rectification effect is due to the resonant nature of electron transfer in the system and the localization properties of bound state wave functions of resonant states of the tunneling electron interacting with an asymmetric molecule in an electric field. The asymmetry of the tunneling wave function is enhanced or weakened depending on the polarity of the applied bias. The conceptually new theoretical approach, the Green's function theory of sub-barrier scattering, is able to provide a physically transparent explanation of this rectification effect based on the concept of the bound state spectrum of a tunneling electron. The theory predicts the characteristic features of the I-V spectrum in qualitative agreement with experiment. PMID:16606295

  15. First-principles simulations of thiophene oligomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scherlis, Damian; Marzari, Nicola

    2003-03-01

    Conducting polymers, extensively investigated for their use in electronic and nanotechnology applications, have recently gained prominence for their possible use as molecular actuators in mechanical and bioengineering devices. We have focused our efforts on thiophene-based compounds, a class of materials that can be designed for high stress generation and large linear displacement (actuation strain), ideally outperforming mammalian muscle. Key features for the development of these materials are the microscopic binding properties of thiophene and thiophene oligomers stacks, where applied electric fields lead to oxidation and enhanced pi-pi bonding. We have completed the structural studies of neutral and charged oligothiophene dimers, in the search for efficient dimerization mechanisms. A comparison between different density-functional and quantum-chemistry approaches is critically presented, as are solvation effects, described in this work with a combination of first-principles molecular dynamics and a QM/MM approach for the solvating medium.

  16. Identification of Human Islet Amyloid Polypeptide as a BACE2 Substrate

    PubMed Central

    Rulifson, Ingrid C.; Cao, Ping; Miao, Li; Kopecky, David; Huang, Linda; White, Ryan D.; Samayoa, Kim; Gardner, Jonitha; Wu, Xiaosu; Chen, Kui; Tsuruda, Trace; Homann, Oliver; Baribault, Helene; Yamane, Harvey; Carlson, Tim; Wiltzius, Jed; Li, Yang

    2016-01-01

    Pancreatic amyloid formation by islet amyloid polypeptide (IAPP) is a hallmark pathological feature of type 2 diabetes. IAPP is stored in the secretory granules of pancreatic beta-cells and co-secreted with insulin to maintain glucose homeostasis. IAPP is innocuous under homeostatic conditions but imbalances in production or processing of IAPP may result in homodimer formation leading to the rapid production of cytotoxic oligomers and amyloid fibrils. The consequence is beta-cell dysfunction and the accumulation of proteinaceous plaques in and around pancreatic islets. Beta-site APP-cleaving enzyme 2, BACE2, is an aspartyl protease commonly associated with BACE1, a related homolog responsible for amyloid processing in the brain and strongly implicated in Alzheimer’s disease. Herein, we identify two distinct sites of the mature human IAPP sequence that are susceptible to BACE2-mediated proteolytic activity. The result of proteolysis is modulation of human IAPP fibrillation and human IAPP protein degradation. These results suggest a potential therapeutic role for BACE2 in type 2 diabetes-associated hyperamylinaemia. PMID:26840340

  17. A Monte Carlo Study of the Early Steps of Functional Amyloid Formation.

    PubMed

    Tian, Pengfei; Lindorff-Larsen, Kresten; Boomsma, Wouter; Jensen, Mogens Høgh; Otzen, Daniel Erik

    2016-01-01

    In addition to their well-known roles in neurodegenerative diseases and amyloidoses, amyloid structures also assume important functional roles in the cell. Although functional amyloid shares many physiochemical properties with its pathogenic counterpart, it is evolutionarily optimized to avoid cytotoxicity. This makes it an interesting study case for aggregation phenomenon in general. One of the most well-known examples of a functional amyloid, E. coli curli, is an essential component in the formation of bacterial biofilm, and is primarily formed by aggregates of the protein CsgA. Previous studies have shown that the minor sequence variations observed in the five different subrepeats (R1-R5), which comprise the CsgA primary sequence, have a substantial influence on their individual aggregation propensities. Using a recently described diffusion-optimized enhanced sampling approach for Monte Carlo simulations, we here investigate the equilibrium properties of the monomeric and dimeric states of these subrepeats, to probe whether structural properties observed in these early stage oligomers are decisive for the characteristics of the resulting aggregate. We show that the dimerization propensities of these peptides have strong correlations with their propensity for amyloid formation, and provide structural insights into the inter- and intramolecular contacts that appear to be essential in this process. PMID:26745180

  18. Surface Effects Mediate Self-Assembly of Amyloid-β Peptides

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Here we present a label-free method for studying the mechanism of surface effects on amyloid aggregation. In this method, spin-coating is used to rapidly dry samples, in a homogeneous manner, after various incubation times. This technique allows the control of important parameters for self-assembly, such as the surface concentration. Atomic force microscopy is then used to obtain high-resolution images of the morphology. While imaging under dry conditions, we show that the morphologies of self-assembled aggregates of a model amyloid-β peptide, Aβ12–28, are strongly influenced by the local surface concentration. On mica surfaces, where the peptides can freely diffuse, homogeneous, self-assembled protofibrils formed spontaneously and grew longer with longer subsequent incubation. The surface fibrillization rate was much faster than the rates of fibril formation observed in solution, with initiation occurring at much lower concentrations. These data suggest an alternative pathway for amyloid formation on surfaces where the nucleation stage is either bypassed entirely or too fast to measure. This simple preparation procedure for high-resolution atomic force microscopy imaging of amyloid oligomers and protofibrils should be applicable to any amyloidogenic protein species. PMID:25229233

  19. A surface enhanced Raman spectroscopy platform based on nanoshells for detection of β-amyloid

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beier, Hope T.; Cowan, Christopher B.; Good, Theresa A.; Coté, Gerard L.

    2008-02-01

    A major limitation of many surfaced enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) approaches is the dependence of the Raman enhancement on the local nanostructure. While these local "hot spots" may provide areas of extremely strong enhancement, which make trace analyte detection possible, they also make quantitative measurements problematic. Gold nanoshells however, with the ratio of the radius of their silica core to gold shell tuned to the near infrared excitation wavelength, have been used as a platform for uniform SERS enhancement. By using nanoshells, the SERS enhancement is dependent on the resonance of single nanoshells, without relying on the uncontrolled contribution from localized "hot spots". The nanoshell platform is functionalized with sialic acid to mimic neuronal cells surfaces to allow for the specific binding of β-amyloid, the primary protein component of the senile plaques found in Alzheimer's disease patients. We ultimately hope that this mechanism will provide insight into the relationship between the progression of Alzheimer's disease and β-amyloid through detection of the toxic form of the protein with structural and concentration information. With this approach, we have obtained concentration dependent spectra, consistent across the platform surface, which indicate the feasibility of detecting β-amyloid oligomers into the picomolar range. Additionally, by monitoring SERS spectra as β-amyloid changes its structural conformation from monomer to fibril, we have demonstrated conformational dependence of the SERS signals.

  20. Structure-based discovery of fiber-binding compounds that reduce the cytotoxicity of amyloid beta

    PubMed Central

    Jiang, Lin; Liu, Cong; Leibly, David; Landau, Meytal; Zhao, Minglei; Hughes, Michael P; Eisenberg, David S

    2013-01-01

    Amyloid protein aggregates are associated with dozens of devastating diseases including Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, ALS, and diabetes type 2. While structure-based discovery of compounds has been effective in combating numerous infectious and metabolic diseases, ignorance of amyloid structure has hindered similar approaches to amyloid disease. Here we show that knowledge of the atomic structure of one of the adhesive, steric-zipper segments of the amyloid-beta (Aβ) protein of Alzheimer’s disease, when coupled with computational methods, identifies eight diverse but mainly flat compounds and three compound derivatives that reduce Aβ cytotoxicity against mammalian cells by up to 90%. Although these compounds bind to Aβ fibers, they do not reduce fiber formation of Aβ. Structure-activity relationship studies of the fiber-binding compounds and their derivatives suggest that compound binding increases fiber stability and decreases fiber toxicity, perhaps by shifting the equilibrium of Aβ from oligomers to fibers. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.00857.001 PMID:23878726

  1. Direct and selective elimination of specific prions and amyloids by 4,5-dianilinophthalimide and analogs

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Huan; Duennwald, Martin L.; Roberts, Blake E.; Rozeboom, Leslie M.; Zhang, Yingxin L.; Steele, Andrew D.; Krishnan, Rajaraman; Su, Linhui Julie; Griffin, Drees; Mukhopadhyay, Samrat; Hennessy, Edward J.; Weigele, Peter; Blanchard, Barbara J.; King, Jonathan; Deniz, Ashok A.; Buchwald, Stephen L.; Ingram, Vernon M.; Lindquist, Susan; Shorter, James

    2008-01-01

    Mechanisms to safely eliminate amyloids and preamyloid oligomers associated with many devastating diseases are urgently needed. Biophysical principles dictate that small molecules are unlikely to perturb large intermolecular protein–protein interfaces, let alone extraordinarily stable amyloid interfaces. Yet 4,5-dianilinophthalimide (DAPH-1) reverses Aβ42 amyloidogenesis and neurotoxicity, which is associated with Alzheimer's disease. Here, we show that DAPH-1 and select derivatives are ineffective against several amyloidogenic proteins, including tau, α-synuclein, Ure2, and PrP, but antagonize the yeast prion protein, Sup35, in vitro and in vivo. This allowed us to exploit several powerful new tools created for studying the conformational transitions of Sup35 and decipher the mechanisms by which DAPH-1 and related compounds antagonize the prion state. During fibrillization, inhibitory DAPHs alter the folding of Sup35's amyloidogenic core, preventing amyloidogenic oligomerization and specific recognition events that nucleate prion assembly. Select DAPHs also are capable of attacking preformed amyloids. They remodel Sup35 prion-specific intermolecular interfaces to create morphologically altered aggregates with diminished infectivity and self-templating activity. Our studies provide mechanistic insights and reinvigorate hopes for small-molecule therapies that specifically disrupt intermolecular amyloid contacts. PMID:18480256

  2. Exploring the early steps of aggregation of amyloid-forming peptide KFFE

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wei, Guanghong; Mousseau, Normand; Derreumaux, Philippe

    2004-11-01

    It has been shown recently that even a tetrapeptide can form amyloid fibrils sharing all the characteristics of amyloid fibrils built from large proteins. Recent experimental studies also suggest that the toxicity observed in several neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's disease and Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, is not only related to the mature fibrils themselves, but also to the soluble oligomers formed early in the process of fibrillogenesis. This raises the interest in studying the early steps of the aggregation process. Although fibril formation follows the nucleation-condensation process, characterized by the presence of lag phase, the exact pathways remain to be determined. In this study, we used the activation-relaxation technique and a generic energy model to explore the process of self-assembly and the structures of the resulting aggregates of eight KFFE peptides. Our simulations show, starting from different states with a preformed antiparallel dimer, that eight chains can self-assemble to adopt, with various orientations, four possible distant oligomeric well-aligned structures of similar energy. Two of these structures show a double-layer β-sheet organization, in agreement with the structure of amyloid fibrils as observed by x-ray diffraction; another two are mixtures of dimers and trimers. Our results also suggest that octamers are likely to be below the critical size for nucleation of amyloid fibrils for small peptides.

  3. Pituicytoma with gelsolin amyloid deposition.

    PubMed

    Ida, Cristiane M; Yan, Xiaoling; Jentoft, Mark E; Kip, N Sertac; Scheithauer, Bernd W; Morris, Jonathan M; Dogan, Ahmet; Parisi, Joseph E; Kovacs, Kalman

    2013-09-01

    Pituicytoma is a rare low-grade (WHO grade I) sellar region glioma. Among sellar tumors, pituitary adenomas, mainly prolactinomas, may show amyloid deposits. Gelsolin is a ubiquitous calcium-dependent protein that regulates actin filament dynamics. Two known gene point mutations result in gelsolin amyloid deposition, a characteristic feature of a rare type of familial amyloid polyneuropathy (FAP), the Finnish-type FAP, or hereditary gelsolin amyloidosis (HGA). HGA is an autosomal-dominant systemic amyloidosis, characterized by slowly progressive neurological deterioration with corneal lattice dystrophy, cranial neuropathy, and cutis laxa. A unique case of pituicytoma with marked gelsolin amyloid deposition in a 67-year-old Chinese woman is described. MRI revealed a 2.6-cm well-circumscribed, uniformly contrast-enhancing solid sellar mass with suprasellar extension. Histologically, the lesion was characterized by solid sheets and fascicles of spindle cells with slightly fibrillary cytoplasm and oval nuclei with pinpoint nucleoli. Surrounding brain parenchyma showed marked reactive piloid gliosis. Remarkably, conspicuous amyloid deposits were identified as pink homogeneous spherules on light microscopy that showed apple-green birefringence on Congo red with polarization. Mass spectrometric-based proteomic analysis identified the amyloid as gelsolin type. Immunohistochemically, diffuse reactivity to S100 protein and TTF1, focal reactivity for GFAP, and no reactivity to EMA, synaptophysin, and chromogranin were observed. HGA-related mutations were not identified in the tumor. No recurrence was noted 14 months after surgery. To the knowledge of the authors, amyloid deposition in pituicytoma or tumor-associated gelsolin amyloidosis has not been previously described. This novel finding expands the spectrum of sellar tumors that may be associated with amyloid deposition. PMID:23817895

  4. Structural and functional properties of prefibrillar α-synuclein oligomers

    PubMed Central

    Pieri, Laura; Madiona, Karine; Melki, Ronald

    2016-01-01

    The deposition of fibrillar alpha-synuclein (α-syn) within inclusions (Lewy bodies and Lewy neurites) in neurons and glial cells is a hallmark of synucleinopathies. α-syn populates a variety of assemblies ranging from prefibrillar oligomeric species to fibrils whose specific contribution to neurodegeneration is still unclear. Here, we compare the specific structural and biological properties of distinct soluble prefibrillar α-syn oligomers formed either spontaneously or in the presence of dopamine and glutaraldehyde. We show that both on-fibrillar assembly pathway and distinct dopamine-mediated and glutaraldehyde-cross-linked α-syn oligomers are only slightly effective in perturbing cell membrane integrity and inducing cytotoxicity, while mature fibrils exhibit the highest toxicity. In contrast to low-molecular weight and unstable oligomers, large stable α-syn oligomers seed the aggregation of soluble α-syn within reporter cells although to a lesser extent than mature α-syn fibrils. These oligomers appear elongated in shape. Our findings suggest that α-syn oligomers represent a continuum of species ranging from unstable low molecular weight particles to mature fibrils via stable elongated oligomers composed of more than 15 α-syn monomers that possess seeding capacity. PMID:27075649

  5. Antiparallel Triple-strand Architecture for Prefibrillar Aβ42 Oligomers*

    PubMed Central

    Gu, Lei; Liu, Cong; Stroud, James C.; Ngo, Sam; Jiang, Lin; Guo, Zhefeng

    2014-01-01

    Aβ42 oligomers play key roles in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer disease, but their structures remain elusive partly due to their transient nature. Here, we show that Aβ42 in a fusion construct can be trapped in a stable oligomer state, which recapitulates characteristics of prefibrillar Aβ42 oligomers and enables us to establish their detailed structures. Site-directed spin labeling and electron paramagnetic resonance studies provide structural restraints in terms of side chain mobility and intermolecular distances at all 42 residue positions. Using these restraints and other biophysical data, we present a novel atomic-level oligomer model. In our model, each Aβ42 protein forms a single β-sheet with three β-strands in an antiparallel arrangement. Each β-sheet consists of four Aβ42 molecules in a head-to-tail arrangement. Four β-sheets are packed together in a face-to-back fashion. The stacking of identical segments between different β-sheets within an oligomer suggests that prefibrillar oligomers may interconvert with fibrils via strand rotation, wherein β-strands undergo an ∼90° rotation along the strand direction. This work provides insights into rational design of therapeutics targeting the process of interconversion between toxic oligomers and non-toxic fibrils. PMID:25118290

  6. Possible peroxidase active site environment in amyloidogenic proteins: Native monomer or misfolded-oligomer; which one is susceptible to the enzymatic activity, with contribution of heme?

    PubMed

    Khodarahmi, Reza; Ashrafi-Kooshk, Mohammad Reza; Khodarahmi, Sina; Ghadami, Seyyed Abolghasem; Mostafaie, Ali

    2015-09-01

    Amyloid states of many proteins complex with heme and exhibit significant non-specific peroxidase activity, compared to free heme. Neurotransmitter deficiency, generation of neurotoxins, altered activity/metabolism of key enzymes and cellular DNA damage are possible evidences highlighting the importance of the uncontrollable peroxidase activity in Alzheimer's disease (AD)-involved brain cells. Despite extensive experimental work was carried out on this field, discrepancy on chronological precedence of amyloid aggregation and oxidative reactions as well as the mechanism involved in the peroxidase-induced oxidative stress is still not completely understood. In this study, we highlight further that heme cofactor readily complexes with structural intermediates of amyloid aggregates of ovalbumin, lactoglobulin and crystallin and report the ability of "heme-amyloid aggregate/oligomer") to produce peroxidase-like active site. Histidine side chains are also proposed as both distal and proximal residues required for proper function of these peroxidase systems. Taking uncontrollable peroxidase activity of "Aβ-heme" complex into account, it appears that this process, as a new opened dimension in AD pathologic research, provides structural/mechanistic basis for more efficient therapeutic strategies against neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:26123814

  7. Effective anti-Alzheimer Aβ therapy involves depletion of specific Aβ oligomer subtypes

    PubMed Central

    Knight, Elysse M.; Kim, Soong Ho; Kottwitz, Jessica C.; Hatami, Asa; Albay, Ricardo; Suzuki, Akinobu; Lublin, Alex; Alberini, Cristina M.; Klein, William L.; Szabo, Paul; Relkin, Norman R.; Ehrlich, Michelle; Glabe, Charles G.; Steele, John W.

    2016-01-01

    Background: Recent studies have implicated specific assembly subtypes of β-amyloid (Aβ) peptide, specifically soluble oligomers (soAβ) as disease-relevant structures that may underlie memory loss in Alzheimer disease. Removing existing soluble and insoluble Aβ assemblies is thought to be essential for any attempt at stabilizing brain function and slowing cognitive decline in Alzheimer disease. IV immunoglobulin (IVIg) therapies have been shown to contain naturally occurring polyclonal antibodies that recognize conformational neoepitopes of soluble or insoluble Aβ assemblies including soAβ. These naturally occurring polyclonal antibodies have been suggested to underlie the apparent clinical benefits of IVIg. However, direct evidence linking anti-Aβ antibodies to the clinical bioactivity of IVIg has been lacking. Methods: Five-month-old female Dutch APP E693Q mice were treated for 3 months with neat IVIg or with IVIg that had been affinity-depleted over immobilized Aβ conformers in 1 of 2 assembly states. Memory was assessed in a battery of tests followed by quantification of brain soAβ levels using standard anti-soAβ antibodies. Results: We provide evidence that NU4-type soAβ (NU4-soAβ) assemblies accumulate in the brains of Dutch APP E693Q mice and are associated with defects in memory, even in the absence of insoluble Aβ plaques. Memory benefits were associated with depletion from APP E693Q mouse brain of NU4-soAβ and A11-soAβ but not OC-type fibrillar Aβ oligomers. Conclusions: We propose that targeting of specific soAβ assembly subtypes may be an important consideration in the therapeutic and/or prophylactic benefit of anti-Aβ antibody drugs. PMID:27218118

  8. Clusterin Binds to Aβ1-42 Oligomers with High Affinity and Interferes with Peptide Aggregation by Inhibiting Primary and Secondary Nucleation.

    PubMed

    Beeg, Marten; Stravalaci, Matteo; Romeo, Margherita; Carrá, Arianna Dorotea; Cagnotto, Alfredo; Rossi, Alessandro; Diomede, Luisa; Salmona, Mario; Gobbi, Marco

    2016-03-25

    The aggregation of amyloid β protein (Aβ) is a fundamental pathogenic mechanism leading to the neuronal damage present in Alzheimer disease, and soluble Aβ oligomers are thought to be a major toxic culprit. Thus, better knowledge and specific targeting of the pathways that lead to these noxious species may result in valuable therapeutic strategies. We characterized some effects of the molecular chaperone clusterin, providing new and more detailed evidence of its potential neuroprotective effects. Using a classical thioflavin T assay, we observed a dose-dependent inhibition of the aggregation process. The global analysis of time courses under different conditions demonstrated that clusterin has no effect on the elongation rate but mainly interferes with the nucleation processes (both primary and secondary), reducing the number of nuclei available for further fibril growth. Then, using a recently developed immunoassay based on surface plasmon resonance, we obtained direct evidence of a high-affinity (KD= 1 nm) interaction of clusterin with biologically relevant Aβ1-42oligomers, selectively captured on the sensor chip. Moreover, with the same technology, we observed that substoichiometric concentrations of clusterin prevent oligomer interaction with the antibody 4G8, suggesting that the chaperone shields hydrophobic residues exposed on the oligomeric assemblies. Finally, we found that preincubation with clusterin antagonizes the toxic effects of Aβ1-42oligomers, as evaluated in a recently developedin vivomodel inCaenorhabditis elegans.These data substantiate the interaction of clusterin with biologically active regions exposed on nuclei/oligomers of Aβ1-42, providing a molecular basis for the neuroprotective effects of the chaperone. PMID:26884339

  9. Chirality organization of aniline oligomers through hydrogen bonds of amino acid moieties.

    PubMed

    Ohmura, Satoshi D; Moriuchi, Toshiyuki; Hirao, Toshikazu

    2010-11-19

    Aniline oligomers bearing amino acid moieties were designed by the introduction of L/D-Ala-OMe into aniline oligomers to induce chirality organization of the π-conjugated aniline oligomer moieties, wherein the formation of intramolecular hydrogen bonds was demonstrated to play an important role to regulate the aniline oligomer moieties conformationally.

  10. Polyalanine and Abeta Aggregation Kinetics: Probing Intermediate Oligomer Formation and Structure Using Computer Simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Phelps, Erin Melissa

    2011-12-01

    The aggregation of proteins into stable, well-ordered structures known as amyloid fibrils has been associated with many neurodegenerative diseases. Amyloid fibrils are long straight, and un-branched structures containing several proto-filaments, each of which exhibits "cross beta structure," -- ribbon-like layers of large beta sheets whose strands run perpendicular to the fibril axis. It has been suggested in the literature that the pathway to fibril formation has the following steps: unfolded monomers associate into transient unstable oligomers, the oligomers undergo a rearrangement into the cross-beta structure and form into proto-filaments, these proto-filaments then associate and grow into fully formed fibrils. Recent experimental studies have determined that the unstable intermediate structures are toxic to cells and that their presence may play a key role in the pathogenesis of the amyloid diseases. Many efforts have been made to determine the structure of intermediate oligomer aggregates that form during the fibrillization process. The goal of this work is to provide details about the structure and formation kinetics of the unstable oligomers that appear in the fibril formation pathway. The specific aims of this work are to determine the steps in the fibril formation pathway and how the kinetics of fibrillization changes with variations in temperature and concentration. The method used is the application of discontinuous molecular dynamics to large systems of peptides represented with an intermediate resolution model, PRIME, that was previously developed in our group. Three different peptide sequences are simulated: polyalanine (KA14K), Abeta17-40, and Abeta17-42; the latter two are truncated sequences of the Alzheimer's peptide. We simulate the spontaneous assembly of these peptide chains from a random initial configuration of random coils. We investigate aggregation kinetics and oligomer formation of a system of 192 polyalanine (KA14K) chains over a

  11. Biomimetic peptoid oligomers as dual-action antifreeze agents

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Mia L.; Ehre, David; Jiang, Qi; Hu, Chunhua; Kirshenbaum, Kent; Ward, Michael D.

    2012-01-01

    The ability of natural peptides and proteins to influence the formation of inorganic crystalline materials has prompted the design of synthetic compounds for the regulation of crystal growth, including the freezing of water and growth of ice crystals. Despite their versatility and ease of structural modification, peptidomimetic oligomers have not yet been explored extensively as crystallization modulators. This report describes a library of synthetic N-substituted glycine peptoid oligomers that possess “dual-action” antifreeze activity as exemplified by ice crystal growth inhibition concomitant with melting temperature reduction. We investigated the structural features responsible for these phenomena and observed that peptoid antifreeze activities depend both on oligomer backbone structure and side chain chemical composition. These studies reveal the capability of peptoids to act as ice crystallization regulators, enabling the discovery of a unique and diverse family of synthetic oligomers with potential as antifreeze agents in food production and biomedicine. PMID:23169638

  12. Toward a Molecular Theory of Early and Late Events in Monomer to Amyloid Fibril Formation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Straub, John E.; Thirumalai, D.

    2011-05-01

    Quantitative understanding of the kinetics of fibril formation and the molecular mechanism of transition from monomers to fibrils is needed to obtain insights into the growth of amyloid fibrils and more generally self-assembly multisubunit protein complexes. Significant advances using computations of protein aggregation in a number of systems have established generic and sequence-specific aspects of the early steps in oligomer formation. Theoretical considerations, which view oligomer and fibril growth as diffusion in a complex energy landscape, and computational studies, involving minimal lattice and coarse-grained models, have revealed general principles governing the transition from monomeric protein to ordered fibrillar aggregates. Detailed atomistic calculations have explored the early stages of the protein aggregation pathway for a number of amyloidogenic proteins, most notably amyloid β- (Aβ-) protein and fragments from proteins linked to various diseases. These computational studies have provided insights into the role of sequence, role of water, and specific interatomic interactions underlying the thermodynamics and dynamics of elementary kinetic steps in the aggregation pathway. Novel methods are beginning to illustrate the structural basis for the production of Aβ-peptides through interactions with secretases in the presence of membranes. We show that a variety of theoretical approaches, ranging from scaling arguments to minimal models to atomistic simulations, are needed as a complement to experimental studies probing the principles governing protein aggregation.

  13. Structure, orientation, and surface interaction of Alzheimer amyloid-β peptides on the graphite.

    PubMed

    Yu, Xiang; Wang, Qiuming; Lin, Yinan; Zhao, Jun; Zhao, Chao; Zheng, Jie

    2012-04-24

    The misfolding and aggregation of amyloid-β (Aβ) peptides into amyloid fibrils in solution and on the cell membrane has been linked to the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease. Although it is well-known that the presence of different surfaces can accelerate the aggregation of Aβ peptides into fibrils, surface-induced conformation, orientation, aggregation, and adsorption of Aβ peptides have not been well understood at the atomic level. Here, we perform all-atom explicit-water molecular dynamics (MD) simulations to study the orientation change, conformational dynamics, surface interaction of small Aβ aggregates with different sizes (monomer to tetramer), and conformations (α-helix and β-hairpin) upon adsorption on the graphite surface, in comparison with Aβ structures in bulk solution. Simulation results show that hydrophobic graphite induces the quick adsorption of Aβ peptides regardless of their initial conformations and sizes. Upon the adsorption, Aβ prefers to adopt random structure for monomers and to remain β-rich-structure for small oligomers, but not helical structures. More importantly, due to the amphiphilic sequence of Aβ and the hydrophobic nature of graphite, hydrophobic C-terminal residues of higher-order Aβ oligomers appear to have preferential interactions with the graphite surface for facilitating Aβ fibril formation and fibril growth. In combination of atomic force microscopy (AFM) images and MD simulation results, a postulated mechanism is proposed to describe the structure and kinetics of Aβ aggregation from aqueous solution to the graphite surface, providing parallel insights into Aβ aggregation on biological cell membranes.

  14. β Cell–specific increased expression of calpastatin prevents diabetes induced by islet amyloid polypeptide toxicity

    PubMed Central

    Gurlo, Tatyana; Costes, Safia; Hoang, Jonathan D.; Rivera, Jacqueline F.; Butler, Alexandra E.; Butler, Peter C.

    2016-01-01

    The islet in type 2 diabetes (T2D) shares many features of the brain in protein misfolding diseases. There is a deficit of β cells with islet amyloid derived from islet amyloid polypeptide (IAPP), a protein coexpressed with insulin. Small intracellular membrane-permeant oligomers, the most toxic form of IAPP, are more frequent in β cells of patients with T2D and rodents expressing human IAPP. β Cells in T2D, and affected cells in neurodegenerative diseases, share a comparable pattern of molecular pathology, including endoplasmic reticulum stress, mitochondrial dysfunction, attenuation of autophagy, and calpain hyperactivation. While this adverse functional cascade in response to toxic oligomers is well described, the sequence of events and how best to intervene is unknown. We hypothesized that calpain hyperactivation is a proximal event and tested this in vivo by β cell–specific suppression of calpain hyperactivation with calpastatin overexpression in human IAPP transgenic mice. β Cell–specific calpastatin overexpression was remarkably protective against β cell dysfunction and loss and diabetes onset. The critical autophagy/lysosomal pathway for β cell viability was protected with calpain suppression, consistent with findings in models of neurodegenerative diseases. We conclude that suppression of calpain hyperactivation is a potentially beneficial disease-modifying strategy for protein misfolding diseases, including T2D. PMID:27812546

  15. The hunt for brain Aβ oligomers by peripherally circulating multi-functional nanoparticles: Potential therapeutic approach for Alzheimer disease.

    PubMed

    Mancini, Simona; Minniti, Stefania; Gregori, Maria; Sancini, Giulio; Cagnotto, Alfredo; Couraud, Pierre-Olivier; Ordóñez-Gutiérrez, Lara; Wandosell, Francisco; Salmona, Mario; Re, Francesca

    2016-01-01

    We previously showed the ability of liposomes bi-functionalized with phosphatidic acid and an ApoE-derived peptide (mApoE-PA-LIP) to reduce brain Aβ in transgenic Alzheimer mice. Herein we investigated the efficacy of mApoE-PA-LIP to withdraw Aβ peptide in different aggregation forms from the brain, using a transwell cellular model of the blood-brain barrier and APP/PS1 mice. The spontaneous efflux of Aβ oligomers (Aβo), but not of Aβ fibrils, from the 'brain' side of the transwell was strongly enhanced (5-fold) in presence of mApoE-PA-LIP in the 'blood' compartment. This effect is due to a withdrawal of Aβo exerted by peripheral mApoE-PA-LIP by sink effect, because, when present in the brain side, they did not act as Aβo carrier and limit the oligomer efflux. In vivo peripheral administration of mApoE-PA-LIP significantly increased the plasma Aβ level, suggesting that Aβ-binding particles exploiting the sink effect can be used as a therapeutic strategy for Alzheimer disease. From the Clinical Editor: Alzheimer disease (AD) at present is an incurable disease, which is thought to be caused by an accumulation of amyloid-β (Aβ) peptides in the brain. Many strategies in combating this disease have been focused on either the prevention or dissolving these peptides. In this article, the authors showed the ability of liposomes bi-functionalized with phosphatidic acid and with an ApoE- derived peptide to withdraw amyloid peptides from the brain. The data would help the future design of more novel treatment for Alzheimer disease. PMID:26410276

  16. The hunt for brain Aβ oligomers by peripherally circulating multi-functional nanoparticles: Potential therapeutic approach for Alzheimer disease.

    PubMed

    Mancini, Simona; Minniti, Stefania; Gregori, Maria; Sancini, Giulio; Cagnotto, Alfredo; Couraud, Pierre-Olivier; Ordóñez-Gutiérrez, Lara; Wandosell, Francisco; Salmona, Mario; Re, Francesca

    2016-01-01

    We previously showed the ability of liposomes bi-functionalized with phosphatidic acid and an ApoE-derived peptide (mApoE-PA-LIP) to reduce brain Aβ in transgenic Alzheimer mice. Herein we investigated the efficacy of mApoE-PA-LIP to withdraw Aβ peptide in different aggregation forms from the brain, using a transwell cellular model of the blood-brain barrier and APP/PS1 mice. The spontaneous efflux of Aβ oligomers (Aβo), but not of Aβ fibrils, from the 'brain' side of the transwell was strongly enhanced (5-fold) in presence of mApoE-PA-LIP in the 'blood' compartment. This effect is due to a withdrawal of Aβo exerted by peripheral mApoE-PA-LIP by sink effect, because, when present in the brain side, they did not act as Aβo carrier and limit the oligomer efflux. In vivo peripheral administration of mApoE-PA-LIP significantly increased the plasma Aβ level, suggesting that Aβ-binding particles exploiting the sink effect can be used as a therapeutic strategy for Alzheimer disease. From the Clinical Editor: Alzheimer disease (AD) at present is an incurable disease, which is thought to be caused by an accumulation of amyloid-β (Aβ) peptides in the brain. Many strategies in combating this disease have been focused on either the prevention or dissolving these peptides. In this article, the authors showed the ability of liposomes bi-functionalized with phosphatidic acid and with an ApoE- derived peptide to withdraw amyloid peptides from the brain. The data would help the future design of more novel treatment for Alzheimer disease.

  17. Porcine prion protein amyloid.

    PubMed

    Hammarström, Per; Nyström, Sofie

    2015-01-01

    Mammalian prions are composed of misfolded aggregated prion protein (PrP) with amyloid-like features. Prions are zoonotic disease agents that infect a wide variety of mammalian species including humans. Mammals and by-products thereof which are frequently encountered in daily life are most important for human health. It is established that bovine prions (BSE) can infect humans while there is no such evidence for any other prion susceptible species in the human food chain (sheep, goat, elk, deer) and largely prion resistant species (pig) or susceptible and resistant pets (cat and dogs, respectively). PrPs from these species have been characterized using biochemistry, biophysics and neurobiology. Recently we studied PrPs from several mammals in vitro and found evidence for generic amyloidogenicity as well as cross-seeding fibril formation activity of all PrPs on the human PrP sequence regardless if the original species was resistant or susceptible to prion disease. Porcine PrP amyloidogenicity was among the studied. Experimentally inoculated pigs as well as transgenic mouse lines overexpressing porcine PrP have, in the past, been used to investigate the possibility of prion transmission in pigs. The pig is a species with extraordinarily wide use within human daily life with over a billion pigs harvested for human consumption each year. Here we discuss the possibility that the largely prion disease resistant pig can be a clinically silent carrier of replicating prions. PMID:26218890

  18. Porcine prion protein amyloid

    PubMed Central

    Hammarström, Per; Nyström, Sofie

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Mammalian prions are composed of misfolded aggregated prion protein (PrP) with amyloid-like features. Prions are zoonotic disease agents that infect a wide variety of mammalian species including humans. Mammals and by-products thereof which are frequently encountered in daily life are most important for human health. It is established that bovine prions (BSE) can infect humans while there is no such evidence for any other prion susceptible species in the human food chain (sheep, goat, elk, deer) and largely prion resistant species (pig) or susceptible and resistant pets (cat and dogs, respectively). PrPs from these species have been characterized using biochemistry, biophysics and neurobiology. Recently we studied PrPs from several mammals in vitro and found evidence for generic amyloidogenicity as well as cross-seeding fibril formation activity of all PrPs on the human PrP sequence regardless if the original species was resistant or susceptible to prion disease. Porcine PrP amyloidogenicity was among the studied. Experimentally inoculated pigs as well as transgenic mouse lines overexpressing porcine PrP have, in the past, been used to investigate the possibility of prion transmission in pigs. The pig is a species with extraordinarily wide use within human daily life with over a billion pigs harvested for human consumption each year. Here we discuss the possibility that the largely prion disease resistant pig can be a clinically silent carrier of replicating prions. PMID:26218890

  19. Porcine prion protein amyloid.

    PubMed

    Hammarström, Per; Nyström, Sofie

    2015-01-01

    Mammalian prions are composed of misfolded aggregated prion protein (PrP) with amyloid-like features. Prions are zoonotic disease agents that infect a wide variety of mammalian species including humans. Mammals and by-products thereof which are frequently encountered in daily life are most important for human health. It is established that bovine prions (BSE) can infect humans while there is no such evidence for any other prion susceptible species in the human food chain (sheep, goat, elk, deer) and largely prion resistant species (pig) or susceptible and resistant pets (cat and dogs, respectively). PrPs from these species have been characterized using biochemistry, biophysics and neurobiology. Recently we studied PrPs from several mammals in vitro and found evidence for generic amyloidogenicity as well as cross-seeding fibril formation activity of all PrPs on the human PrP sequence regardless if the original species was resistant or susceptible to prion disease. Porcine PrP amyloidogenicity was among the studied. Experimentally inoculated pigs as well as transgenic mouse lines overexpressing porcine PrP have, in the past, been used to investigate the possibility of prion transmission in pigs. The pig is a species with extraordinarily wide use within human daily life with over a billion pigs harvested for human consumption each year. Here we discuss the possibility that the largely prion disease resistant pig can be a clinically silent carrier of replicating prions.

  20. Copper inducing Aβ42 rather than Aβ40 nanoscale oligomer formation is the key process for Aβ neurotoxicity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jin, Lu; Wu, Wei-Hui; Li, Qiu-Ye; Zhao, Yu-Fen; Li, Yan-Mei

    2011-11-01

    Copper is known to be a critical factor in Alzheimer's disease (AD) pathogenesis, as it is involved in amyloid-β (Aβ) peptide related toxicity. However, the relationship between neurotoxicity and Aβ peptide in the presence of copper remains unclear. The effect of copper has not been clearly differentiated between Aβ42 and Aβ40, and it is still debated whether copper-mediated neurotoxicity is due to reactive oxygen species (ROS) accumulation or other molecular mechanisms. Here, we describe that copper dramatically affects Aβ42 aggregation and enhances Aβ42 cytotoxicity while it shows no significant effects on Aβ40. These phenomena are mainly because that the strong interactions between copper and Aβ42 lead to great conformation changes, and stabilize Aβ42 aggregates at highly toxic nanoscale oligomer stage, whereas copper shows no similar impact on Aβ40. We also propose a possible molecular mechanism that copper enhances Aβ42 cytotoxicity via perturbing membrane structure. Moreover, we test the effect of an analogue of copper, nickel, on Aβ aggregation and cytotoxicity, finding that nickel also enhances cytotoxicity via Aβ42 nanoscale oligomer formation. These results clarify that the copper-induced Aβ42 nanoscale oligomer formation is the key process for Aβ neurotoxicity, and suggest that disrupting the interactions between copper and Aβ42 peptide to inhibit nanoscale oligomerization process, deserves more attention in AD drug development.Copper is known to be a critical factor in Alzheimer's disease (AD) pathogenesis, as it is involved in amyloid-β (Aβ) peptide related toxicity. However, the relationship between neurotoxicity and Aβ peptide in the presence of copper remains unclear. The effect of copper has not been clearly differentiated between Aβ42 and Aβ40, and it is still debated whether copper-mediated neurotoxicity is due to reactive oxygen species (ROS) accumulation or other molecular mechanisms. Here, we describe that copper

  1. Subdiffusion of proteins and oligomers on membranes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lepzelter, David; Zaman, Muhammad

    2012-11-01

    Diffusion of proteins on lipid membranes plays a central role in cell signaling processes. From a mathematical perspective, most membrane diffusion processes are explained by the Saffman-Delbrück theory. However, recent studies have suggested a major limitation in the theoretical framework, the lack of complexity in the modeled lipid membrane. Lipid domains (sometimes termed membrane rafts) are known to slow protein diffusion, but there have been no quantitative theoretical examinations of how much diffusion is slowed in a general case. We provide an overall theoretical framework for confined-domain ("corralled") diffusion. Further, there have been multiple apparent contradictions of the basic conclusions of Saffman and Delbrück, each involving cases in which a single protein or an oligomer has multiple transmembrane regions passing through a lipid phase barrier. We present a set of corrections to the Saffman-Delbrück theory to account for these experimental observations. Our corrections are able to provide a quantitative explanation of numerous cellular signaling processes that have been considered beyond the scope of the Saffman-Delbrück theory, and may be extendable to other forms of subdiffusion.

  2. Study of amyloids using yeast

    PubMed Central

    Wickner, Reed B.; Kryndushkin, Dmitry; Shewmaker, Frank; McGlinchey, Ryan; Edskes, Herman K.

    2012-01-01

    Summary Saccharomyces cerevisiae has been a useful model organism in such fields as the cell cycle, regulation of transcription, protein trafficking and cell biology, primarily because of its ease of genetic manipulation. This is no less so in the area of amyloid studies. The endogenous yeast amyloids described to date include prions, infectious proteins (Table 1), and some cell wall proteins (1). and amyloids of humans and a fungal prion have also been studied using the yeast system. Accordingly, the emphasis of this chapter will be on genetic, biochemical, cell biological and physical methods particularly useful in the study of yeast prions and other amyloids studied in yeast. We limit our description of these methods to those aspects which have been most useful in studying yeast prions, citing more detailed expositions in the literature. Volumes on yeast genetics methods (2–4), and on amyloids and prions (5, 6) are useful, and Masison has edited a volume of Methods on “Identification, analysis and characterization of fungal prions” which covers some of this territory (7). We also outline some useful physical methods, pointing the reader to more extensive and authoratative descriptions. PMID:22528100

  3. Inhibitory mechanism of pancreatic amyloid fibril formation: formation of the complex between tea catechins and the fragment of residues 22-27.

    PubMed

    Kamihira-Ishijima, Miya; Nakazawa, Hiromi; Kira, Atsushi; Naito, Akira; Nakayama, Tsutomu

    2012-12-21

    Islet amyloid polypeptide (IAPP) is a major component of pancreatic amyloid deposits associated with type 2 diabetes. Polyphenols contained in plant foods have been found to inhibit amyloid fibril formation of proteins and/or peptides. However, the inhibition mechanism is not clear for a variety of systems. Here the inhibition mechanism of green tea polyphenols, catechins, on amyloid fibril formation of the IAPP fragment (IAPP22-27), which is of sufficient length for formation of β-sheet-containing amyloid fibrils, was investigated by means of kinetic analysis. A quartz crystal microbalance (QCM) determined that the association constants of gallate-type catechins [epicatechin 3-gallate (ECg) and epigallocatechin 3-gallate] for binding to IAPP22-27 immobilized on the gold plate in QCM were 1 order of magnitude larger than those of the free IAPP22-27 peptide, and also those of epicatechin and epigallocatechin. Kinetic analysis using a two-step autocatalytic reaction mechanism revealed that ECg significantly reduced the rate constants of the first nucleation step of amyloid fibril formation, while the rate of autocatalytic growth was less retarded. (1)H nuclear magnetic resonance studies clarified that a IAPP22-27/ECg complex clearly forms as viewed from the (1)H chemical shift changes and line broadening. Our study suggests that tea catechins specifically inhibit the early stages of amyloid fibril formation to form amyloid nuclei by interacting with the unstructured peptide and that this inhibition mechanism is of great therapeutic value because stabilization of the native state could delay the pathogenesis of amyloid diseases and also the toxicity of the small oligomer (protofibril) is reported to be greater than that of the mature fibril. PMID:23205879

  4. Initial stages of beta-amyloid Aβ1-40 and Aβ1-42 oligomerization observed using fluorescence decay and molecular dynamics analyses of tyrosine

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Amaro, Mariana; Kubiak-Ossowska, Karina; Birch, David J. S.; Rolinski, Olaf J.

    2013-03-01

    The development of Alzheimer’s disease is associated with the aggregation of the beta-amyloid peptides Aβ1-40 and Aβ1-42. It is believed that the small oligomers formed during the early stages of the aggregation are neurotoxic and involved in the process of neurodegeneration. In this paper we use fluorescence decay measurements of beta-amyloid intrinsic fluorophore tyrosine (Tyr) and molecular dynamics (MD) simulations to study the early stages of oligomer formation for the Aβ1-40 and Aβ1-42 peptides in vitro. We demonstrate that the lifetime distributions of the amyloid fluorescence decay efficiently describe changes in the complex Tyr photophysics during the peptide aggregation and highlight the differences in aggregation performance of the two amyloids. Tyr fluorescence decay is found to be a more sensitive sensor of Aβ1-40 aggregation than Aβ1-42 aggregation. The MD simulation of the peptide aggregation is compared with the experimental data and supports a four-rotamer model of Tyr.

  5. Hydrogen peroxide is generated during the very early stages of aggregation of the amyloid peptides implicated in Alzheimer disease and familial British dementia.

    PubMed

    Tabner, Brian J; El-Agnaf, Omar M A; Turnbull, Stuart; German, Matthew J; Paleologou, Katerina E; Hayashi, Yoshihito; Cooper, Leanne J; Fullwood, Nigel J; Allsop, David

    2005-10-28

    Alzheimer disease and familial British dementia are neurodegenerative diseases that are characterized by the presence of numerous amyloid plaques in the brain. These lesions contain fibrillar deposits of the beta-amyloid peptide (Abeta) and the British dementia peptide (ABri), respectively. Both peptides are toxic to cells in culture, and there is increasing evidence that early "soluble oligomers" are the toxic entity rather than mature amyloid fibrils. The molecular mechanisms responsible for this toxicity are not clear, but in the case of Abeta, one prominent hypothesis is that the peptide can induce oxidative damage via the formation of hydrogen peroxide. We have developed a reliable method, employing electron spin resonance spectroscopy in conjunction with the spin-trapping technique, to detect any hydrogen peroxide generated during the incubation of Abeta and other amyloidogenic peptides. Here, we monitored levels of hydrogen peroxide accumulation during different stages of aggregation of Abeta-(1-40) and ABri and found that in both cases it was generated as a short "burst" early on in the aggregation process. Ultrastructural studies with both peptides revealed that structures resembling "soluble oligomers" or "protofibrils" were present during this early phase of hydrogen peroxide formation. Mature amyloid fibrils derived from Abeta-(1-40) did not generate hydrogen peroxide. We conclude that hydrogen peroxide formation during the early stages of protein aggregation may be a common mechanism of cell death in these (and possibly other) neurodegenerative diseases.

  6. Intrafollicular amyloid in primary hyperparathyroidism

    PubMed Central

    Leedham, P. W.; Pollock, D. J.

    1970-01-01

    The histology of the parathyroids from 88 cases of primary hyperparathyroidism has been reviewed in a search for local amyloid deposits. Characteristic intrafollicular amyloid deposits of varying extent were found in nine cases. The case histories of these show that seven had suspected or proven pluriglandular adenomatosis but that the remainder had no such associations. The material studied shows no correlation with systemic primary or secondary amyloidosis. The significance of these findings is discussed in relation to the pluriglandular syndrome, peptide hormones, medullary carcinoma of the thyroid, and calcitonin secretion. It is suggested that amyloid in this context may be a `marker' for secretion of a peptide closely related to calcitonin. Images PMID:5504375

  7. Development and characterization of a TAPIR-like mouse monoclonal antibody to amyloid-beta.

    PubMed

    Wang, Jun; Hara, Hideo; Makifuchi, Takao; Tabira, Takeshi

    2008-06-01

    Tissue amyloid plaque immuno-reactive (TAPIR) antibody was better related to the effect of immunotherapy in Alzheimer's disease (AD) than ELISA antibody. Here we used a hybridoma technique to develop a TAPIR-like anti-human amyloid-beta (Abeta) mouse monoclonal antibody. The obtained monoclonal antibody, 3.4A10, was an IgG2b isotype and recognized N-terminal portion of Abeta1-42 without binding denatured or native amyloid-beta protein precursor. It had higher affinity to Abeta1-42 than to Abeta1-40 by Biacore affinity analysis and stained preferably the peripheral part of senile plaques and recognized the plaque core less than 4G8. It inhibited the Abeta1-42 fibril formation as well as degraded pre-aggregated Abeta1-42 peptide in a thioflavin T fluorescence spectrophotometry assay. The in vivo studies showed that 3.4A10 treatment decreased amyloid burden compared to the control group and significantly reduced Abeta42 levels rather than Abeta40 levels in brain lysates as well as the Abeta*56 oligomer (12mer) in TBS fraction of the brain lysates. 3.4A10 entered brain and decorated some plaques, which is surrounded by more Iba1-positive microglia. 3.4A10 therapy did not induce lymphocytic infiltration and obvious increase in microhemorrhage. We conclude that 3.4A10 is a TAPIR-like anti-human amyloid monoclonal antibody, and has a potential of therapeutic application for AD. PMID:18560128

  8. Development and characterization of a TAPIR-like mouse monoclonal antibody to amyloid-beta.

    PubMed

    Wang, Jun; Hara, Hideo; Makifuchi, Takao; Tabira, Takeshi

    2008-06-01

    Tissue amyloid plaque immuno-reactive (TAPIR) antibody was better related to the effect of immunotherapy in Alzheimer's disease (AD) than ELISA antibody. Here we used a hybridoma technique to develop a TAPIR-like anti-human amyloid-beta (Abeta) mouse monoclonal antibody. The obtained monoclonal antibody, 3.4A10, was an IgG2b isotype and recognized N-terminal portion of Abeta1-42 without binding denatured or native amyloid-beta protein precursor. It had higher affinity to Abeta1-42 than to Abeta1-40 by Biacore affinity analysis and stained preferably the peripheral part of senile plaques and recognized the plaque core less than 4G8. It inhibited the Abeta1-42 fibril formation as well as degraded pre-aggregated Abeta1-42 peptide in a thioflavin T fluorescence spectrophotometry assay. The in vivo studies showed that 3.4A10 treatment decreased amyloid burden compared to the control group and significantly reduced Abeta42 levels rather than Abeta40 levels in brain lysates as well as the Abeta*56 oligomer (12mer) in TBS fraction of the brain lysates. 3.4A10 entered brain and decorated some plaques, which is surrounded by more Iba1-positive microglia. 3.4A10 therapy did not induce lymphocytic infiltration and obvious increase in microhemorrhage. We conclude that 3.4A10 is a TAPIR-like anti-human amyloid monoclonal antibody, and has a potential of therapeutic application for AD.

  9. E. coli chaperones DnaK, Hsp33 and Spy inhibit bacterial functional amyloid assembly.

    PubMed

    Evans, Margery L; Schmidt, Jens C; Ilbert, Marianne; Doyle, Shannon M; Quan, Shu; Bardwell, James C A; Jakob, Ursula; Wickner, Sue; Chapman, Matthew R

    2011-01-01

    Amyloid formation is an ordered aggregation process, where β-sheet rich polymers are assembled from unstructured or partially folded monomers. We examined how two Escherichia coli cytosolic chaperones, DnaK and Hsp33, and a more recently characterized periplasmic chaperone, Spy, modulate the aggregation of a functional amyloid protein, CsgA. We found that DnaK, the Hsp70 homologue in E. coli, and Hsp33, a redox-regulated holdase, potently inhibited CsgA amyloidogenesis. The Hsp33 anti-amyloidogenesis activity was oxidation dependent, as oxidized Hsp33 was significantly more efficient than reduced Hsp33 at preventing CsgA aggregation. When soluble CsgA was seeded with preformed amyloid fibers, neither Hsp33 nor DnaK were able to efficiently prevent soluble CsgA from adopting the amyloid conformation. Moreover, both DnaK and Hsp33 increased the time that CsgA was reactive with the amyloid oligomer conformation-specific A11 antibody. Since CsgA must also pass through the periplasm during secretion, we assessed the ability of the periplasmic chaperone Spy to inhibit CsgA polymerization. Like DnaK and Hsp33, Spy also inhibited CsgA polymerization in vitro. Overexpression of Spy resulted in increased chaperone activity in periplasmic extracts and in reduced curli biogenesis in vivo. We propose that DnaK, Hsp33 and Spy exert their effects during the nucleation stages of CsgA fibrillation. Thus, both housekeeping and stress induced cytosolic and periplasmic chaperones may be involved in discouraging premature CsgA interactions during curli biogenesis.

  10. Appearance of annular ring-like intermediates during amyloid fibril formation from human serum albumin.

    PubMed

    Arya, Shruti; Kumari, Arpana; Dalal, Vijit; Bhattacharya, Mily; Mukhopadhyay, Samrat

    2015-09-21

    The self-assembly of proteins triggered by a conformational switch into highly ordered β-sheet rich amyloid fibrils has captivated burgeoning interest in recent years due to the involvement of amyloids in a variety of human diseases and a diverse range of biological functions. Here, we have investigated the mechanism of fibrillogenesis of human serum albumin (HSA), an all-α-helical protein, using an array of biophysical tools that include steady-state as well as time-resolved fluorescence, circular dichroism and Raman spectroscopy in conjunction with atomic force microscopy (AFM). Investigations into the temporal evolution of nanoscale morphology using AFM revealed the presence of ring-like intermediates that subsequently transformed into worm-like fibrils presumably by a ring-opening mechanism. Additionally, a multitude of morphologically-diverse oligomers were observed on the pathway to amyloid formation. Kinetic analysis using multiple structural probes in-tandem indicated that HSA amyloid assembly is a concerted process encompassing a major structural change that is primarily mediated by hydrophobic interactions between thermally-induced disordered segments originating in various domains. A slower growth kinetics of aggregates suggested that the protein structural reorganization is a prerequisite for fibril formation. Moreover, time-dependent Raman spectroscopic studies of HSA aggregation provided key molecular insights into the conformational transitions occurring within the protein amide backbone and at the residue-specific level. Our data revealed the emergence of conformationally-diverse disulfides as a consequence of structural reorganization and sequestration of tyrosines into the hydrophobic amyloid core comprising antiparallel cross β-sheets.

  11. MMPBSA decomposition of the binding energy throughout a molecular dynamics simulation of amyloid-beta (Abeta(10-35)) aggregation.

    PubMed

    Campanera, Josep M; Pouplana, Ramon

    2010-04-15

    Recent experiments with amyloid-beta (Abeta) peptides indicate that the formation of toxic oligomers may be an important contribution to the onset of Alzheimer's disease. The toxicity of Abeta oligomers depend on their structure, which is governed by assembly dynamics. However, a detailed knowledge of the structure of at the atomic level has not been achieved yet due to limitations of current experimental techniques. In this study, replica exchange molecular dynamics simulations are used to identify the expected diversity of dimer conformations of Abeta(10-35) monomers. The most representative dimer conformation has been used to track the dimer formation process between both monomers. The process has been characterized by means of the evolution of the decomposition of the binding free energy, which provides an energetic profile of the interaction. Dimers undergo a process of reorganization driven basically by inter-chain hydrophobic and hydrophilic interactions and also solvation/desolvation processes.

  12. Antagonizing amyloid-β/calcium-sensing receptor signaling in human astrocytes and neurons: a key to halt Alzheimer's disease progression?

    PubMed Central

    Dal Prà, Ilaria; Chiarini, Anna; Armato, Ubaldo

    2015-01-01

    Astrocytes’ roles in late-onset Alzheimer's disease (LOAD) promotion are important, since they survive soluble or fibrillar amyloid-β peptides (Aβs) neurotoxic effects, undergo alterations of intracellular and intercellular Ca2+ signaling and gliotransmitters release via the Aβ/α7-nAChR (α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor) signaling, and overproduce/oversecrete newly synthesized Aβ42 oligomers, NO, and VEGF-A via the Aβ/CaSR (calcium-sensing receptor) signaling. Recently, it was suggested that the NMDAR (N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor) inhibitor nitromemantine would block the synapse-destroying effects of Aβ/α7-nAChR signaling. Yet, this and the progressive extracellular accrual and spreading of Aβ42 oligomers would be stopped well upstream by NPS 2143, an allosteric CaSR antagonist (calcilytic). PMID:25883618

  13. Ordered Self-Assembly Mechanism of a Spherical Oncoprotein Oligomer Triggered by Zinc Removal and Stabilized by an Intrinsically Disordered Domain

    PubMed Central

    Smal, Clara; Alonso, Leonardo G.; Wetzler, Diana E.; Heer, Angeles; de Prat Gay, Gonzalo

    2012-01-01

    Background Self-assembly is a common theme in proteins of unrelated sequences or functions. The human papillomavirus E7 oncoprotein is an extended dimer with an intrinsically disordered domain, that can form large spherical oligomers. These are the major species in the cytosol of HPV transformed and cancerous cells. E7 binds to a large number of targets, some of which lead to cell transformation. Thus, the assembly process not only is of biological relevance, but represents a model system to investigate a widely distributed mechanism. Methodology/Principal Findings Using various techniques, we monitored changes in secondary, tertiary and quaternary structure in a time course manner. By applying a robust kinetic model developed by Zlotnik, we determined the slow formation of a monomeric “Z-nucleus” after zinc removal, followed by an elongation phase consisting of sequential second-order events whereby one monomer is added at a time. This elongation process takes place at a strikingly slow overall average rate of one monomer added every 28 seconds at 20 µM protein concentration, strongly suggesting either a rearrangement of the growing complex after binding of each monomer or the existence of a “conformation editing” mechanism through which the monomer binds and releases until the appropriate conformation is adopted. The oligomerization determinant lies within its small 5 kDa C-terminal globular domain and, remarkably, the E7 N-terminal intrinsically disordered domain stabilizes the oligomer, preventing an insoluble amyloid route. Conclusion We described a controlled ordered mechanism with features in common with soluble amyloid precursors, chaperones, and other spherical oligomers, thus sharing determining factors for symmetry, size and shape. In addition, such a controlled and discrete polymerization reaction provides a valuable tool for nanotechnological applications. Finally, its increased immunogenicity related to its supramolecular structure is the

  14. RPS23RG1 reduces Aβ oligomer-induced synaptic and cognitive deficits

    PubMed Central

    Yan, Li; Chen, Yaomin; Li, Wubo; Huang, Xiumei; Badie, Hedieh; Jian, Fan; Huang, Timothy; Zhao, Yingjun; Cohen, Stanley N.; Li, Limin; Zhang, Yun-wu; Luo, Huanmin; Tu, Shichun; Xu, Huaxi

    2016-01-01

    Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is the most common form of dementia in the elderly. It is generally believed that β-amyloidogenesis, tau-hyperphosphorylation, and synaptic loss underlie cognitive decline in AD. Rps23rg1, a functional retroposed mouse gene, has been shown to reduce Alzheimer’s β-amyloid (Aβ) production and tau phosphorylation. In this study, we have identified its human homolog, and demonstrated that RPS23RG1 regulates synaptic plasticity, thus counteracting Aβ oligomer (oAβ)-induced cognitive deficits in mice. The level of RPS23RG1 mRNA is significantly lower in the brains of AD compared to non-AD patients, suggesting its potential role in the pathogenesis of the disease. Similar to its mouse counterpart, human RPS23RG1 interacts with adenylate cyclase, activating PKA/CREB, and inhibiting GSK-3. Furthermore, we show that human RPS23RG1 promotes synaptic plasticity and offsets oAβ-induced synaptic loss in a PKA-dependent manner in cultured primary neurons. Overexpression of Rps23rg1 in transgenic mice consistently prevented oAβ-induced PKA inactivation, synaptic deficits, suppression of long-term potentiation, and cognitive impairment as compared to wild type littermates. Our study demonstrates that RPS23RG1 may reduce the occurrence of key elements of AD pathology and enhance synaptic functions to counteract oAβ-induced synaptic and cognitive deficits in AD. PMID:26733416

  15. Nanomechanical properties of single amyloid fibrils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sweers, K. K. M.; Bennink, M. L.; Subramaniam, V.

    2012-06-01

    Amyloid fibrils are traditionally associated with neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease or Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease. However, the ability to form amyloid fibrils appears to be a more generic property of proteins. While disease-related, or pathological, amyloid fibrils are relevant for understanding the pathology and course of the disease, functional amyloids are involved, for example, in the exceptionally strong adhesive properties of natural adhesives. Amyloid fibrils are thus becoming increasingly interesting as versatile nanobiomaterials for applications in biotechnology. In the last decade a number of studies have reported on the intriguing mechanical characteristics of amyloid fibrils. In most of these studies atomic force microscopy (AFM) and atomic force spectroscopy play a central role. AFM techniques make it possible to probe, at nanometer length scales, and with exquisite control over the applied forces, biological samples in different environmental conditions. In this review we describe the different AFM techniques used for probing mechanical properties of single amyloid fibrils on the nanoscale. An overview is given of the existing mechanical studies on amyloid. We discuss the difficulties encountered with respect to the small fibril sizes and polymorphic behavior of amyloid fibrils. In particular, the different conformational packing of monomers within the fibrils leads to a heterogeneity in mechanical properties. We conclude with a brief outlook on how our knowledge of these mechanical properties of the amyloid fibrils can be exploited in the construction of nanomaterials from amyloid fibrils.

  16. Microbial Manipulation of the Amyloid Fold

    PubMed Central

    DePas, William H.

    2012-01-01

    Microbial biofilms are encased in a protein, DNA and polysaccharide matrix that protects the community, promotes interactions with the environment, and helps cells to adhere together. The protein component of these matrices is often a remarkably stable, β-sheet-rich polymer called amyloid. Amyloids form ordered, self-templating fibers that are highly aggregative, making them a valuable biofilm component. Some eukaryotic proteins inappropriately adopt the amyloid fold and these misfolded protein aggregates disrupt normal cellular proteostasis, which can cause significant cytotoxicity. Indeed, until recently amyloids were considered solely the result of protein misfolding. However, research over the past decade has revealed how various organisms have capitalized on the amyloid fold by developing sophisticated biogenesis pathways that coordinate gene expression, protein folding, and secretion so that amyloid-related toxicities are minimized. How microbes manipulate amyloids, by augmenting their advantageous properties and by reducing their undesirable properties, will be the subject of this review. PMID:23108148

  17. Inhibitory Effect of Curcumin-Cu(II) and Curcumin-Zn(II) Complexes on Amyloid-Beta Peptide Fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Mononuclear complexes of Curcumin with Cu(II) and Zn(II) have been synthesized and, characterized and their effects on the fibrillization and aggregation of amyloid-beta (Aβ) peptide have been studied. FTIR spectroscopy and atomic force microscopy (AFM) observations demonstrate that the complexes can inhibit the transition from less structured oligomers to β-sheet rich protofibrils which act as seeding factors for further fibrillization. The metal complexes also impart more improved inhibitory effects than Curcumin on peptide fibrillization. PMID:25147492

  18. Degradation of a Sodium Acrylate Oligomer by an Arthrobacter sp

    PubMed Central

    Hayashi, Takaya; Mukouyama, Masaharu; Sakano, Kouichi; Tani, Yoshiki

    1993-01-01

    Arthrobacter sp. strain NO-18 was first isolated from soil as a bacterium which could degrade the sodium acrylate oligomer and utilize it as the sole source of carbon. When 0.2% (wt/wt) oligomer was added to the culture medium, the acrylate oligomer was found to be degraded by 70 to 80% in 2 weeks, using gel permeation chromatography. To determine the maximum molecular weight for biodegradation, the degradation test was done with the hexamer, heptamer, and octamer, which were separated from the oligomer mixture by fractional gel permeation chromatography. The hexamer and heptamer were consumed to the extents of 58 and 36%, respectively, in 2 weeks, but the octamer was not degraded. Oligomers with three different terminal groups were synthesized to examine the effect of the different terminal groups on biodegradation, but few differences were found. Arthrobacter sp. NO-18 assimilated acrylic acid, propionic acid, glutaric acid, 2-methylglutaric acid, and 1,3,5-pentanetricarboxylic acid. Degradation of the acrylic unit structure by this strain is discussed. PMID:8517751

  19. Imide oligomers endcapped with phenylethynyl phthalic anhydrides and polymers therefrom

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hergenrother, Paul M. (Inventor); Smith, Jr., Joseph G. (Inventor)

    1996-01-01

    Controlled molecular weight phenylethynyl terminated imide oligomers (PETIs) have been prepared by the cyclodehydration of precursor phenylethynyl terminated amic acid oligomers. Amino terminated amic acid oligomers are prepared from the reaction of dianhydride(s) with an excess of diamine(s) and subsequently endcapped with phenylethynyl phthalic anhydride(s) (PEPA). The polymerizations are carried out in polar aprotic solvents such as N-methyl-2-pyrrolidinone or N,N-dimethylacetamide under nitrogen at room temperature. The amic acid oligomers are subsequently cyclodehydrated either thermally or chemically to the corresponding imide oligomers. Direct preparation of PETIs from the reaction of dianhydride(s) with an excess of diamine(s) and endcapped with phenylethynyl phthalic anhydride(s) has been performed in m-cresol. Phenylethynyl phthalic anhydrides are synthesized by the palladium catalyzed reaction of phenylacetylene with bromo substituted phthalic anhydrides in triethylamine. These new materials exhibit excellent properties and are potentially useful as adhesives, coatings, films, moldings and composite matrices.

  20. Imide Oligomers Endcapped with Phenylethynl Phthalic Anhydrides and Polymers Therefrom

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hergenrother, Paul M. (Inventor); Smith, Joseph G., Jr. (Inventor)

    1998-01-01

    Controlled molecular weight phenylethynyl terminated imide oligomers (PETIs) have been prepared by the cyclodehydration of precursor phenylethynyl terminated amic acid oligomers. Amino terminated amic acid oligomers are prepared from the reaction of dianhydride(s) with an excess of diamine(s) and subsequently endcapped with phenylethynyl phthalic anhydride(s) (PEPA). The polymerizations are carried out in polar aprotic solvents such as N-methyl-2-pyrrolidinone or N.N-dimethylacetamide under nitrogen at room temperature. The amic acid oligomers are subsequently cyclodehydrated either thermally or cheznicauy to the corresponding imide oligomers. Direct preparation of PETIs from the reaction of dianhydxide(s) with an excess of diamine(s) and endcapped with phenylethynyl phthalic anhydride(s) has been performed in m-cresol. Phenylethynyl phthalic anhydrides are synthesized by the palladium catalyzed reaction of phenylacetylene with bromo substituted phthalic anhydrides in triethylamine. These new materials exhibit excellent properties and are potentially useful as adhesives, coatings, films, moldings and composite matrices.

  1. Biodistribution of 99mTc Tricarbonyl Glycine Oligomers

    PubMed Central

    Jang, Beom-Su; Lee, Joo-Sang; Rho, Jong Kook

    2012-01-01

    99mTc tricarbonyl glycine monomers, trimers, and pentamers were synthesized and evaluated for their radiolabeling and in vivo distribution characteristics. We synthesized a 99mTc-tricarbonyl precursor with a low oxidation state (I). 99mTc(CO)3(H2O)3 + was then made to react with monomeric and oligomeric glycine for the development of bifunctional chelating sequences for biomolecules. Labeling yields of 99mTc-tricarbonyl glycine monomers and oligomers were checked by high-performance liquid chromatography. The labeling yields of 99mTc-tricarbonyl glycine and glycine oligomers were more than 95%. We evaluated the characteristics of 99mTc-tricarbonyl glycine oligomers by carrying out a lipophilicity test and an imaging study. The octanol-water partition coefficient of 99mTc tricarbonyl glycine oligomers indicated hydrophilic properties. Single-photon emission computed tomography imaging of 99mTc-tricarbonyl glycine oligomers showed rapid renal excretion through the kidneys with a low uptake in the liver, especially of 99mTc tricarbonyl triglycine. Furthermore, we verified that the addition of triglycine to prototype biomolecules (AGRGDS and RRPYIL) results in the improvement of radiolabeling yield. From these results, we conclude that triglycine has good characteristics for use as a bifunctional chelating sequence for a 99mTc-tricarbonyl- based biomolecular imaging probe. PMID:24278615

  2. Atomic-resolution structure of a disease-relevant Aβ(1-42) amyloid fibril.

    PubMed

    Wälti, Marielle Aulikki; Ravotti, Francesco; Arai, Hiromi; Glabe, Charles G; Wall, Joseph S; Böckmann, Anja; Güntert, Peter; Meier, Beat H; Riek, Roland

    2016-08-23

    Amyloid-β (Aβ) is present in humans as a 39- to 42-amino acid residue metabolic product of the amyloid precursor protein. Although the two predominant forms, Aβ(1-40) and Aβ(1-42), differ in only two residues, they display different biophysical, biological, and clinical behavior. Aβ(1-42) is the more neurotoxic species, aggregates much faster, and dominates in senile plaque of Alzheimer's disease (AD) patients. Although small Aβ oligomers are believed to be the neurotoxic species, Aβ amyloid fibrils are, because of their presence in plaques, a pathological hallmark of AD and appear to play an important role in disease progression through cell-to-cell transmissibility. Here, we solved the 3D structure of a disease-relevant Aβ(1-42) fibril polymorph, combining data from solid-state NMR spectroscopy and mass-per-length measurements from EM. The 3D structure is composed of two molecules per fibril layer, with residues 15-42 forming a double-horseshoe-like cross-β-sheet entity with maximally buried hydrophobic side chains. Residues 1-14 are partially ordered and in a β-strand conformation, but do not display unambiguous distance restraints to the remainder of the core structure. PMID:27469165

  3. Insight into the stability of cross-beta amyloid fibril from molecular dynamics simulation.

    PubMed

    Chen, Yue; He, Yong-Jie; Wu, Maoying; Yan, Guanwen; Li, Yixue; Zhang, Jian; Chen, Hai-Feng

    2010-06-01

    Amyloid fibrils are considered to play causal roles in the pathogenesis of amyloid-related degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's disease, type II diabetes mellitus, the transmissible spongiform encephalopathies, and prion disease. The mechanism of fibril formation is still hotly debated and remains an important open question. In this study, we utilized molecular dynamics (MD) simulation to analyze the stability of hexamer for eight class peptides. The MD results suggest that VEALYL and MVGGVV-1 are the most stable ones, then SNQNNY, followed by LYQLEN, MVGGVV-2, VQIVYK, SSTSAA, and GGVVIA. The statistics result indicates that hydrophobic residues play a key role in stabilizing the zipper interface. Single point and two linkage mutants of MVGGVV-1 confirmed that both Met1 and Val2 are key hydrophobic residues. This is consistent with the statistics analysis. The stability results of oligomer for MVGGVV-1 suggest that the intermediate state should be trimer (3-0) and tetramer (2-2). These methods can be used in stabilization study of other amyloid fibril.

  4. A central role for dityrosine crosslinking of Amyloid-β in Alzheimer’s disease

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is characterized by the deposition of insoluble amyloid plaques in the neuropil composed of highly stable, self-assembled Amyloid-beta (Aβ) fibrils. Copper has been implicated to play a role in Alzheimer’s disease. Dimers of Aβ have been isolated from AD brain and have been shown to be neurotoxic. Results We have investigated the formation of dityrosine cross-links in Aβ42 formed by covalent ortho-ortho coupling of two tyrosine residues under conditions of oxidative stress with elevated copper and shown that dityrosine can be formed in vitro in Aβ oligomers and fibrils and that these links further stabilize the fibrils. Dityrosine crosslinking was present in internalized Aβ in cell cultures treated with oligomeric Aβ42 using a specific antibody for dityrosine by immunogold labeling transmission electron microscopy. Results also revealed the prevalence of dityrosine crosslinks in amyloid plaques in brain tissue and in cerebrospinal fluid from AD patients. Conclusions Aβ dimers may be stabilized by dityrosine crosslinking. These results indicate that dityrosine cross-links may play an important role in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer’s disease and can be generated by reactive oxygen species catalyzed by Cu2+ ions. The observation of increased Aβ and dityrosine in CSF from AD patients suggests that this could be used as a potential biomarker of oxidative stress in AD. PMID:24351276

  5. Atomic-resolution structure of a disease-relevant Aβ(1–42) amyloid fibril

    PubMed Central

    Wälti, Marielle Aulikki; Ravotti, Francesco; Arai, Hiromi; Glabe, Charles G.; Wall, Joseph S.; Böckmann, Anja; Güntert, Peter; Meier, Beat H.; Riek, Roland

    2016-01-01

    Amyloid-β (Aβ) is present in humans as a 39- to 42-amino acid residue metabolic product of the amyloid precursor protein. Although the two predominant forms, Aβ(1–40) and Aβ(1–42), differ in only two residues, they display different biophysical, biological, and clinical behavior. Aβ(1–42) is the more neurotoxic species, aggregates much faster, and dominates in senile plaque of Alzheimer’s disease (AD) patients. Although small Aβ oligomers are believed to be the neurotoxic species, Aβ amyloid fibrils are, because of their presence in plaques, a pathological hallmark of AD and appear to play an important role in disease progression through cell-to-cell transmissibility. Here, we solved the 3D structure of a disease-relevant Aβ(1–42) fibril polymorph, combining data from solid-state NMR spectroscopy and mass-per-length measurements from EM. The 3D structure is composed of two molecules per fibril layer, with residues 15–42 forming a double-horseshoe–like cross–β-sheet entity with maximally buried hydrophobic side chains. Residues 1–14 are partially ordered and in a β-strand conformation, but do not display unambiguous distance restraints to the remainder of the core structure. PMID:27469165

  6. β-Hairpin of Islet Amyloid Polypeptide Bound to an Aggregation Inhibitor.

    PubMed

    Mirecka, Ewa A; Feuerstein, Sophie; Gremer, Lothar; Schröder, Gunnar F; Stoldt, Matthias; Willbold, Dieter; Hoyer, Wolfgang

    2016-01-01

    In type 2 diabetes, the formation of islet amyloid consisting of islet amyloid polypeptide (IAPP) is associated with reduction in β-cell mass and contributes to the failure of islet cell transplantation. Rational design of inhibitors of IAPP amyloid formation has therapeutic potential, but is hampered by the lack of structural information on inhibitor complexes of the conformationally flexible, aggregation-prone IAPP. Here we characterize a β-hairpin conformation of IAPP in complex with the engineered binding protein β-wrapin HI18. The β-strands correspond to two amyloidogenic motifs, 12-LANFLVH-18 and 22-NFGAILS-28, which are connected by a turn established around Ser-20. Besides backbone hydrogen bonding, the IAPP:HI18 interaction surface is dominated by non-polar contacts involving hydrophobic side chains of the IAPP β-strands. Apart from monomers, HI18 binds oligomers and fibrils and inhibits IAPP aggregation and toxicity at low substoichiometric concentrations. The IAPP β-hairpin can serve as a molecular recognition motif enabling control of IAPP aggregation. PMID:27641459

  7. β-Hairpin of Islet Amyloid Polypeptide Bound to an Aggregation Inhibitor

    PubMed Central

    Mirecka, Ewa A.; Feuerstein, Sophie; Gremer, Lothar; Schröder, Gunnar F.; Stoldt, Matthias; Willbold, Dieter; Hoyer, Wolfgang

    2016-01-01

    In type 2 diabetes, the formation of islet amyloid consisting of islet amyloid polypeptide (IAPP) is associated with reduction in β-cell mass and contributes to the failure of islet cell transplantation. Rational design of inhibitors of IAPP amyloid formation has therapeutic potential, but is hampered by the lack of structural information on inhibitor complexes of the conformationally flexible, aggregation-prone IAPP. Here we characterize a β-hairpin conformation of IAPP in complex with the engineered binding protein β-wrapin HI18. The β-strands correspond to two amyloidogenic motifs, 12-LANFLVH-18 and 22-NFGAILS-28, which are connected by a turn established around Ser-20. Besides backbone hydrogen bonding, the IAPP:HI18 interaction surface is dominated by non-polar contacts involving hydrophobic side chains of the IAPP β-strands. Apart from monomers, HI18 binds oligomers and fibrils and inhibits IAPP aggregation and toxicity at low substoichiometric concentrations. The IAPP β-hairpin can serve as a molecular recognition motif enabling control of IAPP aggregation. PMID:27641459

  8. Atomic-resolution structure of a disease-relevant Aβ(1-42) amyloid fibril.

    PubMed

    Wälti, Marielle Aulikki; Ravotti, Francesco; Arai, Hiromi; Glabe, Charles G; Wall, Joseph S; Böckmann, Anja; Güntert, Peter; Meier, Beat H; Riek, Roland

    2016-08-23

    Amyloid-β (Aβ) is present in humans as a 39- to 42-amino acid residue metabolic product of the amyloid precursor protein. Although the two predominant forms, Aβ(1-40) and Aβ(1-42), differ in only two residues, they display different biophysical, biological, and clinical behavior. Aβ(1-42) is the more neurotoxic species, aggregates much faster, and dominates in senile plaque of Alzheimer's disease (AD) patients. Although small Aβ oligomers are believed to be the neurotoxic species, Aβ amyloid fibrils are, because of their presence in plaques, a pathological hallmark of AD and appear to play an important role in disease progression through cell-to-cell transmissibility. Here, we solved the 3D structure of a disease-relevant Aβ(1-42) fibril polymorph, combining data from solid-state NMR spectroscopy and mass-per-length measurements from EM. The 3D structure is composed of two molecules per fibril layer, with residues 15-42 forming a double-horseshoe-like cross-β-sheet entity with maximally buried hydrophobic side chains. Residues 1-14 are partially ordered and in a β-strand conformation, but do not display unambiguous distance restraints to the remainder of the core structure.

  9. Consequences of Inhibiting Amyloid Precursor Protein Processing Enzymes on Synaptic Function and Plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Hui; Megill, Andrea; He, Kaiwen; Kirkwood, Alfredo; Lee, Hey-Kyoung

    2012-01-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a neurodegenerative disease, one of whose major pathological hallmarks is the accumulation of amyloid plaques comprised of aggregated β-amyloid (Aβ) peptides. It is now recognized that soluble Aβ oligomers may lead to synaptic dysfunctions early in AD pathology preceding plaque deposition. Aβ is produced by a sequential cleavage of amyloid precursor protein (APP) by the activity of β- and γ-secretases, which have been identified as major candidate therapeutic targets of AD. This paper focuses on how Aβ alters synaptic function and the functional consequences of inhibiting the activity of the two secretases responsible for Aβ generation. Abnormalities in synaptic function resulting from the absence or inhibition of the Aβ-producing enzymes suggest that Aβ itself may have normal physiological functions which are disrupted by abnormal accumulation of Aβ during AD pathology. This interpretation suggests that AD therapeutics targeting the β- and γ-secretases should be developed to restore normal levels of Aβ or combined with measures to circumvent the associated synaptic dysfunction(s) in order to have minimal impact on normal synaptic function. PMID:22792491

  10. Consequences of inhibiting amyloid precursor protein processing enzymes on synaptic function and plasticity.

    PubMed

    Wang, Hui; Megill, Andrea; He, Kaiwen; Kirkwood, Alfredo; Lee, Hey-Kyoung

    2012-01-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a neurodegenerative disease, one of whose major pathological hallmarks is the accumulation of amyloid plaques comprised of aggregated β-amyloid (Aβ) peptides. It is now recognized that soluble Aβ oligomers may lead to synaptic dysfunctions early in AD pathology preceding plaque deposition. Aβ is produced by a sequential cleavage of amyloid precursor protein (APP) by the activity of β- and γ-secretases, which have been identified as major candidate therapeutic targets of AD. This paper focuses on how Aβ alters synaptic function and the functional consequences of inhibiting the activity of the two secretases responsible for Aβ generation. Abnormalities in synaptic function resulting from the absence or inhibition of the Aβ-producing enzymes suggest that Aβ itself may have normal physiological functions which are disrupted by abnormal accumulation of Aβ during AD pathology. This interpretation suggests that AD therapeutics targeting the β- and γ-secretases should be developed to restore normal levels of Aβ or combined with measures to circumvent the associated synaptic dysfunction(s) in order to have minimal impact on normal synaptic function.

  11. Self-assembly of MPG1, a hydrophobin protein from the rice blast fungus that forms functional amyloid coatings, occurs by a surface-driven mechanism

    PubMed Central

    Pham, Chi L. L.; Rey, Anthony; Lo, Victor; Soulès, Margaux; Ren, Qin; Meisl, Georg; Knowles, Tuomas P. J.; Kwan, Ann H.; Sunde, Margaret

    2016-01-01

    Rice blast is a devastating disease of rice caused by the fungus Magnaporthe oryzae and can result in loss of a third of the annual global rice harvest. Two hydrophobin proteins, MPG1 and MHP1, are highly expressed during rice blast infections. These hydrophobins have been suggested to facilitate fungal spore adhesion and to direct the action of the enzyme cutinase 2, resulting in penetration of the plant host. Therefore a mechanistic understanding of the self-assembly properties of these hydrophobins and their interaction with cutinase 2 is crucial for the development of novel antifungals. Here we report details of a study of the structure, assembly and interactions of these proteins. We demonstrate that, in vitro, MPG1 assembles spontaneously into amyloid structures while MHP1 forms a non-fibrillar film. The assembly of MPG1 only occurs at a hydrophobic:hydrophilic interface and can be modulated by MHP1 and other factors. We further show that MPG1 assemblies can much more effectively retain cutinase 2 activity on a surface after co-incubation and extensive washing compared with other protein coatings. The assembly and interactions of MPG1 and MHP1 at hydrophobic surfaces thereby provide the basis for a possible mechanism by which the fungus can develop appropriately at the infection interface. PMID:27142249

  12. Astrocytes containing amyloid beta-protein (Abeta)-positive granules are associated with Abeta40-positive diffuse plaques in the aged human brain.

    PubMed Central

    Funato, H.; Yoshimura, M.; Yamazaki, T.; Saido, T. C.; Ito, Y.; Yokofujita, J.; Okeda, R.; Ihara, Y.

    1998-01-01

    Amyloid beta-protein (Abeta) is the major component of senile plaques that emerge in the cortex during aging and appear most abundantly in Alzheimer's disease. In the course of our immunocytochemical study on a large number of autopsy cases, we noticed, in many aged nondemented cases, the presence of unique diffuse plaques in the cortex distinct from ordinary diffuse plaques by immunocytochemistry. The former were amorphous, very faintly Abeta-immunoreactive plaques resembling diffuse plaques, but they stained for Abeta40 and were associated with small cells containing Abeta-positive granules. A panel of amino- and carboxyl-terminal-specific Abeta antibodies showed that such Abeta40-positive diffuse plaques and cell-associated granules were composed exclusively of amino-terminally deleted Abeta terminating at Abeta40, -42, and -43. Double immunostaining also showed that those Abeta-immunoreactive granules are located in astrocytes and not in microglia or neurons. Immunoelectron microscopy revealed that nonfibrillar Abeta immunoreactivity was located within lipofuscin-like granules in somewhat swollen astrocytes. These findings raise the possibility that astrocytes take up Abeta and attempt to degrade it in lysosomes in the aged brain. Images Figure 2 Figure 3 Figure 4 Figure 5 PMID:9546359

  13. Self-assembly of MPG1, a hydrophobin protein from the rice blast fungus that forms functional amyloid coatings, occurs by a surface-driven mechanism.

    PubMed

    Pham, Chi L L; Rey, Anthony; Lo, Victor; Soulès, Margaux; Ren, Qin; Meisl, Georg; Knowles, Tuomas P J; Kwan, Ann H; Sunde, Margaret

    2016-01-01

    Rice blast is a devastating disease of rice caused by the fungus Magnaporthe oryzae and can result in loss of a third of the annual global rice harvest. Two hydrophobin proteins, MPG1 and MHP1, are highly expressed during rice blast infections. These hydrophobins have been suggested to facilitate fungal spore adhesion and to direct the action of the enzyme cutinase 2, resulting in penetration of the plant host. Therefore a mechanistic understanding of the self-assembly properties of these hydrophobins and their interaction with cutinase 2 is crucial for the development of novel antifungals. Here we report details of a study of the structure, assembly and interactions of these proteins. We demonstrate that, in vitro, MPG1 assembles spontaneously into amyloid structures while MHP1 forms a non-fibrillar film. The assembly of MPG1 only occurs at a hydrophobic:hydrophilic interface and can be modulated by MHP1 and other factors. We further show that MPG1 assemblies can much more effectively retain cutinase 2 activity on a surface after co-incubation and extensive washing compared with other protein coatings. The assembly and interactions of MPG1 and MHP1 at hydrophobic surfaces thereby provide the basis for a possible mechanism by which the fungus can develop appropriately at the infection interface. PMID:27142249

  14. Probing the stability of insulin oligomers using electrospray ionization ion mobility mass spectrometry.

    PubMed

    Boga Raja, Uday Kumar; Injeti, Srilakshmi; Culver, Tiffany; McCabe, Jacob W; Angel, Laurence A

    2015-01-01

    The peptide hormone insulin is central to regulating carbohydrate and fat metabolism in the body by controlling blood sugar levels. Insulin's most active form is the monomer and the extent of insulin oligomerization is related to insulin's activity of controlling blood sugar levels. Electrospray ionization (ESI) of human insulin produced a series of oligomers from the monomer to the undecamer identified using quadrupole ion mobility time-of-flight mass spectrometry. Previous research suggested that only the monomer, dimer and hexamer are native forms of insulin in solution and the range of oligomers observed in the gas-phase are ESI artifacts. Here the properties of three distinct oligomer bands I, II and III, where both the charge state and number of insulin units of the oligomer increase incrementally, were investigated. When Zn(ii) was added to the insulin sample the same oligomers were observed but with 0-6 Zn(ii) ions bound to each of the oligomers. The oligomers of bands I, II and III were characterized by comparing their drift times, collision cross- sections, relative intensities, collision-induced dissociation (CID) patterns and relative breakdown energies. Insulin oligomers of band I dissociated primarily by releasing either the 2+ or 3+ monomer accompanied by an oligomer that conserved the mass, charge and Zn(ii) of the precursor. Insulin oligomers of bands II and III dissociated primarily by releasing the 2+ monomer accompanied by an oligomer which conserved the mass, charge and Zn(ii) of the precursor. Comparison of CID patterns and breakdown energies showed all the oligomers in band II required higher collision energies to dissociate than the oligomers in band I, and the oligomers of band III required higher energies to dissociate than oligomers of band II. These results show that the amount of excess charge on the oligomer in respect to the number of insulin monomers in the oligomer affects their stability. PMID:26764306

  15. Toxic β-Amyloid (Aβ) Alzheimer's Ion Channels: From Structure to Function and Design

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nussinov, Ruth

    2012-02-01

    Full-length amyloid beta peptides (Aβ1-40/42) form neuritic amyloid plaques in Alzheimer's disease (AD) patients and are implicated in AD pathology. Recent biophysical and cell biological studies suggest a direct mechanism of amyloid beta toxicity -- ion channel mediated loss of calcium homeostasis. Truncated amyloid beta fragments (Aβ11-42 and Aβ17-42), commonly termed as non-amyloidogenic are also found in amyloid plaques of Alzheimer's disease (AD) and in the preamyloid lesions of Down's syndrome (DS), a model system for early onset AD study. Very little is known about the structure and activity of these smaller peptides although they could be key AD and DS pathological agents. Using complementary techniques of explicit solvent molecular dynamics (MD) simulations, atomic force microscopy (AFM), channel conductance measurements, cell calcium uptake assays, neurite degeneration and cell death assays, we have shown that non-amyloidogenic Aβ9-42 and Aβ17-42 peptides form ion channels with loosely attached subunits and elicit single channel conductances. The subunits appear mobile suggesting insertion of small oligomers, followed by dynamic channel assembly and dissociation. These channels allow calcium uptake in APP-deficient cells and cause neurite degeneration in human cortical neurons. Channel conductance, calcium uptake and neurite degeneration are selectively inhibited by zinc, a blocker of amyloid ion channel activity. Thus truncated Aβ fragments could account for undefined roles played by full length Aβs and provide a novel mechanism of AD and DS pathology. The emerging picture from our large-scale simulations is that toxic ion channels formed by β-sheets are highly polymorphic, and spontaneously break into loosely interacting dynamic units (though still maintaining ion channel structures as imaged with AFM), that associate and dissociate leading to toxic ion flux. This sharply contrasts intact conventional gated ion channels that consist of tightly

  16. Structural and Functional Aspects of Hetero-oligomers Formed by the Small Heat Shock Proteins αB-Crystallin and HSP27*

    PubMed Central

    Aquilina, J. Andrew; Shrestha, Sudichhya; Morris, Amie M.; Ecroyd, Heath

    2013-01-01

    Small heat shock proteins (sHSPs) exist as large polydisperse species in which there is constant dynamic subunit exchange between oligomeric and dissociated forms. Their primary role in vivo is to bind destabilized proteins and prevent their misfolding and aggregation. αB-Crystallin (αB) and HSP27 are the two most widely distributed and most studied sHSPs in the human body. They are coexpressed in different tissues, where they are known to associate with each other to form hetero-oligomeric complexes. In this study, we aimed to determine how these two sHSPs interact to form hetero-oligomers in vitro and whether, by doing so, there is an increase in their chaperone activity and stability compared with their homo-oligomeric forms. Our results demonstrate that HSP27 and αB formed polydisperse hetero-oligomers in vitro, which had an average molecular mass that was intermediate of each of the homo-oligomers and which were more thermostable than αB, but less so than HSP27. The hetero-oligomer chaperone function was found to be equivalent to that of αB, with each being significantly better in preventing the amorphous aggregation of α-lactalbumin and the amyloid fibril formation of α-synuclein in comparison with HSP27. Using mass spectrometry to monitor subunit exchange over time, we found that HSP27 and αB exchanged subunits 23% faster than the reported rate for HSP27 and αA and almost twice that for αA and αB. This represents the first quantitative evaluation of αB/HSP27 subunit exchange, and the results are discussed in the broader context of regulation of function and cellular proteostasis. PMID:23532854

  17. Solution Structure of Apoptotic BAX Oligomer: Oligomerization Likely Precedes Membrane Insertion.

    PubMed

    Sung, Tai-Ching; Li, Ching-Yu; Lai, Yei-Chen; Hung, Chien-Lun; Shih, Orion; Yeh, Yi-Qi; Jeng, U-Ser; Chiang, Yun-Wei

    2015-10-01

    Proapoptotic BAX protein is largely cytosolic in healthy cells, but it oligomerizes and translocates to mitochondria upon receiving apoptotic stimuli. A long-standing challenge has been the inability to capture any structural information beyond the onset of activation. Here, we present solution structures of an activated BAX oligomer by means of spectroscopic and scattering methods, providing details about the monomer-monomer interfaces in the oligomer and how the oligomer is assembled from homodimers. We show that this soluble oligomer undergoes a direct conversion into membrane-inserted oligomer, which has the ability of inducing apoptosis and structurally resembles a membrane-embedded oligomer formed from BAX monomers in lipid environment. Structural differences between the soluble and the membrane-inserted oligomers are manifested in the C-terminal helices. Our data suggest an alternative pathway of apoptosis in which BAX oligomer formation occurs prior to membrane insertion.

  18. Oligomer Molecules for Efficient Organic Photovoltaics.

    PubMed

    Lin, Yuze; Zhan, Xiaowei

    2016-02-16

    Solar cells, a renewable, clean energy technology that efficiently converts sunlight into electricity, are a promising long-term solution for energy and environmental problems caused by a mass of production and the use of fossil fuels. Solution-processed organic solar cells (OSCs) have attracted much attention in the past few years because of several advantages, including easy fabrication, low cost, lightweight, and flexibility. Now, OSCs exhibit power conversion efficiencies (PCEs) of over 10%. In the early stage of OSCs, vapor-deposited organic dye materials were first used in bilayer heterojunction devices in the 1980s, and then, solution-processed polymers were introduced in bulk heterojunction (BHJ) devices. Relative to polymers, vapor-deposited small molecules offer potential advantages, such as a defined molecular structure, definite molecular weight, easy purification, mass-scale production, and good batch-to-batch reproducibility. However, the limited solubility and high crystallinity of vapor-deposited small molecules are unfavorable for use in solution-processed BHJ OSCs. Conversely, polymers have good solution-processing and film-forming properties and are easily processed into flexible devices, whereas their polydispersity of molecular weights and difficulty in purification results in batch to batch variation, which may hamper performance reproducibility and commercialization. Oligomer molecules (OMs) are monodisperse big molecules with intermediate molecular weights (generally in the thousands), and their sizes are between those of small molecules (generally with molecular weights <1000) and polymers (generally with molecular weights >10000). OMs not only overcome shortcomings of both vapor-deposited small molecules and solution-processed polymers, but also combine their advantages, such as defined molecular structure, definite molecular weight, easy purification, mass-scale production, good batch-to-batch reproducibility, good solution processability

  19. Oligomer Molecules for Efficient Organic Photovoltaics.

    PubMed

    Lin, Yuze; Zhan, Xiaowei

    2016-02-16

    Solar cells, a renewable, clean energy technology that efficiently converts sunlight into electricity, are a promising long-term solution for energy and environmental problems caused by a mass of production and the use of fossil fuels. Solution-processed organic solar cells (OSCs) have attracted much attention in the past few years because of several advantages, including easy fabrication, low cost, lightweight, and flexibility. Now, OSCs exhibit power conversion efficiencies (PCEs) of over 10%. In the early stage of OSCs, vapor-deposited organic dye materials were first used in bilayer heterojunction devices in the 1980s, and then, solution-processed polymers were introduced in bulk heterojunction (BHJ) devices. Relative to polymers, vapor-deposited small molecules offer potential advantages, such as a defined molecular structure, definite molecular weight, easy purification, mass-scale production, and good batch-to-batch reproducibility. However, the limited solubility and high crystallinity of vapor-deposited small molecules are unfavorable for use in solution-processed BHJ OSCs. Conversely, polymers have good solution-processing and film-forming properties and are easily processed into flexible devices, whereas their polydispersity of molecular weights and difficulty in purification results in batch to batch variation, which may hamper performance reproducibility and commercialization. Oligomer molecules (OMs) are monodisperse big molecules with intermediate molecular weights (generally in the thousands), and their sizes are between those of small molecules (generally with molecular weights <1000) and polymers (generally with molecular weights >10000). OMs not only overcome shortcomings of both vapor-deposited small molecules and solution-processed polymers, but also combine their advantages, such as defined molecular structure, definite molecular weight, easy purification, mass-scale production, good batch-to-batch reproducibility, good solution processability

  20. Amyloid Structures as Biofilm Matrix Scaffolds.

    PubMed

    Taglialegna, Agustina; Lasa, Iñigo; Valle, Jaione

    2016-10-01

    Recent insights into bacterial biofilm matrix structures have induced a paradigm shift toward the recognition of amyloid fibers as common building block structures that confer stability to the exopolysaccharide matrix. Here we describe the functional amyloid systems related to biofilm matrix formation in both Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria and recent knowledge regarding the interaction of amyloids with other biofilm matrix components such as extracellular DNA (eDNA) and the host immune system. In addition, we summarize the efforts to identify compounds that target amyloid fibers for therapeutic purposes and recent developments that take advantage of the amyloid structure to engineer amyloid fibers of bacterial biofilm matrices for biotechnological applications. PMID:27185827

  1. Amyloid Structures as Biofilm Matrix Scaffolds.

    PubMed

    Taglialegna, Agustina; Lasa, Iñigo; Valle, Jaione

    2016-10-01

    Recent insights into bacterial biofilm matrix structures have induced a paradigm shift toward the recognition of amyloid fibers as common building block structures that confer stability to the exopolysaccharide matrix. Here we describe the functional amyloid systems related to biofilm matrix formation in both Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria and recent knowledge regarding the interaction of amyloids with other biofilm matrix components such as extracellular DNA (eDNA) and the host immune system. In addition, we summarize the efforts to identify compounds that target amyloid fibers for therapeutic purposes and recent developments that take advantage of the amyloid structure to engineer amyloid fibers of bacterial biofilm matrices for biotechnological applications.

  2. Amyloid Goiter Secondary to Ulcerative Colitis.

    PubMed

    Aydin, Bunyamin; Koca, Yavuz Savas; Koca, Tugba; Yildiz, Ihsan; Gerek Celikden, Sevda; Ciris, Metin

    2016-01-01

    Diffuse amyloid goiter (AG) is an entity characterized by the deposition of amyloid in the thyroid gland. AG may be associated with either primary or secondary amyloidosis. Secondary amyloidosis is rarely caused by inflammatory bowel diseases. Secondary amyloidosis is relatively more common in the patients with Crohn's disease, whereas it is highly rare in patients with ulcerative colitis. Diffuse amyloid goiter caused by ulcerative colitis is also a rare condition. In the presence of amyloid in the thyroid gland, medullary thyroid cancer should be kept in mind in the differential diagnosis. Imaging techniques and biochemical tests are not very helpful in the diagnosis of secondary amyloid goiter and the definitive diagnosis is established based on the histopathologic analysis and histochemical staining techniques. In this report, we present a 35-year-old male patient with diffuse amyloid goiter caused by secondary amyloidosis associated with ulcerative colitis. PMID:27051538

  3. Amyloid beta modulation of neuronal network activity in vitro.

    PubMed

    Charkhkar, Hamid; Meyyappan, Susheela; Matveeva, Evgenia; Moll, Jonathan R; McHail, Daniel G; Peixoto, Nathalia; Cliff, Richard O; Pancrazio, Joseph J

    2015-12-10

    In vitro assays offer a means of screening potential therapeutics and accelerating the drug development process. Here, we utilized neuronal cultures on planar microelectrode arrays (MEA) as a functional assay to assess the neurotoxicity of amyloid-β 1-42 (Aβ42), a biomolecule implicated in the Alzheimer׳s disease (AD). In this approach, neurons harvested from embryonic mice were seeded on the substrate-integrated microelectrode arrays. The cultured neurons form a spontaneously active network, and the spiking activity as a functional endpoint could be detected via the MEA. Aβ42 oligomer, but not monomer, significantly reduced network spike rate. In addition, we demonstrated that the ionotropic glutamate receptors, NMDA and AMPA/kainate, play a role in the effects of Aβ42 on neuronal activity in vitro. To examine the utility of the MEA-based assay for AD drug discovery, we tested two model therapeutics for AD, methylene blue (MB) and memantine. Our results show an almost full recovery in the activity within 24h after administration of Aβ42 in the cultures pre-treated with either MB or memantine. Our findings suggest that cultured neuronal networks may be a useful platform in screening potential therapeutics for Aβ induced changes in neurological function.

  4. Amyloid beta modulation of neuronal network activity in vitro.

    PubMed

    Charkhkar, Hamid; Meyyappan, Susheela; Matveeva, Evgenia; Moll, Jonathan R; McHail, Daniel G; Peixoto, Nathalia; Cliff, Richard O; Pancrazio, Joseph J

    2015-12-10

    In vitro assays offer a means of screening potential therapeutics and accelerating the drug development process. Here, we utilized neuronal cultures on planar microelectrode arrays (MEA) as a functional assay to assess the neurotoxicity of amyloid-β 1-42 (Aβ42), a biomolecule implicated in the Alzheimer׳s disease (AD). In this approach, neurons harvested from embryonic mice were seeded on the substrate-integrated microelectrode arrays. The cultured neurons form a spontaneously active network, and the spiking activity as a functional endpoint could be detected via the MEA. Aβ42 oligomer, but not monomer, significantly reduced network spike rate. In addition, we demonstrated that the ionotropic glutamate receptors, NMDA and AMPA/kainate, play a role in the effects of Aβ42 on neuronal activity in vitro. To examine the utility of the MEA-based assay for AD drug discovery, we tested two model therapeutics for AD, methylene blue (MB) and memantine. Our results show an almost full recovery in the activity within 24h after administration of Aβ42 in the cultures pre-treated with either MB or memantine. Our findings suggest that cultured neuronal networks may be a useful platform in screening potential therapeutics for Aβ induced changes in neurological function. PMID:26453830

  5. A theranostic agent for in vivo near-infrared imaging of β-amyloid species and inhibition of β-amyloid aggregation.

    PubMed

    Li, Yinhui; Xu, Di; Ho, See-Lok; Li, Hung-Wing; Yang, Ronghua; Wong, Man Shing

    2016-07-01

    Amyloid-β (Aβ) peptide as one of the main components of senile plaques is closely related to the onset and progression of incurable Alzheimer's disease (AD). Numerous efforts have been devoted to develop probes for Aβ species/plaque imaging for AD diagnostics and to develop aggregation inhibitors preventing formation of toxic soluble oligomeric Aβ for therapeutics. Herein, for the first time, a series of novel charged molecules, which can simultaneously perform near infra-red in vivo imaging of Aβ species/plaques in animal model and inhibition of self-aggregation of Aβ monomer from forming toxic oligomers, are reported. Among them, DBA-SLOH showed excellent blood-brain barrier (BBB) permeability and biocompatibility due to the incorporation of lipophilic alkyl chains with moderate length into the charged skeleton. Importantly, DBA-SLOH was found to have a high binding affinity toward Aβ species exhibiting a dramatic fluorescence enhancement upon interacting with Aβ species. Despite a weaker binding with Aβ monomers as compared to Aβ aggregates, DBA-SLOH could effectively prevent the Aβ1-40 and Aβ1-42 peptides from self-aggregation and forming toxic oligomers. This multifunctional fluorescent molecule shows promising potential as a theranostic agent for the diagnosis and therapy of AD. PMID:27107167

  6. Tanshinones inhibit amyloid aggregation by amyloid-β peptide, disaggregate amyloid fibrils, and protect cultured cells.

    PubMed

    Wang, Qiuming; Yu, Xiang; Patal, Kunal; Hu, Rundong; Chuang, Steven; Zhang, Ge; Zheng, Jie

    2013-06-19

    The misfolding and aggregation of amyloid-β (Aβ) peptides into amyloid fibrils is regarded as one of the causative events in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Tanshinones extracted from Chinese herb Danshen (Salvia Miltiorrhiza Bunge) were traditionally used as anti-inflammation and cerebrovascular drugs due to their antioxidation and antiacetylcholinesterase effects. A number of studies have suggested that tanshinones could protect neuronal cells. In this work, we examine the inhibitory activity of tanshinone I (TS1) and tanshinone IIA (TS2), the two major components in the Danshen herb, on the aggregation and toxicity of Aβ1-42 using atomic force microscopy (AFM), thioflavin-T (ThT) fluorescence assay, cell viability assay, and molecular dynamics (MD) simulations. AFM and ThT results show that both TS1 and TS2 exhibit different inhibitory abilities to prevent unseeded amyloid fibril formation and to disaggregate preformed amyloid fibrils, in which TS1 shows better inhibitory potency than TS2. Live/dead assay further confirms that introduction of a very small amount of tanshinones enables protection of cultured SH-SY5Y cells against Aβ-induced cell toxicity. Comparative MD simulation results reveal a general tanshinone binding mode to prevent Aβ peptide association, showing that both TS1 and TS2 preferentially bind to a hydrophobic β-sheet groove formed by the C-terminal residues of I31-M35 and M35-V39 and several aromatic residues. Meanwhile, the differences in binding distribution, residues, sites, population, and affinity between TS1-Aβ and TS2-Aβ systems also interpret different inhibitory effects on Aβ aggregation as observed by in vitro experiments. More importantly, due to nonspecific binding mode of tanshinones, it is expected that tanshinones would have a general inhibitory efficacy of a wide range of amyloid peptides. These findings suggest that tanshinones, particularly TS1 compound, offer promising lead compounds with dual

  7. Microdroplet temperature calibration via thermal dissociation of quenched DNA oligomers.

    PubMed

    Hall, Eric W; Faris, Gregory W

    2014-03-01

    The development of microscale analytical techniques has created an increasing demand for reliable and accurate heating at the microscale. Here, we present a novel method for calibrating the temperature of microdroplets using quenched, fluorescently labeled DNA oligomers. Upon melting, the 3' fluorophore of the reporter oligomer separates from the 5' quencher of its reverse complement, creating a fluorescent signal recorded as a melting curve. The melting temperature for a given oligomer is determined with a conventional quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) instrument and used to calibrate the temperature within a microdroplet, with identical buffer concentrations, heated with an infrared laser. Since significant premelt fluorescence prevents the use of a conventional (single-term) sigmoid or logistic function to describe the melting curve, we present a three-term sigmoid model that provides a very good match to the asymmetric fluorescence melting curve with premelting. Using mixtures of three oligomers of different lengths, we fit multiple three-term sigmoids to obtain precise comparison of the microscale and macroscale fluorescence melting curves using "extrapolated two-state" melting temperatures.

  8. Small Glycosylated Lignin Oligomers Are Stored in Arabidopsis Leaf Vacuoles

    PubMed Central

    Dima, Oana; Morreel, Kris; Vanholme, Bartel; Kim, Hoon; Ralph, John; Boerjan, Wout

    2015-01-01

    Lignin is an aromatic polymer derived from the combinatorial coupling of monolignol radicals in the cell wall. Recently, various glycosylated lignin oligomers have been revealed in Arabidopsis thaliana. Given that monolignol oxidation and monolignol radical coupling are known to occur in the apoplast, and glycosylation in the cytoplasm, it raises questions about the subcellular localization of glycosylated lignin oligomer biosynthesis and their storage. By metabolite profiling of Arabidopsis leaf vacuoles, we show that the leaf vacuole stores a large number of these small glycosylated lignin oligomers. Their structural variety and the incorporation of alternative monomers, as observed in Arabidopsis mutants with altered monolignol biosynthesis, indicate that they are all formed by combinatorial radical coupling. In contrast to the common believe that combinatorial coupling is restricted to the apoplast, we hypothesized that the aglycones of these compounds are made within the cell. To investigate this, leaf protoplast cultures were cofed with 13C6-labeled coniferyl alcohol and a 13C4-labeled dimer of coniferyl alcohol. Metabolite profiling of the cofed protoplasts provided strong support for the occurrence of intracellular monolignol coupling. We therefore propose a metabolic pathway involving intracellular combinatorial coupling of monolignol radicals, followed by oligomer glycosylation and vacuolar import, which shares characteristics with both lignin and lignan biosynthesis. PMID:25700483

  9. Liquid chromatographic fractionations of mixtures of polystyrene oligomers

    SciTech Connect

    Curtis, M A; Webb, J W; Warren, D C; Brandt, V O; Gerberich, F G; Raut, K B; Rogers, L B

    1980-05-24

    Oligomer mixtures of 800, 2200, and 4000 molecular weight polystyrene have been fractionated using silica and bonded phase columns under similar conditions of solvent gradient and flow rate. Using a hexane/tetrahydrofuran gradient, the silica and nitro phases were best in that they separated 41 and 43 oligomers, respectively. At the other extreme, a phenyl bonded phase column gave virtually no resolution using a water/THF gradient and a cyano bonded phase column, using the earlier hexane/tetrahydrofuran system, resolved only 10 oligomers. Amino and octadecyl bonded phase columns gave results intermediate between these two extremes. The strength of the solvent used to dissolve the sample was found to be of critical importance. Use of too good a sample solvent seriously degraded the attainable resolution. When number average and weight average molecular weights for an 800 molecular weight polystyrene sample were calculated from the oligomer distribution, the silica column gave values which were most consistent with those reported from other methods.

  10. Microdroplet temperature calibration via thermal dissociation of quenched DNA oligomers.

    PubMed

    Hall, Eric W; Faris, Gregory W

    2014-03-01

    The development of microscale analytical techniques has created an increasing demand for reliable and accurate heating at the microscale. Here, we present a novel method for calibrating the temperature of microdroplets using quenched, fluorescently labeled DNA oligomers. Upon melting, the 3' fluorophore of the reporter oligomer separates from the 5' quencher of its reverse complement, creating a fluorescent signal recorded as a melting curve. The melting temperature for a given oligomer is determined with a conventional quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) instrument and used to calibrate the temperature within a microdroplet, with identical buffer concentrations, heated with an infrared laser. Since significant premelt fluorescence prevents the use of a conventional (single-term) sigmoid or logistic function to describe the melting curve, we present a three-term sigmoid model that provides a very good match to the asymmetric fluorescence melting curve with premelting. Using mixtures of three oligomers of different lengths, we fit multiple three-term sigmoids to obtain precise comparison of the microscale and macroscale fluorescence melting curves using "extrapolated two-state" melting temperatures. PMID:24688810

  11. Immunological activity difference between native calreticulin monomers and oligomers.

    PubMed

    He, Mi-chun; Wang, Jun; Wu, Jian; Gong, Fang-yuan; Hong, Chao; Xia, Yun; Zhang, Li-juan; Bao, Wan-rong; Gao, Xiao-Ming

    2014-01-01

    We have recently demonstrated that the greatly increased immunological activities of recombinant murine calreticulin (rCRT) are largely attributed to its self-oligomerization. Although native CRT (nCRT) can also oligomerize under stress conditions in vitro, whether this phenomenon could occur inside cells and the immunological activity difference between nCRT monomers and oligomers remained unclear. In this study, we illustrated the formation of CRT oligomers in tranfectant cells under "heat & low pH" (42°C/pH 6.5) condition. The mixture of nCRT oligomers and monomers (OnCRT) was obtained after 3 hr treatment of murine monomeric nCRT (MnCRT) under similar condition (42°C/pH 5.0) in vitro. The OnCRT thus obtained was better recognized by 2 monoclonal Abs from mice that had been immunized with oligomeric rCRT. Unlike MnCRT, OnCRT was able to elicit CRT-specific IgG production in mice. OnCRT also stimulated bone-marrow derived dendritic cells (BMDCs) to secrete significantly higher levels of TNF-α, IL-6 and IL-12p40 than did MnCRT in vitro. We postulate that oligomerization of soluble CRT may occur under certain pathophysiological conditions (e.g. ultrahyperpyrexia) and the resultant oligomers may exhibit exaggerated immunostimulating activities, thereby affiliating the inflammatory responses in vivo.

  12. Protein-induced photophysical changes to the amyloid indicator dye thioflavin T

    PubMed Central

    Wolfe, Leslie S.; Calabrese, Matthew F.; Nath, Abhinav; Blaho, Dorottya V.; Miranker, Andrew D.; Xiong, Yong

    2010-01-01

    The small molecule thioflavin T (ThT) is a defining probe for the identification and mechanistic study of amyloid fiber formation. As such, ThT is fundamental to investigations of serious diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson disease, and type II diabetes. For each disease, a different protein undergoes conformational conversion to a β-sheet rich fiber. The fluorescence of ThT exhibits an increase in quantum yield upon binding these fibers. Despite its widespread use, the structural basis for binding specificity and for the changes to the photophysical properties of ThT remain poorly understood. Here, we report the co-crystal structures of ThT with two alternative states of β-2 microglobulin (β2m); one monomeric, the other an amyloid-like oligomer. In the latter, the dye intercalates between β-sheets orthogonal to the β-strands. Importantly, the fluorophore is bound in such a manner that a photophysically relevant torsion is limited to a range of angles generally associated with low, not high, quantum yield. Quantum mechanical assessment of the fluorophore shows the electronic distribution to be strongly stabilized by aromatic interactions with the protein. Monomeric β2m gives little increase in ThT fluorescence despite showing three fluorophores, at two binding sites, in configurations generally associated with high quantum yield. Our efforts fundamentally extend existing understanding about the origins of amyloid-induced photophysical changes. Specifically, the β-sheet interface that characterizes amyloid acts both sterically and electronically to stabilize the fluorophore’s ground state electronic distribution. By preventing the fluorophore from adopting its preferred excited state configuration, nonradiative relaxation pathways are minimized and quantum yield is increased. PMID:20826442

  13. Protein-induced photophysical changes to the amyloid indicator dye thioflavin T

    SciTech Connect

    Wolfe, Leslie S.; Calabrese, Matthew F.; Nath, Abhinav; Blaho, Dorottya V.; Miranker, Andrew D.; Xiong, Yong

    2010-10-04

    The small molecule thioflavin T (ThT) is a defining probe for the identification and mechanistic study of amyloid fiber formation. As such, ThT is fundamental to investigations of serious diseases such as Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson disease, and type II diabetes. For each disease, a different protein undergoes conformational conversion to a {beta}-sheet rich fiber. The fluorescence of ThT exhibits an increase in quantum yield upon binding these fibers. Despite its widespread use, the structural basis for binding specificity and for the changes to the photophysical properties of ThT remain poorly understood. Here, we report the co-crystal structures of ThT with two alternative states of {beta}-2 microglobulin ({beta}2m); one monomeric, the other an amyloid-like oligomer. In the latter, the dye intercalates between {beta}-sheets orthogonal to the {beta}-strands. Importantly, the fluorophore is bound in such a manner that a photophysically relevant torsion is limited to a range of angles generally associated with low, not high, quantum yield. Quantum mechanical assessment of the fluorophore shows the electronic distribution to be strongly stabilized by aromatic interactions with the protein. Monomeric {beta}2m gives little increase in ThT fluorescence despite showing three fluorophores, at two binding sites, in configurations generally associated with high quantum yield. Our efforts fundamentally extend existing understanding about the origins of amyloid-induced photophysical changes. Specifically, the {beta}-sheet interface that characterizes amyloid acts both sterically and electronically to stabilize the fluorophore's ground state electronic distribution. By preventing the fluorophore from adopting its preferred excited state configuration, nonradiative relaxation pathways are minimized and quantum yield is increased.

  14. Protein-induced Photophysical Changes to the Amyloid Indicator Dye Thioflavin T

    SciTech Connect

    L Wolfe; M Calabrese; A Nath; D Blaho; A Miranker; Y Xiong

    2011-12-31

    The small molecule thioflavin T (ThT) is a defining probe for the identification and mechanistic study of amyloid fiber formation. As such, ThT is fundamental to investigations of serious diseases such as Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson disease, and type II diabetes. For each disease, a different protein undergoes conformational conversion to a {beta}-sheet rich fiber. The fluorescence of ThT exhibits an increase in quantum yield upon binding these fibers. Despite its widespread use, the structural basis for binding specificity and for the changes to the photophysical properties of ThT remain poorly understood. Here, we report the co-crystal structures of ThT with two alternative states of {beta}-2 microglobulin ({beta}2m); one monomeric, the other an amyloid-like oligomer. In the latter, the dye intercalates between {beta}-sheets orthogonal to the {beta}-strands. Importantly, the fluorophore is bound in such a manner that a photophysically relevant torsion is limited to a range of angles generally associated with low, not high, quantum yield. Quantum mechanical assessment of the fluorophore shows the electronic distribution to be strongly stabilized by aromatic interactions with the protein. Monomeric {beta}2m gives little increase in ThT fluorescence despite showing three fluorophores, at two binding sites, in configurations generally associated with high quantum yield. Our efforts fundamentally extend existing understanding about the origins of amyloid-induced photophysical changes. Specifically, the {beta}-sheet interface that characterizes amyloid acts both sterically and electronically to stabilize the fluorophore's ground state electronic distribution. By preventing the fluorophore from adopting its preferred excited state configuration, nonradiative relaxation pathways are minimized and quantum yield is increased.

  15. Montmorillonite Clay-Catalyzed Synthesis of RNA Oligomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ferris, J. P.; Miyakawa, S.; Huang, W.; Joshi, P.

    2005-12-01

    It is proposed that catalysis had a central role in the origins of life. This will be illustrated using the montmorillonite clay-catalyzed synthesis of oligomers of RNA from activated monomers, (Ferris and Ertem, 1993) a possible step in the origin of the RNA world (Ferris, 2005). Structural analysis of oligomers formed in the reaction of the activated monomer of 5'-AMP with that of 5'-CMP demonstrated that the oligomers formed were not produced by random synthesis but rather the sequences observed were directed by the montmorillonite catalyst (Miyakawa and Ferris, 2003). RNA oligomers containing up to 40 mers have been synthesized in reactions performed in water at 25 oC in the presence of montmorillonite (Huang and Ferris, 2003). Analysis of the structure elements in these oligomers from the 7 to 39 mers showed that they did not vary. Reaction of D, L-mixtures of the activated monomers of A and U resulted in the formation of greater amounts of the homochiral amounts of dimers and trimers of A than would be expected if there was no selectivity in the reaction. A limited number of the dimers and trimers of U were also formed but here the selectivity was for the formation of an excess of heterochiral products (Joshi et al., 2000). A postulate that explains why homochiral trimers of U are not formed and the significance of catalysis in prebiotic synthesis will be discussed. Ferris, J.P. (2005) Origins of life, molecular basis of. In R.A. Meyers, Ed. Encyclopedia of Molecular Cell Biology and Molecular Medicine, 10. Wiley-VCH Verlag, Weinheim, Germany. Ferris, J.P., and Ertem, G. (1993) Montmorillonite catalysis of RNA oligomer formation in aqueous solution. A model for the prebiotic formation of RNA. J. Am. Chem. Soc., 115, 12270-12275. Huang, W., and Ferris, J.P. (2003) Synthesis of 35-40 mers of RNA oligomers from unblocked monomers. A simple approach to the RNA world. Chem. Commun., 1458-1459. Joshi, P.C., Pitsch, S., and Ferris, J.P. (2000) Homochiral selection

  16. A Synchrotron-Based Hydroxyl Radical Footprinting Analysis of Amyloid Fibrils and Prefibrillar Intermediates with Residue-Specific Resolution

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Structural models of the fibrils formed by the 40-residue amyloid-β (Aβ40) peptide in Alzheimer’s disease typically consist of linear polypeptide segments, oriented approximately perpendicular to the long axis of the fibril, and joined together as parallel in-register β-sheets to form filaments. However, various models differ in the number of filaments that run the length of a fibril, and in the topological arrangement of these filaments. In addition to questions about the structure of Aβ40 monomers in fibrils, there are important unanswered questions about their structure in prefibrillar intermediates, which are of interest because they may represent the most neurotoxic form of Aβ40. To assess different models of fibril structure and to gain insight into the structure of prefibrillar intermediates, the relative solvent accessibility of amino acid residue side chains in fibrillar and prefibrillar Aβ40 preparations was characterized in solution by hydroxyl radical footprinting and structural mass spectrometry. A key to the application of this technology was the development of hydroxyl radical reactivity measures for individual side chains of Aβ40. Combined with mass-per-length measurements performed by dark-field electron microscopy, the results of this study are consistent with the core filament structure represented by two- and three-filament solid state nuclear magnetic resonance-based models of the Aβ40 fibril (such as 2LMN, 2LMO, 2LMP, and 2LMQ), with minor refinements, but they are inconsistent with the more recently proposed 2M4J model. The results also demonstrate that individual Aβ40 fibrils exhibit structural heterogeneity or polymorphism, where regions of two-filament structure alternate with regions of three-filament structure. The footprinting approach utilized in this study will be valuable for characterizing various fibrillar and nonfibrillar forms of the Aβ peptide. PMID:25382225

  17. A Synchrotron-Based Hydroxyl Radical Footprinting Analysis of Amyloid Fibrils and Prefibrillar Intermediates with Residue-Specific Resolution

    SciTech Connect

    Klinger, Alexandra L.; Kiselar, Janna; Ilchenko, Serguei; Komatsu, Hiroaki; Chance, Mark R.; Axelsen, Paul H.

    2014-11-09

    The structural models of the fibrils formed by the 40-residue amyloid-β (Aβ40) peptide in Alzheimer’s disease typically consist of linear polypeptide segments, oriented approximately perpendicular to the long axis of the fibril, and joined together as parallel in-register β-sheets to form filaments. However, various models differ in the number of filaments that run the length of a fibril, and in the topological arrangement of these filaments. In addition to questions about the structure of Aβ40 monomers in fibrils, there are important unanswered questions about their structure in prefibrillar intermediates, which are of interest because they may represent the most neurotoxic form of Aβ40. To assess different models of fibril structure and to gain insight into the structure of prefibrillar intermediates, the relative solvent accessibility of amino acid residue side chains in fibrillar and prefibrillar Aβ40 preparations was characterized in solution by hydroxyl radical footprinting and structural mass spectrometry. A key to the application of this technology was the development of hydroxyl radical reactivity measures for individual side chains of Aβ40. When we combined mass-per-length measurements performed by dark-field electron microscopy, we determined that the results of our study were consistent with the core filament structure represented by two- and three-filament solid state nuclear magnetic resonance-based models of the Aβ40 fibril (such as 2LMN, 2LMO, 2LMP, and 2LMQ), with minor refinements, but they are inconsistent with the more recently proposed 2M4J model. Our results also demonstrate that individual Aβ40 fibrils exhibit structural heterogeneity or polymorphism, where regions of two-filament structure alternate with regions of three-filament structure. The footprinting approach utilized in this study will be valuable for characterizing various fibrillar and nonfibrillar forms of the Aβ peptide.

  18. Self-assembly of 33-mer gliadin peptide oligomers.

    PubMed

    Herrera, M G; Benedini, L A; Lonez, C; Schilardi, P L; Hellweg, T; Ruysschaert, J-M; Dodero, V I

    2015-11-28

    The 33-mer gliadin peptide, LQLQPF(PQPQLPY)3PQPQPF, is a highly immunogenic peptide involved in celiac disease and probably in other immunopathologies associated with gliadin. Herein, dynamic light scattering measurements showed that 33-mer, in the micromolar concentration range, forms polydisperse nano- and micrometer range particles in aqueous media. This behaviour is reminiscent of classical association of colloids and we hypothesized that the 33-mer peptide self-assembles into micelles that could be the precursors of 33-mer oligomers in water. Deposition of 33-mer peptide aqueous solution on bare mica generated nano- and microstructures with different morphologies as revealed by atomic force microscopy. At 6 μM, the 33-mer is organised in isolated and clusters of spherical nanostructures. In the 60 to 250 μM concentration range, the spherical oligomers associated mainly in linear and annular arrangements and structures adopting a "sheet" type morphology appeared. At higher concentrations (610 μM), mainly filaments and plaques immersed in a background of nanospherical structures were detected. The occurrence of different morphologies of oligomers and finally the filaments suggests that the unique specific geometry of the 33-mer oligomers has a crucial role in the subsequent condensation and organization of their fractal structures into the final filaments. The self-assembly process on mica is described qualitatively and quantitatively by a fractal diffusion limited aggregation (DLA) behaviour with the fractal dimension in the range of 1.62 ± 0.02 to 1.73 ± 0.03. Secondary structure evaluation of the oligomers by Attenuated Total Reflection FTIR spectroscopy (ATR-FTIR) revealed the existence of a conformational equilibrium of self-assembled structures, from an extended conformation to a more folded parallel beta elongated structures. Altogether, these findings provide structural and morphological information about supramolecular organization of the 33-mer

  19. Unique Properties of the Rabbit Prion Protein Oligomer.

    PubMed

    Yu, Ziyao; Huang, Pei; Yu, Yuanhui; Zheng, Zhen; Huang, Zicheng; Guo, Chenyun; Lin, Donghai

    2016-01-01

    Prion diseases, also known as transmissible spongiform encephalopathies (TSEs), are a group of fatal neurodegenerative disorders infecting both humans and animals. Recent works have demonstrated that the soluble prion protein oligomer (PrPO), the intermediate of the conformational transformation from the host-derived cellular form (PrPC) to the disease-associated Scrapie form (PrPSc), exerts the major neurotoxicity in vitro and in vivo. Rabbits show strong resistance to TSEs, the underlying mechanism is unclear to date. It is expected that the relative TSEs-resistance of rabbits is closely associated with the unique properties of rabbit prion protein oligomer which remain to be addressed in detail. In the present work, we prepared rabbit prion protein oligomer (recRaPrPO) and human prion protein oligomer (recHuPrPO) under varied conditions, analyzed the effects of pH, NaCl concentration and incubation temperature on the oligomerization, and compared the properties of recRaPrPO and recHuPrPO. We found that several factors facilitated the formation of prion protein oligomers, including low pH, high NaCl concentration, high incubation temperature and low conformational stability of monomeric prion protein. RecRaPrPO was formed more slowly than recHuPrPO at physiological-like conditions (< 57°C, < 150 mM NaCl). Furthermore, recRaPrPO possessed higher susceptibility to proteinase K and lower cytotoxicity in vitro than recHuPrPO. These unique properties of recRaPrPO might substantially contribute to the TSEs-resistance of rabbits. Our work sheds light on the oligomerization of prion proteins and is of benefit to mechanistic understanding of TSEs-resistance of rabbits. PMID:27529173

  20. Unique Properties of the Rabbit Prion Protein Oligomer

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Ziyao; Huang, Pei; Yu, Yuanhui; Zheng, Zhen; Huang, Zicheng; Guo, Chenyun; Lin, Donghai

    2016-01-01

    Prion diseases, also known as transmissible spongiform encephalopathies (TSEs), are a group of fatal neurodegenerative disorders infecting both humans and animals. Recent works have demonstrated that the soluble prion protein oligomer (PrPO), the intermediate of the conformational transformation from the host-derived cellular form (PrPC) to the disease-associated Scrapie form (PrPSc), exerts the major neurotoxicity in vitro and in vivo. Rabbits show strong resistance to TSEs, the underlying mechanism is unclear to date. It is expected that the relative TSEs-resistance of rabbits is closely associated with the unique properties of rabbit prion protein oligomer which remain to be addressed in detail. In the present work, we prepared rabbit prion protein oligomer (recRaPrPO) and human prion protein oligomer (recHuPrPO) under varied conditions, analyzed the effects of pH, NaCl concentration and incubation temperature on the oligomerization, and compared the properties of recRaPrPO and recHuPrPO. We found that several factors facilitated the formation of prion protein oligomers, including low pH, high NaCl concentration, high incubation temperature and low conformational stability of monomeric prion protein. RecRaPrPO was formed more slowly than recHuPrPO at physiological-like conditions (< 57°C, < 150 mM NaCl). Furthermore, recRaPrPO possessed higher susceptibility to proteinase K and lower cytotoxicity in vitro than recHuPrPO. These unique properties of recRaPrPO might substantially contribute to the TSEs-resistance of rabbits. Our work sheds light on the oligomerization of prion proteins and is of benefit to mechanistic understanding of TSEs-resistance of rabbits. PMID:27529173

  1. Imide Oligomers Containing Pendent and Terminal Phenylethynyl Groups-2

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Connell, J. W.; Smith, J. G., Jr.; Hergenrother, P. M.

    1998-01-01

    As part of a program to develop high-performance/high-temperature structural resins for aeronautical applications, imide oligomers containing pendent and terminal phenylethynyl groups were prepared, characterized and the cured resins evaluated as composite matrices. The oligomers were prepared at a calculated number-average molecular weight of 5000 g/mol and contained 15-20 mol% pendent phenylethynyl groups. In previous work, an oligomer containing pendent and terminal phenylethynyl groups exhibited a high glass transition temperature (approximately 313 C), and laminates therefrom exhibited high compressive properties, but processability, fracture toughness, microcrack resistance and damage tolerance were less than desired. In an attempt to improve these deficiencies, modifications in the oligomeric backbone involving the incorporation of 1,3-bis(3-aminophenoxy)benzene were investigated as a means of improving processability and toughness without detracting from the high glass transition temperature and high compressive properties. The amide acid oligomeric solutions were prepared in N-methyl-2-pyrrolidinone and were subsequently processed into imide powder, thin films, adhesive tape and carbon fiber prepreg. Neat resin plaques were fabricated from imide powder by compression moulding. The maximum processing pressure was 1.4 MPa and the cure temperature ranged from 350 to 371 C for 1 h for the mouldings, adhesives, films and composites. The properties of the 1,3-bis(3-aniinophenoxy)benzene modified cured imide oligomers containing pendent and terminal phenylethynyl groups are compared with those of previously prepared oligomers containing pendent and terminal phenylethynyl groups of similar composition and molecular weight.

  2. Solution Structure of an Amyloid-Forming Protein During Photoinitiated Hexamer-Dodecamer Transitions Revealed Through Small-Angle Neutron Scattering

    SciTech Connect

    Hamill,A.; Wang, S.; Lee, Jr., C.

    2007-01-01

    Shape-reconstruction analysis applied to small angle neutron scattering (SANS) data is used to determine the in vitro conformations of {alpha}-chymotrypsin oligomers that form as a result of partial unfolding with a photoresponsive surfactant. In the presence of the photoactive surfactant under visible light, the native oligomers (dimers or compact hexamers) rearrange into expanded corkscrew-like hexamers. Converting the surfactant to the photopassive form with UV light illumination causes the hexamers to laterally aggregate and intertwine into dodecamers with elongated, twisted conformations containing cross-sectional dimensions similar to amyloid protofilaments. Secondary-structure measurements with FT-IR indicate that this photoinduced hexamer-to-dodecamer association occurs through intermolecular {beta} sheets stabilized with hydrogen bonds, similar to amyloid formation. Traditional structural characterization techniques such as X-ray crystallography and NMR are not easily amenable to the study of these non-native protein conformations; however, SANS is ideally suited to the study of these associated intermediates, providing direct observation of the mechanism of oligomeric formation in an amyloid-forming protein. Combined with photoinitiated hexamer-to-dodecamer associations in the presence of the photoresponsive surfactant, this study could provide unique insight into the amyloidosis disease pathway, as well as novel disease treatment strategies.

  3. Review: history of the amyloid fibril.

    PubMed

    Sipe, J D; Cohen, A S

    2000-06-01

    Rudolph Virchow, in 1854, introduced and popularized the term amyloid to denote a macroscopic tissue abnormality that exhibited a positive iodine staining reaction. Subsequent light microscopic studies with polarizing optics demonstrated the inherent birefringence of amyloid deposits, a property that increased intensely after staining with Congo red dye. In 1959, electron microscopic examination of ultrathin sections of amyloidotic tissues revealed the presence of fibrils, indeterminate in length and, invariably, 80 to 100 A in width. Using the criteria of Congophilia and fibrillar morphology, 20 or more biochemically distinct forms of amyloid have been identified throughout the animal kingdom; each is specifically associated with a unique clinical syndrome. Fibrils, also 80 to 100 A in width, have been isolated from tissue homogenates using differential sedimentation or solubility. X-ray diffraction analysis revealed the fibrils to be ordered in the beta pleated sheet conformation, with the direction of the polypeptide backbone perpendicular to the fibril axis (cross beta structure). Because of the similar dimensions and tinctorial properties of the fibrils extracted from amyloid-laden tissues and amyloid fibrils in tissue sections, they have been assumed to be identical. However, the spatial relationship of proteoglycans and amyloid P component (AP), common to all forms of amyloid, to the putative protein only fibrils in tissues, has been unclear. Recently, it has been suggested that, in situ, amyloid fibrils are composed of proteoglycans and AP as well as amyloid proteins and thus resemble connective tissue microfibrils. Chemical and physical definition of the fibrils in tissues will be needed to relate the in vitro properties of amyloid protein fibrils to the pathogenesis of amyloid fibril formation in vivo. PMID:10940217

  4. Noninvasive Identification of ATTRwt Cardiac Amyloid: The Re-emergence of Nuclear Cardiology.

    PubMed

    Maurer, Mathew S

    2015-12-01

    More than half of all subjects with chronic heart failure are older adults with preserved ejection fraction (HFpEF). Effective therapy for this condition is yet to be delineated by clinical trials, suggesting that a greater understanding of underlying biologic mechanisms is needed, especially for the purpose of clinical intervention and future clinical trials. Amyloid infiltration of the myocardium is an underappreciated contributing factor to HFpEF that is often caused by misfolded monomers or oligomers of the protein transthyretin. While previously called senile cardiac amyloidosis and traditionally requiring endomyocardial biopsy for diagnosis, advances in our pathophysiologic understanding of this condition, coupled with nuclear imaging techniques using bone isotopes that can diagnose this condition noninvasively and the development of potential therapies, have resulted in a renewed interest in this previously considered "rare" condition. This reviewer focuses on the re-emergence of nuclear cardiology using pyrophosphate agents that hold promise for early, noninvasive identification of affected individuals. PMID:26091765

  5. Amyloid-β effects on synapses and memory require AMPA receptor subunit GluA3

    PubMed Central

    Reinders, Niels R.; Pao, Yvonne; Renner, Maria C.; da Silva-Matos, Carla M.; Lodder, Tessa R.; Malinow, Roberto; Kessels, Helmut W.

    2016-01-01

    Amyloid-β (Aβ) is a prime suspect for causing cognitive deficits during the early phases of Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Experiments in AD mouse models have shown that soluble oligomeric clusters of Aβ degrade synapses and impair memory formation. We show that all Aβ-driven effects measured in these mice depend on AMPA receptor (AMPAR) subunit GluA3. Hippocampal neurons that lack GluA3 were resistant against Aβ-mediated synaptic depression and spine loss. In addition, Aβ oligomers blocked long-term synaptic potentiation only in neurons that expressed GluA3. Furthermore, although Aβ-overproducing mice showed significant memory impairment, memories in GluA3-deficient congenics remained unaffected. These experiments indicate that the presence of GluA3-containing AMPARs is critical for Aβ-mediated synaptic and cognitive deficits. PMID:27708157

  6. Study on the inter- and intra-peptide salt-bridge mechanism of Aβ23-28 oligomer interaction with small molecules: QM/MM method.

    PubMed

    Boopathi, Subramaniam; Kolandaivel, Ponmalai

    2015-07-01

    Amyloid β (Aβ) peptides have long been known to be a potential candidate for the onset of Alzheimer's disease (AD). The biophysical properties of Aβ42 peptide aggregates are of significant importance for the amyloid cascade mechanism of AD. It is necessary to design an inhibitor using small molecules to reduce the aggregation process in Aβ42 peptides. Attention has been given to use the natural products as anti-aggregation compounds, directly targeting Aβ peptides. Polyphenols have been extensively studied as a class of amyloid inhibitors. 9,10-Anthraquinone (AQ) is present in abundance in medicinal plants (rhubarb), the Trp-Pro-Tyr (TPT) peptide has been found in the venom of the black mamba snake, and the morin molecule is naturally present in wine and green tea; several other polyphenol derivatives are under clinical trials to develop anti-neurodegenerative drugs. In vitro and in vivo results strongly suggest that AQ and morin molecules are potential inhibitors of Aβ aggregation; however, the detailed understanding of the inhibition mechanism remains largely unknown. The formation of Aβ fibrils and oligomers requires a conformational change from α-helix to β-sheet, which occurs due to the formation of a salt-bridge between Asp(23) and Lys(28) residues. The present study focused on investigating the salt-bridge mechanism in the monomer, dimer and oligomer of the Aβ23-28 peptide during the interaction with TPT, morin and AQ molecules. Interaction energy and natural bond orbital analyses have been carried out using the ONIOM(M05-2X/6-31++G(d,p):UFF) method. The QM/MM studies have been performed to study the mechanism of salt-bridge formation during the inhibition process of amyloid β protein aggregation. The TPT molecule, which binds with the Asp(23) and Lys(28) residues of Aβ, prevents the salt-bridge formation between Asp(23) and Lys(28) residues and consequently the probability of the formation of Aβ fibrils is reduced.

  7. Study on the inter- and intra-peptide salt-bridge mechanism of Aβ23-28 oligomer interaction with small molecules: QM/MM method.

    PubMed

    Boopathi, Subramaniam; Kolandaivel, Ponmalai

    2015-07-01

    Amyloid β (Aβ) peptides have long been known to be a potential candidate for the onset of Alzheimer's disease (AD). The biophysical properties of Aβ42 peptide aggregates are of significant importance for the amyloid cascade mechanism of AD. It is necessary to design an inhibitor using small molecules to reduce the aggregation process in Aβ42 peptides. Attention has been given to use the natural products as anti-aggregation compounds, directly targeting Aβ peptides. Polyphenols have been extensively studied as a class of amyloid inhibitors. 9,10-Anthraquinone (AQ) is present in abundance in medicinal plants (rhubarb), the Trp-Pro-Tyr (TPT) peptide has been found in the venom of the black mamba snake, and the morin molecule is naturally present in wine and green tea; several other polyphenol derivatives are under clinical trials to develop anti-neurodegenerative drugs. In vitro and in vivo results strongly suggest that AQ and morin molecules are potential inhibitors of Aβ aggregation; however, the detailed understanding of the inhibition mechanism remains largely unknown. The formation of Aβ fibrils and oligomers requires a conformational change from α-helix to β-sheet, which occurs due to the formation of a salt-bridge between Asp(23) and Lys(28) residues. The present study focused on investigating the salt-bridge mechanism in the monomer, dimer and oligomer of the Aβ23-28 peptide during the interaction with TPT, morin and AQ molecules. Interaction energy and natural bond orbital analyses have been carried out using the ONIOM(M05-2X/6-31++G(d,p):UFF) method. The QM/MM studies have been performed to study the mechanism of salt-bridge formation during the inhibition process of amyloid β protein aggregation. The TPT molecule, which binds with the Asp(23) and Lys(28) residues of Aβ, prevents the salt-bridge formation between Asp(23) and Lys(28) residues and consequently the probability of the formation of Aβ fibrils is reduced. PMID:25973904

  8. Characterization of Amyloid Cores in Prion Domains

    PubMed Central

    Sant’Anna, Ricardo; Fernández, Maria Rosario; Batlle, Cristina; Navarro, Susanna; de Groot, Natalia S.; Serpell, Louise; Ventura, Salvador

    2016-01-01

    Amyloids consist of repetitions of a specific polypeptide chain in a regular cross-β-sheet conformation. Amyloid propensity is largely determined by the protein sequence, the aggregation process being nucleated by specific and short segments. Prions are special amyloids that become self-perpetuating after aggregation. Prions are responsible for neuropathology in mammals, but they can also be functional, as in yeast prions. The conversion of these last proteins to the prion state is driven by prion forming domains (PFDs), which are generally large, intrinsically disordered, enriched in glutamines/asparagines and depleted in hydrophobic residues. The self-assembly of PFDs has been thought to rely mostly on their particular amino acid composition, rather than on their sequence. Instead, we have recently proposed that specific amyloid-prone sequences within PFDs might be key to their prion behaviour. Here, we demonstrate experimentally the existence of these amyloid stretches inside the PFDs of the canonical Sup35, Swi1, Mot3 and Ure2 prions. These sequences self-assemble efficiently into highly ordered amyloid fibrils, that are functionally competent, being able to promote the PFD amyloid conversion in vitro and in vivo. Computational analyses indicate that these kind of amyloid stretches may act as typical nucleating signals in a number of different prion domains. PMID:27686217

  9. Monoacylated Cellular Prion Proteins Reduce Amyloid-β-Induced Activation of Cytoplasmic Phospholipase A2 and Synapse Damage.

    PubMed

    West, Ewan; Osborne, Craig; Nolan, William; Bate, Clive

    2015-01-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a progressive neurodegenerative disease characterized by the accumulation of amyloid-β (Aβ) and the loss of synapses. Aggregation of the cellular prion protein (PrPC) by Aβ oligomers induced synapse damage in cultured neurons. PrPC is attached to membranes via a glycosylphosphatidylinositol (GPI) anchor, the composition of which affects protein targeting and cell signaling. Monoacylated PrPC incorporated into neurons bound "natural Aβ", sequestering Aβ outside lipid rafts and preventing its accumulation at synapses. The presence of monoacylated PrPC reduced the Aβ-induced activation of cytoplasmic phospholipase A2 (cPLA2) and Aβ-induced synapse damage. This protective effect was stimulus specific, as treated neurons remained sensitive to α-synuclein, a protein associated with synapse damage in Parkinson's disease. In synaptosomes, the aggregation of PrPC by Aβ oligomers triggered the formation of a signaling complex containing the cPLA2.a process, disrupted by monoacylated PrPC. We propose that monoacylated PrPC acts as a molecular sponge, binding Aβ oligomers at the neuronal perikarya without activating cPLA2 or triggering synapse damage. PMID:26043272

  10. Methylglyoxal produced by amyloid-β peptide-induced nitrotyrosination of triosephosphate isomerase triggers neuronal death in Alzheimer's disease.

    PubMed

    Tajes, Marta; Eraso-Pichot, Abel; Rubio-Moscardó, Fanny; Guivernau, Biuse; Ramos-Fernández, Eva; Bosch-Morató, Mònica; Guix, Francesc Xavier; Clarimón, Jordi; Miscione, Gian Pietro; Boada, Mercé; Gil-Gómez, Gabriel; Suzuki, Toshiharu; Molina, Henrik; Villà-Freixa, Jordi; Vicente, Rubén; Muñoz, Francisco J

    2014-01-01

    Amyloid-β peptide (Aβ) aggregates induce nitro-oxidative stress, contributing to the characteristic neurodegeneration found in Alzheimer's disease (AD). One of the most strongly nitrotyrosinated proteins in AD is the triosephosphate isomerase (TPI) enzyme which regulates glycolytic flow, and its efficiency decreased when it is nitrotyrosinated. The main aims of this study were to analyze the impact of TPI nitrotyrosination on cell viability and to identify the mechanism behind this effect. In human neuroblastoma cells (SH-SY5Y), we evaluated the effects of Aβ42 oligomers on TPI nitrotyrosination. We found an increased production of methylglyoxal (MG), a toxic byproduct of the inefficient nitro-TPI function. The proapoptotic effects of Aβ42 oligomers, such as decreasing the protective Bcl2 and increasing the proapoptotic caspase-3 and Bax, were prevented with a MG chelator. Moreover, we used a double mutant TPI (Y165F and Y209F) to mimic nitrosative modifications due to Aβ action. Neuroblastoma cells transfected with the double mutant TPI consistently triggered MG production and a decrease in cell viability due to apoptotic mechanisms. Our data show for the first time that MG is playing a key role in the neuronal death induced by Aβ oligomers. This occurs because of TPI nitrotyrosination, which affects both tyrosines associated with the catalytic center.

  11. Characterization of the oligomeric states of insulin in self-assembly and amyloid fibril formation by mass spectrometry.

    PubMed Central

    Nettleton, E J; Tito, P; Sunde, M; Bouchard, M; Dobson, C M; Robinson, C V

    2000-01-01

    The self-assembly and aggregation of insulin molecules has been investigated by means of nanoflow electrospray mass spectrometry. Hexamers of insulin containing predominantly two, but up to four, Zn(2+) ions were observed in the gas phase when solutions at pH 4.0 were examined. At pH 3.3, in the absence of Zn(2+), dimers and tetramers are observed. Spectra obtained from solutions of insulin at millimolar concentrations at pH 2.0, conditions under which insulin is known to aggregate in solution, showed signals from a range of higher oligomers. Clusters containing up to 12 molecules could be detected in the gas phase. Hydrogen exchange measurements show that in solution these higher oligomers are in rapid equilibrium with monomeric insulin. At elevated temperatures, under conditions where insulin rapidly forms amyloid fibrils, the concentration of soluble higher oligomers was found to decrease with time yielding insoluble high molecular weight aggregates and then fibrils. The fibrils formed were examined by electron microscopy and the results show that the amorphous aggregates formed initially are converted to twisted, unbranched fibrils containing several protofilaments. Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy shows that both the soluble form of insulin and the initial aggregates are predominantly helical, but that formation of beta-sheet structure occurs simultaneously with the appearance of well-defined fibrils. PMID:10920035

  12. Monoacylated Cellular Prion Proteins Reduce Amyloid-β-Induced Activation of Cytoplasmic Phospholipase A2 and Synapse Damage

    PubMed Central

    West, Ewan; Osborne, Craig; Nolan, William; Bate, Clive

    2015-01-01

    Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is a progressive neurodegenerative disease characterized by the accumulation of amyloid-β (Aβ) and the loss of synapses. Aggregation of the cellular prion protein (PrPC) by Aβ oligomers induced synapse damage in cultured neurons. PrPC is attached to membranes via a glycosylphosphatidylinositol (GPI) anchor, the composition of which affects protein targeting and cell signaling. Monoacylated PrPC incorporated into neurons bound “natural Aβ”, sequestering Aβ outside lipid rafts and preventing its accumulation at synapses. The presence of monoacylated PrPC reduced the Aβ-induced activation of cytoplasmic phospholipase A2 (cPLA2) and Aβ-induced synapse damage. This protective effect was stimulus specific, as treated neurons remained sensitive to α-synuclein, a protein associated with synapse damage in Parkinson’s disease. In synaptosomes, the aggregation of PrPC by Aβ oligomers triggered the formation of a signaling complex containing the cPLA2.a process, disrupted by monoacylated PrPC. We propose that monoacylated PrPC acts as a molecular sponge, binding Aβ oligomers at the neuronal perikarya without activating cPLA2 or triggering synapse damage. PMID:26043272

  13. Na, K-ATPase α3 is a death target of Alzheimer patient amyloid-β assembly

    PubMed Central

    Ohnishi, Takayuki; Yanazawa, Masako; Sasahara, Tomoya; Kitamura, Yasuki; Hiroaki, Hidekazu; Fukazawa, Yugo; Kii, Isao; Nishiyama, Takashi; Kakita, Akiyoshi; Takeda, Hiroyuki; Takeuchi, Akihide; Arai, Yoshie; Ito, Akane; Komura, Hitomi; Hirao, Hajime; Satomura, Kaori; Inoue, Masafumi; Muramatsu, Shin-ichi; Matsui, Ko; Tada, Mari; Sato, Michio; Saijo, Eri; Shigemitsu, Yoshiki; Sakai, Satoko; Umetsu, Yoshitaka; Goda, Natsuko; Takino, Naomi; Takahashi, Hitoshi; Hagiwara, Masatoshi; Sawasaki, Tatsuya; Iwasaki, Genji; Nakamura, Yu; Nabeshima, Yo-ichi; Teplow, David B.; Hoshi, Minako

    2015-01-01

    Neurodegeneration correlates with Alzheimer’s disease (AD) symptoms, but the molecular identities of pathogenic amyloid β-protein (Aβ) oligomers and their targets, leading to neurodegeneration, remain unclear. Amylospheroids (ASPD) are AD patient-derived 10- to 15-nm spherical Aβ oligomers that cause selective degeneration of mature neurons. Here, we show that the ASPD target is neuron-specific Na+/K+-ATPase α3 subunit (NAKα3). ASPD-binding to NAKα3 impaired NAKα3-specific activity, activated N-type voltage-gated calcium channels, and caused mitochondrial calcium dyshomeostasis, tau abnormalities, and neurodegeneration. NMR and molecular modeling studies suggested that spherical ASPD contain N-terminal-Aβ–derived “thorns” responsible for target binding, which are distinct from low molecular-weight oligomers and dodecamers. The fourth extracellular loop (Ex4) region of NAKα3 encompassing Asn879 and Trp880 is essential for ASPD–NAKα3 interaction, because tetrapeptides mimicking this Ex4 region bound to the ASPD surface and blocked ASPD neurotoxicity. Our findings open up new possibilities for knowledge-based design of peptidomimetics that inhibit neurodegeneration in AD by blocking aberrant ASPD–NAKα3 interaction. PMID:26224839

  14. Methylglyoxal produced by amyloid-β peptide-induced nitrotyrosination of triosephosphate isomerase triggers neuronal death in Alzheimer's disease.

    PubMed

    Tajes, Marta; Eraso-Pichot, Abel; Rubio-Moscardó, Fanny; Guivernau, Biuse; Ramos-Fernández, Eva; Bosch-Morató, Mònica; Guix, Francesc Xavier; Clarimón, Jordi; Miscione, Gian Pietro; Boada, Mercé; Gil-Gómez, Gabriel; Suzuki, Toshiharu; Molina, Henrik; Villà-Freixa, Jordi; Vicente, Rubén; Muñoz, Francisco J

    2014-01-01

    Amyloid-β peptide (Aβ) aggregates induce nitro-oxidative stress, contributing to the characteristic neurodegeneration found in Alzheimer's disease (AD). One of the most strongly nitrotyrosinated proteins in AD is the triosephosphate isomerase (TPI) enzyme which regulates glycolytic flow, and its efficiency decreased when it is nitrotyrosinated. The main aims of this study were to analyze the impact of TPI nitrotyrosination on cell viability and to identify the mechanism behind this effect. In human neuroblastoma cells (SH-SY5Y), we evaluated the effects of Aβ42 oligomers on TPI nitrotyrosination. We found an increased production of methylglyoxal (MG), a toxic byproduct of the inefficient nitro-TPI function. The proapoptotic effects of Aβ42 oligomers, such as decreasing the protective Bcl2 and increasing the proapoptotic caspase-3 and Bax, were prevented with a MG chelator. Moreover, we used a double mutant TPI (Y165F and Y209F) to mimic nitrosative modifications due to Aβ action. Neuroblastoma cells transfected with the double mutant TPI consistently triggered MG production and a decrease in cell viability due to apoptotic mechanisms. Our data show for the first time that MG is playing a key role in the neuronal death induced by Aβ oligomers. This occurs because of TPI nitrotyrosination, which affects both tyrosines associated with the catalytic center. PMID:24614897

  15. Preparation of fluorescently-labeled amyloid-beta peptide assemblies: the effect of fluorophore conjugation on structure and function

    PubMed Central

    Jungbauer, L. M.; Yu, C; Laxton, K. J.; LaDu, M. J.

    2009-01-01

    Recent research has focused on soluble oligomeric assemblies of the 42 amino acid isoform of the amyloid-beta peptide (Aβ42) as the proximal cause of neuronal injury, synaptic loss, and the eventual dementia associated with Alzheimer’s disease (AD). While neurotoxicity, neuroinflammation, and deficits in behavior and memory have all been attributed to oligomeric Aβ42, the specific roles for this assembly in the cellular neuropathology of AD remain poorly understood. In particular, lack of reliable and well-characterized forms of easily detectable Aβ42 oligomers has hindered study of the cellular trafficking of exogenous Aβ42 by neurons in vitro and in vivo. Therefore, the objective of this study is to fluorescently label soluble oligomeric Aβ42 without altering the structure or function of this assembly. Previous studies have demonstrated the advantages of using tapping mode atomic force microscopy (AFM) to characterize the structural assemblies formed by synthetic Aβ42 under specific solution conditions (e.g., oligomers, protofibrils, and fibrils). Here, we extend these methods to establish a strategy for fluorescent labeling of oligomeric Aβ42 assemblies that are structurally comparable to unlabeled oligomeric Aβ42. To compare function, we demon-strate that the uptake of labeled and unlabeled oligomeric Aβ42 by neurons in vitro is similar. AFM-characterized fluorophore-Aβ42 oligomers are an exciting new reagent for use in a variety of studies designed to elucidate critical cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying the functions of this Aβ42 assembly form in AD. PMID:19343729

  16. Nanoscale Synaptic Membrane Mimetic Allows Unbiased High Throughput Screen That Targets Binding Sites for Alzheimer’s-Associated Aβ Oligomers

    PubMed Central

    Wilcox, Kyle C.; Marunde, Matthew R.; Das, Aditi; Velasco, Pauline T.; Kuhns, Benjamin D.; Marty, Michael T.; Jiang, Haoming; Luan, Chi-Hao; Sligar, Stephen G.; Klein, William L.

    2015-01-01

    Despite their value as sources of therapeutic drug targets, membrane proteomes are largely inaccessible to high-throughput screening (HTS) tools designed for soluble proteins. An important example comprises the membrane proteins that bind amyloid β oligomers (AβOs). AβOs are neurotoxic ligands thought to instigate the synapse damage that leads to Alzheimer’s dementia. At present, the identities of initial AβO binding sites are highly uncertain, largely because of extensive protein-protein interactions that occur following attachment of AβOs to surface membranes. Here, we show that AβO binding sites can be obtained in a state suitable for unbiased HTS by encapsulating the solubilized synaptic membrane proteome into nanoscale lipid bilayers (Nanodiscs). This method gives a soluble membrane protein library (SMPL)—a collection of individualized synaptic proteins in a soluble state. Proteins within SMPL Nanodiscs showed enzymatic and ligand binding activity consistent with conformational integrity. AβOs were found to bind SMPL Nanodiscs with high affinity and specificity, with binding dependent on intact synaptic membrane proteins, and selective for the higher molecular weight oligomers known to accumulate at synapses. Combining SMPL Nanodiscs with a mix-incubate-read chemiluminescence assay provided a solution-based HTS platform to discover antagonists of AβO binding. Screening a library of 2700 drug-like compounds and natural products yielded one compound that potently reduced AβO binding to SMPL Nanodiscs, synaptosomes, and synapses in nerve cell cultures. Although not a therapeutic candidate, this small molecule inhibitor of synaptic AβO binding will provide a useful experimental antagonist for future mechanistic studies of AβOs in Alzheimer’s model systems. Overall, results provide proof of concept for using SMPLs in high throughput screening for AβO binding antagonists, and illustrate in general how a SMPL Nanodisc system can facilitate drug

  17. Amyloid-β peptides act as allosteric modulators of cholinergic signalling through formation of soluble BAβACs.

    PubMed

    Kumar, Rajnish; Nordberg, Agneta; Darreh-Shori, Taher

    2016-01-01

    Amyloid-β peptides, through highly sophisticated enzymatic machinery, are universally produced and released in an action potential synchronized manner into the interstitial fluids in the brain. Yet no native functions are attributed to amyloid-β. The amyloid-β hypothesis ascribes just neurotoxicity properties through build-up of soluble homomeric amyloidoligomers or fibrillar deposits. Apolipoprotein-ε4 (APOE4) allele is the only confirmed genetic risk factor of sporadic Alzheimer's disease; once more it is unclear how it increases the risk of Alzheimer's disease. Similarly, central cholinergic signalling is affected selectively and early in the Alzheimer's disease brain, again why cholinergic neurons show this sensitivity is still unclear. However, the three main known Alzheimer's disease risk factors, advancing age, female gender and APOE4, have been linked to a high apolipoprotein-E and accumulation of the acetylcholine degrading enzyme, butyrylcholinesterase in cerebrospinal fluids of patients. Furthermore, numerous reports indicate that amyloid-β interacts with butyrylcholinesterase and apolipoprotein-E. We have proposed that this interaction leads to formation of soluble ultrareactive acetylcholine-hydrolyzing complexes termed BAβACs, to adjust at demand both synaptic and extracellular acetylcholine signalling. This hypothesis predicted presence of acetylcholine-synthesizing enzyme, choline acetyltransferase in extracellular fluids to allow maintenance of equilibrium between breakdown and synthesis of acetylcholine through continuous in situ syntheses. A recent proof-of-concept study led to the discovery of this enzyme in the human extracellular fluids. We report here that apolipoprotein-E, in particular ε4 isoprotein acts as one of the strongest endogenous anti-amyloid-β fibrillization agents reported in the literature. At biological concentrations, apolipoprotein-E prevented amyloid-β fibrillization for at least 65 h. We show that amyloid

  18. Amyloid-β peptides act as allosteric modulators of cholinergic signalling through formation of soluble BAβACs

    PubMed Central

    Kumar, Rajnish; Nordberg, Agneta

    2016-01-01

    Amyloid-β peptides, through highly sophisticated enzymatic machinery, are universally produced and released in an action potential synchronized manner into the interstitial fluids in the brain. Yet no native functions are attributed to amyloid-β. The amyloid-β hypothesis ascribes just neurotoxicity properties through build-up of soluble homomeric amyloidoligomers or fibrillar deposits. Apolipoprotein-ε4 (APOE4) allele is the only confirmed genetic risk factor of sporadic Alzheimer’s disease; once more it is unclear how it increases the risk of Alzheimer’s disease. Similarly, central cholinergic signalling is affected selectively and early in the Alzheimer’s disease brain, again why cholinergic neurons show this sensitivity is still unclear. However, the three main known Alzheimer’s disease risk factors, advancing age, female gender and APOE4, have been linked to a high apolipoprotein-E and accumulation of the acetylcholine degrading enzyme, butyrylcholinesterase in cerebrospinal fluids of patients. Furthermore, numerous reports indicate that amyloid-β interacts with butyrylcholinesterase and apolipoprotein-E. We have proposed that this interaction leads to formation of soluble ultrareactive acetylcholine-hydrolyzing complexes termed BAβACs, to adjust at demand both synaptic and extracellular acetylcholine signalling. This hypothesis predicted presence of acetylcholine-synthesizing enzyme, choline acetyltransferase in extracellular fluids to allow maintenance of equilibrium between breakdown and synthesis of acetylcholine through continuous in situ syntheses. A recent proof-of-concept study led to the discovery of this enzyme in the human extracellular fluids. We report here that apolipoprotein-E, in particular ε4 isoprotein acts as one of the strongest endogenous anti-amyloid-β fibrillization agents reported in the literature. At biological concentrations, apolipoprotein-E prevented amyloid-β fibrillization for at least 65 h. We show that

  19. Hydrodynamic effects on β-amyloid (16-22) peptide aggregation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chiricotto, Mara; Melchionna, Simone; Derreumaux, Philippe; Sterpone, Fabio

    2016-07-01

    Computer simulations based on simplified representations are routinely used to explore the early steps of amyloid aggregation. However, when protein models with implicit solvent are employed, these simulations miss the effect of solvent induced correlations on the aggregation kinetics and lifetimes of metastable states. In this work, we apply the multi-scale Lattice Boltzmann Molecular Dynamics technique (LBMD) to investigate the initial aggregation phases of the amyloid Aβ16-22 peptide. LBMD includes