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Sample records for oligomers neurotoxicity providing

  1. Pramipexole prevents neurotoxicity induced by oligomers of beta-amyloid.

    PubMed

    Uberti, Daniela; Bianchi, Irene; Olivari, Luca; Ferrari-Toninelli, Giulia; Canonico, PierLuigi; Memo, Maurizio

    2007-08-27

    Here we demonstrate that pramipexole, an antiparkinsonian dopamine receptor agonist drug, exerts neuroprotective effects against beta-amyloid neurotoxicity. Using a specific protocol to test individually oligomers, fibrils, or unaggregated amyloid beta-peptide, we found pramipexole able to protect cells against oligomers and fibrils. Unaggregated amyloid beta-peptide was found unable to cause cell death. Fibrils and oligomers were also found to produce elevated amount of free radicals, and this effect was prevented by pramipexole. We propose pramipexole may become in the future a coadjuvant in the treatment of neuropathologies, besides Parkinson's disease, where amyloid beta-peptide-mediated oxidative injury exerts a relevant role.

  2. Size-dependent neurotoxicity of β-amyloid oligomers

    PubMed Central

    Cizas, Paulius; Budvytyte, Rima; Morkuniene, Ramune; Moldovan, Radu; Broccio, Matteo; Lösche, Mathias; Niaura, Gediminas; Valincius, Gintaras; Borutaite, Vilmante

    2010-01-01

    The link between the size of soluble amyloid β (Aβ) oligomers and their toxicity to rat cerebellar granule cells (CGC) was investigated. Variation in conditions during in vitro oligomerization of Aβ1-42 resulted in peptide assemblies with different particle size as measured by atomic force microscopy and confirmed by the dynamic light scattering and fluorescence correlation spectroscopy. Small oligomers of Aβ1-42 with a mean particle z-height of 1-2 nm exhibited propensity to bind to the phospholipid vesicles and they were the most toxic species that induced rapid neuronal necrosis at submicromolar concentrations whereas the bigger aggregates (z-height above 4-5 nm) did not bind vesicles and did not cause detectable neuronal death. Similar neurotoxic pattern was also observed in primary cultures of cortex neurons whereas Aβ1–42 oligomers, monomers and fibrils were non-toxic to glial cells in CGC cultures or macrophage J774 cells. However, both oligomeric forms of Aβ1-42 induced reduction of neuronal cell densities in the CGC cultures. PMID:20153288

  3. Size-dependent neurotoxicity of beta-amyloid oligomers.

    PubMed

    Cizas, Paulius; Budvytyte, Rima; Morkuniene, Ramune; Moldovan, Radu; Broccio, Matteo; Lösche, Mathias; Niaura, Gediminas; Valincius, Gintaras; Borutaite, Vilmante

    2010-04-15

    The link between the size of soluble amyloid beta (Abeta) oligomers and their toxicity to rat cerebellar granule cells (CGC) was investigated. Variation in conditions during in vitro oligomerization of Abeta(1-42) resulted in peptide assemblies with different particle size as measured by atomic force microscopy and confirmed by dynamic light scattering and fluorescence correlation spectroscopy. Small oligomers of Abeta(1-42) with a mean particle z-height of 1-2 nm exhibited propensity to bind to phospholipid vesicles and they were the most toxic species that induced rapid neuronal necrosis at submicromolar concentrations whereas the bigger aggregates (z-height above 4-5 nm) did not bind vesicles and did not cause detectable neuronal death. A similar neurotoxic pattern was also observed in primary cultures of cortex neurons whereas Abeta(1-42) oligomers, monomers and fibrils were non-toxic to glial cells in CGC cultures or macrophage J774 cells. However, both oligomeric forms of Abeta(1-42) induced reduction of neuronal cell densities in the CGC cultures.

  4. Elucidating molecular mass and shape of a neurotoxicoligomer.

    PubMed

    Sebollela, Adriano; Mustata, Gina-Mirela; Luo, Kevin; Velasco, Pauline T; Viola, Kirsten L; Cline, Erika N; Shekhawat, Gajendra S; Wilcox, Kyle C; Dravid, Vinayak P; Klein, William L

    2014-12-17

    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.

  5. 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

  6. 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

  7. Neurotoxicity and memory deficits induced by soluble low-molecular-weight amyloid-β1-42 oligomers are revealed in vivo by using a novel animal model.

    PubMed

    Brouillette, Jonathan; Caillierez, Raphaëlle; Zommer, Nadège; Alves-Pires, Claire; Benilova, Iryna; Blum, David; De Strooper, Bart; Buée, Luc

    2012-06-06

    Neuronal and synaptic degeneration are the best pathological correlates for memory decline in Alzheimer's disease (AD). Although the accumulation of soluble low-molecular-weight amyloid-β (Aβ) oligomers has been suggested to trigger neurodegeneration in AD, animal models overexpressing or infused with Aβ lack neuronal loss at the onset of memory deficits. Using a novel in vivo approach, we found that repeated hippocampal injections of small soluble Aβ(1-42) oligomers in awake, freely moving mice were able to induce marked neuronal loss, tau hyperphosphorylation, and deficits in hippocampus-dependent memory. The neurotoxicity of small Aβ(1-42) species was observed in vivo as well as in vitro in association with increased caspase-3 activity and reduced levels of the NMDA receptor subunit NR2B. We found that the sequestering agent transthyretin is able to bind the toxic Aβ(1-42) species and attenuated the loss of neurons and memory deficits. Our novel mouse model provides evidence that small, soluble Aβ(1-42) oligomers are able to induce extensive neuronal loss in vivo and initiate a cascade of events that mimic the key neuropathological hallmarks of AD.

  8. Lysosomal Enzyme Glucocerebrosidase Protects against Aβ1-42 Oligomer-Induced Neurotoxicity

    PubMed Central

    Kam, Tae-In; Yun, Seungpil; Kim, Sangjune; Park, Hyejin; Hwang, Heehong; Pletnikova, Olga; Troncoso, Juan C.; Dawson, Valina L.; Dawson, Ted M.; Ko, Han Seok

    2015-01-01

    Glucocerebrosidase (GCase) functions as a lysosomal enzyme and its mutations are known to be related to many neurodegenerative diseases, including Gaucher’s disease (GD), Parkinson’s disease (PD), and Dementia with Lewy Bodies (DLB). However, there is little information about the role of GCase in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Here we demonstrate that GCase protein levels and enzyme activity are significantly decreased in sporadic AD. Moreover, Aβ1–42 oligomer treatment results in neuronal cell death that is concomitant with decreased GCase protein levels and enzyme activity, as well as impairment in lysosomal biogenesis and acidification. Importantly, overexpression of GCase promotes the lysosomal degradation of Aβ1–42 oligomers, restores the lysosomal impairment, and protects against the toxicity in neurons treated with Aβ1–42 oligomers. Our findings indicate that a deficiency of GCase could be involved in progression of AD pathology and suggest that augmentation of GCase activity may be a potential therapeutic option for the treatment of AD. PMID:26629917

  9. Ethoxyquin provides neuroprotection against cisplatin-induced neurotoxicity

    PubMed Central

    Zhu, Jing; Carozzi, Valentina Alda; Reed, Nicole; Mi, Ruifa; Marmiroli, Paola; Cavaletti, Guido; Hoke, Ahmet

    2016-01-01

    Ethoxyquin was recently identified as a neuroprotective compound against toxic neuropathies and efficacy was demonstrated against paclitaxel-induced neurotoxicity in vivo. In this study we examined the efficacy of ethoxyquin in preventing neurotoxicity of cisplatin in rodent models of chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy and explored its mechanism of action. Ethoxyquin prevented neurotoxicity of cisplatin in vitro in a sensory neuronal cell line and primary rat dorsal root ganglion neurons. In vivo, chronic co-administration of ethoxyquin partially abrogated cisplatin-induced behavioral, electrophysiological and morphological abnormalities. Furthermore, ethoxyquin did not interfere with cisplatin’s ability to induce tumor cell death in ovarian cancer cell line in vitro and in vivo. Finally, ethoxyquin reduced the levels of two client proteins (SF3B2 and ataxin-2) of a chaperone protein, heat shock protein 90 (Hsp90) when co-administered with cisplatin in vitro. These results implied that the neuroprotective effect of ethoxyquin is mediated through these two client proteins of Hsp90. In fact, reducing levels of SF3B2 in tissue-cultured neurons was effective against neurotoxicity of cisplatin. These findings suggest that ethoxyquin or other compounds that inhibit chaperone activity of Hsp90 and reduce levels of its client protein, SF3B2 may be developed as an adjuvant therapy to prevent neurotoxicity in cisplatin-based chemotherapy protocols. PMID:27350330

  10. Validation and Characterization of a Novel Peptide That Binds Monomeric and Aggregated β-Amyloid and Inhibits the Formation of Neurotoxic Oligomers*

    PubMed Central

    Barr, Renae K.; Verdile, Giuseppe; Wijaya, Linda K.; Morici, Michael; Taddei, Kevin; Gupta, Veer B.; Pedrini, Steve; Jin, Liang; Nicolazzo, Joseph A.; Knock, Erin; Fraser, Paul E.; Martins, Ralph N.

    2016-01-01

    Although the formation of β-amyloid (Aβ) deposits in the brain is a hallmark of Alzheimer disease (AD), the soluble oligomers rather than the mature amyloid fibrils most likely contribute to Aβ toxicity and neurodegeneration. Thus, the discovery of agents targeting soluble Aβ oligomers is highly desirable for early diagnosis prior to the manifestation of a clinical AD phenotype and also more effective therapies. We have previously reported that a novel 15-amino acid peptide (15-mer), isolated via phage display screening, targeted Aβ and attenuated its neurotoxicity (Taddei, K., Laws, S. M., Verdile, G., Munns, S., D'Costa, K., Harvey, A. R., Martins, I. J., Hill, F., Levy, E., Shaw, J. E., and Martins, R. N. (2010) Neurobiol. Aging 31, 203–214). The aim of the current study was to generate and biochemically characterize analogues of this peptide with improved stability and therapeutic potential. We demonstrated that a stable analogue of the 15-amino acid peptide (15M S.A.) retained the activity and potency of the parent peptide and demonstrated improved proteolytic resistance in vitro (stable to t = 300 min, c.f. t = 30 min for the parent peptide). This candidate reduced the formation of soluble Aβ42 oligomers, with the concurrent generation of non-toxic, insoluble aggregates measuring up to 25–30 nm diameter as determined by atomic force microscopy. The 15M S.A. candidate directly interacted with oligomeric Aβ42, as shown by coimmunoprecipitation and surface plasmon resonance/Biacore analysis, with an affinity in the low micromolar range. Furthermore, this peptide bound fibrillar Aβ42 and also stained plaques ex vivo in brain tissue from AD model mice. Given its multifaceted ability to target monomeric and aggregated Aβ42 species, this candidate holds promise for novel preclinical AD imaging and therapeutic strategies. PMID:26538562

  11. Seeding induced by alpha-synuclein oligomers provides evidence for spreading of alpha-synuclein pathology.

    PubMed

    Danzer, Karin M; Krebs, Simon K; Wolff, Michael; Birk, Gerald; Hengerer, Bastian

    2009-10-01

    Lewy bodies, alpha-synuclein (alpha-syn) immunopositive intracellular deposits, are the pathological hallmark of Parkinson's disease (PD). Interestingly, Lewybody-like structures have been identified in fetal tissue grafts about one decade after transplantation into the striatum of PD patients. One possible explanation for the accelerated deposition of alpha-syn in the graft is that the aggregation of alpha-syn from the host tissue to the graft is spread by a prion disease-like mechanism. We discuss here an in vitro model which might recapitulate some aspects of disease propagation in PD. We found here that in vitro-generated alpha-syn oligomers induce transmembrane seeding of alpha-syn aggregation in a dose- and time-dependent manner. This effect was observed in primary neuronal cultures as well as in neuronal cell lines. The seeding oligomers were characterized by a distinctive lithium dodecyl sulfate-stable oligomer pattern and could be generated in a dynamic process out of pore-forming oligomers. We propose that alpha-syn oligomers form as a dynamic mixture of oligomer types with different properties and that alpha-syn oligomers can be converted into different types depending on the brain milieu conditions. Our data indicate that extracellular alpha-syn oligomers can induce intracellular alpha-syn aggregation, therefore we hypothesize that a similar mechanism might lead to alpha-syn pathology propagation.

  12. Regulation of Amyloid β Oligomer Binding to Neurons and Neurotoxicity by the Prion Protein-mGluR5 Complex.

    PubMed

    Beraldo, Flavio H; Ostapchenko, Valeriy G; Caetano, Fabiana A; Guimaraes, Andre L S; Ferretti, Giulia D S; Daude, Nathalie; Bertram, Lisa; Nogueira, Katiane O P C; Silva, Jerson L; Westaway, David; Cashman, Neil R; Martins, Vilma R; Prado, Vania F; Prado, Marco A M

    2016-10-14

    The prion protein (PrP(C)) has been suggested to operate as a scaffold/receptor protein in neurons, participating in both physiological and pathological associated events. PrP(C), laminin, and metabotropic glutamate receptor 5 (mGluR5) form a protein complex on the plasma membrane that can trigger signaling pathways involved in neuronal differentiation. PrP(C) and mGluR5 are co-receptors also for β-amyloid oligomers (AβOs) and have been shown to modulate toxicity and neuronal death in Alzheimer's disease. In the present work, we addressed the potential crosstalk between these two signaling pathways, laminin-PrP(C)-mGluR5 or AβO-PrP(C)-mGluR5, as well as their interplay. Herein, we demonstrated that an existing complex containing PrP(C)-mGluR5 has an important role in AβO binding and activity in neurons. A peptide mimicking the binding site of laminin onto PrP(C) (Ln-γ1) binds to PrP(C) and induces intracellular Ca(2+) increase in neurons via the complex PrP(C)-mGluR5. Ln-γ1 promotes internalization of PrP(C) and mGluR5 and transiently decreases AβO biding to neurons; however, the peptide does not impact AβO toxicity. Given that mGluR5 is critical for toxic signaling by AβOs and in prion diseases, we tested whether mGlur5 knock-out mice would be susceptible to prion infection. Our results show mild, but significant, effects on disease progression, without affecting survival of mice after infection. These results suggest that PrP(C)-mGluR5 form a functional response unit by which multiple ligands can trigger signaling. We propose that trafficking of PrP(C)-mGluR5 may modulate signaling intensity by different PrP(C) ligands.

  13. Crystal structure of the amyloid-β p3 fragment provides a model for oligomer formation in Alzheimer's disease.

    PubMed

    Streltsov, Victor A; Varghese, Joseph N; Masters, Colin L; Nuttall, Stewart D

    2011-01-26

    Alzheimer's disease is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder associated with the presence of amyloid-β (Aβ) peptide fibrillar plaques in the brain. However, current evidence suggests that soluble nonfibrillar Aβ oligomers may be the major drivers of Aβ-mediated synaptic dysfunction. Structural information on these Aβ species has been very limited because of their noncrystalline and unstable nature. Here, we describe a crystal structure of amylogenic residues 18-41 of the Aβ peptide (equivalent to the p3 α/γ-secretase fragment of amyloid precursor protein) presented within the CDR3 loop region of a shark Ig new antigen receptor (IgNAR) single variable domain antibody. The predominant oligomeric species is a tightly associated Aβ dimer, with paired dimers forming a tetramer in the crystal caged within four IgNAR domains, preventing uncontrolled amyloid formation. Our structure correlates with independently observed features of small nonfibrillar Aβ oligomers and reveals conserved elements consistent with residues and motifs predicted as critical in Aβ folding and oligomerization, thus potentially providing a model system for nonfibrillar oligomer formation in Alzheimer's disease.

  14. Radiation inactivation method provides evidence that membrane-bound mitochondrial creatine kinase is an oligomer

    SciTech Connect

    Quemeneur, E.; Eichenberger, D.; Goldschmidt, D.; Vial, C.; Beauregard, G.; Potier, M.

    1988-06-30

    Lyophilized suspensions of rabbit heart mitochondria have been irradiated with varying doses of gamma rays. Mitochondrial creatine kinase activity was inactivated exponentially with a radiation inactivation size of 352 or 377 kDa depending upon the initial medium. These values are in good agreement with the molecular mass previously deduced from by permeation experiments: 357 kDa. This is the first direct evidence showing that the native form of mitochondrial creatine kinase is associated to the inner membrane as an oligomer, very likely an octamer.

  15. t-BHQ Provides Protection against Lead Neurotoxicity via Nrf2/HO-1 Pathway

    PubMed Central

    Ye, Fang; Li, Xiaoyi; Li, Lili; Yuan, Jing; Chen, Jun

    2016-01-01

    The neurotoxicity of lead has been well established, and oxidative stress is strongly associated with lead-induced neurotoxicity. Nrf2 is important for protection against oxidative stress in many disease models. We applied t-BHQ, which is an Nrf2 activator, to investigate the possible role of Nrf2 in the protection against lead neurotoxicity. t-BHQ significantly attenuated the oxidative stress in developmental rats by decreasing MDA level, as well as by increasing SOD activity and GSH content, in the hippocampus and frontal cortex. Furthermore, neuronal apoptosis was detected by Nissl staining, and Bax expression was inhibited in the t-BHQ-treated group. Results showed that t-BHQ suppressed ROS production and caspase 3/7 activity but increased intracellular GSH content, in SH-SY5Y cells under lead exposure. Moreover, in vivo and in vitro, t-BHQ enhanced the nuclear translocation of Nrf2 and binding to ARE areas but did not induce Nrf2 transcription. These phenomena were confirmed using RT-PCR, EMSA, Western blot, and immunofluorescence analyses. Subsequent upregulation of the expression of HO-1, NQO1, and GCLC was observed. However, knockdown of Nrf2 or HO-1 adversely affected the protective effects of t-BHQ against lead toxicity in SH-SY5Y cells. Thus, t-BHQ can protect against lead neurotoxicity, depending on the Nrf2/HO-1 pathway. PMID:26798413

  16. 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.

  17. Direct observation of single amyloid-β(1-40) oligomers on live cells: binding and growth at physiological concentrations.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Robin D; Schauerte, Joseph A; Wisser, Kathleen C; Gafni, Ari; Steel, Duncan G

    2011-01-01

    Understanding how amyloid-β peptide interacts with living cells on a molecular level is critical to development of targeted treatments for Alzheimer's disease. Evidence that oligomeric Aβ interacts with neuronal cell membranes has been provided, but the mechanism by which membrane binding occurs and the exact stoichiometry of the neurotoxic aggregates remain elusive. Physiologically relevant experimentation is hindered by the high Aβ concentrations required for most biochemical analyses, the metastable nature of Aβ aggregates, and the complex variety of Aβ species present under physiological conditions. Here we use single molecule microscopy to overcome these challenges, presenting direct optical evidence that small Aβ(1-40) oligomers bind to living neuroblastoma cells at physiological Aβ concentrations. Single particle fluorescence intensity measurements indicate that cell-bound Aβ species range in size from monomers to hexamers and greater, with the majority of bound oligomers falling in the dimer-to-tetramer range. Furthermore, while low-molecular weight oligomeric species do form in solution, the membrane-bound oligomer size distribution is shifted towards larger aggregates, indicating either that bound Aβ oligomers can rapidly increase in size or that these oligomers cluster at specific sites on the membrane. Calcium indicator studies demonstrate that small oligomer binding at physiological concentrations induces only mild, sporadic calcium leakage. These findings support the hypothesis that small oligomers are the primary Aβ species that interact with neurons at physiological concentrations.

  18. Ellagic acid promotes A{beta}42 fibrillization and inhibits A{beta}42-induced neurotoxicity

    SciTech Connect

    Feng, Ying; Yang, Shi-gao; Du, Xue-ting; Zhang, Xi; Sun, Xiao-xia; Zhao, Min; Sun, Gui-yuan; Liu, Rui-tian

    2009-12-25

    Smaller, soluble oligomers of {beta}-amyloid (A{beta}) play a critical role in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Selective inhibition of A{beta} oligomer formation provides an optimum target for AD therapy. Some polyphenols have potent anti-amyloidogenic activities and protect against A{beta} neurotoxicity. Here, we tested the effects of ellagic acid (EA), a polyphenolic compound, on A{beta}42 aggregation and neurotoxicity in vitro. EA promoted A{beta} fibril formation and significant oligomer loss, contrary to previous results that polyphenols inhibited A{beta} aggregation. The results of transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and Western blot displayed more fibrils in A{beta}42 samples co-incubated with EA in earlier phases of aggregation. Consistent with the hypothesis that plaque formation may represent a protective mechanism in which the body sequesters toxic A{beta} aggregates to render them harmless, our MTT results showed that EA could significantly reduce A{beta}42-induced neurotoxicity toward SH-SY5Y cells. Taken together, our results suggest that EA, an active ingredient in many fruits and nuts, may have therapeutic potential in AD.

  19. Near-planar Solution Structures of Mannose-binding Lectin Oligomers Provide Insight on Activation of Lectin Pathway of Complement

    PubMed Central

    Miller, Ami; Phillips, Anna; Gor, Jayesh; Wallis, Russell; Perkins, Stephen J.

    2012-01-01

    The complement system is a fundamental component of innate immunity that orchestrates complex immunological and inflammatory processes. Complement comprises over 30 proteins that eliminate invading microorganisms while maintaining host cell integrity. Protein-carbohydrate interactions play critical roles in both the activation and regulation of complement. Mannose-binding lectin (MBL) activates the lectin pathway of complement via the recognition of sugar arrays on pathogenic surfaces. To determine the solution structure of MBL, synchrotron x-ray scattering and analytical ultracentrifugation experiments showed that the carbohydrate-recognition domains in the MBL dimer, trimer, and tetramer are positioned close to each other in near-planar fan-like structures. These data were subjected to constrained modeling fits. A bent structure for the MBL monomer was identified starting from two crystal structures for its carbohydrate-recognition domain and its triple helical region. The MBL monomer structure was used to identify 10–12 near-planar solution structures for each of the MBL dimers, trimers, and tetramers starting from 900 to 6,859 randomized structures for each. These near-planar fan-like solution structures joined at an N-terminal hub clarified how the carbohydrate-recognition domain of MBL binds to pathogenic surfaces. They also provided insight on how MBL presents a structural template for the binding and auto-activation of the MBL-associated serine proteases to initiate the lectin pathway of complement activation. PMID:22167201

  20. Acrylamide neurotoxicity.

    PubMed

    Erkekoglu, Pinar; Baydar, Terken

    2014-02-01

    Acrylamide, a food contaminant, belongs to a large class of structurally similar toxic chemicals, 'type-2 alkenes', to which humans are widely exposed. Besides, occupational exposure to acrylamide has received wide attention through the last decades. It is classified as a neurotoxin and there are three important hypothesis considering acrylamide neurotoxicity: inhibition of kinesin-based fast axonal transport, alteration of neurotransmitter levels, and direct inhibition of neurotransmission. While many researchers believe that exposure of humans to relatively low levels of acrylamide in the diet will not result in clinical neuropathy, some neurotoxicologists are concerned about the potential for its cumulative neurotoxicity. It has been shown in several studies that the same neurotoxic effects can be observed at low and high doses of acrylamide, with the low doses simply requiring longer exposures. This review is focused on the neurotoxicity of acrylamide and its possible outcomes.

  1. Structural differences between Abeta(1-40) intermediate oligomers and fibrils elucidated by proteolytic fragmentation and hydrogen/deuterium exchange.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Aming; Qi, Wei; Good, Theresa A; Fernandez, Erik J

    2009-02-01

    The aggregation of amyloid-beta protein (Abeta) in vivo is a critical pathological event in Alzheimer's disease. Although more and more evidence shows that the intermediate oligomers are the primary neurotoxic species in Alzheimer's disease, the particular structural features responsible for the toxicity of these intermediates are poorly understood. We measured the peptide level solvent accessibility of multiple Abeta(1-40) aggregated states using hydrogen exchange detected by mass spectrometry. A gradual reduction in solvent accessibility, spreading from the C-terminal region to the N-terminal region was observed with ever more aggregated states of Abeta peptide. The observed hydrogen exchange protection begins with reporter peptides 20-34 and 35-40 in low molecular weight oligomers found in fresh samples and culminates with increasing solvent protection of reporter peptide 1-16 in long time aged fibrillar species. The more solvent exposed structure of intermediate oligomers in the N-termini relative to well-developed fibrils provides a novel explanation for the structure-dependent neurotoxicity of soluble oligomers reported previously.

  2. 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.

  3. Unique copper-induced oligomers mediate alpha-synuclein toxicity.

    PubMed

    Wright, Josephine A; Wang, Xiaoyan; Brown, David R

    2009-08-01

    Parkinson's disease and a number of other neurodegenerative diseases have been linked to either genetic mutations in the alpha-synuclein gene or show evidence of aggregates of the alpha-synuclein protein, sometimes in the form of Lewy bodies. There currently is no clear evidence of a distinct neurotoxic species of alpha-synuclein to explain the death of neurons in these diseases. We undertook to assess the toxicity of alpha-synuclein via exogenous application in cell culture. Initially, we showed that only aggregated alpha-synuclein is neurotoxic and requires the presence copper but not iron. Other members of the synuclein family showed no toxicity in any form and inherited point mutations did not alter the effective toxic concentration of alpha-synuclein. Through protein fractionation techniques, we were able to isolate an oligomeric species responsible for the toxicity of alpha-synuclein. This oligomeric species has a unique stellate appearance under EM and again, requires association with copper to induce cell death. The results allow us to suggest that the toxic species of alpha-synuclein in vivo could possibly be these stellate oligomers and not fibrils. Our data provide a link between the recently noted association of copper and alpha-synuclein and a potential role for the combination in causing neurodegeneration.

  4. Acetyl-L-carnitine provides effective in vivo neuroprotection over 3,4-methylenedioximethamphetamine-induced mitochondrial neurotoxicity in the adolescent rat brain.

    PubMed

    Alves, E; Binienda, Z; Carvalho, F; Alves, C J; Fernandes, E; de Lourdes Bastos, M; Tavares, M A; Summavielle, T

    2009-01-23

    3,4-Methylenedioximethamphetamine (MDMA, ecstasy) is a worldwide abused stimulant drug, with persistent neurotoxic effects and high prevalence among adolescents. The massive release of 5-HT from pre-synaptic storage vesicles induced by MDMA followed by monoamine oxidase B (MAO-B) metabolism, significantly increases oxidative stress at the mitochondrial level. l-Carnitine and its ester, acetyl-l-carnitine (ALC), facilitate the transport of long chain free fatty acids across the mitochondrial membrane enhancing neuronal anti-oxidative defense. Here, we show the potential of ALC against the neurotoxic effects of MDMA exposure. Adolescent male Wistar rats were assigned to four groups: control saline solution, isovolumetric to the MDMA solution, administered i.p.; MDMA (4x10 mg/kg MDMA, i.p.); ALC/MDMA (100 mg/kg 30 min of ALC prior to MDMA, i.p.) and ALC (100 mg/kg, i.p.). Rats were killed 2 weeks after exposure and brains were analyzed for lipid peroxidation, carbonyl formation, mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) deletion and altered expression of the DNA-encoded subunits of the mitochondrial complexes I (NADH dehydrogenase, NDII) and IV (cytochrome c oxidase, COXI) from the respiratory chain. Levels of 5-HT and 5-hydroxyindoleacetic acid (5-HIAA) were also assessed. The present work is the first to successfully demonstrate that pretreatment with ALC exerts effective neuroprotection against the MDMA-induced neurotoxicity at the mitochondrial level, reducing carbonyl formation, decreasing mtDNA deletion, improving the expression of the respiratory chain components and preventing the decrease of 5-HT levels in several regions of the rat brain. These results indicate potential benefits of ALC application in the prevention and treatment of neurodegenerative disorders.

  5. Capping of Aβ42 Oligomers by Small Molecule Inhibitors

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Aβ42 peptides associate into soluble oligomers and protofibrils in the process of forming the amyloid fibrils associated with Alzheimer’s disease. The oligomers have been reported to be more toxic to neurons than fibrils, and have been targeted by a wide range of small molecule and peptide inhibitors. With single touch atomic force microscopy (AFM), we show that monomeric Aβ42 forms two distinct types of oligomers, low molecular weight (MW) oligomers with heights of 1–2 nm and high MW oligomers with heights of 3–5 nm. In both cases, the oligomers are disc-shaped with diameters of ∼10–15 nm. The similar diameters suggest that the low MW species stack to form the high MW oligomers. The ability of Aβ42 inhibitors to interact with these oligomers is probed using atomic force microscopy and NMR spectroscopy. We show that curcumin and resveratrol bind to the N-terminus (residues 5–20) of Aβ42 monomers and cap the height of the oligomers that are formed at 1–2 nm. A second class of inhibitors, which includes sulindac sulfide and indomethacin, exhibit very weak interactions across the Aβ42 sequence and do not block the formation of the high MW oligomers. The correlation between N-terminal interactions and capping of the height of the Aβ oligomers provides insights into the mechanism of inhibition and the pathway of Aβ aggregation. PMID:25422864

  6. 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

  7. Optimized Ultrasonic Irradiation Finds Out Ultrastable Aβ1-40 Oligomers.

    PubMed

    Nakajima, Kichitaro; So, Masatomo; Takahashi, Kazuma; Tagawa, Yoh-Ichi; Hirao, Masahiko; Goto, Yuji; Ogi, Hirotsugu

    2017-03-16

    Oligomer species of amyloid β (Aβ) peptides are intensively investigated because of their relevance to Alzheimer's disease (AD), and a stable oligomer will be a cause of AD. In this article, we investigate the structural stability of two representative Aβ1-40 oligomers, which are with and without the β-sheet structure, denoted by β and non-β oligomers, respectively, using optimized ultrasonic irradiation (OUI). Recent studies reveal that OUI significantly accelerates the fibril formation in Aβ1-40 monomers; it is capable of transforming any unstable oligomers into fibrils (the dead-end products) in a short time. First, we find that β oligomers can be produced under high-speed stirring agitation; their β-sheet structures are evaluated by the circular-dichroism spectrum measurement, by the immunoassay using the fibril-specific OC antibody, and by the seeding experiment, showing identical characteristics to those formed in previous reports. Second, we form non-β oligomers in a high-concentration NaCl solution and confirm that they include no β-sheet structure, and they are recognized by the oligomer-specific A11 antibody. Furthermore, we confirm the neurotoxicity of the two types of oligomers using the neural tissue derived from mouse embryonic stem cells. We apply the OUI agitation to the β and non-β oligomers. The non-β oligomers are transformed into the fibrils, indicating that they are intermediate species in the fibrillation pathway. However, the β oligomers are surprisingly unaffected by OUI, indicating their high thermodynamic stability. We conclude that the β oligomers should be the independent dead-end products of another pathway, different from the fibrillation pathway.

  8. Monofunctional hyperbranched ethylene oligomers.

    PubMed

    Wiedemann, Thomas; Voit, Gregor; Tchernook, Alexandra; Roesle, Philipp; Göttker-Schnetmann, Inigo; Mecking, Stefan

    2014-02-05

    The neutral κ(2)N,O-salicylaldiminato Ni(II) complexes [κ(2)N,O-{(2,6-(3',5'-R2C6H3)2C6H3-N═C(H)-(3,5-I2-2-O-C6H2)}]NiCH3(pyridine)] (1a-pyr, R = Me; 1b-pyr, R = Et; 1c-pyr, R = iPr) convert ethylene to hyperbranched low-molecular-weight oligomers (Mn ca. 1000 g mol(-1)) with high productivities. While all three catalysts are capable of generating hyperbranched structures, branching densities decrease significantly with the nature of the remote substituent along Me > Et > iPr and oligomer molecular weights increase. Consequently, only 1a-pyr forms hyperbranched structures over a wide range of reaction conditions (ethylene pressure 5-30 atm and 20-70 °C). An in situ catalyst system achieves similar activities and identical highly branched oligomer microstructures, eliminating the bottleneck given by the preparation and isolation of Ni-Me catalyst precursor species. Selective introduction of one primary carboxylic acid ester functional group per highly branched oligoethylene molecule was achieved by isomerizing ethoxycarbonylation and alternatively cross metathesis with ethyl acrylate followed by hydrogenation. The latter approach results in complete functionalization and no essential loss of branched oligomer material and molecular weight, as the reacting double bonds are close to a chain end. Reduction yielded a monoalcohol-functionalized oligomer. Introduction of one reactive epoxide group per branched oligomer occurs completely and selectively under mild conditions. All reaction steps involved in oligomerization and monofunctionalization are efficient and readily scalable.

  9. Polyetherurethane oligomers with aldehyde groups as additives for lubricating oils

    SciTech Connect

    Nikolaev, V.N.; Abramov, E.G.; Tenyushev, A.I.

    1995-01-01

    Polyetherurethane oligomers with aldehyde groups, which we synthesized from polyoxypropylene diols (molecular weight 500, 1000, 1500, 2000, or 3000) with toluene diisocyanate and salicylaldehyde, are of interest as additives for lubricating oils. The effects of these oligomers on the service properties and physicochemical characteristics of lubricating oils were investigated by methods prreviously described. As the lube base stocks we used castor oil, a polyoxypropylene diol and a polyethoxysiloxane. The oligomers are readily soluble in organic solvents and in the lube base stocks, and their solutions are stable during storage and use. We found that the optimal concentration of oligomers is 5%, providing the best lubricating properties, in particular the best antiwear properties.

  10. 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.

  11. Phenotypic screening for developmental neurotoxicity ...

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    There are large numbers of environmental chemicals with little or no available information on their toxicity, including developmental neurotoxicity. Because of the resource-intensive nature of traditional animal tests, high-throughput (HTP) methods that can rapidly evaluate chemicals for the potential to affect the developing brain are being explored. Typically, HTP screening uses biochemical and molecular assays to detect the interaction of a chemical with a known target or molecular initiating event (e.g., the mechanism of action). For developmental neurotoxicity, however, the mechanism(s) is often unknown. Thus, we have developed assays for detecting chemical effects on the key events of neurodevelopment at the cellular level (e.g., proliferation, differentiation, neurite growth, synaptogenesis, network formation). Cell-based assays provide a test system at a level of biological complexity that encompasses many potential neurotoxic mechanisms. For example, phenotypic assessment of neurite outgrowth at the cellular level can detect chemicals that target kinases, ion channels, or esterases at the molecular level. The results from cell-based assays can be placed in a conceptual framework using an Adverse Outcome Pathway (AOP) which links molecular, cellular, and organ level effects with apical measures of developmental neurotoxicity. Testing a wide range of concentrations allows for the distinction between selective effects on neurodevelopmental and non-specific

  12. Functional Diversity of Isoamylase Oligomers: The ISA1 Homo-Oligomer Is Essential for Amylopectin Biosynthesis in Rice Endosperm1[W][OA

    PubMed Central

    Utsumi, Yoshinori; Utsumi, Chikako; Sawada, Takayuki; Fujita, Naoko; Nakamura, Yasunori

    2011-01-01

    Rice (Oryza sativa) endosperm has two isoamylase (ISA) oligomers, ISA1 homo-oligomer and ISA1-ISA2 hetero-oligomer. To examine their contribution to starch synthesis, expression of the ISA1 or ISA2 gene was differently regulated in various transgenic plants. Although suppression of ISA2 gene expression caused the endosperm to have only the homo-oligomer, no significant effects were detected on the starch phenotypes. In contrast, ISA2 overexpression led to endosperm having only the hetero-oligomer, and starch synthesis in the endosperm was drastically impaired, both quantitatively and qualitatively, because the starch was devoid of typical starch features, such as thermal and x-ray diffraction properties, and water-soluble highly branched maltodextrins were accumulated. In the ISA2 overexpressed line, about 60% to 70% of the ISA1-ISA2 hetero-oligomer was bound to starch, while the ISA homo- and hetero-oligomers from the wild type were mostly present in the soluble form at the early milking stage of the endosperm. Detailed analysis of the relative amounts of homo- and hetero-oligomers in various lines also led us to the conclusion that the ISA1 homo-oligomer is essential, but not the ISA1-ISA2 oligomer, for starch production in rice endosperm. The relative amounts of ISA1 and ISA2 proteins were shown to determine the ratio of both oligomers and the stoichiometry of both ISAs in the hetero-oligomer. It was noted when compared with the homo-oligomer that all the hetero-oligomers from rice endosperm and leaf and potato (Solanum tuberosum) tuber were much more stable at 40°C. This study provides substantial data on the structural and functional diversity of ISA oligomers between plant tissues and species. PMID:21436381

  13. Soluble Prion Protein Binds Isolated Low Molecular Weight Amyloid-β Oligomers 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.

  14. Occupational Neurotoxic Diseases in Taiwan

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Chi-Hung; Huang, Chu-Yun

    2012-01-01

    Occupational neurotoxic diseases have become increasingly common in Taiwan due to industrialization. Over the past 40 years, Taiwan has transformed from an agricultural society to an industrial society. The most common neurotoxic diseases also changed from organophosphate poisoning to heavy metal intoxication, and then to organic solvent and semiconductor agent poisoning. The nervous system is particularly vulnerable to toxic agents because of its high metabolic rate. Neurological manifestations may be transient or permanent, and may range from cognitive dysfunction, cerebellar ataxia, Parkinsonism, sensorimotor neuropathy and autonomic dysfunction to neuromuscular junction disorders. This study attempts to provide a review of the major outbreaks of occupational neurotoxins from 1968 to 2012. A total of 16 occupational neurotoxins, including organophosphates, toxic gases, heavy metals, organic solvents, and other toxic chemicals, were reviewed. Peer-reviewed articles related to the electrophysiology, neuroimaging, treatment and long-term follow up of these neurotoxic diseases were also obtained. The heavy metals involved consisted of lead, manganese, organic tin, mercury, arsenic, and thallium. The organic solvents included n-hexane, toluene, mixed solvents and carbon disulfide. Toxic gases such as carbon monoxide, and hydrogen sulfide were also included, along with toxic chemicals including polychlorinated biphenyls, tetramethylammonium hydroxide, organophosphates, and dimethylamine borane. In addition we attempted to correlate these events to the timeline of industrial development in Taiwan. By researching this topic, the hope is that it may help other developing countries to improve industrial hygiene and promote occupational safety and health care during the process of industrialization. PMID:23251841

  15. A Generic Method for Design of Oligomer-Specific Antibodies

    PubMed Central

    Brännström, Kristoffer; Lindhagen-Persson, Malin; Gharibyan, Anna L.; Iakovleva, Irina; Vestling, Monika; Sellin, Mikael E.; Brännström, Thomas; Morozova-Roche, Ludmilla; Forsgren, Lars; Olofsson, Anders

    2014-01-01

    Antibodies that preferentially and specifically target pathological oligomeric protein and peptide assemblies, as opposed to their monomeric and amyloid counterparts, provide therapeutic and diagnostic opportunities for protein misfolding diseases. Unfortunately, the molecular properties associated with oligomer-specific antibodies are not well understood, and this limits targeted design and development. We present here a generic method that enables the design and optimisation of oligomer-specific antibodies. The method takes a two-step approach where discrimination between oligomers and fibrils is first accomplished through identification of cryptic epitopes exclusively buried within the structure of the fibrillar form. The second step discriminates between monomers and oligomers based on differences in avidity. We show here that a simple divalent mode of interaction, as within e.g. the IgG isotype, can increase the binding strength of the antibody up to 1500 times compared to its monovalent counterpart. We expose how the ability to bind oligomers is affected by the monovalent affinity and the turnover rate of the binding and, importantly, also how oligomer specificity is only valid within a specific concentration range. We provide an example of the method by creating and characterising a spectrum of different monoclonal antibodies against both the Aβ peptide and α-synuclein that are associated with Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases, respectively. The approach is however generic, does not require identification of oligomer-specific architectures, and is, in essence, applicable to all polypeptides that form oligomeric and fibrillar assemblies. PMID:24618582

  16. 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

  17. Neurotoxic Shellfish Poisoning

    PubMed Central

    Watkins, Sharon M.; Reich, Andrew; Fleming, Lora E.; Hammond, Roberta

    2008-01-01

    Neurotoxic shellfish poisoning (NSP) is caused by consumption of molluscan shellfish contaminated with brevetoxins primarily produced by the dinoflagellate, Karenia brevis. Blooms of K. brevis, called Florida red tide, occur frequently along the Gulf of Mexico. Many shellfish beds in the US (and other nations) are routinely monitored for presence of K. brevis and other brevetoxin-producing organisms. As a result, few NSP cases are reported annually from the US. However, infrequent larger outbreaks do occur. Cases are usually associated with recreationally-harvested shellfish collected during or post red tide blooms. Brevetoxins are neurotoxins which activate voltage-sensitive sodium channels causing sodium influx and nerve membrane depolarization. No fatalities have been reported, but hospitalizations occur. NSP involves a cluster of gastrointestinal and neurological symptoms: nausea and vomiting, paresthesias of the mouth, lips and tongue as well as distal paresthesias, ataxia, slurred speech and dizziness. Neurological symptoms can progress to partial paralysis; respiratory distress has been recorded. Recent research has implicated new species of harmful algal bloom organisms which produce brevetoxins, identified additional marine species which accumulate brevetoxins, and has provided additional information on the toxicity and analysis of brevetoxins. A review of the known epidemiology and recommendations for improved NSP prevention are presented. PMID:19005578

  18. Role of Prion Protein Aggregation in Neurotoxicity

    PubMed Central

    Corsaro, Alessandro; Thellung, Stefano; Villa, Valentina; Nizzari, Mario; Florio, Tullio

    2012-01-01

    In several neurodegenerative diseases, such as Parkinson, Alzheimer’s, Huntington, and prion diseases, the deposition of aggregated misfolded proteins is believed to be responsible for the neurotoxicity that characterizes these diseases. Prion protein (PrP), the protein responsible of prion diseases, has been deeply studied for the peculiar feature of its misfolded oligomers that are able to propagate within affected brains, inducing the conversion of the natively folded PrP into the pathological conformation. In this review, we summarize the available experimental evidence concerning the relationship between aggregation status of misfolded PrP and neuronal death in the course of prion diseases. In particular, we describe the main findings resulting from the use of different synthetic (mainly PrP106-126) and recombinant PrP-derived peptides, as far as mechanisms of aggregation and amyloid formation, and how these different spatial conformations can affect neuronal death. In particular, most data support the involvement of non-fibrillar oligomers rather than actual amyloid fibers as the determinant of neuronal death. PMID:22942726

  19. Capping of aβ42 oligomers by small molecule inhibitors.

    PubMed

    Fu, Ziao; Aucoin, Darryl; Ahmed, Mahiuddin; Ziliox, Martine; Van Nostrand, William E; Smith, Steven O

    2014-12-23

    Aβ42 peptides associate into soluble oligomers and protofibrils in the process of forming the amyloid fibrils associated with Alzheimer's disease. The oligomers have been reported to be more toxic to neurons than fibrils, and have been targeted by a wide range of small molecule and peptide inhibitors. With single touch atomic force microscopy (AFM), we show that monomeric Aβ42 forms two distinct types of oligomers, low molecular weight (MW) oligomers with heights of 1-2 nm and high MW oligomers with heights of 3-5 nm. In both cases, the oligomers are disc-shaped with diameters of ~10-15 nm. The similar diameters suggest that the low MW species stack to form the high MW oligomers. The ability of Aβ42 inhibitors to interact with these oligomers is probed using atomic force microscopy and NMR spectroscopy. We show that curcumin and resveratrol bind to the N-terminus (residues 5-20) of Aβ42 monomers and cap the height of the oligomers that are formed at 1-2 nm. A second class of inhibitors, which includes sulindac sulfide and indomethacin, exhibit very weak interactions across the Aβ42 sequence and do not block the formation of the high MW oligomers. The correlation between N-terminal interactions and capping of the height of the Aβ oligomers provides insights into the mechanism of inhibition and the pathway of Aβ aggregation.

  20. Single-Molecule Imaging Reveals Aβ42:Aβ40 Ratio-Dependent Oligomer Growth on Neuronal Processes

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, Robin D.; Schauerte, Joseph A.; Chang, Chun-Chieh; Wisser, Kathleen C.; Althaus, John Christian; Carruthers, Cynthia J.L.; Sutton, Michael A.; Steel, Duncan G.; Gafni, Ari

    2013-01-01

    Soluble oligomers of the amyloid-β peptide have been implicated as proximal neurotoxins in Alzheimer’s disease. However, the identity of the neurotoxic aggregate(s) and the mechanisms by which these species induce neuronal dysfunction remain uncertain. Physiologically relevant experimentation is hindered by the low endogenous concentrations of the peptide, the metastability of Aβ oligomers, and the wide range of observed interactions between Aβ and biological membranes. Single-molecule microscopy represents one avenue for overcoming these challenges. Using this technique, we find that Aβ binds to primary rat hippocampal neurons at physiological concentrations. Although amyloid-β(1–40) as well as amyloid-β(1–42) initially form larger oligomers on neurites than on glass slides, a 1:1 mix of the two peptides result in smaller neurite-bound oligomers than those detected on-slide or for either peptide alone. With 1 nM peptide in solution, Aβ40 oligomers do not grow over the course of 48 h, Aβ42 oligomers grow slightly, and oligomers of a 1:1 mix grow substantially. Evidently, small Aβ oligomers are capable of binding to neurons at physiological concentrations and grow at rates dependent on local Aβ42:Aβ40 ratios. These results are intriguing in light of the increased Aβ42:Aβ40 ratios shown to correlate with familial Alzheimer’s disease mutations. PMID:23442968

  1. Current Challenges in Neurotoxicity Risk Assessment ...

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    Neurotoxicity risk assessment must continue to evolve in parallel with advances in basic research. Along with this evolution is an expansion in the scope of neurotoxicity assessments of environmental health risks. Examples of this expansion include an increasing emphasis on complex animal models that better replicate human behavior and a wider array of molecular and mechanistic data relevant to interpreting the underlying cause(s) of toxicity. However, modern neurotoxicology studies are often more nuanced and complicated than traditional studies, and they often vary considerably in evaluation methods from one study to the next, impeding comparisons. This can pose particular difficulties for risk assessors, especially given the recent demand for chemical risk assessments to be more systematic and transparent. This presentation will introduce and provide some examples of specific challenges in neurotoxicity assessments of environmental chemicals. Some of these challenges are relatively new to the field, such as the incorporation of data on neuron-supportive glial cells into hazard characterization, while other challenges have persisted for several decades, but only recently are studies being designed to evaluate them, including analyses of latent neurotoxicity. The examples provided illustrate some future research areas of interest for scientists and risk assessors examining human neurotoxicity risk. This abstract will be presented to internal U.S. Food and Drug A

  2. 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.

  3. Neurotoxicity and Behavior

    EPA Science Inventory

    Neurotoxicity is important to consider as a component of occupational and environmental safety and health programs. The failure to do so has contributed to a number of cases in which workers, consumers of manufactured products, and people exposed in the environment were irreparab...

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. Peripherally administered sera antibodies recognizing amyloid-β oligomers 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

    2016-04-04

    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.

  7. Dopamine-induced α-synuclein oligomers show self- and cross-propagation properties.

    PubMed

    Planchard, Matthew S; Exley, Sarah E; Morgan, Sarah E; Rangachari, Vijayaraghavan

    2014-10-01

    Amyloid aggregates of α-synuclein (αS) protein are the predominant species present within the intracellular inclusions called Lewy bodies in Parkinson's disease (PD) patients. Among various aggregates, the low-molecular weight ones broadly ranging between 2 and 30 mers are known to be the primary neurotoxic agents responsible for the impairment of neuronal function. Recent research has indicated that the neurotransmitter dopamine (DA) is one of the key physiological agents promoting and augmenting αS aggregation, which is thought to be a significant event in PD pathologenesis. Specifically, DA is known to induce the formation of soluble oligomers of αS, which in turn are responsible for inducing several important cellular changes leading to cellular toxicity. In this report, we present the generation, isolation, and biophysical characterization of five different dopamine-derived αS oligomers (DSOs) ranging between 3 and 15 mers, corroborating previously published reports. More importantly, we establish that these DSOs are also capable of replication by self-propagation, which leads to the replication of DSOs upon interaction with αS monomers, a process similar to that observed in mammilian prions. In addition, DSOs are also able to cross-propagate amyloid-β (Aβ) aggregates involved in Alzheimer's disease (AD). Interestingly, while self-propagation of DSOs occur with no net gain in protein structure, cross-propagation proceeds with an overall gain in β-sheet conformation. These results implicate the involvement of DSOs in the progression of PD, and, in part, provide a molecular basis for the observed co-existence of AD-like pathology among PD patients.

  8. Dopamine-induced α-synuclein oligomers show self- and cross-propagation properties

    PubMed Central

    Planchard, Matthew S; Exley, Sarah E; Morgan, Sarah E; Rangachari, Vijayaraghavan

    2014-01-01

    Amyloid aggregates of α-synuclein (αS) protein are the predominant species present within the intracellular inclusions called Lewy bodies in Parkinson’s disease (PD) patients. Among various aggregates, the low-molecular weight ones broadly ranging between 2 and 30 mers are known to be the primary neurotoxic agents responsible for the impairment of neuronal function. Recent research has indicated that the neurotransmitter dopamine (DA) is one of the key physiological agents promoting and augmenting αS aggregation, which is thought to be a significant event in PD pathologenesis. Specifically, DA is known to induce the formation of soluble oligomers of αS, which in turn are responsible for inducing several important cellular changes leading to cellular toxicity. In this report, we present the generation, isolation, and biophysical characterization of five different dopamine-derived αS oligomers (DSOs) ranging between 3 and 15 mers, corroborating previously published reports. More importantly, we establish that these DSOs are also capable of replication by self-propagation, which leads to the replication of DSOs upon interaction with αS monomers, a process similar to that observed in mammilian prions. In addition, DSOs are also able to cross-propagate amyloid-β (Aβ) aggregates involved in Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Interestingly, while self-propagation of DSOs occur with no net gain in protein structure, cross-propagation proceeds with an overall gain in β-sheet conformation. These results implicate the involvement of DSOs in the progression of PD, and, in part, provide a molecular basis for the observed co-existence of AD-like pathology among PD patients. PMID:25044276

  9. Nitric oxide neurotoxicity.

    PubMed

    Dawson, V L; Dawson, T M

    1996-06-01

    Derangements in glutamate neurotransmission have been implicated in several neurodegenerative disorders including, stroke, epilepsy, Huntington's disease, Alzheimer's disease, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). Activation of the N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor subtype of glutamate receptors results in the influx of calcium which binds calmodulin and activates neuronal nitric oxide synthase (nNOS), to convent L-arginine to citrulline and nitric oxide (NO). NO has many roles in the central nervous system as a messenger molecule, however, when generated in excess NO can be neurotoxic. Excess NO is in part responsible for glutamate neurotoxicity in primary neuronal cell culture and in animal models of stroke. It is likely that most of the neurotoxic actions of NO are mediated by peroxynitrite (ONOO-), the reaction product from NO and superoxide anion. In pathologic conditions, peroxynitrite and oxygen free radicals can be generated in excess of a cell antioxidant capacity resulting in severe damage to cellular constituents including proteins, DNA and lipids. The inherent biochemical and physiological characteristics of the brain, including high lipid concentrations and energy requirements, make it particularly susceptible to free radical and oxidant mediated insult. Increasing evidence indicates that many neurologic disorders may have components of free radical and oxidative stress induced injury.

  10. Developmental Neurotoxicology: History and Outline of Developmental Neurotoxicity Study Guidelines.

    EPA Science Inventory

    The present work provides a brief review of basic concepts in developmental neurotoxicology, as well as current representative testing guidelines for evaluating developmental neurotoxicity (DNT) of xenobiotics. Historically, DNT was initially recognized as a “functional” teratoge...

  11. Vesicle permeabilization by purified soluble oligomers of prion protein: a comparative study of the interaction of oligomers and monomers with lipid membranes.

    PubMed

    Chich, J-F; Chapuis, C; Henry, C; Vidic, J; Rezaei, H; Noinville, S

    2010-04-09

    The conversion of normal cellular prion protein (PrP) into its pathological isoform, scrapie PrP, may occur at the cell surface or, more probably, in late endosomes. The early events leading to the structural conversion of PrP appear to be related to the presence of more or less stable soluble oligomers, which might mediate neurotoxicity. In the current study, we investigate the interaction of alpha-rich PrP monomers and beta-rich size-exclusion-chromatography-purified PrP oligomers with lipid membranes. We compare their structural properties when associated with lipid bilayers and study their propensities to permeabilize the membrane at physiological pH. We also study the influence of the N-terminal flexible region (residues 24-103) by comparing full-length PrP(24-234) and N-terminally truncated PrP(104-234) oligomers. We showed that both 12-subunit oligomers cause an immediate and large increase in the permeability of the membrane, whereas equivalent amounts of monomeric forms cause no detectable leakage. Although the two monomeric PrP constructs undergo an alpha-to-beta conformational change when bound to the negatively charged membrane, only the full-length form of monomeric PrP has a weak fusogenic effect. Finally, the oligomers affect the integrity of the membrane differently from the monomers, independently of the presence of the N-terminal flexible domain. As for other forms of amyloidogenesis, a reasonable mechanism for the toxicity arising from PrP fibrillization must be associated with low-molecular-weight oligomeric intermediates, rather than with mature fibrils. Knowledge of the mechanism of action of these soluble oligomers would have a high impact on the development of novel therapeutic targets.

  12. Self-propagative replication of Aβ oligomers suggests potential transmissibility in Alzheimer disease.

    PubMed

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

    2014-01-01

    The aggregation of amyloid-β (Aβ) peptide and its deposition in parts of the brain form the central processes in the etiology of Alzheimer disease (AD). The low-molecular weight oligomers of Aβ aggregates (2 to 30 mers) are known to be the primary neurotoxic agents whose mechanisms of cellular toxicity and synaptic dysfunction have received substantial attention in the recent years. However, how these toxic agents proliferate and induce widespread amyloid deposition throughout the brain, and what mechanism is involved in the amplification and propagation of toxic oligomer species, are far from clear. Emerging evidence based on transgenic mice models indicates a transmissible nature of Aβ aggregates and implicates a prion-like mechanism of oligomer propagation, which manifests as the dissemination and proliferation of Aβ toxicity. Despite accumulating evidence in support of a transmissible nature of Aβ aggregates, a clear, molecular-level understanding of this intriguing mechanism is lacking. Recently, we reported the characterization of unique replicating oligomers of Aβ42 (12-24 mers) in vitro called Large Fatty Acid-derived Oligomers (LFAOs) (Kumar et al., 2012, J. Biol. Chem). In the current report, we establish that LFAOs possess physiological activity by activating NF-κB in human neuroblastoma cells, and determine the experimental parameters that control the efficiency of LFAO replication by self-propagation. These findings constitute the first detailed report on monomer - oligomer lateral propagation reactions that may constitute potential mechanism governing transmissibility among Aβ oligomers. These data support the previous reports on transmissible mechanisms observed in transgenic animal models.

  13. Postsynaptic Receptors for Amyloid-β Oligomers as Mediators of Neuronal Damage in Alzheimer's Disease.

    PubMed

    Dinamarca, Margarita C; Ríos, Juvenal A; Inestrosa, Nibaldo C

    2012-01-01

    The neurotoxic effect of amyloid-β peptide (Aβ) over the central synapses has been described and is reflected in the decrease of some postsynaptic excitatory proteins, the alteration in the number and morphology of the dendritic spines, and a decrease in long-term potentiation. Many studies has been carried out to identify the putative Aβ receptors in neurons, and is still no clear why the Aβ oligomers only affect the excitatory synapses. Aβ oligomers bind to neurite and preferentially to the postsynaptic region, where the postsynaptic protein-95 (PSD-95) is present in the glutamatergic synapse, and interacts directly with the N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR) and neuroligin (NL). NL is a postsynaptic protein which binds to the presynaptic protein, neurexin to form a heterophilic adhesion complex, the disruption of this interaction affects the integrity of the synaptic contact. Structurally, NL has an extracellular domain homolog to acetylcholinesterase, the first synaptic protein that was found to interact with Aβ. In the present review we will document the interaction between Aβ and the extracellular domain of NL-1 at the excitatory synapse, as well as the interaction with other postsynaptic components, including the glutamatergic receptors (NMDA and mGluR5), the prion protein, the neurotrophin receptor, and the α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor. We conclude that several Aβ oligomers receptors exist at the excitatory synapse, which could be the responsible for the neurotoxic effect described for the Aβ oligomers. The characterization of the interaction between Aβ receptors and Aβ oligomers could help to understand the source of the neurologic damage observed in the brain of the Alzheimer's disease patients.

  14. Low-resolution structure of a vesicle disrupting α-synuclein oligomer that accumulates during fibrillation

    PubMed Central

    Giehm, Lise; Svergun, Dmitri I.; Otzen, Daniel E.; Vestergaard, Bente

    2011-01-01

    One of the major hallmarks of Parkinson disease is aggregation of the protein α-synuclein (αSN). Aggregate cytotoxicity has been linked to an oligomeric species formed at early stages in the aggregation process. Here we follow the fibrillation process of αSN in solution over time using small angle X-ray scattering and resolve four major coexisting species in the fibrillation process, namely monomer, dimer, fibril and an oligomer. By ab initio modeling to fit the data, we obtain a low-resolution structure of a symmetrical and slender αSN fibril in solution, consisting of a repeating unit with a maximal distance of 900 Å and a diameter of ∼180 Å. The same approach shows the oligomer to be shaped like a wreath, with a central channel and with dimensions corresponding to the width of the fibril. The structure, accumulation and decay of this oligomer is consistent with an on-pathway role for the oligomer in the fibrillation process. We propose an oligomer-driven αSN fibril formation mechanism, where the fibril is built from the oligomers. The wreath-shaped structure of the oligomer highlights its potential cytotoxicity by simple membrane permeabilization. This is confirmed by the ability of the purified oligomer to disrupt liposomes. Our results provide the first structural description in solution of a potentially cytotoxic oligomer, which accumulates during the fibrillation of αSN. PMID:21300904

  15. Lipid raft disruption protects mature neurons against amyloid oligomer toxicity.

    PubMed

    Malchiodi-Albedi, Fiorella; Contrusciere, Valentina; Raggi, Carla; Fecchi, Katia; Rainaldi, Gabriella; Paradisi, Silvia; Matteucci, Andrea; Santini, Maria Teresa; Sargiacomo, Massimo; Frank, Claudio; Gaudiano, Maria Cristina; Diociaiuti, Marco

    2010-04-01

    A specific neuronal vulnerability to amyloid protein toxicity may account for brain susceptibility to protein misfolding diseases. To investigate this issue, we compared the effects induced by oligomers from salmon calcitonin (sCTOs), a neurotoxic amyloid protein, on cells of different histogenesis: mature and immature primary hippocampal neurons, primary astrocytes, MG63 osteoblasts and NIH-3T3 fibroblasts. In mature neurons, sCTOs increased apoptosis and induced neuritic and synaptic damages similar to those caused by amyloid beta oligomers. Immature neurons and the other cell types showed no cytotoxicity. sCTOs caused cytosolic Ca(2+) rise in mature, but not in immature neurons and the other cell types. Comparison of plasma membrane lipid composition showed that mature neurons had the highest content in lipid rafts, suggesting a key role for them in neuronal vulnerability to sCTOs. Consistently, depletion in gangliosides protected against sCTO toxicity. We hypothesize that the high content in lipid rafts makes mature neurons especially vulnerable to amyloid proteins, as compared to other cell types; this may help explain why the brain is a target organ for amyloid-related diseases.

  16. Environmental neurotoxicity of chemicals and radiation

    SciTech Connect

    Verity, M.A. )

    1993-06-01

    Epidemiologic and societal concerns continue to stimulate studies in the field of environmental neurotoxicology. Although the role of heavy metals, aluminum, and iron are unclear in the etiology of human neurodegenerative disorders, these toxins have provided fertile ground for in vivo and in vitro experimental studies to elucidate their role in neurotoxic injury. Experimental models of clinical syndromes are discussed with special relevance to developmental neurotoxicology. Cycloleucine, tellurium, and 1,3-dinitrobenzene provide models of subacute combined degeneration, primary peripheral nerve demyelination, and thiamine deficiency-like lesions, respectively. Increasing attention is being given to irradiation neurotoxicity, especially in the developing or young central nervous system. A fuller understanding of the pathogenesis of low-dose irradiation injury allows for a clearer understanding of its neurobiology and also provides a more rational approach to understanding an interventional therapy associated with brain irradiation for childhood neoplasia. 43 refs.

  17. 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

  18. 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

  19. Synaptotoxic amyloid-β oligomers: a molecular basis for the cause, diagnosis, and treatment of Alzheimer's disease?

    PubMed

    Klein, William L

    2013-01-01

    The oligomer hypothesis for Alzheimer's disease (AD)was introduced in 1998. It was based on evidence that oligomers could exist free of amyloid fibrils, that fibril-free oligomer solutions rapidly inhibited long term potentiation, and that oligomers ultimately caused a highly selective nerve cell death. Fibrils no longer were the only toxins made by amyloid-β (Aβ), and likely not the most important ones. Oligomers provided a new basis for instigating AD. Since introduction of the hypothesis, more than 1,500 articles on oligomers have been published. Articles for this review were selected for contributions to oligomer theory at three different levels. The first set demonstrated new aspects of oligomer pathobiology in cell models, showing that exposure of neurons to oligomers is sufficient to cause key features of AD neuropathology. The second set confirmed the relationship between oligomers and salient AD neuropathology in animal models, consistent with other in vivo studies that overall have substantiated cell-based discoveries. The third set developed strategies for therapeutic targeting of oligomers, introducing both small molecule and antibody-based approaches. These and related findings from many groups have helped establish oligomers as central to the mechanism of AD pathogenesis. Comprising a ligand-based attack on specific synapses, the action of toxic oligomers gives a molecular basis to account for key features of AD neuropathology and to explain why early disease targets memory. Although there still is no effective treatment for AD, insights over the past five years raise hopes that new approaches targeting Aβ oligomers could finally bring disease-modifying therapeutics.

  20. Neurotoxicity of metals.

    PubMed

    Caito, Samuel; Aschner, Michael

    2015-01-01

    Metals are frequently used in industry and represent a major source of toxin exposure for workers. For this reason governmental agencies regulate the amount of metal exposure permissible for worker safety. While essential metals serve physiologic roles, metals pose significant health risks upon acute and chronic exposure to high levels. The central nervous system is particularly vulnerable to metals. The brain readily accumulates metals, which under physiologic conditions are incorporated into essential metalloproteins required for neuronal health and energy homeostasis. Severe consequences can arise from circumstances of excess essential metals or exposure to toxic nonessential metal. Herein, we discuss sources of occupational metal exposure, metal homeostasis in the human body, susceptibility of the nervous system to metals, detoxification, detection of metals in biologic samples, and chelation therapeutic strategies. The neurologic pathology and physiology following aluminum, arsenic, lead, manganese, mercury, and trimethyltin exposures are highlighted as classic examples of metal-induced neurotoxicity.

  1. Neurotoxicity of organomercurial compounds.

    PubMed

    Sanfeliu, Coral; Sebastià, Jordi; Cristòfol, Rosa; Rodríguez-Farré, Eduard

    2003-01-01

    Mercury is a ubiquitous contaminant, and a range of chemical species is generated by human activity and natural environmental change. Elemental mercury and its inorganic and organic compounds have different toxic properties, but all them are considered hazardous in human exposure. In an equimolecular exposure basis, organomercurials with a short aliphatic chain are the most harmful compounds and they may cause irreversible damage to the nervous system. Methylmercury (CH(3)Hg(+)) is the most studied following the neurotoxic outbreaks identified as Minamata disease and the Iraq poisoning. The first description of the CNS pathology dates from 1954. Since then, the clinical neurology, the neuropathology and the mechanisms of neurotoxicity of organomercurials have been widely studied. The high thiol reactivity of CH(3)Hg(+), as well as all mercury compounds, has been suggested to be the basis of their harmful biological effects. However, there is clear selectivity of CH(3)Hg(+) for specific cell types and brain structures, which is not yet fully understood. The main mechanisms involved are inhibition of protein synthesis, microtubule disruption, increase of intracellular Ca(2+) with disturbance of neurotransmitter function, oxidative stress and triggering of excitotoxicity mechanisms. The effects are more damaging during CNS development, leading to alterations of the structure and functionality of the nervous system. The major source of CH(3)Hg(+) exposure is the consumption of fish and, therefore, its intake is practically unavoidable. The present concern is on the study of the effects of low level exposure to CH(3)Hg(+) on human neurodevelopment, with a view to establishing a safe daily intake. Recommendations are 0.4 micro g/kg body weight/day by the WHO and US FDA and, recently, 0.1 micro g/kg body weight/day by the US EPA. Unfortunately, these levels are easily attained with few meals of fish per week, depending on the source of the fish and its position in the

  2. The slowly aggregating salmon Calcitonin: a useful tool for the study of the amyloid oligomers structure and activity.

    PubMed

    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.

  3. Direct detection of alpha synuclein oligomers in vivo

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Rat models of Parkinson’s disease are widely used to elucidate the mechanisms underlying disease etiology or to investigate therapeutic approaches. Models were developed using toxins such as MPTP or 6-OHDA to specifically target dopaminergic neurons resulting in acute neuronal loss in the substantia nigra or by using viral vectors to induce the specific and gradual expression of alpha synuclein in the substantia nigra. The detection of alpha- synuclein oligomers, the presumed toxic species, in these models and others has been possible using only indirect biochemical approaches to date. Here we coinjected AAVs encoding alpha-synuclein fused to the N- or C-terminal half of VenusYFP in rat substantia nigra pars compacta and describe for the first time a novel viral vector rodent model with the unique ability to directly detect and track alpha synuclein oligomers ex vivo and in vivo. Results Viral coinjection resulted in widespread VenusYFP signal within the nigrostriatal pathway, including cell bodies in the substantia nigra and synaptic accumulation in striatal terminals, suggestive of in vivo alpha-synuclein oligomers formation. Transduced rats showed alpha-synuclein induced dopaminergic neuron loss in the substantia nigra, the appearance of dystrophic neurites, and gliosis in the striatum. Moreover, we have applied in vivo imaging techniques in the living mouse to directly image alpha-synuclein oligomers in the cortex. Conclusion We have developed a unique animal model that provides a tool for the Parkinson’s disease research community with which to directly detect alpha- synuclein oligomers in vivo and screen therapeutic approaches targeting alpha-synuclein oligomers. PMID:24252244

  4. WASP-1, a canonical Wnt signaling potentiator, rescues hippocampal synaptic impairments induced by Aβ oligomers.

    PubMed

    Vargas, Jessica Y; Ahumada, Juan; Arrázola, Macarena S; Fuenzalida, Marco; Inestrosa, Nibaldo C

    2015-02-01

    Amyloid-β (Aβ) oligomers are a key factor in Alzheimer's disease (AD)-associated synaptic dysfunction. Aβ oligomers block the induction of hippocampal long-term potentiation (LTP) in rodents. The activation of Wnt signaling prevents Aβ oligomer-induced neurotoxic effects. The compound WASP-1 (Wnt-activating small molecule potentiator-1), has been described as a synergist of the ligand Wnt-3a, enhancing the activation of Wnt/β-catenin signaling. Herein, we report that WASP-1 administration successfully rescued Aβ-induced synaptic impairments both in vitro and in vivo. The activation of canonical Wnt/β-catenin signaling by WASP-1 increased synaptic transmission and rescued hippocampal LTP impairments induced by Aβ oligomers. Additionally, intra-hippocampal administration of WASP-1 to the double transgenic APPswe/PS1dE9 mouse model of AD prevented synaptic protein loss and reduced tau phosphorylation levels. Moreover, we found that WASP-1 blocked Aβ aggregation in vitro and reduced pathological tau phosphorylation in vivo. These results indicate that targeting canonical Wnt signaling with WASP-1 could have value for treating AD.

  5. 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 neurotoxicoligomers 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.

  6. Structural Insights into Amyloid Oligomers of the Parkinson Disease-related Protein α-Synuclein*

    PubMed Central

    Gallea, J. Ignacio; Celej, M. Soledad

    2014-01-01

    The presence of intraneuronal deposits mainly formed by amyloid fibrils of the presynaptic protein α-synuclein (AS) is a hallmark of Parkinson disease. Currently, neurotoxicity is attributed to prefibrillar oligomeric species rather than the insoluble aggregates, although their mechanisms of toxicity remain elusive. Structural details of the supramolecular organization of AS oligomers are critically needed to decipher the structure-toxicity relationship underlying their pathogenicity. In this study, we employed site-specific fluorescence to get a deeper insight into the internal architecture of AS oligomeric intermediates. We demonstrate that AS oligomers are ordered assemblies possessing a well defined pattern of intermolecular contacts. Some of these contacts involve regions that form the β-sheet core in the fibrillar state, although their spatial arrangement may differ in the two aggregated forms. However, even though the two termini are excluded from the fibrillar core, they are engaged in a number of intermolecular interactions within the oligomer. Therefore, substantial structural remodeling of early oligomeric interactions is essential for fibril growth. The intermolecular contacts identified in AS oligomers can serve as targets for the rational design of anti-amyloid compounds directed at preventing oligomeric interactions/reorganizations. PMID:25143382

  7. In vitro techniques for the assessment of neurotoxicity.

    PubMed Central

    Harry, G J; Billingsley, M; Bruinink, A; Campbell, I L; Classen, W; Dorman, D C; Galli, C; Ray, D; Smith, R A; Tilson, H A

    1998-01-01

    Risk assessment is a process often divided into the following steps: a) hazard identification, b) dose-response assessment, c) exposure assessment, and d) risk characterization. Regulatory toxicity studies usually are aimed at providing data for the first two steps. Human case reports, environmental research, and in vitro studies may also be used to identify or to further characterize a toxic hazard. In this report the strengths and limitations of in vitro techniques are discussed in light of their usefulness to identify neurotoxic hazards, as well as for the subsequent dose-response assessment. Because of the complexity of the nervous system, multiple functions of individual cells, and our limited knowledge of biochemical processes involved in neurotoxicity, it is not known how well any in vitro system would recapitulate the in vivo system. Thus, it would be difficult to design an in vitro test battery to replace in vivo test systems. In vitro systems are well suited to the study of biological processes in a more isolated context and have been most successfully used to elucidate mechanisms of toxicity, identify target cells of neurotoxicity, and delineate the development and intricate cellular changes induced by neurotoxicants. Both biochemical and morphological end points can be used, but many of the end points used can be altered by pharmacological actions as well as toxicity. Therefore, for many of these end points it is difficult or impossible to set a criterion that allows one to differentiate between a pharmacological and a neurotoxic effect. For the process of risk assessment such a discrimination is central. Therefore, end points used to determine potential neurotoxicity of a compound have to be carefully selected and evaluated with respect to their potential to discriminate between an adverse neurotoxic effect and a pharmacologic effect. It is obvious that for in vitro neurotoxicity studies the primary end points that can be used are those affected

  8. Direct PIP2 binding mediates stable oligomer formation of the serotonin transporter

    PubMed Central

    Anderluh, Andreas; Hofmaier, Tina; Klotzsch, Enrico; Kudlacek, Oliver; Stockner, Thomas; Sitte, Harald H.; Schütz, Gerhard J.

    2017-01-01

    The human serotonin transporter (hSERT) mediates uptake of serotonin from the synaptic cleft and thereby terminates serotonergic signalling. We have previously found by single-molecule microscopy that SERT forms stable higher-order oligomers of differing stoichiometry at the plasma membrane of living cells. Here, we report that SERT oligomer assembly at the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) membrane follows a dynamic equilibration process, characterized by rapid exchange of subunits between different oligomers, and by a concentration dependence of the degree of oligomerization. After trafficking to the plasma membrane, however, the SERT stoichiometry is fixed. Stabilization of the oligomeric SERT complexes is mediated by the direct binding to phosphoinositide phosphatidylinositol-4,5-biphosphate (PIP2). The observed spatial decoupling of oligomer formation from the site of oligomer operation provides cells with the ability to define protein quaternary structures independent of protein density at the cell surface. PMID:28102201

  9. Guidelines for Neurotoxicity Risk Assessment

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    These Guidelines set forth principles and procedures to guide EPA scientists in evaluating environmental contaminants that may pose neurotoxic risks, and inform Agency decision makers and the public about these procedures.

  10. INTRACELLULAR SIGNALING AND DEVELOPMENTAL NEUROTOXICITY.

    EPA Science Inventory

    A book chapter in ?Molecular Toxicology: Transcriptional Targets? reviewed the role of intracellular signaling in the developmental neurotoxicity of environmental chemicals. This chapter covered a number of aspects including the development of the nervous system, role of intrace...

  11. [Hyperhomocysteinemia: atherothrombosis and neurotoxicity].

    PubMed

    Fridman, O

    1999-01-01

    The positive correlation existing between hyperhomocyst(e)inemia [HH(e)] and vascular disease has firmly been established through data derived from numerous epidemiological and experimental observations. Clinical data corroborate that homocysteine (Hcy) is an independent risk factor for coronary, cerebral and peripheral arterial occlusive disease or peripheral venous thrombosis. Hcy is a sulfhydryl-containing amino acid that is formed by the demethylation of methionine. It is normally catalyzed to cystathionine by cystathionine beta-synthase a pyridoxal phosphate-dependent enzyme. Hcy is also remethylated to methionine by 5-methyltetrahydrofolate-Hcy methyltransferase (methionine synthase), a vitamin B12 dependent enzyme and by betaine-Hcy methyltransferase. Nutritional status such as vitamin B12, or vitamin B6, or folate deficiencies and genetic defects such as cystathionine beta-synthase or methylene-tetrahydrofolate reductase may contribute to increasing plasma homocysteine levels. The pathogenesis of Hcy-induced vascular damage may be multifactorial, including direct Hcy damage to the endothelium, stimulation of proliferation of smooth muscle cells, enhanced low-density lipoprotein peroxidation, increase of platelet aggregation, and effects on the coagulation system. Besides adverse effects on the endothelium and vessel wall, Hcy exert a toxic action on neuronal cells trough the stimulation of N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptors. Under these conditions, neuronal damage derives from excessive calcium influx and reactive oxygen generation. This mechanism may contribute to the cognitive changes and markedly increased risk of cerebrovascular disease in children and young adults with homocystunuria. Moreover, during stroke, in hiperhomocysteinemic patients, disruption of the blood-brain barrier results in exposure of the brain to near plasma levels of Hcy. The brain is exposed to 15-50 microM H(e). Thus, the neurotoxicity of Hcy acting through the overstimulation

  12. Tissue Plasminogen Activator Neurotoxicity is Neutralized by Recombinant ADAMTS 13

    PubMed Central

    Fan, Mengchen; Xu, Haochen; Wang, Lixiang; Luo, Haiyu; Zhu, Ximin; Cai, Ping; Wei, Lixiang; Lu, Lu; Cao, Yongliang; Ye, Rong; Fan, Wenying; Zhao, Bing-Qiao

    2016-01-01

    Tissue plasminogen activator (tPA) is an effective treatment for ischemic stroke, but its neurotoxicity is a significant problem. Here we tested the hypothesis that recombinant ADAMTS 13 (rADAMTS 13) would reduce tPA neurotoxicity in a mouse model of stroke. We show that treatment with rADAMTS 13 in combination with tPA significantly reduced infarct volume compared with mice treated with tPA alone 48 hours after stroke. The combination treatment significantly improved neurological deficits compared with mice treated with tPA or vehicle alone. These neuroprotective effects were associated with significant reductions in fibrin deposits in ischemic vessels and less severe cell death in ischemic brain. The effect of rADAMTS13 on tPA neurotoxicity was mimicked by the N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor antagonist M-801, and was abolished by injection of NMDA. Moreover, rADAMTS 13 prevents the neurotoxicity effect of tPA, by blocking its interaction with the NMDA receptor NR2B and the attendant phosphorylation of NR2B and activation of ERK1/2. Finally, the NR2B-specific NMDA receptor antagonist ifenprodil abolished tPA neurotoxicity and rADAMTS 13 treatment had no further beneficial effect. Our data suggest that the combination of rADAMTS 13 and tPA may provide a novel treatment of ischemic stroke by diminishing the neurotoxic effects of exogenous tPA. PMID:27181025

  13. A 21st Century Update on Neurotoxicity Risk Assessment ...

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    In 1998, EPA published Guidelines for Neurotoxicity Risk Assessment as the basis for interpreting neurotoxicity results. At that time, the focus was on traditional toxicity testing and human clinical /epidemiological data. More recently, a change in approach to toxicity testing was proposed in “A 21st Century Update on Neurotoxicity Risk Assessment “ (NRC, 2007), stating that traditional toxicity testing was too slow and expensive to develop information on the potential toxicity of the large number of untested chemicals already used in commerce. In addition, new technologies have compounded the problem as new materials, such as engineered nanomaterials, are introduced at a rate exceeding traditional testing capacity. There is currently much effort to develop higher throughput neurotoxicity testing capabilities, especially for developmental neurotoxicity, but there is no general consensus regarding how alternative testing data should be interpreted for neurotoxicity risk assessment. The dependence of critical functions, such as learning, memory or sensory perception, on the operation of integrated neural systems makes the interpretation of data from simple test assays particularly difficult. The concept of Adverse Outcome Pathways (AOP), in which molecular initiating events (MIE) trigger a sequence of steps leading to an adverse outcome, may provide a conceptual framework in which simple alternative testing data indicative of MIEs can be used to predict neur

  14. Counterion condensation on heparin oligomers.

    PubMed

    Minsky, Burcu Baykal; Atmuri, Anand; Kaltashov, Igor A; Dubin, Paul L

    2013-04-08

    The electropherogram of native heparin shows a broad distribution of mobilities μ, which truncates abruptly at a notably high μ = 4.7 × 10(-4) cm(2) V(-1) s(-1). This highly skewed mobility distribution is also found for the 20-saccharide chain, which shows from mass spectrometry a more uniform (symmetrical) with respect to sulfation level. Since a partially degraded heparin exhibits oligomer peaks with μ> 5 × 10(-4) cm(2) V(-1) s(-1) (appearing to escape the limitation of the mobility value for native heparin), we examined the electrophoretic behavior of chain-length monodisperse heparin oligomers. Their mobilities varied inversely with the logarithm of the contour length, L, for L from 3 to 10 nm and reached an asymptotic limit for L > 20 nm. The generality of this effect was indicated by similar behavior for oligomers of poly(styrene sulfonate). A recent theory of polyelectrolyte end effects (Manning, G. S. Macromolecules2008, 41, 6217-6227), in which chain termini exhibit reduced counterion condensation was found to quantitatively account for these results. A qualitative explanation for the anomalously high value of μ of native heparin, 10-20% higher than those seen for synthetic polyelectrolytes of higher linear charge density, is suggested on the basis of similar junction effects (Manning, G. S. Macromolecules2008, 41, 6217-6227), which reduce counterion condensation at the interfaces of regions of high and low sulfation. We suggest that these effects should be considered in models for the biofunctionality of the regulated high and low sulfation (NS/NA) domains of heparan sulfate.

  15. Putative adverse outcome pathways relevant to neurotoxicity

    PubMed Central

    Bal-Price, Anna; Crofton, Kevin M.; Sachana, Magdalini; Shafer, Timothy J.; Behl, Mamta; Forsby, Anna; Hargreaves, Alan; Landesmann, Brigitte; Lein, Pamela J.; Louisse, Jochem; Monnet-Tschudi, Florianne; Paini, Alicia; Rolaki, Alexandra; Schrattenholz, André; Suñol, Cristina; van Thriel, Christoph; Whelan, Maurice; Fritsche, Ellen

    2016-01-01

    The Adverse Outcome Pathway (AOP) framework provides a template that facilitates understanding of complex biological systems and the pathways of toxicity that result in adverse outcomes (AOs). The AOP starts with an molecular initiating event (MIE) in which a chemical interacts with a biological target(s), followed by a sequential series of KEs, which are cellular, anatomical, and/or functional changes in biological processes, that ultimately result in an AO manifest in individual organisms and populations. It has been developed as a tool for a knowledge-based safety assessment that relies on understanding mechanisms of toxicity, rather than simply observing its adverse outcome. A large number of cellular and molecular processes are known to be crucial to proper development and function of the central (CNS) and peripheral nervous systems (PNS). However, there are relatively few examples of well-documented pathways that include causally linked MIEs and KEs that result in adverse outcomes in the CNS or PNS. As a first step in applying the AOP framework to adverse health outcomes associated with exposure to exogenous neurotoxic substances, the EU Reference Laboratory for Alternatives to Animal Testing (EURL ECVAM) organized a workshop (March 2013, Ispra, Italy) to identify potential AOPs relevant to neurotoxic and developmental neurotoxic outcomes. Although the AOPs outlined during the workshop are not fully described, they could serve as a basis for further, more detailed AOP development and evaluation that could be useful to support human health risk assessment in a variety of ways. PMID:25605028

  16. Blood Plasma of Patients with Parkinson's Disease Increases Alpha-Synuclein Aggregation and Neurotoxicity.

    PubMed

    Wang, Peng; Li, Xin; Li, Xuran; Yang, Weiwei; Yu, Shun

    2016-01-01

    A pathological hallmark of Parkinson's disease (PD) is formation of Lewy bodies in neurons of the brain. This has been attributed to the spread of α-synuclein (α-syn) aggregates, which involves release of α-syn from a neuron and its reuptake by a neighboring neuron. We found that treatment with plasma from PD patients induced more α-syn phosphorylation and oligomerization than plasma from normal subjects (NS). Compared with NS plasma, PD plasma added to primary neuron cultures caused more cell death in the presence of extracellular α-syn. This was supported by the observations that phosphorylated α-syn oligomers entered neurons, rapidly increased accumulated thioflavin S-positive inclusions, and induced a series of metabolic changes that included activation of polo-like kinase 2, inhibition of glucocerebrosidase and protein phosphatase 2A, and reduction of ceramide levels, all of which have been shown to promote α-syn phosphorylation and aggregation. We also analyzed neurotoxicity of α-syn oligomers relative to plasma from different patients. Neurotoxicity was not related to age or gender of the patients. However, neurotoxicity was positively correlated with H&Y staging score. The modification in the plasma may promote spreading of α-syn aggregates via an alternative pathway and accelerate progression of PD.

  17. Blood Plasma of Patients with Parkinson's Disease Increases Alpha-Synuclein Aggregation and Neurotoxicity

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Peng; Li, Xin; Li, Xuran; Yang, Weiwei

    2016-01-01

    A pathological hallmark of Parkinson's disease (PD) is formation of Lewy bodies in neurons of the brain. This has been attributed to the spread of α-synuclein (α-syn) aggregates, which involves release of α-syn from a neuron and its reuptake by a neighboring neuron. We found that treatment with plasma from PD patients induced more α-syn phosphorylation and oligomerization than plasma from normal subjects (NS). Compared with NS plasma, PD plasma added to primary neuron cultures caused more cell death in the presence of extracellular α-syn. This was supported by the observations that phosphorylated α-syn oligomers entered neurons, rapidly increased accumulated thioflavin S-positive inclusions, and induced a series of metabolic changes that included activation of polo-like kinase 2, inhibition of glucocerebrosidase and protein phosphatase 2A, and reduction of ceramide levels, all of which have been shown to promote α-syn phosphorylation and aggregation. We also analyzed neurotoxicity of α-syn oligomers relative to plasma from different patients. Neurotoxicity was not related to age or gender of the patients. However, neurotoxicity was positively correlated with H&Y staging score. The modification in the plasma may promote spreading of α-syn aggregates via an alternative pathway and accelerate progression of PD. PMID:27965913

  18. Small angle X-ray scattering analysis of Cu(2+)-induced oligomers of the Alzheimer's amyloid β peptide.

    PubMed

    Ryan, Timothy M; Kirby, Nigel; Mertens, Haydyn D T; Roberts, Blaine; Barnham, Kevin J; Cappai, Roberto; Pham, Chi Le Lan; Masters, Colin L; Curtain, Cyril C

    2015-03-01

    Research into causes of Alzheimer's disease and its treatment has produced a tantalising array of hypotheses about the role of transition metal dyshomeostasis, many of them on the interaction of these metals with the neurotoxic amyloid-β peptide (Aβ). Here, we have used small angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) to study the effect of the molar ratio, Cu(2+)/Aβ, on the early three-dimensional structures of the Aβ1-40 and Cu(2+)/Aβ1-42 peptides in solution. We found that at molar ratios of 0.5 copper to peptide Aβ1-40 aggregated, while Aβ1-42 adopted a relatively monodisperse cylindrical shape, and at a ratio of 1.5 copper to peptide Aβ1-40 adopted a monodisperse cylindrical shape, while Aβ1-42 adopted the shape of an ellipsoid of rotation. We also found, via in-line rapid mixing SAXS analysis, that both peptides in the absence of copper were monodisperse at very short timeframes (<2 s). Kratky plots of these scattering profiles indicated that immediately after mixing both were intrinsically disordered. Ensemble optimisation modelling reflected this, indicating a wide range of structural conformers. These data reflect the ensembles from which the Cu(2+)-promoted oligomers were derived. Our results are discussed in the light of other studies that have shown that the Cu(2+)/Aβ has a marked effect on fibril and oligomer formation by this peptide, with a higher ratio favouring the formation of cytotoxic non-amyloid oligomers. Our results are relatively consistent with previous two-dimensional studies of the conformations of these Cu(2+)-induced entities, made on a much longer time-scale than SAXS, by transmission electron microscopy and atomic force microscopy, which showed that a range of oligomeric species are formed. We propose that SAXS carried out on a modern synchrotron beamline enables studies on initial events in disordered protein folding on physiologically-relevant time-scales, and will likely provide great insight into the initiating processes of the A

  19. Phenylethynyl Terminated Arylene Ether Oxadiazole and Triazole Oligomers and Their Cured Polymers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Thompson, C. M.; Hergenrother, P. M.

    2001-01-01

    Several novel phenylethynyl terminated arylene ether oligomers containing oxadiazole and triazole rings were prepared as part of an effort to develop high performance polymers with an attractive combination of properties (e.g. processability and mechanical performance) for future NASA applications. The oligomers displayed low melt viscosities and good solubilities. Thin films cast from solutions of the oligomers and cured for one hour at 350 C in air gave good tensile properties. Titanium to titanium (6Al-4V) tensile shear specimens were readily fabricated and provided moderate strengths. The chemistry and properties of these new materials are discussed.

  20. Postsynaptic Receptors for Amyloid-β Oligomers as Mediators of Neuronal Damage in Alzheimer’s Disease

    PubMed Central

    Dinamarca, Margarita C.; Ríos, Juvenal A.; Inestrosa, Nibaldo C.

    2012-01-01

    The neurotoxic effect of amyloid-β peptide (Aβ) over the central synapses has been described and is reflected in the decrease of some postsynaptic excitatory proteins, the alteration in the number and morphology of the dendritic spines, and a decrease in long-term potentiation. Many studies has been carried out to identify the putative Aβ receptors in neurons, and is still no clear why the Aβ oligomers only affect the excitatory synapses. Aβ oligomers bind to neurite and preferentially to the postsynaptic region, where the postsynaptic protein-95 (PSD-95) is present in the glutamatergic synapse, and interacts directly with the N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR) and neuroligin (NL). NL is a postsynaptic protein which binds to the presynaptic protein, neurexin to form a heterophilic adhesion complex, the disruption of this interaction affects the integrity of the synaptic contact. Structurally, NL has an extracellular domain homolog to acetylcholinesterase, the first synaptic protein that was found to interact with Aβ. In the present review we will document the interaction between Aβ and the extracellular domain of NL-1 at the excitatory synapse, as well as the interaction with other postsynaptic components, including the glutamatergic receptors (NMDA and mGluR5), the prion protein, the neurotrophin receptor, and the α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor. We conclude that several Aβ oligomers receptors exist at the excitatory synapse, which could be the responsible for the neurotoxic effect described for the Aβ oligomers. The characterization of the interaction between Aβ receptors and Aβ oligomers could help to understand the source of the neurologic damage observed in the brain of the Alzheimer’s disease patients. PMID:23267328

  1. Computational design of organometallic oligomers featuring 1,3-metal-carbon bonding and planar tetracoordinate carbon atoms.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Xue-Feng; Yuan, Cai-Xia; Wang, Xiang; Li, Jia-Jia; Wu, Yan-Bo; Wang, Xiaotai

    2016-01-15

    Density functional theory computations (B3LYP) have been used to explore the chemistry of titanium-aromatic carbon "edge complexes" with 1,3-metal-carbon (1,3-MC) bonding between Ti and planar tetracoordinate Cβ . The titanium-coordinated, end-capping chlorides are replaced with OH or SH groups to afford two series of difunctional monomers that can undergo condensation to form oxide- and sulfide-bridged oligomers. The sulfide-linked oligomers have less molecular strain and are more exergonic than the corresponding oxide-linked oligomers. The HOMO-LUMO gap of the oligomers varies with their composition and decreases with growing oligomer chain. This theoretical study is intended to enrich 1,3-MC bonding and planar tetracoordinate carbon chemistry and provide interesting ideas to experimentalists. Organometallic complexes with the TiE2 (E = OH and SH) decoration on the edge of aromatic hydrocarbons have been computationally designed, which feature 1,3-metal-carbon (1,3-MC) bonding between titanium and planar tetracoordinate β-carbon. Condensation of these difunctional monomers by eliminating small molecules (H2O and H2S) produce chain-like oligomers. The HOMO-LUMO gaps of the oligomers decreases with growing oligomer chain, a trend that suggests possible semiconductor properties for oligomers with longer chains.

  2. Alpha-Synuclein Oligomers—Neurotoxic Molecules in Parkinson's Disease and Other Lewy Body Disorders

    PubMed Central

    Ingelsson, Martin

    2016-01-01

    Adverse intra- and extracellular effects of toxic α-synuclein are believed to be central to the pathogenesis in Parkinson's disease and other disorders with Lewy body pathology in the nervous system. One of the physiological roles of α-synuclein relates to the regulation of neurotransmitter release at the presynapse, although it is still unclear whether this mechanism depends on the action of monomers or smaller oligomers. As for the pathogenicity, accumulating evidence suggest that prefibrillar species, rather than the deposits per se, are responsible for the toxicity in affected cells. In particular, larger oligomers or protofibrils of α-synuclein have been shown to impair protein degradation as well as the function of several organelles, such as the mitochondria and the endoplasmic reticulum. Accumulating evidence further suggest that oligomers/protofibrils may have a toxic effect on the synapse, which may lead to disrupted electrophysiological properties. In addition, recent data indicate that oligomeric α-synuclein species can spread between cells, either as free-floating proteins or via extracellular vesicles, and thereby act as seeds to propagate disease between interconnected brain regions. Taken together, several lines of evidence suggest that α-synuclein have neurotoxic properties and therefore should be an appropriate molecular target for therapeutic intervention in Parkinson's disease and other disorders with Lewy pathology. In this context, immunotherapy with monoclonal antibodies against α-synuclein oligomers/protofibrils should be a particularly attractive treatment option. PMID:27656123

  3. Stabilization of nontoxic Aβ-oligomers: insights into the mechanism of action of hydroxyquinolines in Alzheimer's disease.

    PubMed

    Ryan, Timothy M; Roberts, Blaine R; McColl, Gawain; Hare, Dominic J; Doble, Philip A; Li, Qiao-Xin; Lind, Monica; Roberts, Anne M; Mertens, Haydyn D T; Kirby, Nigel; Pham, Chi L L; Hinds, Mark G; Adlard, Paul A; Barnham, Kevin J; Curtain, Cyril C; Masters, Colin L

    2015-02-18

    The extracellular accumulation of amyloid β (Aβ) peptides is characteristic of Alzheimer's disease (AD). However, formation of diffusible, oligomeric forms of Aβ, both on and off pathways to amyloid fibrils, is thought to include neurotoxic species responsible for synaptic loss and neurodegeneration, rather than polymeric amyloid aggregates. The 8-hydroxyquinolines (8-HQ) clioquinol (CQ) and PBT2 were developed for their ability to inhibit metal-mediated generation of reactive oxygen species from Aβ:Cu complexes and have both undergone preclinical and Phase II clinical development for the treatment of AD. Their respective modes of action are not fully understood and may include both inhibition of Aβ fibrillar polymerization and direct depolymerization of existing Aβ fibrils. In the present study, we find that CQ and PBT2 can interact directly with Aβ and affect its propensity to aggregate. Using a combination of biophysical techniques, we demonstrate that, in the presence of these 8-HQs and in the absence of metal ions, Aβ associates with two 8-HQ molecules and forms a dimer. Furthermore, 8-HQ bind Aβ with an affinity of 1-10 μm and suppress the formation of large (>30 kDa) oligomers. The stabilized low molecular weight species are nontoxic. Treatment with 8-HQs also reduces the levels of in vivo soluble oligomers in a Caenorhabditis elegans model of Aβ toxicity. We propose that 8-HQs possess an additional mechanism of action that neutralizes neurotoxicoligomer formation through stabilization of small (dimeric) nontoxic Aβ conformers.

  4. Cadmium and Its Neurotoxic Effects

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Bo; Du, Yanli

    2013-01-01

    Cadmium (Cd) is a heavy metal that has received considerable concern environmentally and occupationally. Cd has a long biological half-life mainly due to its low rate of excretion from the body. Thus, prolonged exposure to Cd will cause toxic effect due to its accumulation over time in a variety of tissues, including kidneys, liver, central nervous system (CNS), and peripheral neuronal systems. Cd can be uptaken from the nasal mucosa or olfactory pathways into the peripheral and central neurons; for the latter, Cd can increase the blood brain barrier (BBB) permeability. However, mechanisms underlying Cd neurotoxicity remain not completely understood. Effect of Cd neurotransmitter, oxidative damage, interaction with other metals such as cobalt and zinc, estrogen-like, effect and epigenetic modification may all be the underlying mechanisms. Here, we review the in vitro and in vivo evidence of neurotoxic effects of Cd. The available finding indicates the neurotoxic effects of Cd that was associated with both biochemical changes of the cell and functional changes of central nervous system, suggesting that neurotoxic effects may play a role in the systemic toxic effects of the exposure to Cd, particularly the long-term exposure. PMID:23997854

  5. Styrene-terminated polysulfone oligomers as matrix material for graphite reinforced composites: An initial study

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Garcia, Dana; Bowles, Kenneth J.; Vannucci, Raymond D.

    1987-01-01

    Styrene terminated polysulfone oligomers are part of an oligomeric class of compounds with end groups capable of thermal polymerization. These materials can be used as matrices for graphite reinforced composites. The initial evaluation of styrene terminated polysulfone oligomer based composites are summarized in terms of fabrication methods, and mechanical and environmental properties. In addition, a description and evaluation is provided of the NASA/Industry Fellowship Program for Technology Transfer.

  6. Amyloid-β oligomers are sequestered by both intracellular and extracellular chaperones

    PubMed Central

    Narayan, Priyanka; Meehan, Sarah; Carver, John A.; Wilson, Mark R.; Dobson, Christopher M.; Klenerman, David

    2016-01-01

    The aberrant aggregation of the amyloid-β peptide into β-sheet rich, fibrillar structures proceeds via a heterogeneous ensemble of oligomeric intermediates that have been associated with neurotoxicity in Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Of particular interest in this context are the mechanisms by which molecular chaperones, part of the primary biological defenses against protein misfolding, influence Aβ aggregation. We have used single-molecule fluorescence techniques to compare the interactions between distinct aggregation states (monomers, oligomers, amyloid fibrils) of the AD-associated amyloid-β(1-40) peptide, and two molecular chaperones, both of which are upregulated in the brains of patients with AD and have been found colocalized with Aβ in senile plaques. One of the chaperones, αB-crystallin, is primarily found inside cells while the other, clusterin, is predominantly located in the extracellular environment. We find that both chaperones bind to misfolded oligomeric species and form long-lived complexes thereby preventing both their further growth into fibrils and their dissociation. From these studies, we conclude that these chaperones have a common mechanism of action based on sequestering Aβ oligomers. This conclusion suggests that these chaperones, both of which are ATP-independent, are able to inhibit potentially pathogenic Aβ oligomer-associated processes whether they occur in the extracellular or intracellular environment. PMID:23106396

  7. Ethynyl-terminated ester oligomers and polymers therefrom

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hergenrother, Paul M. (Inventor); Havens, Stephen J. (Inventor)

    1986-01-01

    A class of ethynyl terminated oligomers and the process for preparing the 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 polyesters are potentially useful in packaging, magnetic tapes, capacitors, industrial belting, protective coatings, structural adhesives and composite matrices.

  8. Does diisocyanate exposure result in neurotoxicity?

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Context Diisocyanates have been associated with respiratory and dermal sensitization. Limited number of case reports, and a few case studies, media, and other references suggest potential neurotoxic effects from exposures to toluene diisocyanate (TDI), 1,6 hexamethylene diisocyanate (HDI), and methylene diisocyanate (MDI). However, a systematic review of the literature evaluating the causal association on humans does not exist to support this alleged association. Objective To perform systematic review examining the body of epidemiologic evidence and provide assessment of causal association based on principles of the Sir Austin Bradford Hill criteria or considerations for causal analysis. Methods A comprehensive search of public databases for published abstracts, case reports, cross-sectional surveys, and cohort studies using key search terms was conducted. Additional searches included regulatory reviews, EU IUCLID and EU Risk Assessment databases, and unpublished reports in the International Isocyanate Institute database. An expert panel consisting of physicians, toxicologists, and an epidemiologist critically reviewed accepted papers, providing examination of epidemiologic evidence of each report. Finally, the Hill criteria for causation were applied to the summative analysis of identified reports to estimate probability of causal association. Results Twelve papers reporting exposed populations with a variety of neurological symptoms or findings suitable for analysis were identified, including eleven case or case series reports, and one cross-sectional study. Three papers reported on the same population. Each of the papers was limited by paucity of diisocyanate exposure estimates, the presence of confounding exposures to known or suspected neurotoxicants, a lack of objective biological measures of exposure or neurotoxic effects, and lack of relative strength of association measures. Additionally, reported health symptoms and syndromes lacked consistency or

  9. Pathogenesis of Abeta oligomers in synaptic failure.

    PubMed

    Sivanesan, Senthilkumar; Tan, Aaron; Rajadas, Jayakumar

    2013-03-01

    The soluble Abeta oligomers in brain are highly correlated with memory related synaptic dysfunctions in Alzheimer's disease (AD). However, more recent studies implicate the involvement of Abeta dimers and trimers in memory related AD pathology. Apparently, Abeta oligomers can bind with cellular prion protein at the membrane receptors, forming annular amyloid pores and membrane ion channels to induce aberrant spine cytoskeletal changes. Hence synapse targeting of Abeta oligomers involves activation of many receptors such as N-Methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA), alpha-amino-3- hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid (AMPA), nicotinic acetylcholine (nAChRs), p75 neurotrophin (p75NTR) following aberrant clustering of metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluR5) leading to neuronal loss and LTP failure. In particular, NMDA and AMPA receptor activation by soluble amyloid oligomers involves calcium mediated mitochondrial dysfunction, decreased Ca((2+))/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (CaMKII) levels at the synapses accompanying dramatic loss of synaptic proteins such as postsynaptic density-95 (PSD-95), dynamin-1 and synaptophysin. This kind of receptor-Abeta oligomer interaction might eventually affect the neuronal membrane integrity by altering dielectric barrier, various synaptic proteins, spine morphology and density and P/Q calcium currents that might provoke a cascade of events leading to neuronal loss and memory failure. In this review, we try to explain in detail the various possible mechanisms that connect Abeta oligomers with synapse damage and memory failure.

  10. Single-Molecule Imaging Reveals that Small Amyloid-β1–42 Oligomers Interact with the Cellular Prion Protein (PrPC)

    PubMed Central

    Ganzinger, Kristina A; Narayan, Priyanka; Qamar, Seema S; Weimann, Laura; Ranasinghe, Rohan T; Aguzzi, Adriano; Dobson, Christopher M; McColl, James; St George-Hyslop, Peter; Klenerman, David

    2014-01-01

    Oligomers of the amyloid-β peptide (Aβ) play a central role in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer’s disease and have been suggested to induce neurotoxicity by binding to a plethora of cell-surface receptors. However, the heterogeneous mixtures of oligomers of varying sizes and conformations formed by Aβ42 have obscured the nature of the oligomeric species that bind to a given receptor. Here, we have used single-molecule imaging to characterize Aβ42 oligomers (oAβ42) and to confirm the controversial interaction of oAβ42 with the cellular prion protein (PrPC) on live neuronal cells. Our results show that, at nanomolar concentrations, oAβ42 interacts with PrPC and that the species bound to PrPC are predominantly small oligomers (dimers and trimers). Single-molecule biophysical studies can thus aid in deciphering the mechanisms that underlie receptor-mediated oAβ-induced neurotoxicity, and ultimately facilitate the discovery of novel inhibitors of these pathways. PMID:25294384

  11. A HRMS study of oligomer formation through aqueous phase photooxidation of methylvinyl-ketone and methacrolein

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salque-moreton, G.; Liu, Y.; Voisin, D.; Siekmann, F.; Renard, P.; Monod, A.; Thissen, R.

    2012-04-01

    Global estimates of secondary organic aerosol (SOA) formation flux show that the current descriptions miss a large fraction of the sources. Aqueous phase photochemistry in cloud droplets and deliquescent aerosol may provide some of this missing flux. Organic reactions in those media, particularly leading to higher molecular weight products thus need better understanding. Here, we investigated the aqueous phase photooxidation of methacrolein (MACR) and methylvinyl-ketone (MVK), which are the two main oxidation products of isoprene, the volatile organic compound (VOC) that is mostly emitted on the global scale. In our experiments, photolysis of H2O2 provided OH radicals whose reaction with MACR or MVK produced oligomers. Firstly, oligomers were analyzed using electrospray ionization coupled with high-resolution linear ion trap Orbitrap™ (Thermo Corp.) mass spectrometer (HRMS). This technique enabled to propose the unambiguous elemental composition of the produced compounds as data were collected for a mass range of m/z 50-2000 amu. The mass of oligomers increased strongly in positive and negative ionization modes when initial concentrations of MACR and MVK were increased from 2 to 20 mM. Typical regular patterns of oligomer formation were observed for both precursors, and extended up to 1400 amu. These patterns were very different from each other for the two precursors although both showed regular mass differences of 70 amu. In addition, we used a Kendrick analysis and identified more than 20 distinct chemical oligomer series produced by photooxidation of both MACR and MVK, some of which reaching more than 1400 amu. The HRMS investigations allowed us to propose a mechanism of production of oligomers. Upon nebulization, both oligomer systems produce SOA with a mass yield of 2-12%. This mass yield increases with reaction time and precursor concentration. Moreover, time evolution of the oligomer systems observed with the Orbitrap will be compared to HR

  12. Oligomers of the amyloid-beta protein disrupt working memory: confirmation with two behavioral procedures.

    PubMed

    Poling, Alan; Morgan-Paisley, Kineta; Panos, John J; Kim, Eun-Mee; O'Hare, Eugene; Cleary, James P; Lesné, Sylvain; Ashe, Karen H; Porritt, Matthew; Baker, Lisa E

    2008-11-21

    Converging lines of evidence suggest that oligomers of amyloid-beta play a role in the cognitive impairment characteristic of Alzheimer's disease, but only three studies have provided experimental evidence of such impairment. To provide additional information about the effects of these oligomers on memory, the present study examined the memory of groups of rats exposed to ICV injections of the culture media (CM) of Chinese Hamster Ovary cells that were (7PA2) and were not (CHO-) transfected with a human mutation of amyloid precursor protein that appears to cause early-onset Alzheimer's disease. The 7PA2 CM, which contained concentrations of soluble amyloid-beta oligomers physiologically relevant to those found in human brain, significantly disrupted working memory in rats tested in a radial-arm maze. In contrast, CHO- CM, which did not contain such oligomers, had no effect on memory. The disruptive effects of 7PA2-derived amyloid-beta oligomers, evident 2h after exposure, disappeared within a day. These findings are compared to results from 7PA2 CM tested under a complex procedure thought to measure aspects of executive function. The results confirm the disruptive effects of low-n amyloid-beta oligomers and extend them to a well-established rat model of memory.

  13. Specific soluble oligomers of amyloid-β peptide undergo replication and form non-fibrillar aggregates in interfacial environments.

    PubMed

    Kumar, Amit; Paslay, Lea C; Lyons, Daniel; Morgan, Sarah E; Correia, John J; Rangachari, Vijayaraghavan

    2012-06-15

    Aggregates of amyloid-β (Aβ) peptides have been implicated in the etiology of Alzheimer disease. Among the different forms of Aβ aggregates, low molecular weight species ranging between ~2- and 50-mers, also called "soluble oligomers," have emerged as the species responsible for early synaptic dysfunction and neuronal loss. Emerging evidence suggests that the neurotoxic oligomers need not be formed along the obligatory nucleation-dependant fibril formation pathway. In our earlier work, we reported the isolation of one such "off-pathway" 12-18-mer species of Aβ42 generated from fatty acids called large fatty acid-derived oligomers (LFAOs) (Kumar, A., Bullard, R. L., Patel, P., Paslay, L. C., Singh, D., Bienkiewicz, E. A., Morgan, S. E., and Rangachari, V. (2011) PLoS One 6, e18759). Here, we report the physiochemical aspects of LFAO-monomer interactions as well as LFAO-LFAO associations in the presence of interfaces. We discovered that LFAOs are a replicating strain of oligomers that recruit Aβ42 monomers and quantitatively convert them into LFAO assemblies at the expense of fibrils, a mechanism similar to prion propagation. We also found that in the presence of hexane-buffer or chloroform-buffer interfaces LFAOs are able to associate with themselves to form larger but non-fibrillar aggregates. These results further support the hypothesis that low molecular weight oligomers can be generated via non-fibril formation pathways. Furthermore, the unique replicating property of off-pathway oligomers may hold profound significance for Alzheimer disease pathology.

  14. INTEGRATING EPIDEMIOLOGY AND TOXICOLOGY IN NEUROTOXICITY RISK ASSESSMENT.

    EPA Science Inventory

    This manuscript provides an overview of the use of data from toxicology and epidemiology studies for neurotoxicity risk assessment. Parameters such as the use of subjects, study designs, exposures, and measured outcomes are compared and contrasted. The main concern for use of d...

  15. 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.

  16. Neurotoxicity and risk assessment of brominated and alternative flame retardants.

    PubMed

    Hendriks, Hester S; Westerink, Remco H S

    2015-01-01

    Brominated flame retardants (BFRs) are widely used chemicals that prevent or slow the onset and spreading of fire. Unfortunately, many of these compounds pose serious threats for human health and the environment, indicating an urgent need for safe(r) and less persistent alternative flame retardants (AFRs). As previous research identified the nervous system as a sensitive target organ, the neurotoxicity of past and present flame retardants is reviewed. First, an overview of the neurotoxicity of BFRs in humans and experimental animals is provided, and some common in vitro neurotoxic mechanisms of action are discussed. The combined epidemiological and toxicological studies clearly underline the need for replacing BFRs. Many potentially suitable AFRs are already in use, despite the absence of a full profile of their environmental behavior and toxicological properties. To prioritize the suitability of some selected halogenated and non-halogenated organophosphorous flame retardants and inorganic halogen-free flame retardants, the available neurotoxic data of these AFRs are discussed. The suitability of the AFRs is rank-ordered and combined with human exposure data (serum concentrations, breast milk concentrations and house dust concentrations) and physicochemical properties (useful to predict e.g. bioavailability and persistence in the environment) for a first semi-quantitative risk assessment of the AFRs. As can be concluded from the reviewed data, several BFRs and AFRs share some neurotoxic effects and modes of action. Moreover, the available neurotoxicity data indicate that some AFRs may be suitable substitutes for BFRs. However, proper risk assessment is hampered by an overall scarcity of data, particularly regarding environmental persistence, human exposure levels, and the formation of breakdown products and possible metabolites as well as their toxicity. Until these data gaps in environmental behavioral and toxicological profiles are filled, large scale use of

  17. KCTD Hetero-oligomers Confer Unique Kinetic Properties on Hippocampal GABAB Receptor-Induced K+ Currents.

    PubMed

    Fritzius, Thorsten; Turecek, Rostislav; Seddik, Riad; Kobayashi, Hiroyuki; Tiao, Jim; Rem, Pascal D; Metz, Michaela; Kralikova, Michaela; Bouvier, Michel; Gassmann, Martin; Bettler, Bernhard

    2017-02-01

    GABAB receptors are the G-protein coupled receptors for the main inhibitory neurotransmitter in the brain, GABA. GABAB receptors were shown to associate with homo-oligomers of auxiliary KCTD8, KCTD12, KCTD12b, and KCTD16 subunits (named after their T1 K(+)-channel tetramerization domain) that regulate G-protein signaling of the receptor. Here we provide evidence that GABAB receptors also associate with hetero-oligomers of KCTD subunits. Coimmunoprecipitation experiments indicate that two-thirds of the KCTD16 proteins in the hippocampus of adult mice associate with KCTD12. We show that the KCTD proteins hetero-oligomerize through self-interacting T1 and H1 homology domains. Bioluminescence resonance energy transfer measurements in live cells reveal that KCTD12/KCTD16 hetero-oligomers associate with both the receptor and the G-protein. Electrophysiological experiments demonstrate that KCTD12/KCTD16 hetero-oligomers impart unique kinetic properties on G-protein-activated Kir3 currents. During prolonged receptor activation (one min) KCTD12/KCTD16 hetero-oligomers produce moderately desensitizing fast deactivating K(+) currents, whereas KCTD12 and KCTD16 homo-oligomers produce strongly desensitizing fast deactivating currents and nondesensitizing slowly deactivating currents, respectively. During short activation (2 s) KCTD12/KCTD16 hetero-oligomers produce nondesensitizing slowly deactivating currents. Electrophysiological recordings from hippocampal neurons of KCTD knock-out mice are consistent with these findings and indicate that KCTD12/KCTD16 hetero-oligomers increase the duration of slow IPSCs. In summary, our data demonstrate that simultaneous assembly of distinct KCTDs at the receptor increases the molecular and functional repertoire of native GABAB receptors and modulates physiologically induced K(+) current responses in the hippocampus.

  18. Local Anesthetic-Induced Neurotoxicity

    PubMed Central

    Verlinde, Mark; Hollmann, Markus W.; Stevens, Markus F.; Hermanns, Henning; Werdehausen, Robert; Lirk, Philipp

    2016-01-01

    This review summarizes current knowledge concerning incidence, risk factors, and mechanisms of perioperative nerve injury, with focus on local anesthetic-induced neurotoxicity. Perioperative nerve injury is a complex phenomenon and can be caused by a number of clinical factors. Anesthetic risk factors for perioperative nerve injury include regional block technique, patient risk factors, and local anesthetic-induced neurotoxicity. Surgery can lead to nerve damage by use of tourniquets or by direct mechanical stress on nerves, such as traction, transection, compression, contusion, ischemia, and stretching. Current literature suggests that the majority of perioperative nerve injuries are unrelated to regional anesthesia. Besides the blockade of sodium channels which is responsible for the anesthetic effect, systemic local anesthetics can have a positive influence on the inflammatory response and the hemostatic system in the perioperative period. However, next to these beneficial effects, local anesthetics exhibit time and dose-dependent toxicity to a variety of tissues, including nerves. There is equivocal experimental evidence that the toxicity varies among local anesthetics. Even though the precise order of events during local anesthetic-induced neurotoxicity is not clear, possible cellular mechanisms have been identified. These include the intrinsic caspase-pathway, PI3K-pathway, and MAPK-pathways. Further research will need to determine whether these pathways are non-specifically activated by local anesthetics, or whether there is a single common precipitating factor. PMID:26959012

  19. Developmental neurotoxicity of industrial chemicals.

    PubMed

    Grandjean, P; Landrigan, P J

    2006-12-16

    Neurodevelopmental disorders such as autism, attention deficit disorder, mental retardation, and cerebral palsy are common, costly, and can cause lifelong disability. Their causes are mostly unknown. A few industrial chemicals (eg, lead, methylmercury, polychlorinated biphenyls [PCBs], arsenic, and toluene) are recognised causes of neurodevelopmental disorders and subclinical brain dysfunction. Exposure to these chemicals during early fetal development can cause brain injury at doses much lower than those affecting adult brain function. Recognition of these risks has led to evidence-based programmes of prevention, such as elimination of lead additives in petrol. Although these prevention campaigns are highly successful, most were initiated only after substantial delays. Another 200 chemicals are known to cause clinical neurotoxic effects in adults. Despite an absence of systematic testing, many additional chemicals have been shown to be neurotoxic in laboratory models. The toxic effects of such chemicals in the developing human brain are not known and they are not regulated to protect children. The two main impediments to prevention of neurodevelopmental deficits of chemical origin are the great gaps in testing chemicals for developmental neurotoxicity and the high level of proof required for regulation. New, precautionary approaches that recognise the unique vulnerability of the developing brain are needed for testing and control of chemicals.

  20. Multiple mechanisms of PCB neurotoxicity

    SciTech Connect

    Carpenter, D.O.; Stoner, C.T.; Lawrence, D.A.

    1996-12-31

    Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) have been implicated in cancer, but many of the symptoms in humans exposed to PCBs are related to the nervous system and behavior. We demonstrated three different direct mechanisms whereby PCBs are neurotoxic in rats. By using flow cytometry, we demonstrated that the orthosubstituted PCB congener 2,4,4{prime}, but neither TCDD nor the coplanar PCB congener 3,4,5,3{prime},4{prime}, causes rapid death of cerebellar granule cells. The ortho-substituted congener 2,4,4{prime} reduced long-term potentiation, an indicator of cognitive potential, in hippocampal brain slices, but a similar effect was observed for the coplanar congener 3,4,3{prime},4{prime}, indicating that this effect may be caused by both ortho- and coplanar congeners by mechanisms presumably not mediated via the Ah receptor. It was previously shown that some ortho-substituted PCB congeners cause a reduction in levels of the neurotransmitter dopamine, and we present in vitro and in vivo evidence that this is due to reduction of synthesis of dopamine via inhibition of the enzyme tyrosine hydroxylase. Thus, PCBs have a variety of mechanisms of primary neurotoxicity, and neurotoxicity is a characteristic of ortho-substituted, non-dioxin-like congeners as well as some coplanar congeners. The relative contribution of each of these mechanisms to the loss of cognitive function in humans exposed to PCBs remains to be determined. 42 refs., 3 figs., 1 tab.

  1. Meeting report: alternatives for developmental neurotoxicity testing.

    PubMed

    Lein, Pamela; Locke, Paul; Goldberg, Alan

    2007-05-01

    Developmental neurotoxicity testing (DNT) is perceived by many stakeholders to be an area in critical need of alternatives to current animal testing protocols and guidelines. To address this need, the Johns Hopkins Center for Alternatives to Animal Testing (CAAT), the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and the National Toxicology Program are collaborating in a program called TestSmart DNT, the goals of which are to: (a) develop alternative methodologies for identifying and prioritizing chemicals and exposures that may cause developmental neurotoxicity in humans; (b) develop the policies for incorporating DNT alternatives into regulatory decision making; and (c) identify opportunities for reducing, refining, or replacing the use of animals in DNT. The first TestSmart DNT workshop was an open registration meeting held 13-15 March 2006 in Reston, Virginia. The primary objective was to bring together stakeholders (test developers, test users, regulators, and advocates for children's health, animal welfare, and environmental health) and individuals representing diverse disciplines (developmental neurobiology, toxicology, policy, and regulatory science) from around the world to share information and concerns relating to the science and policy of DNT. Individual presentations are available at the CAAT TestSmart website. This report provides a synthesis of workgroup discussions and recommendations for future directions and priorities, which include initiating a systematic evaluation of alternative models and technologies, developing a framework for the creation of an open database to catalog DNT data, and devising a strategy for harmonizing the validation process across international jurisdictional borders.

  2. Characterization of reducible peptide oligomers as carriers for gene delivery.

    PubMed

    Kiselev, Anton; Egorova, Anna; Laukkanen, Antti; Baranov, Vladislav; Urtti, Arto

    2013-01-30

    The stability of DNA-polyplexes and intracellular DNA release are important features of gene delivery systems. To study these features, we have evaluated reducible cysteine-flanked linear lysine and arginine-rich peptides, modified with histidine residues. The reducible disulfide bonds in cysteine flanked peptides and histidine residues should augment DNA release from the peptide-DNA complexes upon disintegration of the reducible bonds. Template polymerization and oxidative polycondensation were applied to obtain peptide oligomers used for DNA-polyplex preparation. The peptides and DNA-peptide complexes were investigated with physical, chemical and transfection measurements. Physicochemical and transfection properties of DNA-polyplexes depended on the amino acid sequence of the peptidic polymers and type of the polymerization. MALDI-TOF analysis of oxidatively polycondensed products revealed several forms of peptide oligomers corresponding to 5-8 amino acid monomers. DNA-peptide particles based on template-polymerized complexes were more resistant to relaxation by negatively charged heparan sulfate than polyplexes formed with oxidatively condensed peptides. Complexes of DNA with the polycations prepared by oxidative polycondensation exhibited a 100-1000-fold higher level of gene expression compared to DNA/template-polymerized peptide complexes. The most efficient transgene expression was shown with arginine-rich polyplexes. Transfection efficacy of the arginine-rich polyplexes was even 10-fold better than that of DNA/PEI complexes. On average, polyplexes based on cysteine-flanked peptide oligomers showed lower cytotoxicity than non-reducible high molecular weight polylysine/DNA particles. We conclude that reducible peptide oligomers provide efficient DNA transfection and have the potential as vehicles for gene delivery.

  3. Molecular modeling of crystalline alkylthiophene oligomers and polymers.

    PubMed

    Moreno, Margherita; Casalegno, Mosè; Raos, Guido; Meille, Stefano V; Po, Riccardo

    2010-02-04

    We present the results of a thorough molecular modeling study of several alkylthiophene-based oligomers and polymers. In particular, we consider two polymers whose limit-ordered crystal structures have been recently reported by our group, on the basis of powder X-ray data analysis: poly(3-(S)-2-methylbutylthiophene) (P3MBT) and form I' of poly(3-butylthiophene) (P3BT). We first describe the development of a series general purpose force fields for the simulation of these and related systems. The force fields incorporate the results of ab initio calculations of the bond torsion energies of selected oligomers and differ in the set of atomic charges used to represent the electrostatic interactions. We then present the results of an extensive validation of these force fields, by means of molecular mechanics (MM) energy minimizations and molecular dynamics (MD) simulations of the crystal structures of these oligomers and polymers. While our "best" force field does not outperform the others on each of the investigated systems, it provides a balanced description of their overall structure and energetics. Finally, our MM minimizations and MD simulations confirm that the reported crystal structures of P3MBT and P3BT are stable and correspond to well-defined energetic minima. The room-temperature MD simulations reveal a certain degree of side-chain disorder, even in our virtually defect-free polymer crystal models.

  4. α-Synuclein oligomers and clinical implications for Parkinson disease.

    PubMed

    Kalia, Lorraine V; Kalia, Suneil K; McLean, Pamela J; Lozano, Andres M; Lang, Anthony E

    2013-02-01

    Protein aggregation within the central nervous system has been recognized as a defining feature of neurodegenerative diseases since the early 20th century. Since that time, there has been a growing list of neurodegenerative disorders, including Parkinson disease, which are characterized by inclusions of specific pathogenic proteins. This has led to the long-held dogma that these characteristic protein inclusions, which are composed of large insoluble fibrillar protein aggregates and visible by light microscopy, are responsible for cell death in these diseases. However, the correlation between protein inclusion formation and cytotoxicity is inconsistent, suggesting that another form of the pathogenic proteins may be contributing to neurodegeneration. There is emerging evidence implicating soluble oligomers, smaller protein aggregates not detectable by conventional microscopy, as potential culprits in the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative diseases. The protein α-synuclein is well recognized to contribute to the pathogenesis of Parkinson disease and is the major component of Lewy bodies and Lewy neurites. However, α-synuclein also forms oligomeric species, with certain conformations being toxic to cells. The mechanisms by which these α-synuclein oligomers cause cell death are being actively investigated, as they may provide new strategies for diagnosis and treatment of Parkinson disease and related disorders. Here we review the possible role of α-synuclein oligomers in cell death in Parkinson disease and discuss the potential clinical implications.

  5. Coulombic free energy and salt ion association per phosphate of all-atom models of DNA oligomer: dependence on oligomer size.

    PubMed

    Shkel, Irina A; Record, M Thomas

    2012-08-23

    We investigate how the coulombic Gibbs free energy and salt ion association per phosphate charge of DNA oligomers vary with oligomer size (i.e. number of charged residues ∣ZD∣) at 0.15 M univalent salt by non-linear Poisson Boltzmann (NLPB) analysis of all-atom DNA models. Calculations of these quantities ([Formula: see text], [Formula: see text]) are performed for short and long double-stranded (ds) and single-stranded (ss) DNA oligomers, ranging from 4 to 118 phosphates (ds) and from 2 to 59 phosphates (ss). Behaviors of [Formula: see text] and [Formula: see text] as functions of ∣ZD∣ provide a measure of the range of the coulombic end effect and determine the size of an oligomer at which an interior region with the properties (per charge) of the infinite-length polyelectrolyte first appears. This size (10-11 phosphates at each end for ds DNA and 6-9 for ss DNA at 0.15 M salt) is in close agreement with values obtained previously by Monte Carlo and NLPB calculations for cylindrical models of polyions, and by analysis of binding of oligocations to DNA oligomers. Differences in [Formula: see text] and in [Formula: see text] between ss and ds DNA are used to predict effects of oligomeric size and salt concentration on duplex stability in the vicinity of 0.15 M salt. Results of all-atom calculations are compared with results of less structurally detailed models and with experimental data.

  6. Design, Characterization, and Use of a Novel Amyloid β-Protein Control for Assembly, Neurotoxicity, and Gene Expression Studies.

    PubMed

    Yamin, Ghiam; Coppola, Giovanni; Teplow, David B

    2016-09-13

    A key pathogenic agent in Alzheimer's disease (AD) is the amyloid β-protein (Aβ), which self-assembles into a variety of neurotoxic structures. Establishing structure-activity relationships for these assemblies, which is critical for proper therapeutic target identification and design, requires aggregation and neurotoxicity experiments that are properly controlled with respect to the Aβ peptide itself. "Reverse" Aβ or non-Aβ peptides suffer from the fact that their biophysical properties are too similar or dissimilar, respectively, to those of native Aβ for them to be appropriate controls. For this reason, we used simple protein design principles to create scrambled Aβ peptides predicted to behave distinctly from native Aβ. We showed that our prediction was true by monitoring secondary structure dynamics with thioflavin T fluorescence and circular dichroism spectroscopy, determining oligomer size distributions, and assaying neurotoxic activity. We then demonstrated the utility of the scrambled Aβ peptides by using them to control experiments examining the effects of Aβ monomers, dimers, higher-order oligomers, and fibrils on gene expression in primary rat hippocampal neurons. Significant changes in gene expression were observed for all peptide assemblies, but fibrils induced the largest changes. Weighted gene co-expression network analysis revealed two predominant gene modules related to Aβ treatment. Many genes within these modules were associated with inflammatory signaling pathways.

  7. International STakeholder NETwork (ISTNET): Creating a Developmental Neurotoxicity Testing (DNT) Roadmap for Regulatory Purposes

    EPA Science Inventory

    A major problem in developmental neurotoxicity (DNT) risk assessment is the lack of toxicological hazard information for most compounds. Therefore, new approaches are being considered to provide adequate experimental data that allow regulatory decisions. This process requires a m...

  8. The Potential Contribution of Advanced Imaging Techniques to Developmental Neurotoxicity Risk Assessment

    EPA Science Inventory

    Neuropathologic assessment provides critical data essential to developmental neurotoxicity risk assessment. There are a number of objectives in conducting a neuropathologic assessment to effectively support risk assessment. These include a comprehensive assessment of the adult an...

  9. Association thermodynamics and conformational stability of beta-sheet amyloid beta(17-42) oligomers: effects of E22Q (Dutch) mutation and charge neutralization.

    PubMed

    Blinov, Nikolay; Dorosh, Lyudmyla; Wishart, David; Kovalenko, Andriy

    2010-01-20

    Amyloid fibrils are associated with many neurodegenerative diseases. It was found that amyloidogenic oligomers, not mature fibrils, are neurotoxic agents related to these diseases. Molecular mechanisms of infectivity, pathways of aggregation, and molecular structure of these oligomers remain elusive. Here, we use all-atom molecular dynamics, molecular mechanics combined with solvation analysis by statistical-mechanical, three-dimensional molecular theory of solvation (also known as 3D-RISM-KH) in a new MM-3D-RISM-KH method to study conformational stability, and association thermodynamics of small wild-type Abeta(17-42) oligomers with different protonation states of Glu(22), as well the E22Q (Dutch) mutants. The association free energy of small beta-sheet oligomers shows near-linear trend with the dimers being thermodynamically more stable relative to the larger constructs. The linear (within statistical uncertainty) dependence of the association free energy on complex size is a consequence of the unilateral stacking of monomers in the beta-sheet oligomers. The charge reduction of the wild-type Abeta(17-42) oligomers upon protonation of the solvent-exposed Glu(22) at acidic conditions results in lowering the association free energy compared to the wild-type oligomers at neutral pH and the E22Q mutants. The neutralization of the peptides because of the E22Q mutation only marginally affects the association free energy, with the reduction of the direct electrostatic interactions mostly compensated by the unfavorable electrostatic solvation effects. For the wild-type oligomers at acidic conditions such compensation is not complete, and the electrostatic interactions, along with the gas-phase nonpolar energetic and the overall entropic effects, contribute to the lowering of the association free energy. The differences in the association thermodynamics between the wild-type Abeta(17-42) oligomers at neutral pH and the Dutch mutants, on the one hand, and the Abeta(17

  10. Lactic acid oligomers (OLAs) as prodrug moieties.

    PubMed

    Kruse, J; Lachmann, B; Lauer, R; Eppacher, S; Noe, C R

    2013-02-01

    In this paper we propose the use of lactic acid oligomers (OLAs) as prodrug moieties. Two synthetic approaches are presented, on the one hand a non selective oligomerisation of lactic acid and on the other hand a block synthesis to tetramers of lactic acid. Dimers of lactic acid were investigated with respect to their plasma stability and their adsorption to albumine. Ibuprofen was chosen as the first drug for OLAylation. The ester 19 of LA(1)-ibuprofen was evaluated with respect to the degradation to human plasma and the adsorption to albumine. All results indicate that lactic acid oligomers are promising prodrug moieties.

  11. Mechanisms of methylmercury-induced neurotoxicity: evidence from experimental studies

    PubMed Central

    Farina, Marcelo; Rocha, João B. T.; Aschner, Michael

    2011-01-01

    Neurological disorders are common, costly, and can cause enduring disability. Although mostly unknown, a few environmental toxicants are recognized causes of neurological disorders and subclinical brain dysfunction. One of the best known neurotoxins is methylmercury (MeHg), a ubiquitous environmental toxicant that leads to long-lasting neurological and developmental deficits in animals and humans. In the aquatic environment, MeHg is accumulated in fish, which represent a major source of human exposure. Although several episodes of MeHg poisoning have contributed to the understanding of the clinical symptoms and histological changes elicited by this neurotoxicant in humans, experimental studies have been pivotal in elucidating the molecular mechanisms that mediate MeHg-induced neurotoxicity. The objective of this mini-review is to summarize data from experimental studies on molecular mechanisms of MeHg-induced neurotoxicity. While the full picture has yet to be unmasked, in vitro approaches based on cultured cells, isolated mitochondria and tissue slices, as well as in vivo studies based mainly on the use of rodents, point to impairment in intracellular calcium homeostasis, alteration of glutamate homeostasis and oxidative stress as important events in MeHg-induced neurotoxicity. The potential relationship among these events is discussed, with particular emphasis on the neurotoxic cycle triggered by MeHg-induced excitotoxicity and oxidative stress. The particular sensitivity of the developing brain to MeHg toxicity, the critical role of selenoproteins and the potential protective role of selenocompounds are also discussed. These concepts provide the biochemical bases to the understanding of MeHg neurotoxicity, contributing to the discovery of endogenous and exogenous molecules that counteract such toxicity and provide efficacious means for ablating this vicious cycle. PMID:21683713

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2015-01-01

    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. Furthermore, the circular dichroism (CD) spectrum of untreated Aβ shows a continuous, progressive change over a 24-hour period, while the spectrum of Aβ treated with SLF remains relatively constant following initial incubation. These findings suggest the conformation of Aβ within the oligomer provides a complementary determinant of Aβ toxicity in addition to oligomer growth and size. Although SLF does not produce a dominant state of secondary structure in Aβ, it does induce a net reduction in beta secondary content compared to untreated samples of Aβ. The FCS results, combined with electron paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy and CD spectroscopy, demonstrate SLFs can inhibit the growth of Aβ oligomers and disrupt existing oligomers, while retaining Aβ as a population of smaller, yet largely disordered oligomers. PMID:26374940

  13. RISK CHARACTERIZATION OF PERSISTENT NEUROTOXIC CONTAMINANTS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Neurotoxicity is an adverse change in structure or function of the central and/or peripheral nervous system following exposure to a chemical, physical, or biological agent. Thousands of chemicals have been estimated to have neurotoxic potential. Many persistent and bioaccumulat...

  14. Novel demonstration of amyloid-β oligomers in sporadic inclusion-body myositis muscle fibers.

    PubMed

    Nogalska, Anna; D'Agostino, Carla; Engel, W King; Klein, William L; Askanas, Valerie

    2010-11-01

    Accumulation of amyloid-β (Aβ) within muscle fibers has been considered an upstream step in the development of the s-IBM pathologic phenotype. Aβ42, which is considered more cytotoxic than Aβ40 and has a higher propensity to oligomerize, is preferentially increased in s-IBM muscle fibers. In Alzheimer disease (AD), low-molecular weight Aβ oligomers and toxic oligomers, also referred to as "Aβ-Derived Diffusible Ligands" (ADDLs), are considered strongly cytotoxic and proposed to play an important pathogenic role. ADDLs have been shown to be increased in AD brain. We now report for the first time that in s-IBM muscle biopsies Aβ-dimer, -trimer, and -tetramer are identifiable by immunoblots. While all the s-IBM samples we studied had Aβ-oligomers, their molecular weights and intensity varied between the patient samples. None of the control muscle biopsies had Aβ oligomers. Dot-immunoblots using highly specific anti-ADDL monoclonal antibodies also showed highly increased ADDLs in all s-IBM biopsies studied, while controls were negative. By immunofluorescence, in some of the abnormal s-IBM muscle fibers ADDLs were accumulated in the form of plaque-like inclusions, and were often increased diffusely in very small fibers. Normal and disease-controls were negative. By gold-immuno-electron microscopy, ADDL-immunoreactivities were in close proximity to 6-10 nm amyloid-like fibrils, and also were immunodecorating amorphous and floccular material. In cultured human muscle fibers, we found that inhibition of autophagy led to the accumulation of Aβ oligomers. This novel demonstration of Aβ42 oligomers in s-IBM muscle biopsy provides additional evidence that intra-muscle fiber accumulation of Aβ42 oligomers in s-IBM may contribute importantly to s-IBM pathogenic cascade.

  15. Humanin Specifically Interacts with Amyloid-β Oligomers and Counteracts Their in vivo Toxicity.

    PubMed

    Romeo, Margherita; Stravalaci, Matteo; Beeg, Marten; Rossi, Alessandro; Fiordaliso, Fabio; Corbelli, Alessandro; Salmona, Mario; Gobbi, Marco; Cagnotto, Alfredo; Diomede, Luisa

    2017-03-06

    The 24-residue peptide humanin (HN) has been proposed as peptide-based inhibitors able to interact directly with amyloid-β (Aβ) oligomers and interfere with the formation and/or biological properties of toxic Aβ species. When administered exogenously HN, or its synthetic S14G-derivative (HNG), exerted multiple cytoprotective effects, counteracting the Aβ-induced toxicity. Whether these peptides interact directly with Aβ, particularly with the soluble oligomeric assemblies, remains largely unknown. We here investigated the ability of HN and HNG to interact directly with highly aggregating Aβ42, and interfere with the formation and toxicity of its oligomers. Experiments were run in cell-free conditions and in vivo in a transgenic C. elegans strain in which the Aβ toxicity was specifically due to oligomeric species. Thioflavin-T assay indicated that both HN and HNG delay the formation and reduce the final amount of Aβ42 fibrils. In vitro surface plasmon resonance studies indicated that they interact with Aβ42 oligomers favoring the formation of amorphous larger assemblies, observed with turbidity and electron microscopy. In vivo studies indicated that both HN and HNG decrease the relative abundance of A11-positive prefibrillar oligomers as well as OC-positive fibrillar oligomers and had similar protective effects. However, while HN possibly decreased the oligomers by promoting their assembly into larger aggregates, the reduction of oligomers caused by HNG can be ascribed to a marked decrease of the total Aβ levels, likely the consequence of the HNG-induced overexpression of the Aβ-degrading enzyme neprilysin. These findings provide information on the mechanisms underlying the anti-oligomeric effects of HN and HNG and illustrate the role of S14G substitution in regulating the in vivo mechanism of action.

  16. Self-assembly of conjugated oligomers and polymers at the interface: structure and properties.

    PubMed

    Xu, Lirong; Yang, Liu; Lei, Shengbin

    2012-08-07

    In this review, we give a brief account on the recent scanning tunneling microscopy investigation of interfacial structures and properties of π-conjugated semiconducting oligomers and polymers, either at the solid-air (including solid-vacuum) or at the solid-liquid interface. The structural aspects of the self-assembly of both oligomers and polymers are highlighted. Conjugated oligomers can form well ordered supramolecular assemblies either at the air-solid or liquid-solid interface, thanks to the relatively high mobility and structural uniformity in comparison with polymers. The backbone structure, substitution of side chains and functional groups can affect the assembling behavior significantly, which offers the opportunity to tune the supramolecular structure of these conjugated oligomers at the interface. For conjugated polymers, the large molecular weight limits the mobility on the surface and the distribution in size also prevents the formation of long range ordered supramolecular assembly. The submolecular resolution obtained on the assembling monolayers enables a detailed investigation of the chain folding at the interface, both the structural details and the effect on electronic properties. Besides the ability in studying the assembling structures at the interfaces, STM also provides a reasonable way to evaluate the distribution of the molecular weight of conjugated polymers by statistic of the contour length of the adsorbed polymer chains. Both conjugated oligomers and polymers can form composite assemblies with other materials. The ordered assembly of oligomers can act as a template to controllably disperse other molecules such as coronene or fullerene. These investigations open a new avenue to fine tune the assembling structure at the interface and in turn the properties of the composite materials. To summarize scanning tunneling microscopy has demonstrated its surprising ability in the investigation of the assembling structures and properties of

  17. Designing Surface-Confined Coordination Oligomers

    SciTech Connect

    Altman, M.; Rachamim, M; Ichiki, T; Iron, M; Evmenenko, G; Dutta, P; van der Boom, M

    2010-01-01

    HOMO-LUMO engineering of coordination-based oligomers covalently bound to silicon or glass has been achieved by the use of a partially fluorinated chromophore (see graphic). The experimental and computationally derived physical chemical properties of these assemblies are compared to their non-fluorinated analogues.

  18. Glucosamine oligomers: 1. Preparation and characterization.

    PubMed

    Domard, A; Cartier, N

    1989-10-01

    Hydrolysis of chitosan in hot concentrated HCl led to chito-oligosaccharides [beta-(1----4) linked 2-amino-2-deoxy-D-glucose]. The time dependence of the distribution was studied. A convenient choice of the conditions for steric exclusion chromatography of these hydrolysates allowed the separation of the first 15 oligomers and of fractions up to DP = 40.

  19. Matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization mass spectrometry of discrete mass poly(butylene glutarate) oligomers.

    PubMed

    Williams, John B; Chapman, Toby M; Hercules, David M

    2003-07-01

    The mass dependency of matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF-MS) response has been studied using equimolar mixtures of synthetic discrete mass poly(butylene glutarate) (PBG) oligomers of known structure having degrees of polymerization of 8, 16, 32, and 64. Mass discrimination observed was attributed to choice of matrix and detector saturation caused by higher laser intensity and inclusion of matrix ions in the MALDI spectra. Optimization of sample preparation and instrumental parameters provided uniform response over the mass ranged spanned by these four oligomers. The oligomer mixture was shown to serve as a model of more complex polymer distributions in the mass range 780-6000 Da, and application of the discrete mass oligomers as internal and calibration standards was demonstrated. Inclusion of PBG discrete mass oligomers as an internal standard in a quasi-equimolar mixture with polydispersed poly(butylene adipate) (PBA) indicated that some diminution of response occurred during the analysis of this mixture of materials. Reasons for differences in the corrected molecular weight averages of the polydispersed PBA obtained from measurements using MALDI and GPC were studied using individual discrete mass oligomers as calibration standards for GPC. The data indicated that differences in hydrodynamic volumes of PBG oligomers and PEG standards at similar masses resulted in an overestimation by GPC of the molecular weight averages of the PBA distribution.

  20. 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.

  1. Neurotoxicity

    MedlinePlus

    ... Strategy Current Research Research Funded by NINDS Basic Neuroscience Clinical Research Translational Research Research at NINDS Focus ... Information Current Research Research Funded by NINDS Basic Neuroscience Clinical Research Translational Research Research at NINDS Focus ...

  2. Electrorheology of aniline-oligomer suspensions under oscillatory shear

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mrlik, M.; Pavlinek, V.; Almajdalawi, S.; Saha, P.; Bober, P.; Stejskal, J.

    2013-02-01

    Preparation of the aniline oligomers by the oxidation of aniline with p-benzoquinone in the solutions of methanesulfonic acid (MSA) and the rheology of their suspensions in silicone oil are presented in this study. This synthesis provides particles of flake-like morphology and various conductivities depending on the molar concentration of MSA. Further, the electrorheological (ER) performance of the particles suspended in the silicone oil was measured as well as dielectric properties of suspensions. Finally, the effect of the temperature on the ER activity was investigated.

  3. Alzheimer’s Toxic Amyloid Beta Oligomers: Unwelcome Visitors to the Na/K ATPase alpha3 Docking Station

    PubMed Central

    DiChiara, Thomas; DiNunno, Nadia; Clark, Jeffrey; Bu, Riana Lo; Cline, Erika N.; Rollins, Madeline G.; Gong, Yuesong; Brody, David L.; Sligar, Stephen G.; Velasco, Pauline T.; Viola, Kirsten L.; Klein, William L.

    2017-01-01

    Toxic amyloid beta oligomers (AβOs) are known to accumulate in Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and in animal models of AD. Their structure is heterogeneous, and they are found in both intracellular and extracellular milieu. When given to CNS cultures or injected ICV into non-human primates and other non-transgenic animals, AβOs have been found to cause impaired synaptic plasticity, loss of memory function, tau hyperphosphorylation and tangle formation, synapse elimination, oxidative and ER stress, inflammatory microglial activation, and selective nerve cell death. Memory loss and pathology in transgenic models are prevented by AβO antibodies, while Aducanumab, an antibody that targets AβOs as well as fibrillar Aβ, has provided cognitive benefit to humans in early clinical trials. AβOs have now been investigated in more than 3000 studies and are widely thought to be the major toxic form of Aβ. Although much has been learned about the downstream mechanisms of AβO action, a major gap concerns the earliest steps: How do AβOs initially interact with surface membranes to generate neuron-damaging transmembrane events? Findings from Ohnishi et al (PNAS 2005) combined with new results presented here are consistent with the hypothesis that AβOs act as neurotoxins because they attach to particular membrane protein docks containing Na/K ATPase-α3, where they inhibit ATPase activity and pathologically restructure dock composition and topology in a manner leading to excessive Ca++ build-up. Better understanding of the mechanism that makes attachment of AβOs to vulnerable neurons a neurotoxic phenomenon should open the door to therapeutics and diagnostics targeting the first step of a complex pathway that leads to neural damage and dementia. PMID:28356893

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

    PubMed Central

    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

    2015-01-01

    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 (PC12undiff). 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. PMID:26221033

  5. Biomarkers of adult and developmental neurotoxicity

    SciTech Connect

    Slikker, William

    2005-08-07

    Neurotoxicity may be defined as any adverse effect on the structure or function of the central and/or peripheral nervous system by a biological, chemical, or physical agent. A multidisciplinary approach is necessary to assess adult and developmental neurotoxicity due to the complex and diverse functions of the nervous system. The overall strategy for understanding developmental neurotoxicity is based on two assumptions: (1) significant differences in the adult versus the developing nervous system susceptibility to neurotoxicity exist and they are often developmental stage dependent; (2) a multidisciplinary approach using neurobiological, including gene expression assays, neurophysiological, neuropathological, and behavioral function is necessary for a precise assessment of neurotoxicity. Application of genomic approaches to developmental studies must use the same criteria for evaluating microarray studies as those in adults including consideration of reproducibility, statistical analysis, homogenous cell populations, and confirmation with non-array methods. A study using amphetamine to induce neurotoxicity supports the following: (1) gene expression data can help define neurotoxic mechanism(s) (2) gene expression changes can be useful biomarkers of effect, and (3) the site-selective nature of gene expression in the nervous system may mandate assessment of selective cell populations.

  6. Interactions between Aβ oligomers and presynaptic cholinergic signaling: age-dependent effects on attentional capacities

    PubMed Central

    Parikh, Vinay; Bernard, Carcha S.; Naughton, Sean X.; Yegla, Brittney

    2014-01-01

    Substantial evidence suggests that cerebral deposition of the neurotoxic fibrillar form of amyloid precursor protein, β-amyloid (Aβ), plays a critical role in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Yet, many aspects of AD pathology including the cognitive symptoms and selective vulnerability of cortically-projecting basal forebrain (BF) cholinergic neurons are not well explained by this hypothesis. Specifically, it is not clear why cognitive decline appears early when the loss of BF cholinergic neurons and plaque deposition are manifested late in AD. Soluble oligomeric forms of Aβ are proposed to appear early in the pathology and to be better predictors of synaptic loss and cognitive deficits. The present study was designed to examine the impact of Aβ oligomers on attentional functions and presynaptic cholinergic transmission in young and aged rats. Chronic intracranial infusions of Aβ oligomers produced subtle decrements in the ability of rats to sustain attentional performance with time on task, irrespective of the age of the animals. However, Aβ oligomers produced robust detrimental effects on performance under conditions of enhanced attentional load in aged animals. In vivo electrochemical recordings show reduced depolarization-evoked cholinergic signals in Aβ-infused aged rats. Moreover, soluble Aβ disrupted the capacity of cholinergic synapses to clear exogenous choline from the extracellular space in both young and aged rats, reflecting impairments in the choline transport process that is critical for acetylcholine (ACh) synthesis and release. Although aging per se reduced the cross-sectional area of BF cholinergic neurons and presynaptic cholinergic proteins in the cortex, attentional performance and ACh release remained unaffected in aged rats infused with the control peptide. Taken together, these data suggest that soluble Aβ may marginally influence attentional functions at young ages primarily by interfering with the choline uptake

  7. Neurotoxicity of manganese oxide nanomaterials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stefanescu, Diana M.; Khoshnan, Ali; Patterson, Paul H.; Hering, Janet G.

    2009-11-01

    Manganese (Mn) toxicity in humans has been observed as manganism, a disease that resembles Parkinson's disease. The mechanism of Mn toxicity and the chemical forms that may be responsible for its neurotoxicity are not well understood. We examined the toxicity of Mn oxide nanomaterials in a neuronal precursor cell model, using the MTS assay to evaluate mitochondrial function in living cells and the LDH assay to quantify the release of the enzyme lactate dehydrogenase as a result of damage to the cell membrane. Both assays show that the toxicity of Mn is dependent on the type of Mn oxide nanomaterial and its concentration as well as on the state of cell differentiation. Following exposure to Mn oxide nanomaterials, reactive oxygen species (ROS) are generated, and flow cytometry experiments suggest that cell death occurred through apoptosis. During exposure to Mn oxide nanomaterials, increased levels of the transcription factor NF-κB (which mediates the cellular inflammatory response) were observed.

  8. Arsenic neurotoxicity--a review.

    PubMed

    Vahidnia, A; van der Voet, G B; de Wolff, F A

    2007-10-01

    Arsenic (As) is one of the oldest poisons known to men. Its applications throughout history are wide and varied: murder, make-up, paint and even as a pesticide. Chronic As toxicity is a global environmental health problem, affecting millions of people in the USA and Germany to Bangladesh and Taiwan. Worldwide, As is released into the environment by smelting of various metals, combustion of fossil fuels, as herbicides and fungicides in agricultural products. The drinking water in many countries, which is tapped from natural geological resources, is also contaminated as a result of the high level of As in groundwater. The environmental fate of As is contamination of surface and groundwater with a contaminant level higher than 10 particle per billion (ppb) as set by World Health Organization (WHO). Arsenic exists in both organic and inorganic species and either form can also exist in a trivalent or pentavalent oxidation state. Long-term health effects of exposure to these As metabolites are severe and highly variable: skin and lung cancer, neurological effects, hypertension and cardiovascular diseases. Neurological effects of As may develop within a few hours after ingestion, but usually are seen in 2-8 weeks after exposure. It is usually a symmetrical sensorimotor neuropathy, often resembling the Guillain-Barré syndrome. The predominant clinical features of neuropathy are paresthesias, numbness and pain, particularly in the soles of the feet. Electrophysiological studies performed on patients with As neuropathy have revealed a reduced nerve conduction velocity, typical of those seen in axonal degeneration. Most of the adverse effects of As, are caused by inactivated enzymes in the cellular energy pathway, whereby As reacts with the thiol groups of proteins and enzymes and inhibits their catalytic activity. Furthermore, As-induced neurotoxicity, like many other neurodegenerative diseases, causes changes in cytoskeletal protein composition and hyperphosphorylation

  9. Delayed treatment of hemoglobin neurotoxicity.

    PubMed

    Regan, Raymond F; Rogers, Bret

    2003-01-01

    Hemoglobin is an oxidative neurotoxin that may contribute to cell injury after CNS trauma and hemorrhagic stroke. Prior studies have demonstrated that concomitant treatment with iron-chelating antioxidants prevents its neurotoxicity. However, the efficacy of these agents when applied hours after hemoglobin has not been determined, and is the subject of the present investigation. Consistent with prior observations, an increase in reactive oxygen species generation, detected by 2',7'-dichlorofluorescin oxidation, was observed when mixed neuronal/astrocyte cultures prepared from mouse cortex were exposed to hemoglobin alone. However, this oxidative stress developed slowly. A significant increase in the dichlorofluorescein signal compared with control, untreated cultures was not observed until four hours after addition of hemoglobin, and was followed by loss of membrane integrity and propidium iodide staining. Treating cultures with the 21-aminosteroid U74500A or the ferric iron chelator deferoxamine four hours after initiating hemoglobin treatment markedly attenuated reactive oxygen species production within 2 h. Continuous exposure to 5 micro M hemoglobin for 24 h resulted in death of about three-quarters of neurons, without injuring astrocytes. Most neuronal loss was prevented by concomitant treatment with U74500A; its effect was not significantly attenuated if treatment was delayed for 2-4 h, and it still prevented over half of neuronal death if treatment was delayed for 8 h. Similar neuroprotection was produced by delayed treatment with deferoxamine or the lipid-soluble iron chelator phenanthroline. None of these agents had any effect on neuronal death when added to cultures 12 h after hemoglobin. These results suggest that hemoglobin is a potent but slowly-acting neurotoxin. The delayed onset of hemoglobin neurotoxicity may make it an attractive target for therapeutic intervention.

  10. Cholinergic and behavioral neurotoxicity of carbaryl and cadmium to larval rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Beauvais, S.L.; Jones, S.B.; Parris, J.T.; Brewer, S.K.; Little, E.E.

    2001-01-01

    Pesticides and heavy metals are common environmental contaminants that can cause neurotoxicity to aquatic organisms, impairing reproduction and survival. Neurotoxic effects of cadmium and carbaryl exposures were estimated in larval rainbow trout (RBT; Oncorhynchus mykiss) using changes in physiological endpoints and correlations with behavioral responses. Following exposures, RBT were videotaped to assess swimming speed. Brain tissue was used to measure cholinesterase (ChE) activity, muscarinic cholinergic receptor (MChR) number, and MChR affinity. ChE activity decreased with increasing concentrations of carbaryl but not of cadmium. MChR were not affected by exposure to either carbaryl or cadmium. Swimming speed correlated with ChE activity in carbaryl-exposed RBT, but no correlation occurred in cadmium-exposed fish. Thus, carbaryl exposure resulted in neurotoxicity reflected by changes in physiological and behavioral parameters measured, while cadmium exposure did not. Correlations between behavior and physiology provide a useful assessment of neurotoxicity.

  11. Surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy for detection of toxic amyloid β oligomers adsorbed on self-assembled monolayers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Voiciuk, Vladislava; Valincius, Gintaras; Budvytytė, Rima; Matijoška, Algirdas; Matulaitienė, Ieva; Niaura, Gediminas

    Surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) was used to detect different spectral features of small (1-2 nm) and large (5-10 nm) synthetic amyloid Aβ-42 oligomers, exhibiting high and no detectable neurotoxicities, respectively. Adsorption of peptides at self-assembled monolayers (SAM) terminated by methyl and pyridinium groups was employed to differentiate toxic and non-toxic oligomers. Three SAMs were analyzed: hydrophobic heptanethiol (HT) and octadecanethiol (ODT) as well as positively charged N-(6-mercapto)hexylpyridinium (MHP) chloride. SERS study revealed twofold adsorption effect, changes in the monolayer structure and appearance of new bands associated with the adsorbed peptides. A band at 1387 cm-1, observed as a result of the SAM and Aβ-42 interaction, is tentatively assigned to the peptide symmetric stretching vibration of carboxylate groups, and appears to be the most prominent spectral feature distinguishing toxic oligomers from the non-toxic Aβ-42 forms. This band was identified in the spectra of Aβ-42 adsorption on heptanethiol and MHP monolayers, while no clear perturbations were observed in the case of ODT monolayer.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. Interaction of arginine oligomer with model membrane

    SciTech Connect

    Yi, Dandan . E-mail: yi_dandan@yahoo.com.cn; Guoming, Li; Gao, Li; Wei, Liang

    2007-08-10

    Short oligomers of arginine (R8) have been shown to cross readily a variety of biological barriers. A hypothesis was put forward that inverted micelles form in biological membranes in the presence of arginine oligomer peptides, facilitating their transfer through the membranes. In order to define the role of peptide-lipid interaction in this mechanism, we prepared liposomes as the model membrane to study the ability of R8 inducing calcein release from liposomes, the fusion of liposomes, R8 binding to liposomes and membrane disturbing activity of the bound R8. The results show that R8 binding to liposome membrane depends on lipid compositions, negative surface charge density and interior water phase pH values of liposomes. R8 has no activity to induce the leakage of calcein from liposomes or improve liposome fusion. R8 does not permeabilize through the membrane spontaneously. These peptides delivering drugs through membranes may depend on receptors and energy.

  15. New Acetylene-Terminated Quinoxaline Oligomers

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1982-03-01

    diketone . In this work, we tried other bases, but potassium t-butoxide and lithium t- butoxide gave unsatisfactory results. Synthesis of acetone adduct...the most expensive ingredient. We have previously been able to improve the synthesis of the bisglyoxals needed for these adhesives,2 and are now...general method of synthesis which have been developed is to first condense the quinoxallne oligomer with glyoxal end groups. 2 r ),-CO--CO-Ar--CO--C&O--j

  16. ASSESSING HIPPOCAMPAL CHANGES INDICATIVE OF NEUROTOXIC EFFECTS.

    EPA Science Inventory

    Subtle changes in cognitive function are often the earliest indication of neurotoxic effects in humans. The hippocampus is a large forebrain structure subserving specific kinds of information encoding and consolidation in humans and other animals. Because of it laminar structur...

  17. EVALUATION OF POTENTIAL DEVELOPMENTAL NEUROTOXICITY OF ORGANOTINS.

    EPA Science Inventory

    Organotins, including monomethyltin (MMT), dimethyltin (DMT), and dibutyltin (DBT), are widely used as heat stabilizers in PVC and CPVC piping, which results in their presence in drinking water supplies. Concern for developmental neurotoxic effects were raised by published findi...

  18. Highly neurotoxic monomeric α-helical prion protein

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Minghai; Ottenberg, Gregory; Sferrazza, Gian Franco; Lasmézas, Corinne Ida

    2012-01-01

    Prion diseases are infectious and belong to the group of protein misfolding neurodegenerative diseases. In these diseases, neuronal dysfunction and death are caused by the neuronal toxicity of a particular misfolded form of their cognate protein. The ability to specifically target the toxic protein conformer or the neuronal death pathway would provide powerful therapeutic approaches to these diseases. The neurotoxic forms of the prion protein (PrP) have yet to be defined but there is evidence suggesting that at least some of them differ from infectious PrP (PrPSc). Herein, without making an assumption about size or conformation, we searched for toxic forms of recombinant PrP after dilution refolding, size fractionation, and systematic biological testing of all fractions. We found that the PrP species most neurotoxic in vitro and in vivo (toxic PrP, TPrP) is a monomeric, highly α-helical form of PrP. TPrP caused autophagy, apoptosis, and a molecular signature remarkably similar to that observed in the brains of prion-infected animals. Interestingly, highly α-helical intermediates have been described for other amyloidogenic proteins but their biological significance remains to be established. We provide unique experimental evidence that a monomeric α-helical form of an amyloidogenic protein represents a cytotoxic species. Although toxic PrP has yet to be purified from prion-infected brains, TPrP might be the equivalent of one highly neurotoxic PrP species generated during prion replication. Because TPrP is a misfolded, highly neurotoxic form of PrP reproducing several features of prion-induced neuronal death, it constitutes a useful model to study PrP-induced neurodegenerative mechanisms. PMID:22323583

  19. 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.

  20. Translating neurobehavioural endpoints of developmental neurotoxicity tests into in vitro assays and readouts.

    PubMed

    van Thriel, Christoph; Westerink, Remco H S; Beste, Christian; Bale, Ambuja S; Lein, Pamela J; Leist, Marcel

    2012-08-01

    The developing nervous system is particularly vulnerable to chemical insults. Exposure to chemicals can result in neurobehavioural alterations, and these have been used as sensitive readouts to assess neurotoxicity in animals and man. Deconstructing neurobehaviour into relevant cellular and molecular components may allow for detection of specific neurotoxic effects in cell-based systems, which in turn may allow an easier examination of neurotoxic pathways and modes of actions and eventually inform the regulatory assessment of chemicals with potential developmental neurotoxicity. Here, current developments towards these goals are reviewed. Imaging genetics (CB) provides new insights into the neurobiological correlates of cognitive function that are being used to delineate neurotoxic mechanisms. The gaps between in vivo neurobehaviour and real-time in vitro measurements of neuronal function are being bridged by ex vivo measurements of synaptic plasticity (RW). An example of solvent neurotoxicity demonstrates how an in vivo neurological defect can be linked via the N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA)-glutamate receptor as a common target to in vitro readouts (AB). Axonal and dendritic morphology in vitro proved to be good correlates of neuronal connectivity and neurobehaviour in animals exposed to polychlorinated biphenyls and organophosphorus pesticides (PJL). Similarly, chemically induced changes in neuronal morphology affected the formation of neuronal networks on structured surfaces. Such network formation may become an important readout for developmental neurotoxicity in vitro (CvT), especially when combined with human neurons derived from embryonic stem cells (ML). We envision that future in vitro test systems for developmental neurotoxicity will combine the above approaches with exposure information, and we suggest a strategy for test system development and cell-based risk assessment.

  1. MicroRNAs: New Players in Anesthetic-Induced Developmental Neurotoxicity

    PubMed Central

    Twaroski, Danielle; Bosnjak, Zeljko J.; Bai, Xiaowen

    2015-01-01

    Growing evidence demonstrates that prolonged exposure to general anesthetics during brain development induces widespread neuronal cell death followed by long-term memory and learning disabilities in animal models. These studies have raised serious concerns about the safety of anesthetic use in pregnant women and young children. However, the underlying mechanisms of anesthetic-induced neurotoxicity are complex and are not well understood. MicroRNAs are endogenous, small, non-coding RNAs that have been implicated to play important roles in many different disease processes by negatively regulating target gene expression. A possible role for microRNAs in anesthetic-induced developmental neurotoxicity has recently been identified, suggesting that microRNA-based signaling might be a novel target for preventing the neurotoxicity. Here we provide an overview of anesthetic-induced developmental neurotoxicity and focus on the role of microRNAs in the neurotoxicity observed in both human stem cell-derived neuron and animal models. Aberrant expression of some microRNAs has been shown to be involved in anesthetic-induced developmental neurotoxicity, revealing the potential of microRNAs as therapeutic or preventive targets against the toxicity. PMID:26146587

  2. 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.

  3. Considerable Enhancement of Emission Yields of [Au(CN)2(-)] Oligomers in Aqueous Solutions by Coexisting Cations.

    PubMed

    Wakabayashi, Ryo; Maeba, Junichi; Nozaki, Koichi; Iwamura, Munetaka

    2016-08-01

    The photophysical properties of [Au(CN)2(-)] oligomers in aqueous solutions were investigated as functions of coexisting cations as well as the viscosity and temperature of solutions. A solution of [Au(CN)2(-)] in the concentration range of 0.03-0.2 mol/dm(3) exhibited emission peaks at 460-480 nm because of the presence of oligomers larger than trimers. Although the emission yields (ϕem) of K[Au(CN)2] solutions were <1%, it considerably increased to 43% when 1.0 mol/dm(3) tetraethylammonium chloride (Et4NCl) was added. The lifetimes of the main emission bands were also significantly varied with additional salts, e.g., KCl, 15 ns; Et4NCl, 520 ns. The time-resolved emission measurements of [Au(CN)2(-)] in a water/glycerol mixture indicated that the lifetimes were almost directly proportional to the inverse of the viscosity of the solution. On the other hand, the intrinsic lifetimes of dimers and trimers with weak emission in shorter wavelength regions were very short and independent of the viscosity of the solutions and coexisting cations (dimer, ∼25 ps; trimer, ∼2 ns). These results indicated that the deactivation of the excited-state [Au(CN)2(-)]n oligomers (n ≥ 4) was dominated by the dissociation of the oligomers to a shorter species (dimer or trimer). The hydrophobic interactions between tetraalkylammonium cations and CN ligands remarkably stabilized the larger oligomers and suppressed the dissociation of the excited-state oligomers, which enhanced the emission yield of the oligomers. This work provides a new method of "exciplex tuning" by changing the environment of excited-state [Au(CN)2(-)]n oligomers.

  4. A quantification method for heat-decomposable methylglyoxal oligomers and its application on 1,3,5-trimethylbenzene SOA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rodigast, Maria; Mutzel, Anke; Herrmann, Hartmut

    2017-03-01

    Methylglyoxal forms oligomeric compounds in the atmospheric aqueous particle phase, which could establish a significant contribution to the formation of aqueous secondary organic aerosol (aqSOA). Thus far, no suitable method for the quantification of methylglyoxal oligomers is available despite the great effort spent for structure elucidation. In the present study a simplified method was developed to quantify heat-decomposable methylglyoxal oligomers as a sum parameter. The method is based on the thermal decomposition of oligomers into methylglyoxal monomers. Formed methylglyoxal monomers were detected using PFBHA (o-(2,3,4,5,6-pentafluorobenzyl)hydroxylamine hydrochloride) derivatisation and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC/MS) analysis. The method development was focused on the heating time (varied between 15 and 48 h), pH during the heating process (pH = 1-7), and heating temperature (50, 100 °C). The optimised values of these method parameters are presented. The developed method was applied to quantify heat-decomposable methylglyoxal oligomers formed during the OH-radical oxidation of 1,3,5-trimethylbenzene (TMB) in the Leipzig aerosol chamber (LEipziger AerosolKammer, LEAK). Oligomer formation was investigated as a function of seed particle acidity and relative humidity. A fraction of heat-decomposable methylglyoxal oligomers of up to 8 % in the produced organic particle mass was found, highlighting the importance of those oligomers formed solely by methylglyoxal for SOA formation. Overall, the present study provides a new and suitable method for quantification of heat-decomposable methylglyoxal oligomers in the aqueous particle phase.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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

  8. 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

    2015-10-29

    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.

  9. 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

  10. Amyloid β-protein oligomers and Alzheimer’s disease

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    The oligomer cascade hypothesis, which states that oligomers are the initiating pathologic agents in Alzheimer’s disease, has all but supplanted the amyloid cascade hypothesis, which suggested that fibers were the key etiologic agents in Alzheimer’s disease. We review here the results of in vivo, in vitro and in silico studies of amyloid β-protein oligomers, and discuss important caveats that should be considered in the evaluation of these results. This article is divided into four sections that mirror the main approaches used in the field to better understand oligomers: (1) attempts to locate and examine oligomers in vivo in situ; that is, without removing these species from their environment; (2) studies involving oligomers extracted from human or animal tissues and the subsequent characterization of their properties ex vivo; (3) studies of oligomers that have been produced synthetically and studied using a reductionist approach in relatively simple in vitro biophysical systems; and (4) computational studies of oligomers in silico. These multiple orthogonal approaches have revealed much about the molecular and cell biology of amyloid β-protein. However, as informative as these approaches have been, the amyloid β-protein oligomer system remains enigmatic. PMID:24289820

  11. Theory of microphase separation in homopolymer oligomer mixtures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Olemskoi, Alexander; Savelyev, Alexey

    2005-11-01

    This work starts with the review of theoretical methods proposed, during past decades, for description of phase behavior in different polymer systems, involving variety of linear polymers (regular and polydisperse block (co)polymers, random polymers) and the polymer systems with non-covalent bonds of different strength. Microphase separation (MS) into different ordered mesophases is known to be the principal property of such systems. It is shown that most of the theoretical approaches proposed for description of the MS are based on the simple random phase approximation (RPA). It turns out, however, that mean field RPA method applied to description of the systems with non-covalent bonds does not provide the whole picture of MS. We show that the problem here arises when one treats both Flory-Huggins non-associated interactions and non-covalent bonds (hydrogen, ionic) within the unified RPA scheme, which is obviously rough for description of the latter type of interactions. Such a theory was developed in a few recent papers for the systems involving weak hydrogen bonds between homopolymer chains and the low molecular weight oligomers (surfactants). However, it leaves some experimental data unaccounted. The purpose of this review is to consider more detailed theory which is able to explain not only all the experimental data for the above systems but also to take into account the strength variation of non-bonding interactions. In particular, we consider the strong ionic interactions, weak hydrogen bonding, and the interactions of intermediate strength between polymer chain and short oligomers within our unifying theory. To develop such a description in a self-consistent way we propose to use a general field theory of stochastic systems. The mesoscopic (lamellar) structure of the periodically alternating layers of stretched homopolymer chains surrounded by perpendicularly oriented oligomeric tails is studied for the systems with both strong (ionic) and weak (hydrogen

  12. Macrocyclic 2,7-Anthrylene Oligomers.

    PubMed

    Yamamoto, Yuta; Wakamatsu, Kan; Iwanaga, Tetsuo; Sato, Hiroyasu; Toyota, Shinji

    2016-05-06

    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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. A 21st Century Update on Neurotoxicity Risk Assessment

    EPA Science Inventory

    In 1998, EPA published Guidelines for Neurotoxicity Risk Assessment as the basis for interpreting neurotoxicity results. At that time, the focus was on traditional toxicity testing and human clinical /epidemiological data. More recently, a change in approach to toxicity testing ...

  16. Can Zebrafish be used to Identify Developmentally Neurotoxic Chemicals

    EPA Science Inventory

    Can Zebrafish be Used to Identify Developmentally Neurotoxic Chemicals? The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is evaluating methods to screen and prioritize large numbers of chemicals for developmental neurotoxicity. We are exploring behavioral methods using zebrafish by desig...

  17. Methyl-esterified 3-hydroxybutyrate oligomers protect bacteria from hydroxyl radicals.

    PubMed

    Koskimäki, Janne J; Kajula, Marena; Hokkanen, Juho; Ihantola, Emmi-Leena; Kim, Jong H; Hautajärvi, Heidi; Hankala, Elina; Suokas, Marko; Pohjanen, Johanna; Podolich, Olga; Kozyrovska, Natalia; Turpeinen, Ari; Pääkkönen, Mirva; Mattila, Sampo; Campbell, Bruce C; Pirttilä, Anna Maria

    2016-05-01

    Bacteria rely mainly on enzymes, glutathione and other low-molecular weight thiols to overcome oxidative stress. However, hydroxyl radicals are the most cytotoxic reactive oxygen species, and no known enzymatic system exists for their detoxification. We now show that methyl-esterified dimers and trimers of 3-hydroxybutyrate (ME-3HB), produced by bacteria capable of polyhydroxybutyrate biosynthesis, have 3-fold greater hydroxyl radical-scavenging activity than glutathione and 11-fold higher activity than vitamin C or the monomer 3-hydroxybutyric acid. We found that ME-3HB oligomers protect hypersensitive yeast deletion mutants lacking oxidative stress-response genes from hydroxyl radical stress. Our results show that phaC and phaZ, encoding polymerase and depolymerase, respectively, are activated and polyhydroxybutyrate reserves are degraded for production of ME-3HB oligomers in bacteria infecting plant cells and exposed to hydroxyl radical stress. We found that ME-3HB oligomer production is widespread, especially in bacteria adapted to stressful environments. We discuss how ME-3HB oligomers could provide opportunities for numerous applications in human health.

  18. 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.

  19. Complement Protein C1q Forms a Complex with Cytotoxic Prion Protein Oligomers

    PubMed Central

    Erlich, Paul; Dumestre-Pérard, Chantal; Ling, Wai Li; Lemaire-Vieille, Catherine; Schoehn, Guy; Arlaud, Gérard J.; Thielens, Nicole M.; Gagnon, Jean; Cesbron, Jean-Yves

    2010-01-01

    A growing number of studies have investigated the interaction between C1q and PrP, but the oligomeric form of PrP involved in this interaction remains to be determined. Aggregation of recombinant full-length murine PrP in the presence of 100 mm NaCl allowed us to isolate three different types of oligomers by size-exclusion chromatography. In contrast to PrP monomers and fibrils, these oligomers activate the classical complement pathway, the smallest species containing 8–15 PrP protomers being the most efficient. We used Thioflavine T fluorescence to monitor PrP aggregation and showed that, when added to the reaction, C1q has a cooperative effect on PrP aggregation and leads to the formation of C1q-PrP complexes. In these complexes, C1q interacts through its globular domains preferentially with the smallest oligomers, as shown by electron microscopy, and retains the ability to activate the classical complement pathway. Using two cell lines, we also provide evidence that C1q inhibits the cytotoxicity induced by the smallest PrP oligomers. The cooperative interaction between C1q and PrP could represent an early step in the disease, where it prevents elimination of the prion seed, leading to further aggregation. PMID:20410306

  20. An update on the physiological and therapeutic relevance of GPCR oligomers.

    PubMed

    Farran, Batoul

    2017-03-01

    The traditional view on GPCRs held that they function as single monomeric units composed of identical subunits. This notion was overturned by the discovery that GPCRs can form homo- and hetero-oligomers, some of which are obligatory, and can further assemble into receptor mosaics consisting of three or more protomers. Oligomerisation exerts significant impacts on receptor function and physiology, offering a platform for the diversification of receptor signalling, pharmacology, regulation, crosstalk, internalization and trafficking. Given their involvement in the modulation of crucial physiological processes, heteromers could constitute important therapeutic targets for a wide range of diseases, including schizophrenia, Parkinson's disease, substance abuse or obesity. This review aims at depicting the current developments in GPCR oligomerisation research, documenting various class A, B and C GPCR heteromers detected in vitro and in vivo using biochemical and biophysical approaches, as well as recently identified higher-order oligomeric complexes. It explores the current understanding of dimerization dynamics and the possible interaction interfaces that drive oligomerisation. Most importantly, it provides an inventory of the wide range of physiological processes and pathophysiological conditions to which GPCR oligomers contribute, surveying some of the oligomers that constitute potential drug targets. Finally, it delineates the efforts to develop novel classes of ligands that specifically target and tether to receptor oligomers instead of a single monomeric entity, thus ameliorating their ability to modulate GPCR function.

  1. Alzheimer's disease-type neuronal tau hyperphosphorylation induced by Aβ oligomers

    PubMed Central

    De Felice, Fernanda G.; Wu, Diana; Lambert, Mary P.; Fernandez, Sara J.; Velasco, Pauline T.; Lacor, Pascale N.; Bigio, Eileen H.; Jerecic, Jasna; Acton, Paul J.; Shughrue, Paul J.; Chen-Dodson, Elizabeth; Kinney, Gene G.; Klein, William L.

    2008-01-01

    Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is characterized by presence of extracellular fibrillar Aβ in amyloid plaques, intraneuronal neurofibrillary tangles consisting of aggregated hyperphosphorylated tau and elevated brain levels of soluble Aβ oligomers (ADDLs). A major question is how these disparate facets of AD pathology are mechanistically related. Here we show that, independent of the presence of fibrils, ADDLs stimulate tau phosphorylation in mature cultures of hippocampal neurons and in neuroblastoma cells at epitopes characteristically hyperphosphorylated in AD. A monoclonal antibody that targets ADDLs blocked their attachment to synaptic binding sites and prevented tau hyperphosphorylation. Tau phosphorylation was blocked by the Src family tyrosine kinase inhibitor, 4-amino-5-(4-chlorophenyl)-7(t-butyl)pyrazol(3,4-D)pyramide (PP1), and by the phosphatidylinositol-3-kinase inhibitor LY294002. Significantly, tau hyperphosphorylation was also induced by a soluble aqueous extract containing Aβ oligomers from AD brains, but not by an extract from non-AD brains. Aβ oligomers have been increasingly implicated as the main neurotoxins in AD, and the current results provide a unifying mechanism in which oligomer activity is directly linked to tau hyperphosphorylation in AD pathology. PMID:17403556

  2. Use of Doubly Charged Precursors to Validate Dissociation Mechanisms of Singly Charged Poly(Dimethylsiloxane) Oligomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fouquet, Thierry; Toniazzo, Valérie; Ruch, David; Charles, Laurence

    2013-07-01

    Collision-induced dissociation of doubly charged poly(dimethylsiloxane) (PDMS) molecules was investigated to provide experimental evidence for fragmentation reactions proposed to occur upon activation of singly charged oligomers. This study focuses on two PDMS species holding trimethylsilyl or methoxy end-groups and cationized with ammonium. In both cases, introduction of the additional charge did not induce significant differences in dissociation behavior, and the use of doubly charged precursors enabled the occurrence of charge-separation reactions, allowing molecules always eliminated as neutrals upon activation of singly charged oligomers to be detected as cationized species. In the case of trimethylsilyl-terminated oligomers, random location of the adducted charge combined with rapid consecutive reactions proposed to occur from singly charged precursors could be validated based on MS/MS data of doubly charged oligomers. In the case of methoxy-terminated PDMS, favored interaction of the adducted ammonium with both end-groups, proposed to rationalize the dissociation behavior of singly charged molecules, was also supported by MS/MS data obtained for molecules adducted with two ammonium cations.

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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.

  4. 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

  5. Facile Synthesis of Highly Crystalline and Large Areal Hexagonal Boron Nitride from Borazine Oligomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Park, Sungchan; Seo, Tae Hoon; Cho, Hyunjin; Min, Kyung Hyun; Lee, Dong Su; Won, Dong-Il; Kang, Sang Ook; Kim, Myung Jong

    2017-01-01

    A novel and facile synthetic method for h-BN films from borazine oligomer (B3N3H4)x precursors has been developed. This method only includes spin-coating of borazine oligomer onto nickel catalysts and a subsequent annealing step. Large areal and highly crystalline h-BN films were obtained. The stoichiometric B/N ratio of borazine oligomer precursor was preserved in the final h-BN product such that it was close to 1 as revealed by XPS. Catalytic effect of nickel for h-BN formation was clearly demonstrated by lowering crystallization temperature compared to the growth condition in the absence of catalyst. The graphene field effect transistor (GFET) characterization has proved the high quality synthesis of h-BN films, showing the shift of neutrality point and the increase of the mobility. This method can also provide functional h-BN coating on various surfaces by annealing Ni-coated borazine oligomer films and subsequent removal of Ni catalyst.

  6. Facile Synthesis of Highly Crystalline and Large Areal Hexagonal Boron Nitride from Borazine Oligomers

    PubMed Central

    Park, Sungchan; Seo, Tae Hoon; Cho, Hyunjin; Min, Kyung Hyun; Lee, Dong Su; Won, Dong-Il; Kang, Sang Ook; Kim, Myung Jong

    2017-01-01

    A novel and facile synthetic method for h-BN films from borazine oligomer (B3N3H4)x precursors has been developed. This method only includes spin-coating of borazine oligomer onto nickel catalysts and a subsequent annealing step. Large areal and highly crystalline h-BN films were obtained. The stoichiometric B/N ratio of borazine oligomer precursor was preserved in the final h-BN product such that it was close to 1 as revealed by XPS. Catalytic effect of nickel for h-BN formation was clearly demonstrated by lowering crystallization temperature compared to the growth condition in the absence of catalyst. The graphene field effect transistor (GFET) characterization has proved the high quality synthesis of h-BN films, showing the shift of neutrality point and the increase of the mobility. This method can also provide functional h-BN coating on various surfaces by annealing Ni-coated borazine oligomer films and subsequent removal of Ni catalyst. PMID:28074854

  7. 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.

  8. Computing highly specific and mismatch tolerant oligomers efficiently.

    PubMed

    Yamada, Tomoyuki; Morishita, Shinichi

    2003-01-01

    The sequencing of the genomes of a variety of species and the growing databases containing expressed sequence tags (ESTs) and complementary DNAs (cDNAs) facilitate the design of highly specific oligomers for use as genomic markers, PCR primers, or DNA oligo microarrays. The first step in evaluating the specificity of short oligomers of about twenty units in length is to determine the frequencies at which the oligomers occur. However, for oligomers longer than about fifty units this is not efficient, as they usually have a frequency of only 1. A more suitable procedure is to consider the mismatch tolerance of an oligomer, that is, the minimum number of mismatches that allows a given oligomer to match a sub-sequence other than the target sequence anywhere in the genome or the EST database. However, calculating the exact value of mismatch tolerance is computationally costly and impractical. Therefore, we studied the problem of checking whether an oligomer meets the constraint that its mismatch tolerance is no less than a given threshold. Here, we present an efficient dynamic programming algorithm solution that utilizes suffix and height arrays. We demonstrated the effectiveness of this algorithm by efficiently computing a dense list of oligo-markers applicable to the human genome. Experimental results show that the algorithm runs faster than well-known Abrahamson's algorithm by orders of magnitude and is able to enumerate 63% to approximately 79% of qualified oligomers.

  9. Computing highly specific and noise-tolerant oligomers efficiently.

    PubMed

    Yamada, Tomoyuki; Morishita, Shinichi

    2004-03-01

    The sequencing of the genomes of a variety of species and the growing databases containing expressed sequence tags (ESTs) and complementary DNAs (cDNAs) facilitate the design of highly specific oligomers for use as genomic markers, PCR primers, or DNA oligo microarrays. The first step in evaluating the specificity of short oligomers of about 20 units in length is to determine the frequencies at which the oligomers occur. However, for oligomers longer than about fifty units this is not efficient, as they usually have a frequency of only 1. A more suitable procedure is to consider the mismatch tolerance of an oligomer, that is, the minimum number of mismatches that allows a given oligomer to match a substring other than the target sequence anywhere in the genome or the EST database. However, calculating the exact value of mismatch tolerance is computationally costly and impractical. Therefore, we studied the problem of checking whether an oligomer meets the constraint that its mismatch tolerance is no less than a given threshold. Here, we present an efficient dynamic programming algorithm solution that utilizes suffix and height arrays. We demonstrated the effectiveness of this algorithm by efficiently computing a dense list of numerous oligo-markers applicable to the human genome. Experimental results show that the algorithm runs faster than well-known Abrahamson's algorithm by orders of magnitude and is able to enumerate 65% approximately 76% of qualified oligomers.

  10. A Kinetic Model for Cell Damage Caused by Oligomer Formation.

    PubMed

    Hong, Liu; Huang, Ya-Jing; Yong, Wen-An

    2015-10-06

    It is well known that the formation of amyloid fiber may cause invertible damage to cells, although the underlying mechanism has not been fully understood. In this article, a microscopic model considering the detailed processes of amyloid formation and cell damage is constructed based on four simple assumptions, one of which is that cell damage is raised by oligomers rather than mature fibrils. By taking the maximum entropy principle, this microscopic model in the form of infinite mass-action equations together with two reaction-convection partial differential equations (PDEs) has been greatly coarse-grained into a macroscopic system consisting of only five ordinary differential equations (ODEs). With this simple model, the effects of primary nucleation, elongation, fragmentation, and protein and seeds concentration on amyloid formation and cell damage have been extensively explored and compared with experiments. We hope that our results will provide new insights into the quantitative linkage between amyloid formation and cell damage.

  11. Nucleus accumbens invulnerability to methamphetamine neurotoxicity.

    PubMed

    Kuhn, Donald M; Angoa-Pérez, Mariana; Thomas, David M

    2011-01-01

    Methamphetamine (Meth) is a neurotoxic drug of abuse that damages neurons and nerve endings throughout the central nervous system. Emerging studies of human Meth addicts using both postmortem analyses of brain tissue and noninvasive imaging studies of intact brains have confirmed that Meth causes persistent structural abnormalities. Animal and human studies have also defined a number of significant functional problems and comorbid psychiatric disorders associated with long-term Meth abuse. This review summarizes the salient features of Meth-induced neurotoxicity with a focus on the dopamine (DA) neuronal system. DA nerve endings in the caudate-putamen (CPu) are damaged by Meth in a highly delimited manner. Even within the CPu, damage is remarkably heterogeneous, with ventral and lateral aspects showing the greatest deficits. The nucleus accumbens (NAc) is largely spared the damage that accompanies binge Meth intoxication, but relatively subtle changes in the disposition of DA in its nerve endings can lead to dramatic increases in Meth-induced toxicity in the CPu and overcome the normal resistance of the NAc to damage. In contrast to the CPu, where DA neuronal deficiencies are persistent, alterations in the NAc show a partial recovery. Animal models have been indispensable in studies of the causes and consequences of Meth neurotoxicity and in the development of new therapies. This research has shown that increases in cytoplasmic DA dramatically broaden the neurotoxic profile of Meth to include brain structures not normally targeted for damage. The resistance of the NAc to Meth-induced neurotoxicity and its ability to recover reveal a fundamentally different neuroplasticity by comparison to the CPu. Recruitment of the NAc as a target of Meth neurotoxicity by alterations in DA homeostasis is significant in light of the numerous important roles played by this brain structure.

  12. Protection from MPTP-induced neurotoxicity in differentiating mouse N2a neuroblastoma cells.

    PubMed

    De Girolamo, L A; Hargreaves, A J; Billett, E E

    2001-02-01

    We have shown previously that subcytotoxic concentrations of MPTP (1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine) inhibit axon outgrowth and are associated with increased neurofilament heavy chain (NF-H) phosphorylation in differentiating mouse N2a neuroblastoma cells while higher doses (> 100 microM) cause cell death. In this work we assessed the ability of potential neuroprotective agents to alleviate both MPTP-induced cell death (cytotoxicity) and MPTP-induced NF-H phosphorylation/reduction in axon outgrowth (neurotoxicity) in N2a cells induced to differentiate by dbcAMP. The neurotoxic effects of MPTP occurred in the absence of significant alterations in energy status or mitochondrial membrane potential. The hormone oestradiol (100 microM) reduced the cytotoxic effect of MPTP, but blocked di-butyryl cyclic AMP (dbcAMP)-induced differentiation, i.e. axon outgrowth. Both the cytotoxic and neurotoxic effects of MPTP were reduced by the monoamine oxidase (MAO) inhibitors deprenyl and, to a lesser extent, clorgyline. Alleviation of both neurotoxicity and cytotoxicity was also achieved by conditioned medium derived from rat C6 glioma cells. In contrast, whilst the p38 MAP kinase inhibitor, SB202190, protected cells against MPTP-induced neurotoxicity, it could not maintain cell viability at high MPTP exposures. In each case neuroprotection involved maintenance of the differentiating phenotype linked with attenuation of NF-H hyper-phosphorylation; the latter may represent a mechanism by which neuronal cells can moderate MPTP-induced neurotoxicity. The use of a simplified neuronal cell model, which expresses subtle biochemical changes following neurotoxic insult, could therefore provide a valuable tool for the identification of potential neuroprotective agents.

  13. Origin and diversification of a metabolic cycle in oligomer world.

    PubMed

    Nishio, Tomoaki; Narikiyo, Osamu

    2013-02-01

    Based on the oligomer-world hypothesis we propose an abstract model where the molecular recognition among oligomers is described in the shape space. The origin of life in the oligomer world is regarded as the establishment of a metabolic cycle in a primitive cell. The cycle is sustained by the molecular recognition. If an original cell acquires the ability of the replication of oligomers, the relationship among oligomers changes due to the poor fidelity of the replication. This change leads to the diversification of metabolic cycles. The selection among diverse cycles is the basis of the evolution. The evolvability is one of the essential characters of life. We demonstrate the origin and diversification of the metabolic cycle by the computer simulation of our model. Such a simulation is expected to be the simplified demonstration of what actually occurred in the primordial soup. Our model describes an analog era preceding the digital era based on the genetic code.

  14. Non-aqueous dispersion coatings based on crystalline oligomers

    SciTech Connect

    Jones, F.N.

    1993-12-31

    Amorphous oligomers and polymers are generally used in coatings; crystalline ones are avoided because of the difficulty of achieving homogeneous, defect-free films. However, dispersions of crystalline oligomers offer potential advantages of stability, useful application rheology, and excellent film properties. The authors describe non-aqueous dispersions of mixtures of crystalline and amorphous oligomers. An example is a dispersion of mixtures of crystalline (at ambient temperature) hydroxyl-functional oligomer of terephthalic acid and 1,6-hexanediol mixed with an amorphous hydroxyl-functional oligomer of terephthalic acid and glycidyl neodecanote. Microscopy, WAXD and DSC indicate that the dispersion particles are crystalline and have a diameter of 5 to 20 {mu}m. The dispersions are stable and are thixotropic. Coatings formulated with melamine and polyisocyanate resin crosslinkers form glossy, transparent film with excellent mechanical properties.

  15. 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.

  16. Glucosamine oligomers: 4. Solid state-crystallization and sustained dissolution.

    PubMed

    Domard, A; Cartier, N

    1992-04-01

    When glucosamine oligomers are stored in the solid state they undergo a process of crystallization. The extent to which this occurs depends on whether the samples are isolated in the -NH3+ or -NH2 form, on the storage time, and on the degree of polymerization of the isolated oligomer. The allomorph obtained by this process seems to correspond to the so-called 'tendon-chitosan'. Dissolution of such aged oligomer samples gives rise to a process of dissociation of the associated chains in the crystal, leading to the establishment of a pseudo-equilibrium between single and associated oligomer chains and hence the simultaneous presence of the 'monomeric', 'dimeric', 'trimeric', etc., forms of the oligomer. The phenomenon cannot be attributed to a process of aggregation in solution. The effects of various parameters on this behaviour have been investigated.

  17. Pb neurotoxicity: neuropsychological effects of lead toxicity.

    PubMed

    Mason, Lisa H; Harp, Jordan P; Han, Dong Y

    2014-01-01

    Neurotoxicity is a term used to describe neurophysiological changes caused by exposure to toxic agents. Such exposure can result in neurocognitive symptoms and/or psychiatric disturbances. Common toxic agents include heavy metals, drugs, organophosphates, bacterial, and animal neurotoxins. Among heavy metal exposures, lead exposure is one of the most common exposures that can lead to significant neuropsychological and functional decline in humans. In this review, neurotoxic lead exposure's pathophysiology, etiology, and epidemiology are explored. In addition, commonly associated neuropsychological difficulties in intelligence, memory, executive functioning, attention, processing speed, language, visuospatial skills, motor skills, and affect/mood are explored.

  18. FcγRIIb mediates amyloid-β neurotoxicity and memory impairment in Alzheimer’s disease

    PubMed Central

    Kam, Tae-In; Song, Sungmin; Gwon, Youngdae; Park, Hyejin; Yan, Ji-Jing; Im, Isak; Choi, Ji-Woo; Choi, Tae-Yong; Kim, Jeongyeon; Song, Dong-Keun; Takai, Toshiyuki; Kim, Yong-Chul; Kim, Key-Sun; Choi, Se-Young; Choi, Sukwoo; Klein, William L.; Yuan, Junying; Jung, Yong-Keun

    2013-01-01

    Amyloid-β (Aβ) induces neuronal loss and cognitive deficits and is believed to be a prominent cause of Alzheimer’s disease (AD); however, the cellular pathology of the disease is not fully understood. Here, we report that IgG Fcγ receptor II-b (FcγRIIb) mediates Aβ neurotoxicity and neurodegeneration. We found that FcγRIIb is significantly upregulated in the hippocampus of AD brains and neuronal cells exposed to synthetic Aβ. Neuronal FcγRIIb activated ER stress and caspase-12, and Fcgr2b KO primary neurons were resistant to synthetic Aβ-induced cell death in vitro. Fcgr2b deficiency ameliorated Aβ-induced inhibition of long-term potentiation and inhibited the reduction of synaptic density by naturally secreted Aβ. Moreover, genetic depletion of Fcgr2b rescued memory impairments in an AD mouse model. To determine the mechanism of action of FcγRIIb in Aβ neurotoxicity, we demonstrated that soluble Aβ oligomers interact with FcγRIIb in vitro and in AD brains, and that inhibition of their interaction blocks synthetic Aβ neurotoxicity. We conclude that FcγRIIb has an aberrant, but essential, role in Aβ-mediated neuronal dysfunction. PMID:23921129

  19. Neurotoxicity of the Parkinson Disease-Associated Pesticide Ziram Is Synuclein-Dependent in Zebrafish Embryos

    PubMed Central

    Lulla, Aaron; Barnhill, Lisa; Bitan, Gal; Ivanova, Magdalena I.; Nguyen, Binh; O’Donnell, Kelley; Stahl, Mark C.; Yamashiro, Chase; Klärner, Frank-Gerrit; Schrader, Thomas; Sagasti, Alvaro; Bronstein, Jeff M.

    2016-01-01

    Background: Exposure to the commonly used dithiocarbamate (DTC) pesticides is associated with an increased risk of developing Parkinson disease (PD), although the mechanisms by which they exert their toxicity are not completely understood. Objective: We studied the mechanisms of ziram’s (a DTC fungicide) neurotoxicity in vivo. Methods: Zebrafish (ZF) embryos were utilized to determine ziram’s effects on behavior, neuronal toxicity, and the role of synuclein in its toxicity. Results: Nanomolar-range concentrations of ziram caused selective loss of dopaminergic (DA) neurons and impaired swimming behavior. Because ziram increases α-synuclein (α-syn) concentrations in rat primary neuronal cultures, we investigated the effect of ziram on ZF γ-synuclein 1 (γ1). ZF express 3 synuclein isoforms, and ZF γ1 appears to be the closest functional homologue to α-syn. We found that recombinant ZF γ1 formed fibrils in vitro, and overexpression of ZF γ1 in ZF embryos led to the formation of neuronal aggregates and neurotoxicity in a manner similar to that of α-syn. Importantly, knockdown of ZF γ1 with morpholinos and disruption of oligomers with the molecular tweezer CLR01 prevented ziram’s DA toxicity. Conclusions: These data show that ziram is selectively toxic to DA neurons in vivo, and this toxicity is synuclein-dependent. These findings have important implications for understanding the mechanisms by which pesticides may cause PD. Citation: Lulla A, Barnhill L, Bitan G, Ivanova MI, Nguyen B, O’Donnell K, Stahl MC, Yamashiro C, Klärner FG, Schrader T, Sagasti A, Bronstein JM. 2016. Neurotoxicity of the Parkinson disease-associated pesticide ziram is synuclein-dependent in zebrafish embryos. Environ Health Perspect 124:1766–1775; http://dx.doi.org/10.1289/EHP141 PMID:27301718

  20. 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.

  1. Mechanisms and Modifiers of Methylmercury-Induced Neurotoxicity

    PubMed Central

    Fretham, Stephanie JB; Caito, Samuel; Martinez-Finley, Ebany J; Aschner, Michael

    2016-01-01

    The neurotoxic consequences of methylmercury (MeHg) exposure have long been known, however a complete understanding of the mechanisms underlying this toxicity is elusive. Recent epidemiological and experimental studies have provided many mechanistic insights, particularly into the contribution of genetic and environmental factors that interact with MeHg to modify toxicity. This review will outline cellular processes directly and indirectly affected by MeHg, including oxidative stress, cellular signaling and gene expression, and discuss genetic, environmental and nutritional factors capable of modifying MeHg toxicity. PMID:27795823

  2. DEVELOPMENTAL NEUROTOXICITY OF PYRETHROID INSECTICIDES: CRITICAL REVIEW.

    EPA Science Inventory

    Pyrethroids are widely utilized insecticides whose primary action is the disruption of voltage-sensitive sodium channels (VSSC). Although these compounds have been in use for over 30 years and their acute neurotoxicity has been well characterized, there is considerably less info...

  3. NEUROTOXICITY OF TETRACHLOROETHYLENE (PERCHLOROETHYLENE): DISCUSSION PAPER

    EPA Science Inventory

    This paper is a background document for a meeting of neurotoxicity experts to discuss the central nervous system effects of exposure to perchloroethylene (perc). The document reviews the literature on neurological testing of people exposed to perc occupationally in dry cleanin...

  4. MANAGING EXPOSURES TO NEUROTOXIC AIR POLLUTANTS.

    EPA Science Inventory

    Researchers at EPA's National Health and Environmental Effects Research Laboratory are developing a biologically-based dose-response model to describe the neurotoxic effects of exposure to volatile organic compounds (VOCs). The model is being developed to improve risk assessment...

  5. Manganese neurotoxicity: a focus on the neonate.

    PubMed

    Erikson, Keith M; Thompson, Khristy; Aschner, Judy; Aschner, Michael

    2007-02-01

    Manganese (Mn) is an essential trace metal found in all tissues, and it is required for normal amino acid, lipid, protein, and carbohydrate metabolism. While Mn deficiency is extremely rare in humans, toxicity due to overexposure of Mn is more prevalent. The brain appears to be especially vulnerable. Mn neurotoxicity is most commonly associated with occupational exposure to aerosols or dusts that contain extremely high levels (>1-5 mg Mn/m(3)) of Mn, consumption of contaminated well water, or parenteral nutrition therapy in patients with liver disease or immature hepatic functioning such as the neonate. This review will focus primarily on the neurotoxicity of Mn in the neonate. We will discuss putative transporters of the metal in the neonatal brain and then focus on the implications of high Mn exposure to the neonate focusing on typical exposure modes (e.g., dietary and parenteral). Although Mn exposure via parenteral nutrition is uncommon in adults, in premature infants, it is more prevalent, so this mode of exposure becomes salient in this population. We will briefly review some of the mechanisms of Mn neurotoxicity and conclude with a discussion of ripe areas for research in this underreported area of neurotoxicity.

  6. Neurotoxicity of ecstasy (MDMA): an overview.

    PubMed

    Sarkar, Sumit; Schmued, Larry

    2010-08-01

    "Ecstasy" (MDMA) is a powerful hallucinogenic drug which has raised concern worldwide because of its high abuse liability. A plethora of studies have demonstrated that MDMA has the potential to induce neurotoxicity both in human and laboratory animals. Although research on MDMA has been carried out by many different laboratories, the mechanism underlying MDMA induced toxicity has not been fully elucidated. MDMA has the ability to reduce serotonin levels in terminals of axons in the cortex of rats and mice. Recently we have shown that it also has the potential to produce degenerate neurons in discrete areas of the brain such as insular and parietal cortex, thalamus, tenia tecta and bed nucleus of stria terminalis (BST). Acute effects of MDMA can result in a constellation of changes including arrthymias, hypertension, hyperthermia, serotonin (5-HT) syndrome, liver problems, seizures and also long lasting neurocognitive impairments including mood disturbances. In human MDMA abusers, there is evidence for reduction of serotonergic biochemical markers. Several factors may contribute to the MDMA-induced neurotoxicity, especially hyperthermia. Other factors potentially influencing MDMA toxicity include monoamine oxidase metabolism of dopamine and serotonin, nitric oxide generation, glutamate excitotoxicity, serotonin 2A receptor agonism and the formation of MDMA neurotoxic metabolites. In this review we will cover the following topics: pharmacological mechanisms, metabolic pathways and acute effects in laboratory animals, as well as in humans, with special attention on the mechanism and pathology of MDMA induced neurotoxicity.

  7. Soluble Aβ oligomer production and toxicity

    PubMed Central

    Larson, Megan E.; Lesné, Sylvain E.

    2011-01-01

    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. PMID:22121920

  8. alpha7 Nicotinic acetylcholine receptor knockout selectively enhances ethanol-, but not beta-amyloid-induced neurotoxicity.

    PubMed

    de Fiebre, Nancyellen C; de Fiebre, Christopher M

    2005-01-03

    The alpha7 subtype of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) has been implicated as a potential site of action for two neurotoxins, ethanol and the Alzheimer's disease related peptide, beta-amyloid. Here, we utilized primary neuronal cultures of cerebral cortex from alpha7 nAChR null mutant mice to examine the role of this receptor in modulating the neurotoxic properties of subchronic, "binge" ethanol and beta-amyloid. Knockout of the alpha7 nAChR gene selectively enhanced ethanol-induced neurotoxicity in a gene dosage-related fashion. Susceptibility of cultures to beta-amyloid induced toxicity, however, was unaffected by alpha7 nAChR gene null mutation. Further, beta-amyloid did not inhibit the binding of the highly alpha7-selective radioligand, [(125)I]alpha-bungarotoxin. On the other hand, in studies in Xenopus oocytes ethanol efficaciously inhibited alpha7 nAChR function. These data suggest that alpha7 nAChRs modulate the neurotoxic effects of binge ethanol, but not the neurotoxicity produced by beta-amyloid. It is hypothesized that inhibition of alpha7 nAChRs by ethanol provides partial protection against the neurotoxic properties of subchronic ethanol.

  9. Structural and functional properties of prefibrillar α-synuclein oligomers.

    PubMed

    Pieri, Laura; Madiona, Karine; Melki, Ronald

    2016-04-14

    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.

  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. 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

  12. Clarithromycin-induced neurotoxicity in adults.

    PubMed

    Bandettini di Poggio, M; Anfosso, Sandra; Audenino, Daniela; Primavera, Alberto

    2011-03-01

    Clarithromycin is a relatively new antibiotic of the macrolide family heralded for an improved side effect profile, dosing schedule, and microbiological activity relative to its parent compound, erythromycin. We review the literature on clarithromycin-induced neurotoxicity in adults and present an illustrative case. A total of 38 patients with clarithromycin-induced neurotoxicity have been reported. The average age of patients was 51.3 years (range: 19-87 years) with females comprising 52.6% of patients. Psychiatric illness was the most common comorbidity, while only two patients had renal failure. Clarithromycin had been prescribed for respiratory infections in most patients, and only two patients were receiving more than 1000 mg/day of antibiotic. The symptoms started 1 day to 10 days after starting clarithromycin (mean: 5 days). A total of 71% of patients were under treatment with concomitant medication, and eight patients were undergoing treatment with psychoactive drugs. Patients had a very good outcome after clarithromycin was discontinued, but medication with neuroleptics or benzodiazepine was required for 58% of patients in the acute phase. Only four patients underwent an electroencephalogram (EEG). Our illustrative patient was a 74-year-old woman with clarithromycin-induced delirium due to non-convulsive status epilepticus (NCSE). Her clinical symptoms and electroencephalogram (EEG) readings dramatically improved after discontinuation of clarithromycin. The mechanism underlying the central nervous system side effects remains unclear. We suggest including an EEG in the diagnostic procedures of patients under treatment with clarithromycin who develop features of neurotoxicity because an EEG can help to differentiate patients with psychiatric illness from those with encephalopathy or epilepsy. Because of the widespread use of clarithromycin, clinicians should be aware of its neurotoxicity. Early detection of clarithromycin-induced neurotoxicity and

  13. Corneal Neurotoxicity Due to Topical Benzalkonium Chloride

    PubMed Central

    Sarkar, Joy; Chaudhary, Shweta; Namavari, Abed; Ozturk, Okan; Chang, Jin-Hong; Yco, Lisette; Sonawane, Snehal; Khanolkar, Vishakha; Hallak, Joelle; Jain, Sandeep

    2012-01-01

    Purpose. The aim of this study was to determine and characterize the effect of topical application of benzalkonium chloride (BAK) on corneal nerves in vivo and in vitro. Methods. Thy1-YFP+ neurofluorescent mouse eyes were treated topically with vehicle or BAK (0.01% or 0.1%). Wide-field stereofluorescence microscopy was performed to sequentially image the treated corneas in vivo every week for 4 weeks, and changes in stromal nerve fiber density (NFD) and aqueous tear production were determined. Whole-mount immunofluorescence staining of corneas was performed with antibodies to axonopathy marker SMI-32. Western immunoblot analyses were performed on trigeminal ganglion and corneal lysates to determine abundance of proteins associated with neurotoxicity and regeneration. Compartmental culture of trigeminal ganglion neurons was performed in Campenot devices to determine whether BAK affects neurite outgrowth. Results. BAK-treated corneas exhibited significantly reduced NFD and aqueous tear production, and increased inflammatory cell infiltration and fluorescein staining at 1 week (P < 0.05). These changes were most significant after 0.1% BAK treatment. The extent of inflammatory cell infiltration in the cornea showed a significant negative correlation with NFD. Sequential in vivo imaging of corneas showed two forms of BAK-induced neurotoxicity: reversible neurotoxicity characterized by axonopathy and recovery, and irreversible neurotoxicity characterized by nerve degeneration and regeneration. Increased abundance of beta III tubulin in corneal lysates confirmed regeneration. A dose-related significant reduction in neurites occurred after BAK addition to compartmental cultures of dissociated trigeminal ganglion cells. Although both BAK doses (0.0001% and 0.001%) reduced nerve fiber length, the reduction was significantly more with the higher dose (P < 0.001). Conclusion. Topical application of BAK to the eye causes corneal neurotoxicity, inflammation, and reduced aqueous

  14. Hemolysis as a possible indicator of neurotoxicity induced by organic solvents.

    PubMed Central

    Anderson, R J; Glasgow, C E; Dunham, C B

    1984-01-01

    The expense, length of time and number of animals required for routine toxicity testing have provided the incentive for finding alternative techniques which are faster, less expensive and equally valid. The purpose of this work was to examine the value of a simple in vitro test (hemolysis) as a correlate of the neurotoxicity produced by commonly used industrial organic solvents. Incubation of rat erythrocytes with organic alcohols produced hemolysis which correlates with the potency of the same alcohols to suppress membrane excitability, measured as reduction in the evoked action potential of the rat sciatic nerve. The hemolytic activity also reflects changes in water solubility among the compounds and thus can be used as an index of in vivo neurotoxicity, the extent of which partly depends on absorption of the agent and delivery to nerve tissue. Hemolysis therefore may be of value as a preliminary test for assessing the neurotoxicity of organic solvents. PMID:6525994

  15. CRP and adiponectin and its oligomers in the metabolic syndrome: evaluation of new laboratory-based biomarkers.

    PubMed

    Devaraj, Sridevi; Swarbrick, Michael M; Singh, Uma; Adams-Huet, Beverley; Havel, Peter J; Jialal, Ishwarlal

    2008-05-01

    The metabolic syndrome (MetS) confers an increased risk for diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Although high-sensitive C-reactive protein (hsCRP) concentrations are higher and adiponectin concentrations lower in MetS, there is no reliable biochemical measure that can capture its various features. We evaluated whether hsCRP, adiponectin, or the ratio of adiponectin or its oligomers, especially the high-molecular-weight (HMW) oligomer, to hsCRP predict MetS in 123 subjects with MetS compared with that in 91 healthy control subjects. MetS subjects had significantly higher hsCRP levels and lower total adiponectin and oligomer levels relative to control subjects (P < .0001). The HMW/total adiponectin and adiponectin/CRP ratios were significantly lower in MetS subjects than control subjects (P < .005). The odds ratio (OR) of MetS using the 75th percentile cutoff for CRP was 3.8 (95% confidence interval [CI], 2.1-6.8) and equivalent to low total adiponectin (OR, 2.5; 95% CI, 1.3-4.5), its oligomers, or the adiponectin/ hsCRP ratio (OR, 2.6; 95% CI, 1.5, 4.8). Thus, measurements of CRP, adiponectin, or its oligomers provide robust biomarkers for predicting MetS.

  16. Structural evolution and membrane interactions of Alzheimer's amyloid-beta peptide oligomers: New knowledge from single-molecule fluorescence studies

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, Robin D; Steel, Duncan G; Gafni, Ari

    2014-01-01

    Amyloid-β peptide (Aβ) oligomers may represent the proximal neurotoxin in Alzheimer's disease. Single-molecule microscopy (SMM) techniques have recently emerged as a method for overcoming the innate difficulties of working with amyloid-β, including the peptide's low endogenous concentrations, the dynamic nature of its oligomeric states, and its heterogeneous and complex membrane interactions. SMM techniques have revealed that small oligomers of the peptide bind to model membranes and cells at low nanomolar-to-picomolar concentrations and diffuse at rates dependent on the membrane characteristics. These methods have also shown that oligomers grow or dissociate based on the presence of specific inhibitors or promoters and on the ratio of Aβ40 to Aβ42. Here, we discuss several types of single-molecule imaging that have been applied to the study of Aβ oligomers and their membrane interactions. We also summarize some of the recent insights SMM has provided into oligomer behavior in solution, on planar lipid membranes, and on living cell membranes. A brief overview of the current limitations of the technique, including the lack of sensitive assays for Aβ-induced toxicity, is included in hopes of inspiring future development in this area of research. PMID:24753305

  17. Monitoring Dopamine Quinone-Induced Dopaminergic Neurotoxicity Using Dopamine Functionalized Quantum Dots.

    PubMed

    Ma, Wei; Liu, Hui-Ting; Long, Yi-Tao

    2015-07-08

    Dopamine (DA) quinone-induced dopaminergic neurotoxicity is known to occur due to the interaction between DA quinone and cysteine (Cys) residue, and it may play an important a role in pathological processes associated with neurodegeneration. In this study, we monitored the interaction process of DA to form DA quinone and the subsequent Cys residue using dopamine functionalized quantum dots (QDs). The fluorescence (FL) of the QD bioconjugates changes as a function of the structure transformation during the interaction process, providing a potential FL tool for monitoring dopaminergic neurotoxicity.

  18. The Conformational Stability of Nonfibrillar Amyloid-β Peptide Oligomers Critically Depends on the C-Terminal Peptide Length

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    The amyloid-β (Aβ) peptide is one key molecule in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer’s disease. We investigated the conformational stability of a nonfibrillar tetrameric Aβ structure by molecular dynamics (MD) simulations revealing that the stability of the Aβ tetramer depends critically on the C-terminal length. In contrast to the Aβ17–40 tetramer, which proved to be instable, the simulations demonstrate structural integrity of the Aβ17–42 and Aβ17–43 tetramers. These differences in stability can be attributed to an extension of the middle strand of a three-stranded antiparallel β sheet through residues 41–43, only present in the longer Aβ species that aggregate faster and are more neurotoxic. Additional MD simulations demonstrate that this higher stability is also present in the monomers forming the tetramer. In conclusion, our findings suggest the existence of a nonfibrillar oligomer topology that is significantly more stable for the longer Aβ species, thus offering a structural explanation for their higher neurotoxicity. PMID:24494584

  19. Hyaluronan synthase assembles chitin oligomers with -GlcNAc(α1→)UDP at the reducing end.

    PubMed

    Weigel, Paul H; West, Christopher M; Zhao, Peng; Wells, Lance; Baggenstoss, Bruce A; Washburn, Jennifer L

    2015-06-01

    Class I hyaluronan synthases (HASs) assemble a polysaccharide containing the repeating disaccharide [GlcNAc(β1,4)GlcUA(β1,3)]n-UDP and vertebrate HASs also assemble (GlcNAc-β1,4)n homo-oligomers (chitin) in the absence of GlcUA-UDP. This multi-membrane domain CAZy GT2 family glycosyltransferase, which couples HA synthesis and translocation across the cell membrane, is atypical in that monosaccharides are incrementally assembled at the reducing, rather than the non-reducing, end of the growing polymer. Using Escherichia coli membranes containing recombinant Streptococcus equisimilis HAS, we demonstrate that a prokaryotic Class I HAS also synthesizes chitin oligomers (up to 15-mers, based on MS and MS/MS analyses of permethylated products). Furthermore, chitin oligomers were found attached at their reducing end to -4GlcNAc(α1→)UDP [i.e. (GlcNAcβ1,4)nGlcNAc(α1→)UDP]. These oligomers, which contained up to at least seven HexNAc residues, consisted of β4-linked GlcNAc residues, based on the sensitivity of the native products to jack bean β-N-acetylhexosaminidase. Interestingly, these oligomers exhibited mass defects of -2, or -4 for longer oligomers, that strictly depended on conjugation to UDP, but MS/MS analyses indicate that these species result from chemical dehydrogenations occurring in the gas phase. Identification of (GlcNAc-β1,4)n-GlcNAc(α1→)UDP as HAS reaction products, made in the presence of GlcNAc(α1→)UDP only, provides strong independent confirmation for the reducing terminal addition mechanism. We conclude that chitin oligomer products made by HAS are derived from the cleavage of these novel activated oligo-chitosyl-UDP oligomers. Furthermore, it is possible that these UDP-activated chitin oligomers could serve as self-assembled primers for initiating HA synthesis and ultimately modify the non-reducing terminus of HA with a chitin cap.

  20. A model for non-obligate oligomer formation in protein aggregration

    PubMed Central

    Healy, Eamonn F.

    2015-01-01

    Using solvent-exposed intramolecular backbone hydrogen bonds as physico-chemical descriptors for protein packing, a role for transient, non-obligate oligomers in the formation of aberrant protein aggregates is presented. Oligomeric models of the both wild type (wt) and select mutant variants of superoxide dismutase (SOD1) are proposed to provide a structural basis for investigating the etiology of Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS). PMID:26282203

  1. Oligomer formation in the radiation-induced polymerization of styrene

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harayma, Hiroshi; Al-Sheikhly, Mohamad; Silverman, Joseph

    2003-12-01

    Analyses of the oligomers formed in radiation-induced polymerization of purified styrene were performed. The principal dimeric products were cis- and trans-diphenyl-cyclobutane with a relatively small amount of 1-phenyltetralin; the trimeric products were the optical isomers of 1-phenyl-4-[1'-phenylethyl-(1')]-tetralin in gamma-ray and 60 MeV proton irradiation. Oligomer formation increased with increasing dose, but more gradually than the linear formation of high polymer with dose. The yield was 0.25-3.1 μmol/J at low doses and decreased to an asymptotic value of 0.15 at higher doses. It appears that oligomers act as chain transfer agents during the polymerization reaction which would account for the observed decrease in molecular weight of the high polymer with increase in dose. Although the thermal and radiation-induced polymerization of styrene have different initiation steps, the oligomers produced by both reactions are similar in composition.

  2. 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

  3. 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

  4. A neuronal and astrocyte co-culture assay for high content analysis of neurotoxicity.

    PubMed

    Anderl, Janet L; Redpath, Stella; Ball, Andrew J

    2009-05-05

    High Content Analysis (HCA) assays combine cells and detection reagents with automated imaging and powerful image analysis algorithms, allowing measurement of multiple cellular phenotypes within a single assay. In this study, we utilized HCA to develop a novel assay for neurotoxicity. Neurotoxicity assessment represents an important part of drug safety evaluation, as well as being a significant focus of environmental protection efforts. Additionally, neurotoxicity is also a well-accepted in vitro marker of the development of neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases. Recently, the application of HCA to neuronal screening has been reported. By labeling neuronal cells with betaIII-tubulin, HCA assays can provide high-throughput, non-subjective, quantitative measurements of parameters such as neuronal number, neurite count and neurite length, all of which can indicate neurotoxic effects. However, the role of astrocytes remains unexplored in these models. Astrocytes have an integral role in the maintenance of central nervous system (CNS) homeostasis, and are associated with both neuroprotection and neurodegradation when they are activated in response to toxic substances or disease states. GFAP is an intermediate filament protein expressed predominantly in the astrocytes of the CNS. Astrocytic activation (gliosis) leads to the upregulation of GFAP, commonly accompanied by astrocyte proliferation and hypertrophy. This process of reactive gliosis has been proposed as an early marker of damage to the nervous system. The traditional method for GFAP quantitation is by immunoassay. This approach is limited by an inability to provide information on cellular localization, morphology and cell number. We determined that HCA could be used to overcome these limitations and to simultaneously measure multiple features associated with gliosis - changes in GFAP expression, astrocyte hypertrophy, and astrocyte proliferation - within a single assay. In co

  5. Translational Biomarkers of Neurotoxicity: A Health and Environmental Sciences Institute Perspective on the Way Forward

    PubMed Central

    Roberts, Ruth A.; Aschner, Michael; Calligaro, David; Guilarte, Tomas R.; Hanig, Joseph P.; Herr, David W.; Hudzik, Thomas J.; Jeromin, Andreas; Kallman, Mary J.; Liachenko, Serguei; Lynch, James J.; Miller, Diane B.; Moser, Virginia C.; O’Callaghan, James P.; Slikker, William; Paule, Merle G.

    2015-01-01

    Neurotoxicity has been linked to a number of common drugs and chemicals, yet efficient and accurate methods to detect it are lacking. There is a need for more sensitive and specific biomarkers of neurotoxicity that can help diagnose and predict neurotoxicity that are relevant across animal models and translational from nonclinical to clinical data. Fluid-based biomarkers such as those found in serum, plasma, urine, and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) have great potential due to the relative ease of sampling compared with tissues. Increasing evidence supports the potential utility of fluid-based biomarkers of neurotoxicity such as microRNAs, F2-isoprostanes, translocator protein, glial fibrillary acidic protein, ubiquitin C-terminal hydrolase L1, myelin basic protein, microtubule-associated protein-2, and total tau. However, some of these biomarkers such as those in CSF require invasive sampling or are specific to one disease such as Alzheimer’s, while others require further validation. Additionally, neuroimaging methodologies, including magnetic resonance imaging, magnetic resonance spectroscopy, and positron emission tomography, may also serve as potential biomarkers and have several advantages including being minimally invasive. The development of biomarkers of neurotoxicity is a goal shared by scientists across academia, government, and industry and is an ideal topic to be addressed via the Health and Environmental Sciences Institute (HESI) framework which provides a forum to collaborate on key challenging scientific topics. Here we utilize the HESI framework to propose a consensus on the relative potential of currently described biomarkers of neurotoxicity to assess utility of the selected biomarkers using a nonclinical model. PMID:26609132

  6. Clinical and imaging features of fludarabine neurotoxicity.

    PubMed

    Lee, Michael S; McKinney, Alexander M; Brace, Jeffrey R; Santacruz, Karen

    2010-03-01

    Neurotoxicity from intravenous fludarabine is a rare but recognized clinical entity. Its brain imaging features have not been extensively described. Three patients received 38.5 mg or 40 mg/m per day fludarabine in a 5-day intravenous infusion before bone marrow transplantation in treatment of hematopoietic malignancies. Several weeks later, each patient developed progressive neurologic decline, including retrogeniculate blindness, leading to coma and death. Brain MRI showed progressively enlarging but mild T2/FLAIR hyperintensities in the periventricular white matter. The lesions demonstrated restricted diffusion but did not enhance. Because the neurotoxicity of fludarabine appears long after exposure, neurologic decline in this setting is likely to be attributed to opportunistic disease. However, the imaging features are distinctive in their latency and in being mild relative to the profound clinical features. The safe dose of fludarabine in this context remains controversial.

  7. Mechanisms of methamphetamine-induced dopaminergic neurotoxicity.

    PubMed

    Riddle, Evan L; Fleckenstein, Annette E; Hanson, Glen R

    2006-01-01

    Methamphetamine (METH) is a powerful stimulant of abuse with potent addictive and neurotoxic properties. More than 2.5 decades ago, METH-induced damage to dopaminergic neurons was described. Since then, numerous advancements have been made in the search for the underlying mechanisms whereby METH causes these persistent dopaminergic deficits. Although our understanding of these mechanisms remains incomplete, combinations of various complex processes have been described around a central theme involving reactive species, such as reactive oxygen and/or nitrogen species (ROS and RNS, respectively). For example, METH-induced hyperthermia, aberrant dopamine(DA), or glutamate transmission; or mitochondrial disruption leads to the generation of reactive species with neurotoxic consequences. This review will describe the current understanding of how high-dose METH administration leads to the production of these toxic reactive species and consequent permanent dopaminergic deficits.

  8. Neurotoxic aspects of porphyinopathies: lead and succinylacetone

    SciTech Connect

    Silbergeld, E.K.; Hruska, R.E.; Bradley, D.; Lamon, J.M.; Frykholm, B.C.

    1982-12-01

    Neurotoxic effects of heavy metals and polyhalogenated hydrocarbons frequently occur at low levels of exposure, in some cases below those levels where direct toxic actions of these compounds have been demonstrated. Rats with acute and chronic lead exposure were compared to rats whose heme synthesis was inhibited by succinylacetone, as a semichronic model of the hereditary heme synthesis disorder, acute intermittent porphyria. Both treatments produce significant inhibition in activity of the enzyme delta-aminolevulinic acid dehydrase and elevations in the heme precursor delta-aminolevulinic acid (ALA) in tissues and urine. Associated with increased ALA is a significant inhibition of neurotransmission utilizing the amino acid ..gamma..-aminobutyric acid (GABA), expressed chemically and behaviorally. The results suggest that in addition to their direct molecular neurotoxicity, porphyrinopathic compounds such as lead may, through altering heme synthesis, adversely affect the brain at low levels of exposure.

  9. [Neurotoxic effects of cobalt: an open question].

    PubMed

    Catalani, S; Apostoli, P

    2011-01-01

    Increased cobalt levels have been associated with neurological diseases (hand tremor, incoordination, cognitive decline, depression, vertigo, hearing loss and visual changes) in addition to "classic" and known cardiac diseases (arrhythmias and cardiomyopathies) and allergic or endocrine symptoms. Cobalt neurotoxicity is reported in isolated cases: old occupational or iatrogenic exposures and more recent releases of metallic ions by prosthesis. The studies of these cases have revealed a typical symptomatology of cobalt probably due to its ability to induce oxidative stress and mitochondrial alterations.

  10. Sequence-Defined Oligomers from Hydroxyproline Building Blocks for Parallel Synthesis Applications.

    PubMed

    Kanasty, Rosemary L; Vegas, Arturo J; Ceo, Luke M; Maier, Martin; Charisse, Klaus; Nair, Jayaprakash K; Langer, Robert; Anderson, Daniel G

    2016-08-08

    The functionality of natural biopolymers has inspired significant effort to develop sequence-defined synthetic polymers for applications including molecular recognition, self-assembly, and catalysis. Conjugation of synthetic materials to biomacromolecules has played an increasingly important role in drug delivery and biomaterials. We developed a controlled synthesis of novel oligomers from hydroxyproline-based building blocks and conjugated these materials to siRNA. Hydroxyproline-based monomers enable the incorporation of broad structural diversity into defined polymer chains. Using a perfluorocarbon purification handle, we were able to purify diverse oligomers through a single solid-phase extraction method. The efficiency of synthesis was demonstrated by building 14 unique trimers and 4 hexamers from 6 diverse building blocks. We then adapted this method to the parallel synthesis of hundreds of materials in 96-well plates. This strategy provides a platform for the screening of libraries of modified biomolecules.

  11. Assessing the Developmental Neurotoxicity of 27 ...

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    Assessing the Developmental Neurotoxicity of 27 Organophosphorus Pesticides Using a Zebrafish Behavioral Assay, Waalkes, M., Hunter, D.L., Jarema, K., Mundy, W., and S. Padilla. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is evaluating methods to screen and prioritize organophosphorus pesticides for developmental neurotoxicity. As such, we are exploring a behavioral testing paradigm that can assess the effects of sublethal and subteratogenic concentrations of developmental neurotoxicants on zebrafish (Danio rerio). This in vivo assay quantifies the locomotor response to light stimuli under tandem light and dark conditions in a 96-well plate using a video tracking system on 6 day post fertilization zebrafish larvae. Each of twenty-seven organophosphorus pesticides was tested for their developmental neurotoxic potential by exposing zebrafish embryos/larvae to the pesticide at several concentrations (≤ 100 μM nominal concentration) during the first five days of development, followed by 24 hours of depuration and then behavioral testing. Approximately 22% of the chemicals (Acephate, Dichlorvos, Diazoxon, Bensulide,Tribufos, Tebupirimfos) did not produce any behavioral changes after developmental exposure, while many (Malaoxon Fosthiazate, Dimethoate, Dicrotophos, Ethoprop, Malathion, Naled, Diazinon, Methamidophos, Terbufos, Trichlorfon, Phorate, Pirimiphos-methyl, Profenofos, Z-Tetrachlorvinphos, Chlorpyrifos, Coumaphos, Phosmet, Omethoate) produced changes in swi

  12. Neurotoxicity of Acrylamide in Exposed Workers

    PubMed Central

    Pennisi, Manuela; Malaguarnera, Giulia; Puglisi, Valentina; Vinciguerra, Luisa; Vacante, Marco; Malaguarnera, Mariano

    2013-01-01

    Acrylamide (ACR) is a water-soluble chemical used in different industrial and laboratory processes. ACR monomer is neurotoxic in humans and laboratory animals. Subchronic exposure to this chemical causes neuropathies, hands and feet numbness, gait abnormalities, muscle weakness, ataxia, skin and in some cases, cerebellar alterations. ACR neurotoxicity involves mostly the peripheral but also the central nervous system, because of damage to the nerve terminal through membrane fusion mechanisms and tubulovescicular alterations. Nevertheless, the exact action mechanism is not completely elucidated. In this paper we have reviewed the current literature on its neurotoxicity connected to work-related ACR exposure. We have analyzed not only the different pathogenetic hypotheses focusing on possible neuropathological targets, but also the critical behavior of ACR poisoning. In addition we have evaluated the ACR-exposed workers case studies. Despite all the amount of work which have being carried out on this topic more studies are necessary to fully understand the pathogenetic mechanisms, in order to propose suitable therapies. PMID:23985770

  13. Involvement of Sphingolipids in Ethanol Neurotoxicity in the Developing Brain

    PubMed Central

    Saito, Mariko; Saito, Mitsuo

    2013-01-01

    Ethanol-induced neuronal death during a sensitive period of brain development is considered one of the significant causes of fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD). In rodent models, ethanol triggers robust apoptotic neurodegeneration during a period of active synaptogenesis that occurs around the first two postnatal weeks, equivalent to the third trimester in human fetuses. The ethanol-induced apoptosis is mitochondria-dependent, involving Bax and caspase-3 activation. Such apoptotic pathways are often mediated by sphingolipids, a class of bioactive lipids ubiquitously present in eukaryotic cellular membranes. While the central role of lipids in ethanol liver toxicity is well recognized, the involvement of sphingolipids in ethanol neurotoxicity is less explored despite mounting evidence of their importance in neuronal apoptosis. Nevertheless, recent studies indicate that ethanol-induced neuronal apoptosis in animal models of FASD is mediated or regulated by cellular sphingolipids, including via the pro-apoptotic action of ceramide and through the neuroprotective action of GM1 ganglioside. Such sphingolipid involvement in ethanol neurotoxicity in the developing brain may provide unique targets for therapeutic applications against FASD. Here we summarize findings describing the involvement of sphingolipids in ethanol-induced apoptosis and discuss the possibility that the combined action of various sphingolipids in mitochondria may control neuronal cell fate. PMID:24961420

  14. Involvement of sphingolipids in ethanol neurotoxicity in the developing brain.

    PubMed

    Saito, Mariko; Saito, Mitsuo

    2013-04-26

    Ethanol-induced neuronal death during a sensitive period of brain development is considered one of the significant causes of fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD). In rodent models, ethanol triggers robust apoptotic neurodegeneration during a period of active synaptogenesis that occurs around the first two postnatal weeks, equivalent to the third trimester in human fetuses. The ethanol-induced apoptosis is mitochondria-dependent, involving Bax and caspase-3 activation. Such apoptotic pathways are often mediated by sphingolipids, a class of bioactive lipids ubiquitously present in eukaryotic cellular membranes. While the central role of lipids in ethanol liver toxicity is well recognized, the involvement of sphingolipids in ethanol neurotoxicity is less explored despite mounting evidence of their importance in neuronal apoptosis. Nevertheless, recent studies indicate that ethanol-induced neuronal apoptosis in animal models of FASD is mediated or regulated by cellular sphingolipids, including via the pro-apoptotic action of ceramide and through the neuroprotective action of GM1 ganglioside. Such sphingolipid involvement in ethanol neurotoxicity in the developing brain may provide unique targets for therapeutic applications against FASD. Here we summarize findings describing the involvement of sphingolipids in ethanol-induced apoptosis and discuss the possibility that the combined action of various sphingolipids in mitochondria may control neuronal cell fate.

  15. Mitochondria: key players in the neurotoxic effects of amphetamines.

    PubMed

    Barbosa, Daniel José; Capela, João Paulo; Feio-Azevedo, Rita; Teixeira-Gomes, Armanda; Bastos, Maria de Lourdes; Carvalho, Félix

    2015-10-01

    Amphetamines are a class of psychotropic drugs with high abuse potential, as a result of their stimulant, euphoric, emphathogenic, entactogenic, and hallucinogenic properties. Although most amphetamines are synthetic drugs, of which methamphetamine, amphetamine, and 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine ("ecstasy") represent well-recognized examples, the use of natural related compounds, namely cathinone and ephedrine, has been part of the history of humankind for thousands of years. Resulting from their amphiphilic nature, these drugs can easily cross the blood-brain barrier and elicit their well-known psychotropic effects. In the field of amphetamines' research, there is a general consensus that mitochondrial-dependent pathways can provide a major understanding concerning pathological processes underlying the neurotoxicity of these drugs. These events include alterations on tricarboxylic acid cycle's enzymes functioning, inhibition of mitochondrial electron transport chain's complexes, perturbations of mitochondrial clearance mechanisms, interference with mitochondrial dynamics, as well as oxidative modifications in mitochondrial macromolecules. Additionally, other studies indicate that amphetamines-induced neuronal toxicity is closely regulated by B cell lymphoma 2 superfamily of proteins with consequent activation of caspase-mediated downstream cell death pathway. Understanding the molecular mechanisms at mitochondrial level involved in amphetamines' neurotoxicity can help in defining target pathways or molecules mediating these effects, as well as in developing putative therapeutic approaches to prevent or treat the acute- or long-lasting neuropsychiatric complications seen in human abusers.

  16. 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

  17. 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.

  18. Functional Assays for Neurotoxicity Testing

    EPA Science Inventory

    Neurobehavioral and pathological evaluations of the nervous system are complementary components of basic research and toxicity testing of pharmaceutical and environmental chemicals. While neuropathological assessments provide insight as to cellular changes in neurons, behavioral ...

  19. Functional Assays for Neurotoxicity Testing*

    EPA Science Inventory

    Neurobehavioral and pathological evaluations of the nervous system are complementary components of basic research and toxicity testing of pharmaceutical and environmental chemicals. While neuropathological assessments provide insight as to cellular changes in neurons, behavioral ...

  20. Monoclonal antibodies selective for α-synuclein oligomers/protofibrils recognize brain pathology in Lewy body disorders and α-synuclein transgenic mice with the disease-causing A30P mutation.

    PubMed

    Fagerqvist, Therese; Lindström, Veronica; Nordström, Eva; Lord, Anna; Tucker, Stina M E; Su, Xingjian; Sahlin, Charlotte; Kasrayan, Alex; Andersson, Jessica; Welander, Hedvig; Näsström, Thomas; Holmquist, Mats; Schell, Heinrich; Kahle, Philipp J; Kalimo, Hannu; Möller, Christer; Gellerfors, Pär; Lannfelt, Lars; Bergström, Joakim; Ingelsson, Martin

    2013-07-01

    Inclusions of intraneuronal alpha-synuclein (α-synuclein) can be detected in brains of patients with Parkinson's disease and dementia with Lewy bodies. The aggregation of α-synuclein is a central feature of the disease pathogenesis. Among the different α-synuclein species, large oligomers/protofibrils have particular neurotoxic properties and should therefore be suitable as both therapeutic and diagnostic targets. Two monoclonal antibodies, mAb38F and mAb38E2, with high affinity and strong selectivity for large α-synuclein oligomers were generated. These antibodies, which do not bind amyloid-beta or tau, recognize Lewy body pathology in brains from patients with Parkinson's disease and dementia with Lewy bodies and detect pathology earlier in α-synuclein transgenic mice than linear epitope antibodies. An oligomer-selective sandwich ELISA, based on mAb38F, was set up to analyze brain extracts of the transgenic mice. The overall levels of α-synuclein oligomers/protofibrils were found to increase with age in these mice, although the levels displayed a large interindividual variation. Upon subcellular fractionation, higher levels of α-synuclein oligomers/protofibrils could be detected in the endoplasmic reticulum around the age when behavioral disturbances develop. In summary, our novel oligomer-selective α-synuclein antibodies recognize relevant pathology and should be important tools to further explore the pathogenic mechanisms in Lewy body disorders. Moreover, they could be potential candidates both for immunotherapy and as reagents in an assay to assess a potential disease biomarker.

  1. Central Neurotoxicity of Immunomodulatory Drugs in Multiple Myeloma

    PubMed Central

    Patel, Urmeel H.; Mir, Muhammad A.; Sivik, Jeffrey K.; Raheja, Divisha; Pandey, Manoj K.; Talamo, Giampaolo

    2015-01-01

    Immunomodulatory drugs (IMiDs) currently used in the treatment of multiple myeloma, are thalidomide, lenalidomide and pomalidomide. One of the most common side effects of thalidomide is neurotoxicity, predominantly in the form of peripheral neuropathy. We report 6 cases of significant central neurotoxicity associated with IMiD therapy. Treatment with thalidomide (1 patient), lenalidomide (4 patients), and pomalidomide (1 patient) was associated with various clinical manifestations of central neurotoxicity, including reversible coma, amnesia, expressive aphasia, and dysarthria. Central neurotoxicity should be recognized as an important side effect of IMiD therapy. PMID:25852850

  2. Beta-amyloid oligomers induce early loss of presynaptic proteins in primary neurons by caspase-dependent and proteasome-dependent mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Jang, Bong Geum; In, Sua; Choi, Boyoung; Kim, Min-Ju

    2014-11-12

    Beta-amyloid is a major pathogenic molecule for Alzheimer's disease (AD) and can be aggregated into a soluble oligomer, which is a toxic intermediate, before amyloid fibril formation. Beta-amyloid oligomers are associated closely with early synaptic loss in AD. However, it is still unknown which synaptic proteins are involved in the synaptotoxicity, and a direct comparison among the synaptic proteins should also be addressed. Here, we investigated changes in the expression of several presynaptic and postsynaptic proteins in primary neurons after treatment with a low-molecular weight and a high-molecular weight beta-amyloid oligomer. Both oligomers induced early neuronal dysfunction after 4 h and significantly reduced presynaptic protein (synaptophysin, syntaxin, synapsin, and synaptotagmin) expression. However, the expression of postsynaptic proteins (PSD95, NMDAR2A/B, and GluR2/3), except NMDAR1 was not reduced, and some protein expression levels were increased. Glutamate treatment, which is correlated with postsynaptic activation, showed more postsynaptic-specific protein loss compared with beta-amyloid oligomer treatment. Finally, the caspase inhibitor zVAD and the proteasomal inhibitor MG132 attenuated presynaptic protein loss. Thus, our data showed changes in synaptic proteins by beta-amyloid oligomers, which provides an understanding of early synaptotoxicity and suggests new approaches for AD treatment.

  3. Probing and trapping a sensitive conformation: amyloid-β fibrils, oligomers, and dimers.

    PubMed

    Fawver, Janelle N; Duong, Karen T; Wise-Scira, Olivia; Petrofes Chapa, Rachel; Schall, Hayley E; Coskuner, Orkid; Zhu, Xiongwei; Colom, Luis V; Murray, Ian V J

    2012-01-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a devastating neurodegenerative disease with pathological misfolding of amyloid-β protein (Aβ). The recent interest in Aβ misfolding intermediates necessitates development of novel detection methods and ability to trap these intermediates. We speculated that two regions of Aβ may allow for detection of specific Aβ species: the N-terminal and 22-35, both likely important in oligomer interaction and formation. We determined via epitomics, proteomic assays, and electron microscopy that the Aβ(42) species (wild type, ΔE22, and MetOx) predominantly formed fibrils, oligomers, or dimers, respectively. The 2H4 antibody to the N-terminal of Aβ, in the presence of 2% SDS, primarily detected fibrils, and an antibody to the 22-35 region detected low molecular weight Aβ species. Simulated molecular modeling provided insight into these SDS-induced structural changes. We next determined if these methods could be used to screen anti-Aβ drugs as well as identify compounds that trap Aβ in various conformations. Immunoblot assays determined that taurine, homotaurine (Tramiprosate), myoinositol, methylene blue, and curcumin did not prevent Aβ aggregation. However, calmidazolium chloride trapped Aβ at oligomers, and berberine reduced oligomer formation. Finally, pretreatment of AD brain tissues with SDS enhanced 2H4 antibody immunostaining of fibrillar Aβ. Thus we identified and characterized Aβs that adopt specific predominant conformations (modified Aβ or via interactions with compounds), developed a novel assay for aggregated Aβ, and applied it to drug screening and immunohistochemistry. In summary, our novel approach facilitates drug screening, increases the probability of success of antibody therapeutics, and improves antibody-based detection and identification of different conformations of Aβ.

  4. Oligomers modulate interfibril branching and mass transport properties of collagen matrices.

    PubMed

    Whittington, Catherine F; Brandner, Eric; Teo, Ka Yaw; Han, Bumsoo; Nauman, Eric; Voytik-Harbin, Sherry L

    2013-10-01

    Mass transport within collagen-based matrices is critical to tissue development, repair, and pathogenesis, as well as the design of next-generation tissue engineering strategies. This work shows how collagen precursors, specified by intermolecular cross-link composition, provide independent control of collagen matrix mechanical and transport properties. Collagen matrices were prepared from tissue-extracted monomers or oligomers. Viscoelastic behavior was measured in oscillatory shear and unconfined compression. Matrix permeability and diffusivity were measured using gravity-driven permeametry and integrated optical imaging, respectively. Both collagen types showed an increase in stiffness and permeability hindrance with increasing collagen concentration (fibril density); however, different physical property–concentration relationships were noted. Diffusivity was not affected by concentration for either collagen type over the range tested. In general, oligomer matrices exhibited a substantial increase in stiffness and only a modest decrease in transport properties when compared with monomer matrices prepared at the same concentration. The observed differences in viscoelastic and transport properties were largely attributed to increased levels of interfibril branching within oligomer matrices. The ability to relate physical properties to relevant microstructure parameters, including fibril density and interfibril branching, is expected to advance the understanding of cell–matrix signaling, as well as facilitate model-based prediction and design of matrix-based therapeutic strategies.

  5. Conformational analysis of o-phenylenes: helical oligomers with frayed ends.

    PubMed

    Hartley, C Scott; He, Jian

    2010-12-17

    The o-phenylenes represent a fundamental class of conjugated polymers that, unlike the isomeric p-phenylenes, should exhibit rich conformational behavior. Recently, we reported the synthesis and characterization of a series of o-phenylene oligomers featuring unusual electronic properties, including surprisingly long-range delocalization as measured by UV-vis spectroscopy and hypsochromic shifts in fluorescence maxima with increasing length. To rationalize these properties, we hypothesized that the oligomers predominantly assume a stacked helical conformation in solution. This assertion, however, was supported by only indirect evidence. Here we present a thorough investigation of the conformational behavior of this series of o-phenylenes by dynamic NMR spectroscopy and computational chemistry. EXSY experiments, in combination with other two-dimensional NMR techniques, provided full (1)H chemical shift assignments for at least the two most prevalent conformers for each member of the series (hexamer to dodecamer). GIAO density functional theory calculations were then used to relate the NMR data to specific molecular geometries. We have found that the o-phenylenes do indeed assume stacked helical conformations with disorder occurring at the ends. Thus, the o-phenylene motif appears to have great potential as a means to organize arenes into predictable three-dimensional arrangements. Our results also illustrate the power of (1)H NMR GIAO predictions in the solution-phase conformational analysis of oligomers, particularly those with a high density of aromatic subunits.

  6. Polymer brain-nanotherapeutics for multipronged inhibition of microglial α-synuclein aggregation, activation, and neurotoxicity.

    PubMed

    Bennett, Neal K; Chmielowski, Rebecca; Abdelhamid, Dalia S; Faig, Jonathan J; Francis, Nicola; Baum, Jean; Pang, Zhiping P; Uhrich, Kathryn E; Moghe, Prabhas V

    2016-12-01

    Neuroinflammation, a common neuropathologic feature of neurodegenerative disorders including Parkinson disease (PD), is frequently exacerbated by microglial activation. The extracellular protein α-synuclein (ASYN), whose aggregation is characteristic of PD, remains a key therapeutic target, but the control of synuclein trafficking and aggregation within microglia has been challenging. First, we established that microglial internalization of monomeric ASYN was mediated by scavenger receptors (SR), CD36 and SRA1, and was rapidly accompanied by the formation of ASYN oligomers. Next, we designed a nanotechnology approach to regulate SR-mediated intracellular ASYN trafficking within microglia. We synthesized mucic acid-derivatized sugar-based amphiphilic molecules (AM) with optimal stereochemistry, rigidity, and charge for enhanced dual binding affinity to SRs and fabricated serum-stable nanoparticles via flash nanoprecipitation comprising hydrophobe cores and amphiphile shells. Treatment of microglia with AM nanoparticles decreased monomeric ASYN internalization and intracellular ASYN oligomer formation. We then engineered composite deactivating NPs with dual character, namely shell-based SR-binding amphiphiles, and core-based antioxidant poly (ferrulic acid), to investigate concerted inhibition of oxidative activation. In ASYN-challenged microglia treated with NPs, we observed decreased ASYN-mediated acute microglial activation and diminished microglial neurotoxicity caused by exposure to aggregated ASYN. When the composite NPs were administered in vivo within the substantia nigra of fibrillar ASYN-challenged wild type mice, there was marked attenuation of activated microglia. Overall, SR-targeting AM nanotechnology represents a novel paradigm in alleviating microglial activation in the context of synucleinopathies like PD and other neurodegenerative diseases.

  7. GeneGenie: optimized oligomer design for directed evolution

    PubMed Central

    Swainston, Neil; Currin, Andrew; Day, Philip J.; Kell, Douglas B.

    2014-01-01

    GeneGenie, a new online tool available at http://www.gene-genie.org, is introduced to support the design and self-assembly of synthetic genes and constructs. GeneGenie allows for the design of oligonucleotide cohorts encoding the gene sequence optimized for expression in any suitable host through an intuitive, easy-to-use web interface. The tool ensures consistent oligomer overlapping melting temperatures, minimizes the likelihood of misannealing, optimizes codon usage for expression in a selected host, allows for specification of forward and reverse cloning sequences (for downstream ligation) and also provides support for mutagenesis or directed evolution studies. Directed evolution studies are enabled through the construction of variant libraries via the optional specification of ‘variant codons’, containing mixtures of bases, at any position. For example, specifying the variant codon TNT (where N is any nucleotide) will generate an equimolar mixture of the codons TAT, TCT, TGT and TTT at that position, encoding a mixture of the amino acids Tyr, Ser, Cys and Phe. This facility is demonstrated through the use of GeneGenie to develop and synthesize a library of enhanced green fluorescent protein variants. PMID:24782527

  8. Cloud forming potential of oligomers relevant to secondary organic aerosols

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xu, Wen; Guo, Song; Gomez-Hernandez, Mario; Zamora, Misti L.; Secrest, Jeremiah; Marrero-Ortiz, Wilmarie; Zhang, Annie L.; Collins, Don R.; Zhang, Renyi

    2014-09-01

    The hygroscopic growth factor (HGF) and cloud condensation nuclei (CCN) activity are measured for surrogates that mimic atmospherically relevant oligomers, including glyoxal trimer dihydrate, methyl glyoxal trimer dihydrate, sucrose, methyl glyoxal mixtures with sulfuric acid and glycolic acid, and 2,4-hexandienal mixtures with sulfuric acid and glycolic acid. For the single-component aerosols, the measured HGF ranges from 1.3 to 1.4 at a relative humidity of 90%, and the hygroscopicity parameter (κ) is in the range of 0.06 to 0.19 on the basis of the measured CCN activity and 0.13 to 0.22 on the basis of the measured HGF, compared to the calculated values of 0.08 to 0.16. Large differences exist in the κ values derived using the measured HGF and CCN data for the multi-component aerosols. Our results reveal that, in contrast to the oxidation process, oligomerization decreases particle hygroscopicity and CCN activity and provides guidance for analyzing the organic species in ambient aerosols.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. ortho-Phenylene oligomers with terminal push-pull substitution.

    PubMed

    He, Jian; Mathew, Sanyo M; Cornett, Sarah D; Grundy, Stephan C; Hartley, C Scott

    2012-05-07

    ortho-Phenylenes are an emerging class of helical oligomers and polymers. We have synthesized a series of push-pull-substituted o-phenylene oligomers (dimethylamino/nitro) up to the octamer. Conformational analysis of the hexamer using a combination of low-temperature NMR spectroscopy and ab initio predictions of (1)H NMR chemical shifts indicates that, like other o-phenylenes, they exist as compact helices in solution. However, the substituents are found to have a significant effect on their conformational behavior: the nitro-functionalized terminus is 3-fold more likely to twist out of the helix. Protonation of the dimethylamino group favors the helical conformer. UV/vis spectroscopy indicates that the direct charge-transfer interaction between the push-pull substituents attenuates quickly compared to other conjugated systems, with no significant charge-transfer band for oligomers longer than the trimer. On protonation of the dimethylamino group, significant bathochromic shifts with increasing oligomer length are observed: the effective conjugation length is 9 repeat units, more than twice that of the parent oligomer. This behavior may be rationalized through examination of the frontier molecular orbitals of these compounds, which exhibit greater delocalization after protonation, as shown by DFT calculations.

  12. Functional neuroimaging of amphetamine-induced striatal neurotoxicity in the pleiotrophin knockout mouse model.

    PubMed

    Soto-Montenegro, María Luisa; Vicente-Rodríguez, Marta; Pérez-García, Carmen; Gramage, Esther; Desco, Manuel; Herradón, Gonzalo

    2015-03-30

    Amphetamine-induced neurotoxic effects have traditionally been studied using immunohistochemistry and other post-mortem techniques, which have proven invaluable for the definition of amphetamine-induced dopaminergic damage in the nigrostriatal pathway. However, these approaches are limited in that they require large numbers of animals and do not provide the temporal data that can be collected in longitudinal studies using functional neuroimaging techniques. Unfortunately, functional imaging studies in rodent models of drug-induced neurotoxicity are lacking. The aim of this study was to evaluate in vivo the changes in brain glucose metabolism caused by amphetamine in the pleiotrophin knockout mouse (PTN-/-), a genetic model with increased vulnerability to amphetamine-induced neurotoxic effects. We showed that administration of amphetamine causes a significantly greater loss of striatal tyrosine hydroxylase content in PTN-/- mice than in wild-type (WT) mice. In addition, [(18)F]-FDG-PET shows that amphetamine produces a significant decrease in glucose metabolism in the striatum and prefrontal cortex in the PTN-/- mice, compared to WT mice. These findings suggest that [(18)F]-FDG uptake measured by PET is useful for detecting amphetamine-induced changes in glucose metabolism in vivo in specific brain areas, including the striatum, a key feature of amphetamine-induced neurotoxicity.

  13. Brain Localization and Neurotoxicity Evaluation of Polysorbate 80-Modified Chitosan Nanoparticles in Rats.

    PubMed

    Yuan, Zhong-Yue; Hu, Yu-Lan; Gao, Jian-Qing

    2015-01-01

    The toxicity evaluation of inorganic nanoparticles has been reported by an increasing number of studies, but toxicity studies concerned with biodegradable nanoparticles, especially the neurotoxicity evaluation, are still limited. For example, the potential neurotoxicity of Polysorbate 80-modified chitosan nanoparticles (Tween 80-modified chitosan nanoparticles, TmCS-NPs), one of the most widely used brain targeting vehicles, remains unknown. In the present study, TmCS-NPs with a particle size of 240 nm were firstly prepared by ionic cross-linking of chitosan with tripolyphosphate. Then, these TmCS-NPs were demonstrated to be entered into the brain and specially deposited in the frontal cortex and cerebellum after systemic injection. Moreover, the concentration of TmCS-NPs in these two regions was found to decrease over time. Although no obvious changes were observed for oxidative stress in the in vivo rat model, the body weight was found to remarkably decreased in a dose-dependent manner after exposure to TmCS-NPs for seven days. Besides, apoptosis and necrosis of neurons, slight inflammatory response in the frontal cortex, and decrease of GFAP expression in the cerebellum were also detected in mouse injected with TmCS-NPs. This study is the first report on the sub-brain biodistribution and neurotoxicity studies of TmCS-NPs. Our results provide new insights into the toxicity evaluation of nanoparticles and our findings would help contribute to a better understanding of the neurotoxicity of biodegradable nanomaterials used in pharmaceutics.

  14. Elevation of protective autophagy as a potential way for preventing developmental neurotoxicity of general anesthetics.

    PubMed

    Li, Guohui; Yu, Buwei

    2014-02-01

    Numerous animal studies have demonstrated that commonly used general anesthetics could cause cognitive impairment in the developing brain. However, the underlying mechanism remains unclear. Recently it is reported that autophagy activation can ameliorate developmental neurotoxicity of ethanol, which is the same GABAA agonist and NMDA antagonist as general anesthetics. We thus intend to propose the possible role of autophagy in the developmental neurotoxicity of general anesthetics. Oxidative stress and neuronal apoptosis can activate autophagy, while autophagy conversely alleviates their levels in the neuron. Crosstalk among neuronal apoptosis, oxidative stress and autophagy resembles the Yin-Yang relationship in Chinese philosophy. Neuronal apoptosis and oxidative stress represent destroyable Yin, while autophagy symbols protective Yang. The destroyable Yin and protective Yang promote and counteract each other. We hypothesize that the destroyable Yin (neuronal apoptosis and oxidative stress injury) prevails over protective Yang (autophagy) when developing brain exposes to general anesthetics. Elevating protective Yang autophagy potentially reverses the neurotoxicity of general anesthetics. Once this hypothesis is proved, it will provide a new perspective to understand the developmental neurotoxicity of general anesthetics and a new way to prevent it.

  15. Valacyclovir and Acyclovir Neurotoxicity With Status Epilepticus.

    PubMed

    Hoskote, Sumedh S; Annapureddy, Narender; Ramesh, Atul K; Rose, Keith; Jones, James P

    2016-01-01

    We present the case of a 52-year-old man with hypertension, diastolic congestive heart failure, end-stage renal disease on hemodialysis 3 times a week and a remote history of a hemorrhagic stroke who presented to the emergency department with a vesicular rash on his left arm. The rash was observed to be in a dermatomal distribution, and a diagnosis of herpes zoster was made. The patient was discharged home on valacyclovir 1 g 3 times a day for a duration of 7 days. The patient took 2 doses of valacyclovir before presenting to the hospital again with irritability and hallucinations. Over the next several days, the patient's neurologic status declined and he became disoriented and increasingly somnolent. Because of a concern for varicella zoster virus (VZV) or herpes simplex virus (HSV) meningoencephalitis, acyclovir was initiated intravenously at 600 mg (10 mg/kg) for every 12 hours. Computed tomography and magnetic resonance imaging of the brain failed to reveal an acute process. Electroencephalogram was interpreted as seizure activity versus metabolic encephalopathy. Lumbar puncture was not suggestive for meningitis, subarachnoid hemorrhage, or HSV/VZV infection. The patient subsequently had a witnessed seizure during dialysis and was felt to have status epilepticus due to acyclovir and valacyclovir neurotoxicity. The patient underwent daily hemodialysis for removal of the drug and eventually made a full neurologic recovery. Our case highlights that acyclovir neurotoxicity can result in status epilepticus, hallucinations, and altered consciousness. Differentiating acyclovir neurotoxicity from HSV or VZV meningoencephalitis is of crucial importance because the symptoms are similar but the management is vastly different.

  16. Preparation and applications of a variety of fluoroalkyl end-capped oligomer/hydroxyapatite composites.

    PubMed

    Takashima, Hiroki; Iwaki, Ken-Ichi; Furukuwa, Rika; Takishita, Katsuhisa; Sawada, Hideo

    2008-04-15

    A variety of fluoroalkyl end-capped oligomers were applied to the preparation of fluorinated oligomer/hydroxyapatite (HAp) composites (particle size: 38-356 nm), which exhibit a good dispersibility in water and traditional organic solvents. These fluoroalkyl end-capped oligomer/HAp composites were easily prepared by the reactions of disodium hydrogen phosphate and calcium chloride in the presence of self-assembled molecular aggregates formed by fluoroalkyl end-capped oligomers in aqueous solutions. In these fluorinated HAp composites thus obtained, fluoroalkyl end-capped acrylic acid oligomers and 2-methacryloyloxyethanesulfonic acid oligomer/HAp nanocomposites afforded transparent colorless solutions toward water; however, fluoroalkyl end-capped N,N-dimethylacrylamide oligomer and acryloylmorpholine oligomer were found to afford transparent colorless solutions with trace amounts of white-colored HAp precipitants under similar conditions. HAp could be encapsulated more effectively into fluorinated 2-methacryloyloxyethanesulfonic acid oligomeric aggregate cores to afford colloidal stable fluorinated oligomer/HAp composites, compared to that of fluorinated acrylic acid oligomers. These fluorinated oligomer/HAp composites were applied to the surface modification of glass and PVA to exhibit a good oleophobicity imparted by fluorine. HAp formation was newly observed on the modified polyethylene terephthalate film surface treated with fluorinated 2-methacryloyloxyethanesulfonic acid oligomers and acrylic acid oligomer/HAp composites by soaking these films into the simulated body fluid.

  17. Single Particle Characterization of Aβ Oligomers in Solution

    PubMed Central

    Yusko, Erik C.; Prangkio, Panchika; Sept, David; Rollings, Ryan C.; Li, Jiali; Mayer, Michael

    2012-01-01

    Determining the pathological role of amyloids in amyloid-associated diseases will require a method for determining the dynamic distributions in size and shape of amyloid oligomers with high resolution. Here, we explored the potential of resistive-pulse sensing through lipid bilayer-coated nanopores to measure the size of individual amyloid-β oligomers directly in solution and without chemical modification. This method classified individual amyloid-β aggregates as spherical oligomers, protofibrils, or mature fibers and made it possible to account for the large heterogeneity of amyloid-β aggregate sizes. The approach revealed the distribution of protofibrillar lengths as well as the average cross-sectional area of protofibrils and fibers. PMID:22686709

  18. Proportion effect in diblock co-oligomer molecular diodes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hu, G. C.; Zhang, G. P.; Li, Y.; Ren, J. F.; Wang, C. K.

    2014-10-01

    Based on ab-initio theory and nonequilibrium Green's function method, the effect of proportion on the rectification in pyrimidinyl-phenyl diblock co-oligomer diodes is investigated in two regimes. For a short co-oligomer diode, it is found that the 1:1 proportion of the two moieties favors the largest rectification ratio. For a long co-oligomer diode, an interesting proportion-dependent variation of the rectifying direction is observed. Furthermore, the optimal proportion for the largest rectification ratio is not 1:1 any longer. A deep understanding can be achieved by analyzing the bias-dependent transmission spectra combined with the evolution of the molecular orbitals.

  19. Aggregation of inorganic nanoparticles mediated by biomimetic oligomers.

    PubMed

    Tigger-Zaborov, Hagar; Maayan, Galia

    2015-09-14

    Assemblies of nanoparticles (NPs) have been broadly used for the construction of materials with unique spectroscopic and chiral properties for applications in various scientific disciplines such as sensing, bio-nanotechnology and medicine. Mediating the aggregation of NPs by synthetic biomimetic oligomers, namely, DNA, PNA, peptides and peptide mimics, rather than by small organic molecules has been shown to produce interesting supramolecular structures and enable the combination of the biocompatibility of the mediators and the spectroscopic properties of the NPs. Yet, the key to using this powerful approach for designing new functional materials is to understand the NPs aggregation patterns induced by biopolymers and biomimetic oligomers. Herein we describe the important developments in this field, from early studies to recent work with an emphasis on synthetic methods and tools for controlled assembly of metal NPs by biomimetic polymers and oligomers.

  20. Changing the Face of Kynurenines and Neurotoxicity: Therapeutic Considerations

    PubMed Central

    Bohár, Zsuzsanna; Toldi, József; Fülöp, Ferenc; Vécsei, László

    2015-01-01

    Kynurenines are the products of tryptophan metabolism. Among them, kynurenine and kynurenic acid are generally thought to have neuroprotective properties, while 3-hydroxykynurenine, 3-hydroxyanthranilic acid and quinolinic acid are considered neurotoxic. They participate in immunoregulation and inflammation and possess pro- or anti-excitotoxic properties, and their involvement in oxidative stress has also been suggested. Consequently, it is not surprising that kynurenines have been closely related to neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, Huntington’s disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and multiple sclerosis. More information about the less-known metabolites, picolinic and cinnabarinic acid, evaluation of new receptorial targets, such as aryl-hydrocarbon receptors, and intensive research on the field of the immunomodulatory function of kynurenines delineated the high importance of this pathway in general homeostasis. Emerging knowledge about the kynurenine pathway provides new target points for the development of therapeutical solutions against neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:25938971

  1. NEUROTOXICITY PRODUCED BY DIBROMOACETIC ACID IN DRINKING WATER OF RATS.

    EPA Science Inventory

    This manuscript examines the neurotoxic potential of a commonly found disinfection by-product (DBP), dibromoacetic acid (DBA). While the Safe Drinking Water Act requires evaluation of DBPs for noncancer health effects, surprisingly few have been tested for neurotoxicity. Rats e...

  2. Increased interleukin-1β levels following low dose MDMA induces tolerance against the 5-HT neurotoxicity produced by challenge MDMA

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Preconditioning is a phenomenon by which tolerance develops to injury by previous exposure to a stressor of mild severity. Previous studies have shown that single or repeated low dose MDMA can attenuate 5-HT transporter loss produced by a subsequent neurotoxic dose of the drug. We have explored the mechanism of delayed preconditioning by low dose MDMA. Methods Male Dark Agouti rats were given low dose MDMA (3 mg/kg, i.p.) 96 h before receiving neurotoxic MDMA (12.5 mg/kg, i.p.). IL-1β and IL1ra levels and 5-HT transporter density in frontal cortex were quantified at 1 h, 3 h or 7 days. IL-1β, IL-1ra and IL-1RI were determined between 3 h and 96 h after low dose MDMA. sIL-1RI combined with low dose MDMA or IL-1β were given 96 h before neurotoxic MDMA and toxicity assessed 7 days later. Results Pretreatment with low dose MDMA attenuated both the 5-HT transporter loss and elevated IL-1β levels induced by neurotoxic MDMA while producing an increase in IL-1ra levels. Low dose MDMA produced an increase in IL-1β at 3 h and in IL-1ra at 96 h. sIL-1RI expression was also increased after low dose MDMA. Coadministration of sIL-1RI (3 μg, i.c.v.) prevented the protection against neurotoxic MDMA provided by low dose MDMA. Furthermore, IL-1β (2.5 pg, intracortical) given 96 h before neurotoxic MDMA protected against the 5-HT neurotoxicity produced by the drug, thus mimicking preconditioning. Conclusions These results suggest that IL-1β plays an important role in the development of delayed preconditioning by low dose MDMA. PMID:22114930

  3. Nanoparticle standards for immuno-based quantitation of α-synuclein oligomers in diagnostics of Parkinson's disease and other synucleinopathies.

    PubMed

    Herrmann, Yvonne; Bujnicki, Tuyen; Zafiu, Christian; Kulawik, Andreas; Kühbach, Katja; Peters, Luriano; Fabig, Judith; Willbold, Johannes; Bannach, Oliver; Willbold, Dieter

    2017-03-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is a neurodegenerative disorder that is characterized by symptoms such as rigor, tremor and bradykinesia. A reliable and early diagnosis could improve the development of early therapeutic strategies before death of dopaminergic neurons leads to the first clinical symptoms. The sFIDA (surface-based fluorescence intensity distribution analysis) assay is a highly sensitive method to determine the concentration of α-synuclein (α-syn) oligomers which are presumably the major toxic isoform of α-syn and potentially the most direct biomarker for PD. Oligomer-based diagnostic tests require standard molecules that closely mimic the native oligomer. This is particularly important for calibration and assessment of inter-assay variation. In this study, we generated a standard in form of α-syn coated silica nanoparticles (α-syn-SiNaPs) that are in the size range of α-syn oligomers and provide a defined number of α-syn epitopes. The preparation of the sFIDA assay was realized on an automated platform to allow handling of high number of samples and reduce the effects of human error. The assay outcome was analyzed by determination of coefficient of variation and linearity for the applied α-syn-SiNaPs concentrations. Additionally, the limit of detection and lower limit of quantification were determined yielding concentrations in the lower femtomolar range.

  4. GalaxyHomomer: a web server for protein homo-oligomer structure prediction from a monomer sequence or structure.

    PubMed

    Baek, Minkyung; Park, Taeyong; Heo, Lim; Park, Chiwook; Seok, Chaok

    2017-04-06

    Homo-oligomerization of proteins is abundant in nature, and is often intimately related with the physiological functions of proteins, such as in metabolism, signal transduction or immunity. Information on the homo-oligomer structure is therefore important to obtain a molecular-level understanding of protein functions and their regulation. Currently available web servers predict protein homo-oligomer structures either by template-based modeling using homo-oligomer templates selected from the protein structure database or by ab initio docking of monomer structures resolved by experiment or predicted by computation. The GalaxyHomomer server, freely accessible at http://galaxy.seoklab.org/homomer, carries out template-based modeling, ab initio docking or both depending on the availability of proper oligomer templates. It also incorporates recently developed model refinement methods that can consistently improve model quality. Moreover, the server provides additional options that can be chosen by the user depending on the availability of information on the monomer structure, oligomeric state and locations of unreliable/flexible loops or termini. The performance of the server was better than or comparable to that of other available methods when tested on benchmark sets and in a recent CASP performed in a blind fashion.

  5. Neurotoxicity of Dietary Supplements from Annonaceae Species.

    PubMed

    Höllerhage, Matthias; Rösler, Thomas W; Berjas, Magda; Luo, Rensheng; Tran, Kevin; Richards, Kristy M; Sabaa-Srur, Armando U; Maia, José Guilherme S; Moraes, Maria Rosa de; Godoy, Helena T; Höglinger, Günter U; Smith, Robert E

    2015-01-01

    Dietary supplements containing plant materials of Annonaceae species (Annona muricata L., A. squamosa L., A. mucosa JACQ., A. squamosa × cherimola Mabb.) were extracted by hot, pressurized ethyl acetate and analyzed for their effect in vitro on Lund human mesencephalic neurons. Cell viability was measured by the 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide assay, and cell death was determined by lactate dehydrogenase levels. Three supplements strongly decreased the cell viability at extract concentrations of 1 µg/mL, of which 1 decreased cell viability at 0.1 µg/µL. Also, strong neuronal toxicities of these supplements were found. Cell death was observed at concentrations of 10 µg/mL. The degree of toxicity was comparable to the ones found in Annonaceous fruit extracts. Two fruit pulps of Annonaceae (A. muricata and A. squamosa) showed a reduction in cell viability at lower concentrations. The fruit pulp extract of A. muricata revealed the strongest neurotoxic effect, with 67% cell death at a concentration of 1 µg/mL. A high reduction in cell viability coupled with pronounced cell death was found at 0.1 µg/mL for an Annonaceous seed extract. These results demonstrate that the intake of dietary supplements containing plant material from Annonaceae may be hazardous to health in terms of neurotoxicity.

  6. The Portland Neurotoxicity Scale: Validation of a Brief Self-Report Measure of Antiepileptic-Drug-Related Neurotoxicity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Salinsky, Martin C.; Storzbach, Daniel

    2005-01-01

    The Portland Neurotoxicity Scale (PNS) is a brief patient-based survey of neurotoxicity complaints commonly encountered with the use of antiepileptic drugs (AEDs). The authors present data on the validity of this scale, particularly when used in longitudinal studies. Participants included 55 healthy controls, 23 epilepsy patient controls, and 86…

  7. Memantine rescues transient cognitive impairment caused by high-molecular-weight aβ oligomers but not the persistent impairment induced by low-molecular-weight oligomers.

    PubMed

    Figueiredo, Cláudia P; Clarke, Julia R; Ledo, José Henrique; Ribeiro, Felipe C; Costa, Carine V; Melo, Helen M; Mota-Sales, Axa P; Saraiva, Leonardo M; Klein, William L; Sebollela, Adriano; De Felice, Fernanda G; Ferreira, Sergio T

    2013-06-05

    Brain accumulation of soluble amyloid-β oligomers (AβOs) has been implicated in synapse failure and cognitive impairment in Alzheimer's disease (AD). However, whether and how oligomers of different sizes induce synapse dysfunction is a matter of controversy. Here, we report that low-molecular-weight (LMW) and high-molecular-weight (HMW) Aβ oligomers differentially impact synapses and memory. A single intracerebroventricular injection of LMW AβOs (10 pmol) induced rapid and persistent cognitive impairment in mice. On the other hand, memory deficit induced by HMW AβOs (10 pmol) was found to be reversible. While memory impairment in LMW oligomer-injected mice was associated with decreased hippocampal synaptophysin and GluN2B immunoreactivities, synaptic pathology was not detected in the hippocampi of HMW oligomer-injected mice. On the other hand, HMW oligomers, but not LMW oligomers, induced oxidative stress in hippocampal neurons. Memantine rescued both neuronal oxidative stress and the transient memory impairment caused by HMW oligomers, but did not prevent the persistent cognitive deficit induced by LMW oligomers. Results establish that different Aβ oligomer assemblies act in an orchestrated manner, inducing different pathologies and leading to synapse dysfunction. Furthermore, results suggest a mechanistic explanation for the limited efficacy of memantine in preventing memory loss in AD.

  8. 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

  9. Copper-induced structural conversion templates prion protein oligomerization and neurotoxicity

    PubMed Central

    Yen, Chi-Fu; Harischandra, Dilshan S.; Kanthasamy, Anumantha; Sivasankar, Sanjeevi

    2016-01-01

    Prion protein (PrP) misfolding and oligomerization are key pathogenic events in prion disease. Copper exposure has been linked to prion pathogenesis; however, its mechanistic basis is unknown. We resolve, with single-molecule precision, the molecular mechanism of Cu2+-induced misfolding of PrP under physiological conditions. We also demonstrate that misfolded PrPs serve as seeds for templated formation of aggregates, which mediate inflammation and degeneration of neuronal tissue. Using a single-molecule fluorescence assay, we demonstrate that Cu2+ induces PrP monomers to misfold before oligomer assembly; the disordered amino-terminal region mediates this structural change. Single-molecule force spectroscopy measurements show that the misfolded monomers have a 900-fold higher binding affinity compared to the native isoform, which promotes their oligomerization. Real-time quaking-induced conversion demonstrates that misfolded PrPs serve as seeds that template amyloid formation. Finally, organotypic slice cultures show that misfolded PrPs mediate inflammation and degeneration of neuronal tissue. Our study establishes a direct link, at the molecular level, between copper exposure and PrP neurotoxicity. PMID:27419232

  10. Molecular Mechanism of Acrylamide Neurotoxicity: Lessons Learned from Organic Chemistry

    PubMed Central

    Gavin, Terrence

    2012-01-01

    Background: Acrylamide (ACR) produces cumulative neurotoxicity in exposed humans and laboratory animals through a direct inhibitory effect on presynaptic function. Objectives: In this review, we delineate how knowledge of chemistry provided an unprecedented understanding of the ACR neurotoxic mechanism. We also show how application of the hard and soft, acids and bases (HSAB) theory led to the recognition that the α,β-unsaturated carbonyl structure of ACR is a soft electrophile that preferentially forms covalent bonds with soft nucleophiles. Methods: In vivo proteomic and in chemico studies demonstrated that ACR formed covalent adducts with highly nucleophilic cysteine thiolate groups located within active sites of presynaptic proteins. Additional research showed that resulting protein inactivation disrupted nerve terminal processes and impaired neurotransmission. Discussion: ACR is a type-2 alkene, a chemical class that includes structurally related electrophilic environmental pollutants (e.g., acrolein) and endogenous mediators of cellular oxidative stress (e.g., 4-hydroxy-2-nonenal). Members of this chemical family produce toxicity via a common molecular mechanism. Although individual environmental concentrations might not be toxicologically relevant, exposure to an ambient mixture of type-2 alkene pollutants could pose a significant risk to human health. Furthermore, environmentally derived type-2 alkenes might act synergistically with endogenously generated unsaturated aldehydes to amplify cellular damage and thereby accelerate human disease/injury processes that involve oxidative stress. Conclusions: These possibilities have substantial implications for environmental risk assessment and were realized through an understanding of ACR adduct chemistry. The approach delineated here can be broadly applied because many toxicants of different chemical classes are electrophiles that produce toxicity by interacting with cellular proteins. PMID:23060388

  11. Electronic coherence dynamics in trans-polyacetylene oligomers.

    PubMed

    Franco, Ignacio; Brumer, Paul

    2012-04-14

    Electronic coherence dynamics in trans-polyacetylene oligomers are considered by explicitly computing the time dependent molecular polarization from the coupled dynamics of electronic and vibrational degrees of freedom in a mean-field mixed quantum-classical approximation. The oligomers are described by the Su-Schrieffer-Heeger Hamiltonian and the effect of decoherence is incorporated by propagating an ensemble of quantum-classical trajectories with initial conditions obtained by sampling the Wigner distribution of the nuclear degrees of freedom. The electronic coherence of superpositions between the ground and excited and between pairs of excited states is examined for chains of different length, and the dynamics is discussed in terms of the nuclear overlap function that appears in the off-diagonal elements of the electronic reduced density matrix. For long oligomers the loss of coherence occurs in tens of femtoseconds. This time scale is determined by the decay of population into other electronic states through vibronic interactions, and is relatively insensitive to the type and class of superposition considered. By contrast, for smaller oligomers the decoherence time scale depends strongly on the initially selected superposition, with superpositions that can decay as fast as 50 fs and as slow as 250 fs. The long-lived superpositions are such that little population is transferred to other electronic states and for which the vibronic dynamics is relatively harmonic.

  12. Strategies and tools for preventing neurotoxicity: to test, to predict and how to do it.

    PubMed

    Llorens, Jordi; Li, Abby A; Ceccatelli, Sandra; Suñol, Cristina

    2012-08-01

    A change in paradigm is needed in the prevention of toxic effects on the nervous system, moving from its present reliance solely on data from animal testing to a prediction model mostly based on in vitro toxicity testing and in silico modeling. According to the report published by the National Research Council (NRC) of the US National Academies of Science, high-throughput in vitro tests will provide evidence for alterations in "toxicity pathways" as the best possible method of large scale toxicity prediction. The challenges to implement this proposal are enormous, and provide much room for debate. While many efforts address the technical aspects of implementing the vision, many questions around it need also to be addressed. Is the overall strategy the only one to be pursued? How can we move from current to future paradigms? Will we ever be able to reliably model for chronic and developmental neurotoxicity in vitro? This paper summarizes four presentations from a symposium held at the International Neurotoxicology Conference held in Xi'an, China, in June 2011. A. Li reviewed the current guidelines for neurotoxicity and developmental neurotoxicity testing, and discussed the major challenges existing to realize the NCR vision for toxicity testing. J. Llorens reviewed the biology of mammalian toxic avoidance in view of present knowledge on the physiology and molecular biology of the chemical senses, taste and smell. This background information supports the hypothesis that relating in vivo toxicity to chemical epitope descriptors that mimic the chemical encoding performed by the olfactory system may provide a way to the long term future of complete in silico toxicity prediction. S. Ceccatelli reviewed the implementation of rodent and human neural stem cells (NSCs) as models for in vitro toxicity testing that measures parameters such as cell proliferation, differentiation and migration. These appear to be sensitive endpoints that can identify substances with

  13. Neurotoxicity of anhydroecgonine methyl ester, a crack cocaine pyrolysis product.

    PubMed

    Garcia, Raphael Caio Tamborelli; Dati, Livia Mendonça Munhoz; Fukuda, Suelen; Torres, Larissa Helena Lobo; Moura, Sidnei; de Carvalho, Nathalia Delazeri; Carrettiero, Daniel Carneiro; Camarini, Rosana; Levada-Pires, Adriana Cristina; Yonamine, Mauricio; Negrini-Neto, Osvaldo; Abdalla, Fernando Maurício Francis; Sandoval, Maria Regina Lopes; Afeche, Solange Castro; Marcourakis, Tania

    2012-07-01

    Smoking crack cocaine involves the inhalation of cocaine and its pyrolysis product, anhydroecgonine methyl ester (AEME). Although there is evidence that cocaine is neurotoxic, the neurotoxicity of AEME has never been evaluated. AEME seems to have cholinergic agonist properties in the cardiovascular system; however, there are no reports on its effects in the central nervous system. The aim of this study was to investigate the neurotoxicity of AEME and its possible cholinergic effects in rat primary hippocampal cell cultures that were exposed to different concentrations of AEME, cocaine, and a cocaine-AEME combination. We also evaluated the involvement of muscarinic cholinergic receptors in the neuronal death induced by these treatments using concomitant incubation of the cells with atropine. Neuronal injury was assessed using 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT) and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) assays. The results of the viability assays showed that AEME is a neurotoxic agent that has greater neurotoxic potential than cocaine after 24 and 48 h of exposure. We also showed that incubation for 48 h with a combination of both compounds in equipotent concentrations had an additive neurotoxic effect. Although both substances decreased cell viability in the MTT assay, only cocaine increased LDH release. Caspase-3 activity was increased after 3 and 6 h of incubation with 1mM cocaine and after 6 h of 0.1 and 1.0mM AEME exposure. Atropine prevented the AEME-induced neurotoxicity, which suggests that muscarinic cholinergic receptors are involved in AEME's effects. In addition, binding experiments confirmed that AEME has an affinity for muscarinic cholinergic receptors. Nevertheless, atropine was not able to prevent the neurotoxicity produced by cocaine and the cocaine-AEME combination, suggesting that these treatments activated other neuronal death pathways. Our results suggest a higher risk for neurotoxicity after smoking crack cocaine than after

  14. Neurotoxicity testing during long-term studies.

    PubMed

    Ivens, I

    1990-01-01

    Several tests and methods for the investigation of neurotoxicity were performed with female Wistar rats for up to 187 days. The methods were validated by testing 10 rats treated with beta,beta'-iminodipropionitrile (IDPN) and 10 control rats. Cage side observation of the animals revealed signs of altered behavior and motor dysfunction of the IDPN-treated rats. Results of a neuromuscular screen indicated changes in gait, righting reflex, grip strength and performance of the negative geotropism test. Investigation of the animals in activity monitors and on the accelerating rotarod showed changes of several parameters. The motor nerve conduction velocity, measured 6 months after the first treatment, was reduced by 6.7 meters per second in the IDPN group compared to controls. From the results of the tests it can be concluded that the methods chosen can be used during long-term studies but may be most useful for animals not older than 12 months.

  15. 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.

  16. Endoplasmic Reticulum Stress and Ethanol Neurotoxicity.

    PubMed

    Yang, Fanmuyi; Luo, Jia

    2015-10-14

    Ethanol abuse affects virtually all organ systems and the central nervous system (CNS) is particularly vulnerable to excessive ethanol exposure. Ethanol exposure causes profound damages to both the adult and developing brain. Prenatal ethanol exposure induces fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD) which is associated with mental retardation and other behavioral deficits. A number of potential mechanisms have been proposed for ethanol-induced brain damage; these include the promotion of neuroinflammation, interference with signaling by neurotrophic factors, induction of oxidative stress, modulation of retinoid acid signaling, and thiamine deficiency. The endoplasmic reticulum (ER) regulates posttranslational protein processing and transport. The accumulation of unfolded or misfolded proteins in the ER lumen triggers ER stress and induces unfolded protein response (UPR) which are mediated by three transmembrane ER signaling proteins: pancreatic endoplasmic reticulum kinase (PERK), inositol-requiring enzyme 1 (IRE1), and activating transcription factor 6 (ATF6). UPR is initiated to protect cells from overwhelming ER protein loading. However, sustained ER stress may result in cell death. ER stress has been implied in various CNS injuries, including brain ischemia, traumatic brain injury, and aging-associated neurodegeneration, such as Alzheimer's disease (AD), Huntington's disease (HD), Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), and Parkinson's disease (PD). However, effects of ethanol on ER stress in the CNS receive less attention. In this review, we discuss recent progress in the study of ER stress in ethanol-induced neurotoxicity. We also examine the potential mechanisms underlying ethanol-mediated ER stress and the interaction among ER stress, oxidative stress and autophagy in the context of ethanol neurotoxicity.

  17. Fumonisin B(1): a neurotoxic mycotoxin.

    PubMed

    Domijan, Ana-Marija

    2012-12-01

    Fumonisin B(1) (FB(1)) is a mycotoxin produced by Fusarium spp. moulds that contaminate crop, predominantly maize, all around the world. More than 15 types of fumonisins have been indentified so far, but FB(1) is the most abundant and toxicologically the most significant one. FB(1) has a wide range of toxic effects, depending on animal species. In horses FB(1) causes equine leukoencephalomalacia (ELEM), in pigs pulmonary oedema and in experimental rodents nephrotoxicity and hepatotoxicity. In humans exposure to FB(1) is linked with higher incidence of primary liver cancer and oesophageal cancer, which are frequent in certain regions of the world (such as Transkei region in South Africa) where maize is staple food. The occurrence of neural tube defect in children in some countries of Central America (such as Mexico and Honduras) is connected with the consumption of FB(1)-contaminated maize-based food. However, possible involvement of FB(1) in the development of human diseases is not clear. Nevertheless, the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) has classified FB(1) as a possible carcinogen to humans (group 2B). FB(1) is a causative agent of ELEM, a brain disorder in equines, indicating that brain is a target organ of FB(1) toxicity. Several studies on experimental animals or on cell cultures of neural origin have established that FB(1) has a neurodegenerative potential, although the mechanism of its neurotoxicity is still vague. The aim of this article is to give an overview of available literature on FB(1) neurotoxicity and involved mechanisms, and to offer a new perspective for future studies.

  18. Prospective, longitudinal assessment of developmental neurotoxicity.

    PubMed Central

    Jacobson, J L; Jacobson, S W

    1996-01-01

    Methodological issues in the design of prospective, longitudinal studies of developmental neurotoxicity in humans are reviewed. A comprehensive assessment of potential confounding influences is important in these studies because inadequate assessment of confounders can threaten the validity of causal inferences drawn from the data. Potential confounders typically include demographic background variables, alcohol and smoking during pregnancy, the quality of parental stimulation, the child's age at test, and the examiner. Exposure to other substances is assessed where significant exposure is expected in the target population. In most studies, control variables even weakly related to outcome are included in all multivariate statistical analyses, and a toxic effect is inferred only if the effect of exposure is significant after controlling for the potential confounders. Once a neurotoxic effect has been identified, suspected mediating variables may be added to the analysis to examine underlying processes or mechanisms through which the exposure may impact on developmental outcome. Individual differences in vulnerability may be examined in terms of either an additive compensatory model or a synergistic "risk and resilience" approach. Failure to detect real effects (Type II error) is of particular concern in these studies because public policy considerations make it likely that negative findings will be interpreted to mean that the exposure is safe. Important sources of Type II error include inadequate representation of highly exposed individuals, overcontrol for confounders, and inappropriate correction for multiple comparisons. Given the high cost and complexity of prospective, longitudinal investigations, cross-sectional pilot studies focusing on highly exposed individuals can be valuable for the initial identification of salient domains of impairment. PMID:9182034

  19. Novel Pharmacological Approaches for Treatment of Neurotoxicity Induced by Chronic Exposure to Depleted Uranium

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2011-03-01

    underlying effects of DU neurotoxicity were proposed to be cellular oxidative stress and the consequent increased production of reactive oxygen species... oxidative stress has previously been reported in rat kidney, testis, and lung (3-4). Studies were designed to identify various biochemical markers...of metal- induced oxidative stress in CNS tissue, and in combination with enhanced extracellular glutamate and NMDA receptor activity would provide

  20. A Disintegrin and Metalloproteinase with Thrombospondin Motifs-5 (ADAMTS-5) Forms Catalytically Active Oligomers*

    PubMed Central

    Kosasih, Hansen J.; Last, Karena; Rogerson, Fraser M.; Golub, Suzanne B.; Gauci, Stephanie J.; Russo, Vincenzo C.; Stanton, Heather; Wilson, Richard; Lamande, Shireen R.; Holden, Paul; Fosang, Amanda J.

    2016-01-01

    The metalloproteinase ADAMTS-5 (A disintegrin and metalloproteinase with thrombospondin motifs) degrades aggrecan, a proteoglycan essential for cartilage structure and function. ADAMTS-5 is the major aggrecanase in mouse cartilage, and is also likely to be the major aggrecanase in humans. ADAMTS-5 is a multidomain enzyme, but the function of the C-terminal ancillary domains is poorly understood. We show that mutant ADAMTS-5 lacking the catalytic domain, but with a full suite of ancillary domains inhibits wild type ADAMTS activity, in vitro and in vivo, in a dominant-negative manner. The data suggest that mutant ADAMTS-5 binds to wild type ADAMTS-5; thus we tested the hypothesis that ADAMTS-5 associates to form oligomers. Co-elution, competition, and in situ PLA experiments using full-length and truncated recombinant ADAMTS-5 confirmed that ADAMTS-5 molecules interact, and showed that the catalytic and disintegrin-like domains support these intermolecular interactions. Cross-linking experiments revealed that recombinant ADAMTS-5 formed large, reduction-sensitive oligomers with a nominal molecular mass of ∼400 kDa. The oligomers were unimolecular and proteolytically active. ADAMTS-5 truncates comprising the disintegrin and/or catalytic domains were able to competitively block full-length ADAMTS-5-mediated aggrecan cleavage, measured by production of the G1-EGE373 neoepitope. These results show that ADAMTS-5 oligomerization is required for full aggrecanase activity, and they provide evidence that blocking oligomerization inhibits ADAMTS-5 activity. The data identify the surface provided by the catalytic and disintegrin-like domains of ADAMTS-5 as a legitimate target for the design of aggrecanase inhibitors. PMID:26668318

  1. Alpha-synuclein oligomers and fibrils originate in two distinct conformer pools: a small angle X-ray scattering and ensemble optimisation modelling study.

    PubMed

    Curtain, Cyril C; Kirby, Nigel M; Mertens, Haydyn D T; Barnham, Kevin J; Knott, Robert B; Masters, Colin L; Cappai, Roberto; Rekas, Agata; Kenche, Vijaya B; Ryan, Timothy

    2015-01-01

    The 140 residue intrinsically disordered protein α-synuclein (α-syn) self-associates to form fibrils that are the major constituent of the Lewy body intracellular protein inclusions, and neurotoxic oligomers. Both of these macromolecular structures are associated with a number of neurodegenerative diseases, including Parkinson's disease and dementia with Lewy bodies. Using ensemble optimisation modelling (EOM) and small angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) on a size-exclusion column equipped beamline, we studied how the distribution of structural conformers in α-syn may be influenced by the presence of the familial early-onset mutations A30P, E45K and A53T, by substituting the four methionine residues with alanines and by reaction with copper (Cu2+) or an anti-fibril organic platinum (Pt) complex. We found that the WT had two major conformer groups, representing ensembles of compact and extended structures. The population of the extended group was increased in the more rapidly fibril-forming E45K and A53T mutants, while the compact group was enlarged in the oligomer-forming A30P mutant. Addition of Cu2+ resulted in the formation of an ensemble of compact conformers, while the anti-fibril agent and alanine substitution substantially reduced the population of extended conformers. Since our observations with the mutants suggest that fibrils may be drawn from the extended conformer ensemble, we propose that the compact and extended ensembles represent the beginning of oligomer and fibril formation pathways respectively, both of which have been reported to lead to a toxic gain of function. Manipulating these pathways and monitoring the results by EOM and SAXS may be useful in the development of anti-Parkinson's disease therapies.

  2. INTEGRATING EPIDEMIOLOGY AND TOXICOLOGY IN NEUROTOXICITY RISK ASSESSMENT.

    EPA Science Inventory

    Neurotoxicity risk assessments depend on the best available scientific information, including data from animal toxicity, human experimental studies and human epidemiology studies. There are several factors to consider when evaluating the comparability of data from studies. Reg...

  3. TESTING FOR DEVELOPMENTAL NEUROTOXICITY: CURRENT APPROACHES AND FUTURE NEEDS.

    EPA Science Inventory

    There are many adverse effects on the nervous system following exposure to environmental chemicals during development. In a number of cases (e.g., lead, methyl mercury) the developing nervous system is a highly susceptible. Developmental Neurotoxicity Testing (DNT) guidelines...

  4. Recommendations for Developing Alternative Test Methods for Developmental Neurotoxicity

    EPA Science Inventory

    There is great interest in developing alternative methods for developmental neurotoxicity testing (DNT) that are cost-efficient, use fewer animals and are based on current scientific knowledge of the developing nervous system. Alternative methods will require demonstration of the...

  5. Serotonergic signalling suppresses ataxin 3 aggregation and neurotoxicity in animal models of Machado-Joseph disease.

    PubMed

    Teixeira-Castro, Andreia; Jalles, Ana; Esteves, Sofia; Kang, Soosung; da Silva Santos, Liliana; Silva-Fernandes, Anabela; Neto, Mário F; Brielmann, Renée M; Bessa, Carlos; Duarte-Silva, Sara; Miranda, Adriana; Oliveira, Stéphanie; Neves-Carvalho, Andreia; Bessa, João; Summavielle, Teresa; Silverman, Richard B; Oliveira, Pedro; Morimoto, Richard I; Maciel, Patrícia

    2015-11-01

    Polyglutamine diseases are a class of dominantly inherited neurodegenerative disorders for which there is no effective treatment. Here we provide evidence that activation of serotonergic signalling is beneficial in animal models of Machado-Joseph disease. We identified citalopram, a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor, in a small molecule screen of FDA-approved drugs that rescued neuronal dysfunction and reduced aggregation using a Caenorhabditis elegans model of mutant ataxin 3-induced neurotoxicity. MOD-5, the C. elegans orthologue of the serotonin transporter and cellular target of citalopram, and the serotonin receptors SER-1 and SER-4 were strong genetic modifiers of ataxin 3 neurotoxicity and necessary for therapeutic efficacy. Moreover, chronic treatment of CMVMJD135 mice with citalopram significantly reduced ataxin 3 neuronal inclusions and astrogliosis, rescued diminished body weight and strikingly ameliorated motor symptoms. These results suggest that small molecule modulation of serotonergic signalling represents a promising therapeutic target for Machado-Joseph disease.

  6. Novel free radical spin traps protect against malonate and MPTP neurotoxicity.

    PubMed

    Matthews, R T; Klivenyi, P; Mueller, G; Yang, L; Wermer, M; Thomas, C E; Beal, M F

    1999-05-01

    Both malonate and 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,5,6 tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) are neurotoxins which cause energy depletion, secondary excitotoxicity, and free radical generation. Malonate is a reversible inhibitor of succinate dehydrogenase, while MPTP is metabolized to 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium, an inhibitor of mitochondrial complex I. We examined the effects of pretreatment with the cyclic nitrone free radical spin trap MDL 101,002 on malonate and MPTP neurotoxicity. MDL 101,002 produced dose-dependent neuroprotection against malonate-induced striatal lesions. MDL 101, 002 produced significant protection against MPTP induced depletions of dopamine and its metabolites. MDL 101,002 also significantly attenuated MPTP-induced increases in striatal 3-nitrotyrosine concentrations. The free radical spin trap tempol also produced significant protection against MPTP neurotoxicity. These findings provide further evidence that free radical spin traps produce neuroprotective effects in vivo and suggest that they may be useful in the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases.

  7. Serotonergic signalling suppresses ataxin 3 aggregation and neurotoxicity in animal models of Machado-Joseph disease

    PubMed Central

    Teixeira-Castro, Andreia; Kang, Soosung; da Silva Santos, Liliana; Silva-Fernandes, Anabela; Neto, Mário F.; Brielmann, Renée M.; Bessa, Carlos; Duarte-Silva, Sara; Miranda, Adriana; Oliveira, Stéphanie; Neves-Carvalho, Andreia; Bessa, João; Summavielle, Teresa; Silverman, Richard B.; Oliveira, Pedro; Morimoto, Richard I.

    2015-01-01

    Polyglutamine diseases are a class of dominantly inherited neurodegenerative disorders for which there is no effective treatment. Here we provide evidence that activation of serotonergic signalling is beneficial in animal models of Machado-Joseph disease. We identified citalopram, a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor, in a small molecule screen of FDA-approved drugs that rescued neuronal dysfunction and reduced aggregation using a Caenorhabditis elegans model of mutant ataxin 3-induced neurotoxicity. MOD-5, the C. elegans orthologue of the serotonin transporter and cellular target of citalopram, and the serotonin receptors SER-1 and SER-4 were strong genetic modifiers of ataxin 3 neurotoxicity and necessary for therapeutic efficacy. Moreover, chronic treatment of CMVMJD135 mice with citalopram significantly reduced ataxin 3 neuronal inclusions and astrogliosis, rescued diminished body weight and strikingly ameliorated motor symptoms. These results suggest that small molecule modulation of serotonergic signalling represents a promising therapeutic target for Machado-Joseph disease. PMID:26373603

  8. Role of α-synuclein penetration into the membrane in the mechanisms of oligomer pore formation

    PubMed Central

    Tsigelny, Igor F.; Sharikov, Yuriy; Wrasidlo, Wolfgang; Gonzalez, Tania; Desplats, Paula A.; Crews, Leslie; Spencer, Brian; Masliah, Eliezer

    2013-01-01

    Parkinson’s disease (PD) and Dementia with Lewy bodies are common disorders of the aging population characterized by the progressive accumulation of α-synuclein (α-syn) in the CNS. Aggregation of α-syn into oligomers with a ring-like appearance has been proposed a role in toxicity. However, the molecular mechanisms and the potential sequence of events involved in the formation of pore-like structures are unclear. We utilized computer modeling and cell-based studies to investigate the process of α-syn (wild type and A53T) oligomerization in membranes. The studies suggest that α-syn rapidly penetrates the membrane, changing its conformation from α-helical toward a coiled structure. This penetration facilitate the incorporation of additional α-syn monomers to the complex, and subsequent displacement of phospholipids, and formation of oligomers in the membrane. This process occurred more rapidly, and with more favorable energy of interaction for mutant A53T compared with wild type α-syn. After 4 ns of simulation for the protein-membrane model α-syn penetrated through two thirds of the membrane. By 9 ns, the penetration of the annular α-syn oligomers can result in the formation of pore-like structures that fully perforate the lipid bilayer. Experimental incubation of recombinant α-syn in synthetic membranes resulted in the formation of similar pore-like complexes. Moreover, mutant (A53T) α-syn had a greater tendency to accumulate in neuronal membrane fractions in cell cultures, resulting in greater neuronal permeability with the calcein efflux assay. These studies provide a sequential molecular explanation for the process of α-syn oligomerization in the membrane, and support the role of formation of pore-like structures in the pathogenesis of the neurodegenerative process in PD. PMID:22251432

  9. 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

  10. Mephedrone does not damage dopamine nerve endings of the striatum, but enhances the neurotoxicity of methamphetamine, amphetamine, and MDMA.

    PubMed

    Angoa-Pérez, Mariana; Kane, Michael J; Briggs, Denise I; Francescutti, Dina M; Sykes, Catherine E; Shah, Mrudang M; Thomas, David M; Kuhn, Donald M

    2013-04-01

    Mephedrone (4-methylmethcathinone) is a β-ketoamphetamine stimulant drug of abuse with close structural and mechanistic similarities to methamphetamine. One of the most powerful actions associated with mephedrone is the ability to stimulate dopamine (DA) release and block its re-uptake through its interaction with the dopamine transporter (DAT). Although mephedrone does not cause toxicity to DA nerve endings, its ability to serve as a DAT blocker could provide protection against methamphetamine-induced neurotoxicity like other DAT inhibitors. To test this possibility, mice were treated with mephedrone (10, 20, or 40 mg/kg) prior to each injection of a neurotoxic regimen of methamphetamine (four injections of 2.5 or 5.0 mg/kg at 2 h intervals). The integrity of DA nerve endings of the striatum was assessed through measures of DA, DAT, and tyrosine hydroxylase levels. The moderate to severe DA toxicity associated with the different doses of methamphetamine was not prevented by any dose of mephedrone but was, in fact, significantly enhanced. The hyperthermia caused by combined treatment with mephedrone and methamphetamine was the same as seen after either drug alone. Mephedrone also enhanced the neurotoxic effects of amphetamine and 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine on DA nerve endings. In contrast, nomifensine protected against methamphetamine-induced neurotoxicity. As mephedrone increases methamphetamine neurotoxicity, the present results suggest that it interacts with the DAT in a manner unlike that of other typical DAT inhibitors. The relatively innocuous effects of mephedrone alone on DA nerve endings mask a potentially dangerous interaction with drugs that are often co-abused with it, leading to heightened neurotoxicity.

  11. Mephedrone Does not Damage Dopamine Nerve Endings of the Striatum but Enhances the Neurotoxicity of Methamphetamine, Amphetamine and MDMA

    PubMed Central

    Angoa-Pérez, Mariana; Kane, Michael J.; Briggs, Denise I.; Francescutti, Dina M.; Sykes, Catherine E.; Shah, Mrudang M.; Thomas, David M.; Kuhn, Donald M.

    2012-01-01

    Mephedrone (4-methylmethcathinone) is a β-ketoamphetamine stimulant drug of abuse with close structural and mechanistic similarities to methamphetamine. One of the most powerful actions associated with mephedrone is the ability to stimulate dopamine (DA) release and block its reuptake through its interaction with the dopamine transporter (DAT). Although mephedrone does not cause toxicity to DA nerve endings, its ability to serve as a DAT blocker could provide protection against methamphetamine-induced neurotoxicity like other DAT inhibitors. To test this possibility, mice were treated with mephedrone (10, 20 or 40 mg/kg) prior to each injection of a neurotoxic regimen of methamphetamine (4 injections of 2.5 or 5.0 mg/kg at 2 hr intervals). The integrity of DA nerve endings of the striatum was assessed through measures of DA, DAT and tyrosine hydroxylase levels. The moderate to severe DA toxicity associated with the different doses of methamphetamine was not prevented by any dose of mephedrone but was, in fact, significantly enhanced. The hyperthermia caused by combined treatment with mephedrone and methamphetamine was the same as seen after either drug alone. Mephedrone also enhanced the neurotoxic effects of amphetamine and MDMA on DA nerve endings. In contrast, nomifensine protected against methamphetamine-induced neurotoxicity. Because mephedrone increases methamphetamine neurotoxicity, the present results suggest that it interacts with the DAT in a manner unlike that of other typical DAT inhibitors. The relatively innocuous effects of mephedrone alone on DA nerve endings mask a potentially dangerous interaction with drugs that are often co-abused with it, leading to heightened neurotoxicity. PMID:23205838

  12. Potential developmental neurotoxicity of pesticides used in Europe

    PubMed Central

    Bjørling-Poulsen, Marina; Andersen, Helle Raun; Grandjean, Philippe

    2008-01-01

    Pesticides used in agriculture are designed to protect crops against unwanted species, such as weeds, insects, and fungus. Many compounds target the nervous system of insect pests. Because of the similarity in brain biochemistry, such pesticides may also be neurotoxic to humans. Concerns have been raised that the developing brain may be particularly vulnerable to adverse effects of neurotoxic pesticides. Current requirements for safety testing do not include developmental neurotoxicity. We therefore undertook a systematic evaluation of published evidence on neurotoxicity of pesticides in current use, with specific emphasis on risks during early development. Epidemiologic studies show associations with neurodevelopmental deficits, but mainly deal with mixed exposures to pesticides. Laboratory experimental studies using model compounds suggest that many pesticides currently used in Europe – including organophosphates, carbamates, pyrethroids, ethylenebisdithiocarbamates, and chlorophenoxy herbicides – can cause neurodevelopmental toxicity. Adverse effects on brain development can be severe and irreversible. Prevention should therefore be a public health priority. The occurrence of residues in food and other types of human exposures should be prevented with regard to the pesticide groups that are known to be neurotoxic. For other substances, given their widespread use and the unique vulnerability of the developing brain, the general lack of data on developmental neurotoxicity calls for investment in targeted research. While awaiting more definite evidence, existing uncertainties should be considered in light of the need for precautionary action to protect brain development. PMID:18945337

  13. Estrogenic protection against gp120 neurotoxicity: role of microglia.

    PubMed

    Zemlyak, Ilona; Brooke, Sheila; Sapolsky, Robert

    2005-06-07

    HIV infection of the nervous system can cause neurotoxicity, and the glycoprotein gp120 of HIV seems to play a key role in this. gp120 is neurotoxic through a multi-cellular pathway, stimulating microglia to release excitotoxins, cytokines and reactive oxygen species, which then damage neurons. We have previously shown that estrogen decreases the neurotoxicity of gp120 in mixed neuronal/glial cultures. In this study, we determine whether estrogen a) decreases the collective neurotoxicity of the factors released by gp120-treated microglia, and/or b) enhances the ability of neurons to survive such factors. To do so, we established microglial cultures, mixed neuronal/glial hippocampal cultures, and neuron-enriched cultures, independently manipulating gp120 and estrogen exposure in each type of culture, and inducing neurotoxicity in neuron-containing cultures by introducing conditioned media from gp120-treated microglial cultures. We observe that estrogen can exert some small protective effects at the level of bolstering neuronal resistance, but that the bulk of its protective effects arise at the level of decreasing the neurotoxicity of factors released by microglia.

  14. The neurotoxicity of amphetamines during the adolescent period.

    PubMed

    Teixeira-Gomes, Armanda; Costa, Vera Marisa; Feio-Azevedo, Rita; Bastos, Maria de Lourdes; Carvalho, Félix; Capela, João Paulo

    2015-04-01

    Amphetamine-type psychostimulants (ATS), such as amphetamine (AMPH), 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA), and methamphetamine (METH) are psychoactive substances widely abused, due to their powerful central nervous system (CNS) stimulation ability. Young people particularly use ATS as recreational drugs. Moreover, AMPH is used clinically, particularly for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, and has the ability to cause structural and functional brain alterations. ATS are known to interact with monoamine transporter sites and easily diffuse across cellular membranes, attaining high levels in several tissues, particularly the brain. Strong evidence suggests that ATS induce neurotoxic effects, raising concerns about the consequences of drug abuse. Considering that many teenagers and young adults commonly use ATS, our main aim was to review the neurotoxic effects of amphetamines, namely AMPH, MDMA, and METH, in the adolescence period of experimental animals. Reports agree that adolescent animals are less susceptible than adult animals to the neurotoxic effects of amphetamines. The susceptibility to the neurotoxic effects of ATS seems roughly located in the early adolescent period of animals. Many authors report that the age of exposure to ATS is crucial for the neurotoxic outcome, showing that the stage of brain maturity has a strong importance. Moreover, recent studies have been undertaken in young adults and/or consumers during adolescence that clearly indicate brain or behavioural damage, arguing for long-term neurotoxic effects in humans. There is an urgent need for more studies during the adolescence period, in order to unveil the mechanisms and the brain dysfunctions promoted by ATS.

  15. The classification of motor neuron defects in the zebrafish embryo toxicity test (ZFET) as an animal alternative approach to assess developmental neurotoxicity.

    PubMed

    Muth-Köhne, Elke; Wichmann, Arne; Delov, Vera; Fenske, Martina

    2012-07-01

    Rodents are widely used to test the developmental neurotoxicity potential of chemical substances. The regulatory test procedures are elaborate and the requirement of numerous animals is ethically disputable. Therefore, non-animal alternatives are highly desirable, but appropriate test systems that meet regulatory demands are not yet available. Hence, we have developed a new developmental neurotoxicity assay based on specific whole-mount immunostainings of primary and secondary motor neurons (using the monoclonal antibodies znp1 and zn8) in zebrafish embryos. By classifying the motor neuron defects, we evaluated the severity of the neurotoxic damage to individual primary and secondary motor neurons caused by chemical exposure and determined the corresponding effect concentration values (EC₅₀). In a proof-of-principle study, we investigated the effects of three model compounds thiocyclam, cartap and disulfiram, which show some neurotoxicity-indicating effects in vertebrates, and the positive controls ethanol and nicotine and the negative controls 3,4-dichloroaniline (3,4-DCA) and triclosan. As a quantitative measure of the neurotoxic potential of the test compounds, we calculated the ratios of the EC₅₀ values for motor neuron defects and the cumulative malformations, as determined in a zebrafish embryo toxicity test (zFET). Based on this index, disulfiram was classified as the most potent and thiocyclam as the least potent developmental neurotoxin. The index also confirmed the control compounds as positive and negative neurotoxicants. Our findings demonstrate that this index can be used to reliably distinguish between neurotoxic and non-neurotoxic chemicals and provide a sound estimate for the neurodevelopmental hazard potential of a chemical. The demonstrated method can be a feasible approach to reduce the number of animals used in developmental neurotoxicity evaluation procedures.

  16. Regiocontrolled synthesis of ethene-bridged para-phenylene oligomers based on Pt(II)- and Ru(II)-catalyzed aromatization.

    PubMed

    Chen, Tse-An; Lee, Te-Ju; Lin, Ming-Yuan; Sohel, Shariar M A; Diau, Eric Wei-Guang; Lush, Shie-Fu; Liu, Rai-Shung

    2010-02-08

    We report the regiocontrolled syntheses of ethene-bridged para-phenylene oligomers in three distinct classes by using Pt(II)- and Ru(II)-catalyzed aromatization. This synthetic approach has been developed based on twofold aromatization of the 1-aryl-2-alkynylbenzene functionality, which proceeds by distinct regioselectivity for platinum and ruthenium catalysts. Variable-temperature NMR spectra provide evidence that large arrays of these oligomers are prone to twist from planarity. The UV/Vis and photoluminescence (PL) spectra as well as the band gaps of these regularly growing arrays show a pattern of extensive pi conjugation with increasing array sizes, except for in one instance.

  17. Anticoagulant flavonoid oligomers from the rhizomes of Alpinia platychilus.

    PubMed

    Shen, Chuan-Pu; Luo, Jian-Guang; Yang, Ming-Hua; Kong, Ling-Yi

    2015-10-01

    Two pairs of enantiomers of flavonoid oligomers (1a and 1b, 2a and 2b) along with one known chalcone (3) were isolated from the rhizomes of Alpinia platychilus. Their structures were elucidated on the basis of spectroscopic data (MS and 1D/2D NMR). The absolute configurations of the flavonoid oligomers were established by their ECD spectra. Separation of the enantiomeric mixtures (1a and 1b, 2a and 2b) was achieved on a chiral column using hexane:isopropyl alcohol:ethanol (7:2:1) as eluents. The anticoagulant assay showed that 2a, 2b and 3 exhibited potent activities to prolong the prothrombin times (PT) and the thrombin times (TT).

  18. Phase transition in conjugated oligomers suspended in chloroform

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dwivedi, Shikha; Kumar, Anupam; Yadav, S. N. S.; Mishra, Pankaj

    2015-08-01

    Density functional theory (DFT) has been used to investigate the isotropic-nematic (I-N) phase transition in a system of high aspect ratio conjugated oligomers suspended in chloroform. The interaction between the oligomers is modeled using Gay-Berne potential in which effect of solvent is implicit. Percus-Yevick integral equation theory has been used to evaluate the pair correlation functions of the fluid phase at several temperatures and densities. These pair correlation function has been used in the DFT to evaluate the I-N freezing parameters. Highly oriented nematic is found to stabilize at low density. The results obtained are in qualitative agreement with the simulation and are verifiable.

  19. Synthesis of long prebiotic oligomers on mineral surfaces.

    PubMed

    Ferris, J P; Hill, A R; Liu, R; Orgel, L E

    1996-05-02

    Most theories of the origin of biological organization assume that polymers with lengths in the range of 30-60 monomers are needed to make a genetic system viable. But it has not proved possible to synthesize plausibly prebiotic polymers this long by condensation in aqueous solution, because hydrolysis competes with polymerization. The potential of mineral surfaces to facilitate prebiotic polymerization was pointed out long ago. Here we describe a system that models prebiotic polymerization by the oligomerization of activated monomers--both nucleotides and amino acids. We find that whereas the reactions in solution produce only short oligomers (the longest typically being a 10-mer), the presence of mineral surfaces (montmorillonite for nucleotides, illite and hydroxylapatite for amino acids) induces the formation of oligomers up to 55 monomers long. These are formed by successive 'feedings' with the monomers; polymerization takes place on the mineral surfaces in a manner akin to solid-phase synthesis of biopolymers.

  20. Synthesis of long Prebiotic Oligomers on Mineral Surfaces

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ferris, James P.; Hill, Aubrey R., Jr.; Liu, Rihe; Orgel, Leslie E.

    1996-01-01

    Most theories of the origin of biological organization assume that polymers with lengths in the range of 30-60 monomers are needed to make a genetic system viable. But it has not proved possible to synthesize plausibly prebiotic polymers this long by condensation in aqueous solution, because hydrolysis competes with polymerization. The potential of mineral surfaces to facilitate prebiotic polymerization was pointed out long ago. Here we describe a system that models prebiotic polymerization by the oligomerization of activated monomers -both nucleotides and amino acids. We find that whereas the reactions in solution produce only short oligomers (the longest typically being a 10-mer), the presence of mineral surfaces (montmorillonite for nucleotides, illite and hydroxylapatite for amino adds) induces the formation of oligomers up to 55 monomers long. These are formed by successive "feedings" with the monomers; polymerization takes place on the mineral surfaces in a manner akin to solid-phase synthesis of biopolymers.

  1. Phase behavior of a lattice hydrophobic oligomer in explicit water.

    PubMed

    Romero-Vargas Castrillón, Santiago; Matysiak, Silvina; Stillinger, Frank H; Rossky, Peter J; Debenedetti, Pablo G

    2012-08-09

    We investigate the thermodynamics of hydrophobic oligomer collapse using a water-explicit, three-dimensional lattice model. The model captures several aspects of protein thermodynamics, including the emergence of cold- and thermal-unfolding, as well as unfolding at high solvent density (a phenomenon akin to pressure-induced denaturation). We show that over a range of conditions spanning a ≈14% increase in solvent density, the oligomer transforms into a compact, strongly water-penetrated conformation at low temperature. This contrasts with thermal unfolding at high temperature, where the system "denatures" into an extended random coil conformation. We report a phase diagram for hydrophobic collapse that correctly captures qualitative aspects of cold and thermal unfolding at low to intermediate solvent densities.

  2. Production of random DNA oligomers for scalable DNA computing.

    PubMed

    Wang, Sixue S L; Johnson, John J X; Hughes, Bradley S T; Karabay, Dundar A O; Bader, Karson D W; Austin, Allen; Austin, Alan; Habib, Aisha; Hatef, Husnia; Joshi, Megha; Nguyen, Lawrence; Mills, Allen P

    2009-01-01

    While remarkably complex networks of connected DNA molecules can form from a relatively small number of distinct oligomer strands, a large computational space created by DNA reactions would ultimately require the use of many distinct DNA strands. The automatic synthesis of this many distinct strands is economically prohibitive. We present here a new approach to producing distinct DNA oligomers based on the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) amplification of a few random template sequences. As an example, we designed a DNA template sequence consisting of a 50-mer random DNA segment flanked by two 20-mer invariant primer sequences. Amplification of a dilute sample containing about 30 different template molecules allows us to obtain around 10(11) copies of these molecules and their complements. We demonstrate the use of these amplicons to implement some of the vector operations that will be required in a DNA implementation of an analog neural network.

  3. Time-dependent insulin oligomer reaction pathway prior to fibril formation: cooling and seeding.

    PubMed

    Sorci, Mirco; Grassucci, Robert A; Hahn, Ingrid; Frank, Joachim; Belfort, Georges

    2009-10-01

    The difficulty in identifying the toxic agents in all amyloid-related diseases is likely due to the complicated kinetics and thermodynamics of the nucleation process and subsequent fibril formation. The slow progression of these diseases suggests that the formation, incorporation, and/or action of toxic agents are possibly rate limiting. Candidate toxic agents include precursors (some at very low concentrations), also called oligomers and protofibrils, and the fibrils. Here, we investigate the kinetic and thermodynamic behavior of human insulin oligomers (imaged by cryo-EM) under fibril-forming conditions (pH 1.6 and 65 degrees C) by probing the reaction pathway to insulin fibril formation using two different types of experiments-cooling and seeding-and confirm the validity of the nucleation model and its effect on fibril growth. The results from both the cooling and seeding studies confirm the existence of a time-changing oligomer reaction process prior to fibril formation that likely involves a rate-limiting nucleation process followed by structural rearrangements of intermediates (into beta-sheet rich entities) to form oligomers that then form fibrils. The latter structural rearrangement step occurs even in the absence of nuclei (i.e., with added heterologous seeds). Nuclei are formed at the fibrillation conditions (pH 1.6 and 65 degrees C) but are also continuously formed during cooling at pH 1.6 and 25 degrees C. Within the time-scale of the experiments, only after increasing the temperature to 65 degrees C are the trapped insulin nuclei and resultant structures able to induce the structural rearrangement step and overcome the energy barrier to form fibrils. This delay in fibrillation and accumulation of nuclei at low temperature (25 degrees C) result in a decrease in the mean length of the fibers when placed at 65 degrees C. Fits of an empirical model to the data provide quantitative measures of the delay in the lag-time during the nucleation process and

  4. Time-dependent insulin oligomer reaction pathway prior to fibril formation: Cooling and seeding

    PubMed Central

    Sorci, Mirco; Grassucci, Robert A.; Hahn, Ingrid; Frank, Joachim; Belfort, Georges

    2009-01-01

    The difficulty in identifying the toxic agents in all amyloid-related diseases is likely due to the complicated kinetics and thermodynamics of the nucleation process and subsequent fibril formation. The slow progression of these diseases suggests that the formation, incorporation and/or action of toxic agents is possibly rate limiting. Candidate toxic agents include precursors (some at very low concentrations), also called oligomers and protofibrils, and the fibrils. Here, we investigate the kinetic and thermodynamic behavior of human insulin oligomers (imaged by cryo-EM) under fibril forming conditions (pH 1.6 and 65°C) by probing the reaction pathway to insulin fibril formation using two different types of experiments – cooling and seeding – and confirm the validity of the nucleation model and its effect on fibril growth. The results from both the cooling and seeding studies confirm the existence of a time-changing oligomer reaction process prior to fibril formation that likely involves a rate-limiting nucleation process followed by structural rearrangements of intermediates (into β-sheet rich entities) to form oligomers that then form fibrils. The latter structural rearrangement step occurs even in the absence of nuclei (i.e. with added heterologous seeds). Nuclei are formed at the fibrillation conditions (pH 1.6 and 65°C) but are also continuously formed during cooling at pH 1.6 and 25°C. Within the time-scale of the experiments, only after increasing the temperature to 65°C are the trapped insulin nuclei and resultant structures able to induce the structural rearrangement step and overcome the energy barrier to form fibrils. This delay in fibrillation and accumulation of nuclei at low temperature (25°C), result in a decrease in the mean length of the fibers when placed at 65°C. Fits of an empirical model to the data provide quantitative measures of the delay in the lag-time during the nucleation process and subsequent reduction in fibril growth rate

  5. Changes of adiponectin oligomer composition by moderate weight reduction.

    PubMed

    Bobbert, Thomas; Rochlitz, Helmut; Wegewitz, Uta; Akpulat, Suzan; Mai, Knut; Weickert, Martin O; Möhlig, Matthias; Pfeiffer, Andreas F H; Spranger, Joachim

    2005-09-01

    Adiponectin affects lipid metabolism and insulin sensitivity. However, adiponectin circulates in three different oligomers that may also have distinct biological functions. We aimed to analyze the role of these oligomers in obesity and lipid metabolism after weight reduction. A total of 17 obese volunteers (15 women and 2 men) participated in a weight reduction program. Individuals were characterized before and after 6 months of a balanced diet. Adiponectin was determined by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, and oligomers were detected by nondenaturating Western blot. BMI decreased (35.1 +/- 1.2 to 32.8 +/- 1.1 kg/m(2), P < 0.001), which was associated with an improved metabolite profile. Total adiponectin increased from 5.3 +/- 0.5 to 6.1 +/- 0.6 microg/ml (P = 0.076). High (HMW) and medium molecular weight (MMW) adiponectin oligomers significantly increased during weight reduction (HMW: 0.37 +/- 0.07 to 0.4 +/- 0.08 microg/ml, P = 0.042; MMW: 2.3 +/- 0.2 to 2.9 +/- 0.3 microg/ml, P = 0.007), while low molecular weight (LMW) did not significantly change. Body weight inversely correlated with HMW (r = -0.695, P = 0.002) and positively with LMW (r = 0.579, P = 0.015). Interestingly, HDL cholesterol and HMW were strongly correlated (r = 0.665, P = 0.007). Indeed, HMW and free fatty acids before weight reduction predicted approximately 60% of HDL changes during intervention. In conclusion, weight reduction results in a relative increase of HMW/MMW adiponectin and a reduction of LMW adiponectin. Total adiponectin and especially HMW adiponectin are related to circulating HDL cholesterol.

  6. Using hyperbranched oligomer functionalized glass fillers to reduce shrinkage stress

    PubMed Central

    Ye, Sheng; Azarnoush, Setareh; Smith, Ian R.; Cramer, Neil B.; Stansbury, Jeffrey W.; Bowman, Christopher N

    2012-01-01

    Objective Fillers are widely utilized to enhance the mechanical properties of polymer resins. However, polymerization stress has the potential to increase due to the higher elastic modulus achieved upon filler addition. Here, we demonstrate a hyperbranched oligomer functionalized glass filler UV curable resin composite which is able to reduce the shrinkage stress without sacrificing mechanical properties. Methods A 16-functional alkene-terminated hyperbranched oligomer is synthesized by thiol-acrylate and thiol-yne reactions and the product structure is analyzed by 1H-NMR, mass spectroscopy, and gel permeation chromatography. Surface functionalization of the glass filler is measured by thermogravimetric analysis. Reaction kinetics, mechanical properties and shrinkage stress are studied via Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, dynamic mechanical analysis and a tensometer, respectively. Results Silica nanoparticles are functionalized with a flexible 16-functional alkene-terminated hyperbranched oligomer which is synthesized by multistage thiol-ene/yne reactions. 93% of the particle surface was covered by this oligomer and an interfacial layer ranging from 0.7 – 4.5 nm thickness is generated. A composite system with these functionalized silica nanoparticles incorporated into the thiol-yne-methacrylate resin demonstrates 30% reduction of shrinkage stress (from 0.9 MPa to 0.6 MPa) without sacrificing the modulus (3100 ± 300 MPa) or glass transition temperature (62 ± 3 °C). Moreover, the shrinkage stress of the composite system builds up at much later stages of the polymerization as compared to the control system. Significance Due to the capability of reducing shrinkage stress without sacrificing mechanical properties, this composite system will be a great candidate for dental composite applications. PMID:22717296

  7. Synthesis of soybean oil-based thiol oligomers.

    PubMed

    Wu, Jennifer F; Fernando, Shashi; Weerasinghe, Dimuthu; Chen, Zhigang; Webster, Dean C

    2011-08-22

    Industrial grade soybean oil (SBO) and thiols were reacted to generate thiol-functionalized oligomers via a thermal, free radical initiated thiol-ene reaction between the SBO double bond moieties and the thiol functional groups. The effect of the reaction conditions, including thiol concentration, catalyst loading level, reaction time, and atmosphere, on the molecular weight and the conversion to the resultant soy-thiols were examined in a combinatorial high-throughput fashion using parallel synthesis, combinatorial FTIR, and rapid gel permeation chromatography (GPC). High thiol functionality and concentration, high thermal free radical catalyst concentration, long reaction time, and the use of a nitrogen reaction atmosphere were found to favor fast consumption of the SBO, and produced high molecular weight products. The thiol conversion during the reaction was inversely affected by a high thiol concentration, but was favored by a long reaction time and an air reaction atmosphere. These experimental observations were explained by the initial low affinity of the SBO and thiol, and the improved affinity between the generated soy-thiol oligomers and unreacted SBO during the reaction. The synthesized soy-thiol oligomers can be used for renewable thiol-ene UV curable materials and high molecular solids and thiourethane thermal cure materials.

  8. Deuteration-induced scission of C{sub 58} oligomers

    SciTech Connect

    Loeffler, Daniel; Jester, Stefan-S.; Weis, Patrick; Boettcher, Artur; Kappes, Manfred M.

    2006-12-14

    The reaction of solid C{sub 58} films with atomic deuterium to yield deuterofullerenes, C{sub 58}D{sub x}, has been investigated by thermal desorption spectroscopy coupled with mass spectrometric detection, ultraviolet photoionization spectroscopy (21.2 eV), and atomic force microscopy (AFM). The average composition of the deuterofullerenes created depends on deuterium dose, beam flux, and surface temperature. Low deuterium exposures at room temperature yield predominantly C{sub 58}D{sub 6-8} cages. Saturation exposures at room temperature yield mass spectra peaked at C{sub 58}D{sub 26}. After saturation exposures at elevated surface temperatures ({approx}500 K), the (subsequently) desorbed material reveals a comparatively narrow mass spectral distribution centered at C{sub 58}D{sub 30}. Deuteration is associated with cleavage of covalent cage-cage bonds in the starting C{sub 58} oligomer material, as evidenced by a considerable lowering of the sublimation energies of C{sub 58}D{sub x} compared to desorption of C{sub 58} desorbed from pure oligomer films. Correspondingly, AFM images reveal a D-induced, thermally activated transition from dendritic C{sub 58} oligomer islands into smooth-rimmed islands composed of deuterated cages. Deuterated films exhibit a significantly lower work function than bare C{sub 58} films. Progressing deuteration also gradually raises the surface ionization potential.

  9. Oligomers, organosulfates, and nitroxy organosulfates identified in rainwater

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Altieri, K. E.; Turpin, B. J.; Seitzinger, S. P.

    2008-12-01

    Wet deposition is an important removal mechanism for atmospheric organic matter, and a potentially important input for receiving ecosystems, yet less than 50 percent of rainwater organic matter is considered chemically characterized. Precipitation samples collected in New Jersey, USA, were analyzed by negative ion ultra-high resolution electrospray ionization Fourier transform ion cyclotron resonance mass spectrometry (FT-ICR MS). We document the presence of 552 unique compounds in the rainwater over a mass range of 50-500 Da, in four compound classes (i.e., CHO, CHOS, CHON, and CHONS). The presence of oligomers, organosulfates, nitroxy organosulfates, organic acids, and linear alkylbenzene sulfonates is reported. Some compounds detected have distinct primary sources; however, the composition of the bulk of this material suggests it is formed in the atmosphere and composed of known contributors to secondary organic aerosol. For example, eight oligomer series known to form through aqueous photooxidation of methylglyoxal and organosulfate compounds known to form from 4 precursors in smog chamber experiments were identified in the rainwater samples. The oligomers, organosulfates, and nitroxy organosulfates detected in the rainwater could all contribute to the HULIS fraction of atmospheric organic matter.

  10. The Viscoelastic Behavior of Polymer/Oligomer Blends

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zheng, Wei; McKenna, Gregory; Simon, Sindee

    2009-03-01

    The dynamics in athermal blends of poly(α-methyl styrene) (PaMS) and its short chain oligomer are investigated using rheometry and differential scanning calorimetry (DSC). Master curves for the dynamic shear responses, G' and G", are successfully constructed for both the pure materials and the blends, indicating the validity of the time-temperature superposition principle. The temperature dependence of the shift factor follows the WLF (Williams-Landel-Ferry) behavior over the temperature range studied, and for the blends, the dependence is dominated by the high mobility oligomer. The discrete relaxation spectra of the materials are calculated and are found to be broader for the blends than for the pure materials. A similar domination of the dynamics by the oligomer is observed in DSC enthalpy recovery studies and in the broadened glass transition from DSC. The ability to predict the dynamic responses of the blends from the responses of the neat materials is examined, and whether this prediction needs to incorporate the self-concentration idea as described in Colmenero's model will be discussed.

  11. Neurotoxicity of traffic-related air pollution.

    PubMed

    Costa, Lucio G; Cole, Toby B; Coburn, Jacki; Chang, Yu-Chi; Dao, Khoi; Roqué, Pamela J

    2017-03-01

    The central nervous system is emerging as an important target for adverse health effects of air pollution, where it may contribute to neurodevelopmental and neurodegenerative disorders. Air pollution comprises several components, including particulate matter (PM) and ultrafine particulate matter (UFPM), gases, organic compounds, and metals. An important source of ambient PM and UFPM is represented by traffic-related air pollution, primarily diesel exhaust (DE). Human epidemiological studies and controlled animal studies have shown that exposure to air pollution, and to traffic-related air pollution or DE in particular, may lead to neurotoxicity. In particular, air pollution is emerging as a possible etiological factor in neurodevelopmental (e.g. autism spectrum disorders) and neurodegenerative (e.g. Alzheimer's disease) disorders. The most prominent effects caused by air pollution in both humans and animals are oxidative stress and neuro-inflammation. Studies in mice acutely exposed to DE (250-300μg/m(3) for 6h) have shown microglia activation, increased lipid peroxidation, and neuro-inflammation in various brain regions, particularly the hippocampus and the olfactory bulb. An impairment of adult neurogenesis was also found. In most cases, the effects of DE were more pronounced in male mice, possibly because of lower antioxidant abilities due to lower expression of paraoxonase 2.

  12. Cadmium neurotoxicity to a freshwater planarian.

    PubMed

    Wu, Jui-Pin; Lee, Hui-Ling; Li, Mei-Hui

    2014-11-01

    Although freshwater planarians are evolutionarily primitive, they are some of the simplest bilateral animals possessing integrated neural networks similar to those in vertebrates. We attempted to develop planarian Dugesia japonica as a model for investigating the neurotoxicity of environmental pollutants such as cadmium (Cd). This study was therefore designed to study the effects of Cd on the locomotor activity, neurobehavior, and neurological enzymes of D. japonica. After planarians were exposed to Cd at high concentrations, altered neurobehavior was observed that exhibited concentration-dependent patterns. Morphological alterations in Cd-treated planarians included irregular shape, body elongation, screw-like hyperkinesia, and bridge-like position. To study the direct effects of Cd on neurological enzymes, tissue homogenates of planarians were incubated in vitro with Cd before their activity was measured. Results showed that acetylcholinesterase (AChE), adenosine triphosphatase (ATPase), and monoamine oxidase A (MAO-A) activities were inhibited in a concentration-dependent manner. MAO-B activity was significantly induced by Cd at low concentrations and inhibited at high concentrations. Changes in the in vivo activity of AChE and ATPase were also found after planarians were treated with Cd at a sublethal concentration (5.56 μM). These observations indicate that neurotransmission systems in planarians are disturbed after Cd exposure.

  13. Oxidative and nitrosative stress in ammonia neurotoxicity.

    PubMed

    Skowrońska, Marta; Albrecht, Jan

    2013-04-01

    Increased ammonia accumulation in the brain due to liver dysfunction is a major contributor to the pathogenesis of hepatic encephalopathy (HE). Fatal outcome of rapidly progressing (acute) HE is mainly related to cytotoxic brain edema associated with astrocytic swelling. An increase of brain ammonia in experimental animals or treatment of cultured astrocytes with ammonia generates reactive oxygen and nitrogen species in the target tissues, leading to oxidative/nitrosative stress (ONS). In cultured astrocytes, ammonia-induced ONS is invariably associated with the increase of the astrocytic cell volume. Interrelated mechanisms underlying this response include increased nitric oxide (NO) synthesis which is partly coupled to the activation of NMDA receptors and increased generation of reactive oxygen species by NADPH oxidase. ONS and astrocytic swelling are further augmented by excessive synthesis of glutamine (Gln) which impairs mitochondrial function following its accumulation in there and degradation back to ammonia ("the Trojan horse" hypothesis). Ammonia also induces ONS in other cell types of the CNS: neurons, microglia and the brain capillary endothelial cells (BCEC). ONS in microglia contributes to the central inflammatory response, while its metabolic and pathophysiological consequences in the BCEC evolve to the vasogenic brain edema associated with HE. Ammonia-induced ONS results in the oxidation of mRNA and nitration/nitrosylation of proteins which impact intracellular metabolism and potentiate the neurotoxic effects. Simultaneously, ammonia facilitates the antioxidant response of the brain, by activating astrocytic transport and export of glutathione, in this way increasing the availability of precursors of neuronal glutathione synthesis.

  14. Molecular Mechanisms of Allosteric Inhibition of Brain Glycogen Phosphorylase by Neurotoxic Dithiocarbamate Chemicals.

    PubMed

    Mathieu, Cécile; Bui, Linh-Chi; Petit, Emile; Haddad, Iman; Agbulut, Onnik; Vinh, Joelle; Dupret, Jean-Marie; Rodrigues-Lima, Fernando

    2017-02-03

    Dithiocarbamates (DTCs) are important industrial chemicals used extensively as pesticides and in a variety of therapeutic applications. However, they have also been associated with neurotoxic effects and in particular with the development of Parkinson-like neuropathy. Although different pathways and enzymes (such as ubiquitin ligases or the proteasome) have been identified as potential targets of DTCs in the brain, the molecular mechanisms underlying their neurotoxicity remain poorly understood. There is increasing evidence that alteration of glycogen metabolism in the brain contributes to neurodegenerative processes. Interestingly, recent studies with N,N-diethyldithiocarbamate suggest that brain glycogen phosphorylase (bGP) and glycogen metabolism could be altered by DTCs. Here, we provide molecular and mechanistic evidence that bGP is a target of DTCs. To examine this system, we first tested thiram, a DTC pesticide known to display neurotoxic effects, observing that it can react rapidly with bGP and readily inhibits its glycogenolytic activity (kinact = 1.4 × 10(5) m(-1) s(-1)). Using cysteine chemical labeling, mass spectrometry, and site-directed mutagenesis approaches, we show that thiram (and certain of its metabolites) alters the activity of bGP through the formation of an intramolecular disulfide bond (Cys(318)-Cys(326)), known to act as a redox switch that precludes the allosteric activation of bGP by AMP. Given the key role of glycogen metabolism in brain functions and neurodegeneration, impairment of the glycogenolytic activity of bGP by DTCs such as thiram may be a new mechanism by which certain DTCs exert their neurotoxic effects.

  15. l-Theanine protects against excess dopamine-induced neurotoxicity in the presence of astrocytes

    PubMed Central

    Takeshima, Mika; Miyazaki, Ikuko; Murakami, Shinki; Kita, Taizo; Asanuma, Masato

    2016-01-01

    l-Theanine (γ-glutamylethylamide), a component of green tea, is considered to have regulatory and neuroprotective roles in the brain. The present study was designed to determine the effect of l-theanine on excess dopamine-induced neurotoxicity in both cell culture and animal experiments. The primary cultured mesencephalic neurons or co-cultures of mesencephalic neurons and striatal astrocytes were pretreated with l-theanine for 72 h, and then treated with excess dopamine for further 24 h. The cell viability of dopamine neurons and levels of glutathione were evaluated. Excess dopamine-induced neurotoxicity was significantly attenuated by 72 h preincubation with l-theanine in neuron-astrocyte co-cultures but not in neuron-rich cultures. Exposure to l-theanine increased the levels of glutathione in both astrocytes and glial conditioned medium. The glial conditioned medium from l-theanine-pretreated striatal astrocytes attenuated dopamine-induced neurotoxicity and quinoprotein formation in mesencephalic neurons. In addition, replacement of l-glutamate with l-theanine in an in vitro cell-free glutathione-synthesis system produced glutathione-like thiol compounds. Furthermore, l-theanine administration (4 mg/kg, p.o.) for 14 days significantly increased glutathione levels in the striatum of mice. The results suggest that l-theanine provides neuroprotection against oxidative stress-induced neuronal damage by humoral molecules released from astrocytes, probably including glutathione. PMID:27698535

  16. l-Theanine protects against excess dopamine-induced neurotoxicity in the presence of astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Takeshima, Mika; Miyazaki, Ikuko; Murakami, Shinki; Kita, Taizo; Asanuma, Masato

    2016-09-01

    l-Theanine (γ-glutamylethylamide), a component of green tea, is considered to have regulatory and neuroprotective roles in the brain. The present study was designed to determine the effect of l-theanine on excess dopamine-induced neurotoxicity in both cell culture and animal experiments. The primary cultured mesencephalic neurons or co-cultures of mesencephalic neurons and striatal astrocytes were pretreated with l-theanine for 72 h, and then treated with excess dopamine for further 24 h. The cell viability of dopamine neurons and levels of glutathione were evaluated. Excess dopamine-induced neurotoxicity was significantly attenuated by 72 h preincubation with l-theanine in neuron-astrocyte co-cultures but not in neuron-rich cultures. Exposure to l-theanine increased the levels of glutathione in both astrocytes and glial conditioned medium. The glial conditioned medium from l-theanine-pretreated striatal astrocytes attenuated dopamine-induced neurotoxicity and quinoprotein formation in mesencephalic neurons. In addition, replacement of l-glutamate with l-theanine in an in vitro cell-free glutathione-synthesis system produced glutathione-like thiol compounds. Furthermore, l-theanine administration (4 mg/kg, p.o.) for 14 days significantly increased glutathione levels in the striatum of mice. The results suggest that l-theanine provides neuroprotection against oxidative stress-induced neuronal damage by humoral molecules released from astrocytes, probably including glutathione.

  17. Different neurotropic pathogens elicit neurotoxic CCR9- or neurosupportive CXCR3-expressing microglia.

    PubMed

    Li, He; Gang, Zhou; Yuling, He; Luokun, Xie; Jie, Xiong; Hao, Lei; Li, Wei; Chunsong, Hu; Junyan, Liu; Mingshen, Jiang; Youxin, Jin; Feili, Gong; Boquan, Jin; Jinquan, Tan

    2006-09-15

    What mechanism that determines microglia accomplishing destructive or constructive role in CNS remains nebulous. We report here that intracranial priming and rechallenging with Toxoplasma gondii in mice elicit neurotoxic CCR9+ Irg1+ (immunoresponsive gene 1) microglia, which render resistance to apoptosis and produce a high level of TNF-alpha; priming and rechallenging with lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus elicit neurosupportive CXCR3+ Irg1- microglia, which are sensitive to apoptosis and produce a high level of IL-10 and TGF-beta. Administration of CCR9 and/or Irg1 small interfering RNA alters the frequency and functional profiles of neurotoxic CCR9+ Irg1+ and neurosupportive CXCR3+ Irg1- microglia in vivo. Moreover, by using a series of different neurotropic pathogens, including intracellular parasites, chronic virus, bacteria, toxic substances, and CNS injury to intracranially prime and subsequent rechallenge mice, the bi-directional elicitation of microglia has been confirmed as neurotoxic CCR9+ Irg1+ and neurosupportive CXCR3+ Irg1- cells in these mouse models. These data suggest that there exist two different types of microglia, providing with a novel insight into microglial involvement in neurodegenerative and neuroinflammatory pathogenesis such as Alzheimer's disease and AIDS dementia.

  18. Alpha 7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor-mediated protection against ethanol-induced neurotoxicity.

    PubMed

    de Fiebre, NancyEllen C; de Fiebre, Christopher M

    2003-11-01

    The alpha(7)-selective nicotinic partial agonist 3-[2,4-dimethoxybenzylidene]anabaseine (DMXB) was examined for its ability to modulate ethanol-induced neurotoxicity in primary cultures of rat neurons. Primary cultures of hippocampal neurons were established from Long-Evans, embryonic day (E)-18 rat fetuses and maintained for 7 days. Ethanol (0-150 mM), DMXB (0-56 microM), or both were subsequently co-applied to cultures. Ethanol was added two additional times to the cultures to compensate for evaporation. After 5 days, neuronal viability was assessed with the MTT cell proliferation assay. Results demonstrated that ethanol reduces neuronal viability in a concentration-dependent fashion and that DMXB protects against this ethanol-induced neurotoxicity, also in a concentration-dependent fashion. These results support the suggestion that nicotinic partial agonists may be useful in treating binge drinking-induced neurotoxicity and may provide clues as to why heavy drinkers are usually smokers.

  19. DHEA-neuroprotection and -neurotoxicity after transient cerebral ischemia in rats.

    PubMed

    Li, Zhen; Cui, Shengzhong; Zhang, Zhuo; Zhou, Rong; Ge, Yingbin; Sokabe, Masahiro; Chen, Ling

    2009-02-01

    Dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) has been implicated not only to prevent N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA)-induced neurotoxicity but also to enhance Ca(2+) influx through NMDA receptor (NMDAr). However, these DHEA effects, which would produce inconsistent outcomes about neuronal damages, are not well studied in ischemia-induced cerebral damages. Herein, we report that a single administration of DHEA (20 mg/kg) during 3 to 48 h after transient global cerebral ischemia in rats exerted neuroprotective effects such as reduction of ischemia-induced neuronal death in the hippocampal CA1 and improvement of ischemia-induced deficits in spatial learning. By contrast, at 1 h before or after ischemia, the administration of DHEA exacerbated the ischemia-induced neuronal death and learning impairment. This DHEA neurotoxicity appeared to be caused by DHEA itself, but not through its metabolite testosterone, and was inhibited by a pretreatment with the NMDAr blocker MK801 or the sigma-1 (sigma(1)) receptor antagonist NE100. However, the DHEA neuroprotection was blocked by NE100. These results show that DHEA not only provides robust ischemic neuroprotection with a long therapeutic opportunity but also exerts neurotoxicity when administered during ischemia and early reperfusion, which points to the importance of administration timing of DHEA in the clinical treatment of brain damages by the transient brain ischemia including stroke.

  20. Heat shock treatment reduces beta amyloid toxicity in vivo by diminishing oligomers.

    PubMed

    Wu, Yanjue; Cao, Zhiming; Klein, William L; Luo, Yuan

    2010-06-01

    Heat shock response, mediated by heat shock proteins, is a highly conserved physiological process in multicellular organisms for reestablishment of cellular homeostasis. Expression of heat shock factors and subsequent heat shock protein plays a role in protection against proteotoxicity in invertebrate and vertebrate models. Proteotoxicity due to beta-amyloid peptide (Abeta) oligomerization has been linked to the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease. Previously, we demonstrated that progressive paralysis induced by expression of human Abeta(1-42) in transgenic Caenorhabditis elegans was alleviated by Abeta oligomer inhibitors Ginkgo biloba extract and its constituents [Wu, Y., Wu, Z., Butko, P., Christen, Y., Lambert, M.P., Klein, W.L., Link, C.D., Luo, Y., 2006. Amyloid-beta-induced pathological behaviors are suppressed by Ginkgo biloba extract EGb 761 and ginkgolides in transgenic Caenorhabditis elegans. J. Neurosci. 26(50): 13102-13113]. In this study, we apply a protective heat shock to the transgenic C. elegans and demonstrate: (1) a delay in paralysis, (2) increased expression of small heat shock protein HSP16.2, and (3) significant reduction of Abeta oligomers in a heat shock time-dependent manner. These results suggest that transient heat shock lessens Abeta toxicity by diminishing Abeta oligomerization, which provides a link between up regulation of endogenous chaperone proteins and protection against Abeta proteotoxicity in vivo.

  1. 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.

  2. Oligomer formation in the troposphere: from experimental knowledge to 3-D modeling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lemaire, V.; Coll, I.; Couvidat, F.; Mouchel-Vallon, C.; Seigneur, C.; Siour, G.

    2015-10-01

    The organic fraction of atmospheric aerosols has proven to be a critical element of air quality and climate issues. However, its composition and the aging processes it undergoes remain insufficiently understood. This work builds on laboratory knowledge to simulate the formation of oligomers from biogenic secondary organic aerosol (BSOA) in the troposphere at the continental scale. We compare the results of two different modeling approaches, a 1st-order kinetic process and a pH-dependent parameterization, both implemented in the CHIMERE air quality model (AQM), to simulate the spatial and temporal distribution of oligomerized SOA over western Europe. Our results show that there is a strong dependence of the results on the selected modeling approach: while the irreversible kinetic process leads to the oligomerization of about 50 % of the total BSOA mass, the pH-dependent approach shows a broader range of impacts, with a strong dependency on environmental parameters (pH and nature of aerosol) and the possibility for the process to be reversible. In parallel, we investigated the sensitivity of each modeling approach to the representation of SOA precursor solubility (Henry's law constant values). Finally, the pros and cons of each approach for the representation of SOA aging are discussed and recommendations are provided to improve current representations of oligomer formation in AQMs.

  3. Somatostatin receptor subtype-4 agonist NNC 26-9100 mitigates the effect of soluble Aβ(42) oligomers via a metalloproteinase-dependent mechanism.

    PubMed

    Sandoval, Karin E; Farr, Susan A; Banks, William A; Crider, Albert M; Morley, John E; Witt, Ken A

    2013-07-03

    Soluble amyloid-β peptide (Aβ) oligomers have been hypothesized to be primary mediators of Alzheimer's disease progression. In this regard, reduction of soluble Aβ-oligomers levels within the brain may provide a viable means in which to treat the disease. Somatostatin receptor subtype-4 (SSTR4) agonists have been proposed to reduce Aβ levels in the brain via enhancement of enzymatic degradation. Herein we evaluated the effect of selective SSTR4 agonist NNC 26-9100 on the changes in learning and soluble Aβ42 oligomer brain content with and without co-administration of the M13-metalloproteinase family enzyme-inhibitor phosphoramidon, using the senescence-accelerated mouse prone-8 (SAMP8) model. NNC 26-9100 treatment (0.2 µg i.c.v. in 2 µL) improved learning, which was blocked by phosphoramidon (1 and 10mM, respectively). NNC 26-9100 decreased total soluble Aβ42, an effect which was blocked by phosphoramidon (10mM). Extracellular, intracellular, and membrane fractions were then isolated from cortical tissue and assessed for soluble oligomer alterations. NNC 26-9100 decreased the Aβ42 trimeric (12 kDa) form within the extracellular and intracellular fractions, and produced a band-split effect of the Aβ42 hexameric (25 kDa) form within the extracellular fraction. These effects were also blocked by phosphoramdon (1 and 10mM, respectively). Subsequent evaluation of NNC 26-9100 in APPswe Tg2576 transgenic mice showed a similar learning improvement and corresponding reduction in soluble Aβ42 oligomers within extracellular, intracellular, and membrane fractions. These data support the hypothesis that NNC 26-9100 reduces soluble Aβ42 oligomers and enhances learning through a phosphoramidon-sensitive metalloproteinase-dependent mechanism.

  4. Ethynyl-Terminated Ester Oligomers and Polymers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hergenrother, P. M.; Havens, S. J.

    1985-01-01

    Polyesters of various molecular weights terminated with ethynyl groups. As ethynyl-terminated polyesters are exposed to elevated temperatures, thermally induced reaction of ethynyl groups occurs to provide cross-linking and chain extension. Reaction raises use temperature of polymer and greatly improves resistance to solvents. New materials produced by this process potentially useful as adhesives, composite matrices, solvent-resistant coatings, membranes, and films.

  5. Synthesis and Optoelectronic Characterization of Some Star-Shaped Oligomers with Benzene and Triphenylamine Cores

    PubMed Central

    Ivan, Teofilia; Vacareanu, Loredana; Grigoras, Mircea

    2012-01-01

    Six star-shaped oligomers containing triphenylamine (D1–D3) and benzene unit (D4–D6) as cores have been synthesized by Wittig condensation or Heck coupling reaction using aromatic aldehydes and triphenylphosphonium salts or aromatic halogenated compounds with vinyl triphenylamine. All oligomers have well-defined molecular structure and high purity. Characterization of the oligomers was made by FT-IR, 1H-NMR spectroscopy, UV-Vis, and fluorescence spectroscopy. The electrochemical behavior was studied by cyclic voltammetry (CV). The cyclic voltammograms have revealed that oligomers undergo quasireversible or irreversible redox processes. The irreversible process is associated with electrochemical polymerization of oligomers by dimerization of unsubstituted triphenylamine groups. Thermal characterization was accomplished by TGA and DSC methods and evidenced that all oligomers were stable materials until 250°C and have formed stable molecular glasses after first heating scan. PMID:24052859

  6. Radiative decay of excitons in model aggregates of {pi}-conjugated oligomers

    SciTech Connect

    Manas, E.S.; Spano, F.C.

    1998-07-01

    Spontaneous emission from exciton states in an aggregate of {pi}-conjugated oligomers is studied theoretically. Each oligomer is taken as a ring of N carbon atoms and is treated using a PPP Hamiltonian. Coulombic interactions between rings are treated to first order. The radiative decay rate {gamma} from an exciton state in an aggregate of M aligned oligomers is superradiant, being M times faster than the decay rate of an isolated oligomer exciton. Inter-oligomer interactions have little effect on the exciton size and energy when the oligomer size N is large compared to the interoligomer spacing. However, when N is small, both the exciton size and energy are strongly affected by these interactions, leading to a markedly different N dependence for {gamma}.

  7. Neurotoxicity from prenatal and postnatal exposure to methylmercury

    PubMed Central

    Grandjean, Philippe; Weihe, Pal; Debes, Frodi; Choi, Anna L.; Budtz-Jørgensen, Esben

    2014-01-01

    The extent to which postnatal methylmercury exposure contributes to neurobehavioral delays is uncertain. Confounding may occur because the child's dietary exposure likely correlates with the mother's. This conundrum was examined in the Faroese birth cohort 1 born in 1986–1987. Exposure parameters included mercury concentrations in maternal hair at parturition, cord blood, and child blood and hair at the age-7 clinical examination (N = 923). In regression analyses, the child's current blood-mercury at age 7 (N = 694) showed only weak associations with the neuropsychological test variables, but visuospatial memory revealed a significant negative association. Mutual adjustment caused decreases of the apparent effect of the prenatal exposure. However, such adjustment may lead to underestimations due to the presence of correlated, error-prone exposure variables. In structural equation models, all methylmercury exposure parameters were instead entered into a latent exposure variable that reflected the total methylmercury load. This latent exposure showed significant associations with neurodevelopmental deficits, with prenatal exposure providing the main information. However, postnatal methylmercury exposure appeared to contribute to neurotoxic effects, in particular in regard to visuospatial processing and memory. Thus, addition in the regression analysis of exposure information obtained at a different point in time was not informative and should be avoided. Further studies with better information on exposure profiles are needed to characterize the effects of postnatal methylmercury exposure. PMID:24681285

  8. Ion channels induced by the prion protein: mediators of neurotoxicity.

    PubMed

    Solomon, Isaac H; Biasini, Emiliano; Harris, David A

    2012-01-01

    Prion diseases comprise a group of rapidly progressive and invariably fatal neurodegenerative disorders for which there are no effective treatments. While conversion of the cellular prion protein (PrP(C)) to a β-sheet rich isoform (PrP(Sc) ) is known to be a critical event in propagation of infectious prions, the identity of the neurotoxic form of PrP and its mechanism of action remain unclear. Insights into this mechanism have been provided by studying PrP molecules harboring deletions and point mutations in the conserved central region, encompassing residues 105-125. When expressed in transgenic mice, PrP deleted for these residues (Δ105-125) causes a spontaneous neurodegenerative illness that is reversed by co-expression of wild-type PrP. In cultured cells, Δ105-125 PrP confers hypersensitivity to certain cationic antibiotics and induces spontaneous ion channel activity that can be recorded by electrophysiological techniques. We have utilized these drug-hypersensitization and current-inducing activities to identify which PrP domains and subcellular locations are required for toxicity. We present an ion channel model for the toxicity of Δ105-125 PrP and related mutants and speculate how a similar mechanism could mediate PrP(Sc)-associated toxicity. Therapeutic regimens designed to inhibit prion-induced toxicity, as well as formation of PrP(Sc) , may prove to be the most clinically beneficial.

  9. Gap Junction Intercellular Communication Mediates Ammonia-Induced Neurotoxicity.

    PubMed

    Bobermin, Larissa Daniele; Arús, Bernardo Assein; Leite, Marina Concli; Souza, Diogo Onofre; Gonçalves, Carlos-Alberto; Quincozes-Santos, André

    2016-02-01

    Astrocytes are important brain targets of ammonia, a neurotoxin implicated in the development of hepatic encephalopathy. During hyperammonemia, the pivotal role of astrocytes in brain function and homeostasis is impaired. These cells are abundantly interconnected by gap junctions (GJ), which are intercellular channels that allow the exchange of signaling molecules and metabolites. This communication may also increase cellular vulnerability during injuries, while GJ uncoupling could limit the extension of a lesion. Therefore, the current study was performed to investigate whether astrocyte coupling through GJ contributes to ammonia-induced cytotoxicity. We found that carbenoxolone (CBX), an effective GJ blocker, prevented the following effects induced by ammonia in astrocyte primary cultures: (1) decrease in cell viability and membrane integrity; (2) increase in reactive oxygen species production; (3) decrease in GSH intracellular levels; (4) GS activity; (5) pro-inflammatory cytokine release. On the other hand, CBX had no effect on C6 astroglial cells, which are poorly coupled via GJ. To our knowledge, this study provides the first evidence that GJ play a role in ammonia-induced cytotoxicity. Although more studies in vivo are required to confirm our hypothesis, our data suggest that GJ communication between astrocytes may transmit damage signals and excitotoxic components from unhealthy to normal cells, thereby contributing to the propagation of the neurotoxicity of ammonia.

  10. Is Neurotoxicity of Metallic Nanoparticles the Cascades of Oxidative Stress?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Song, Bin; Zhang, YanLi; Liu, Jia; Feng, XiaoLi; Zhou, Ting; Shao, LongQuan

    2016-06-01

    With the rapid development of nanotechnology, metallic (metal or metal oxide) nanoparticles (NPs) are widely used in many fields such as cosmetics, the food and building industries, and bio-medical instruments. Widespread applications of metallic NP-based products increase the health risk associated with human exposures. Studies revealed that the brain, a critical organ that consumes substantial amounts of oxygen, is a primary target of metallic NPs once they are absorbed into the body. Oxidative stress (OS), apoptosis, and the inflammatory response are believed to be the main mechanisms underlying the neurotoxicity of metallic NPs. Other studies have disclosed that antioxidant pretreatment or co-treatment can reverse the neurotoxicity of metallic NPs by decreasing the level of reactive oxygen species, up-regulating the activities of antioxidant enzymes, decreasing the proportion of apoptotic cells, and suppressing the inflammatory response. These findings suggest that the neurotoxicity of metallic NPs might involve a cascade of events following NP-induced OS. However, additional research is needed to determine whether NP-induced OS plays a central role in the neurotoxicity of metallic NPs, to develop a comprehensive understanding of the correlations among neurotoxic mechanisms and to improve the bio-safety of metallic NP-based products.

  11. A Geometric Arrangement Algorithm for Structure Determination of Symmetric Protein Homo-oligomers from NOEs and RDCs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martin, Jeffrey W.; Yan, Anthony K.; Bailey-Kellogg, Chris; Zhou, Pei; Donald, Bruce R.

    Nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy is a primary tool to perform structural studies of proteins in the physiologically-relevant solution-state. Restraints on distances between pairs of nuclei in the protein, derived from the nuclear Overhauser effect (NOE) for example, provide information about the structure of the protein in its folded state. NMR studies of symmetric protein homo-oligomers present a unique challenge. Current techniques can determine whether an NOE restrains a pair of protons across different subunits or within a single subunit, but are unable to determine in which subunits the restrained protons lie. Consequently, it is difficult to assign NOEs to particular pairs of subunits with certainty, thus hindering the structural analysis of the oligomeric state. Hence, computational approaches are needed to address this subunit ambiguity. We reduce the structure determination of protein homo-oligomers with cyclic symmetry to computing geometric arrangements of unions of annuli in a plane. Our algorithm, disco, runs in expected O(n 2) time, where n is the number of distance restraints, and is guaranteed to report the exact set of oligomer structures consistent with ambiguously-assigned inter-subunit distance restraints and orientational restraints from residual dipolar couplings (RDCs). Since the symmetry axis of an oligomeric complex must be parallel to an eigenvector of the alignment tensor of RDCs, we can represent each distance restraint as a union of annuli in a plane encoding the configuration space of the symmetry axis. Oligomeric protein structures with the best restraint satisfaction correspond to faces of the arrangement contained in the greatest number of unions of annuli. We demonstrate our method using two symmetric protein complexes: the trimeric E. coli Diacylglycerol Kinase (DAGK), whose distance restraints possess at least two possible subunit assignments each; and a dimeric mutant of the immunoglobulin-binding domain B1 of

  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.

  13. Amino siloxane oligomer-linked graphene oxide as an efficient adsorbent for removal of Pb(II) from wastewater.

    PubMed

    Luo, Shenglian; Xu, Xiangli; Zhou, Guiyin; Liu, Chengbin; Tang, Yanhong; Liu, Yutang

    2014-06-15

    A high performance sorbent, oligomer-linked graphene oxide (GO) composite, was prepared through simple cross-linking reactions between GO sheets and poly3-aminopropyltriethoxysilane (PAS) oligomers as crosslinking agents. The three-dimensional PAS oligomers prevented GO sheets from aggregation, provided foreign molecules with easier access, and introduced a large amount of amino functional groups. The morphology, structure and property of the PAS-GO composite were determined by scanning electron microscope (SEM), transmission electron microscope (TEM), Fourie transform infrared (FTIR), X-ray diffractometer (XRD), thermogravimetric analysis (TGA) and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS). The adsorption performance of PAS-GO was investigated in removing Pb(II) ions from water. Compared to 3-aminopropyltriethoxysilane functionalized GO (AS-GO) which was prepared by the direct reaction between 3-aminopropyltriethoxysilane and GO, PAS-GO exhibited much higher adsorptivity toward Pb(II) with the maximum adsorption capacity of 312.5mg/g at 303 K and furthermore the maximum adsorption capacity increased with increasing temperature. The adsorption could be conducted in a wide pH range of 4.0-7.0. Importantly, PAS-GO had a priority tendency to adsorb Pb, Cu and Fe from a mixed solution of metal ions, especially from a practical industrial effluent.

  14. Concentrations of antibodies against β-amyloid 40/42 monomer and oligomers in Chinese intravenous immunoglobulins.

    PubMed

    Ye, Shengliang; Zeng, Renyong; Jiang, Peng; Hou, Mingxia; Liu, Fengjuan; Wang, Zongkui; Du, Xi; Yuan, Jing; Chen, Yunhua; Cao, Haijun; Ma, Li; Li, Changqing

    2017-02-17

    Intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIg) preparations are being investigated as a potential agent for treatment or prevention of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Antibodies towards soluble β-amyloid (Aβ) contained in IVIg were considered to be the major component contributing to the beneficial effect of the preparations in pilot studies. This study compared the antibody concentrations against Aβ in Octagam(®) IVIg (Octapharma) and 9 IVIg preparations from different Chinese manufacturers by ELISA, using Aβ40 monomer, Aβ40 soluble oligomers, Aβ42 monomer and Aβ42 soluble oligomers as the antigens. The results showed that each preparation contained different antibody levels against the four Aβ forms. The median values of the four antibody concentrations in Chinese IVIg preparations were 16.53, 8.47, 24.36 and 33.25μg/mL, which were remarkably higher than that in Octagam(®) IVIg (1.66, 2.07, 4.61 and 4.64μg/mL). Moreover, the anti-Aβ42 oligomer antibody levels in almost all IVIg preparations were higher than the anti-Aβ42 monomer antibody, and the concentrations of anti-Aβ42 antibodies in most of the IVIg preparations were significantly higher than that of anti-Aβ40 antibodies. These findings will contribute to an increased understanding of the uniqueness of Chinese IVIg preparations, and could provide support for a trial of a Chinese IVIg product in AD patients.

  15. 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

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. Mitochondrial dysfunction associated with nitric oxide pathways in glutamate neurotoxicity.

    PubMed

    Manucha, Walter

    Multiple mechanisms underlying glutamate-induced neurotoxicity have recently been discussed. Likewise, a clear deregulation of the mitochondrial respiratory mechanism has been described in patients with neurodegeneration, oxidative stress, and inflammation. This article highlights nitric oxide, an atypical neurotransmitter synthesized and released on demand by the post-synaptic neurons, and has many important implications for nerve cell survival and differentiation. Consequently, synaptogenesis, synapse elimination, and neurotransmitter release, are nitric oxide-modulated. Interesting, an emergent role of nitric oxide pathways has been discussed as regards neurotoxicity from glutamate-induced apoptosis. These findings suggest that nitric oxide pathways modulation could prevent oxidative damage to neurons through apoptosis inhibition. This review aims to highlight the emergent aspects of nitric oxide-mediated signaling in the brain, and how they can be related to neurotoxicity, as well as the development of neurodegenerative diseases development.

  19. Manganese-induced Neurotoxicity: From C. elegans to Humans

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Pan; Chakraborty, Sudipta; Peres, Tanara V.; Bowman, Aaron B.; Aschner, Michael

    2014-01-01

    Manganese (Mn) is one of the most abundant metals on the earth. It is required for normal cellular activities, but overexposure leads to toxicity. Neurons are more susceptible to Mn-induced toxicity than other cells, and accumulation of Mn in the brain results in Manganism that presents with Parkinson's disease (PD)-like symptoms. In the last decade, a number of Mn transporters have been identified, which improves our understanding of Mn transport in and out of cells. However, the mechanism of Mn-induced neurotoxicity is only partially uncovered, with further research needed to explore the whole picture of Mn-induced toxicity. In this review, we will address recent progress in Mn-induced neurotoxicity from C. elegans to humans, and explore future directions that will help understand the mechanisms of its neurotoxicity. PMID:25893090

  20. Predicting developmental neurotoxicity in rodents from larval zebrafish - - and vice versa

    EPA Science Inventory

    The complexity of standard mammalian developmental neurotoxicity tests limits evaluation of large numbers of chemicals. Less complex, more rapid assays using larval zebrafish are gaining popularity for evaluating the developmental neurotoxicity of chemicals; there remains, howeve...

  1. A screening approach using zebrafish for the detection and characterization of developmental neurotoxicity.

    EPA Science Inventory

    Thousands of chemicals have little or no data to support developmental neurotoxicity risk assessments. Current developmental neurotoxicity guideline studies mandating mammalian model systems are expensive and time consuming. Therefore a rapid, cost-effective method to assess de...

  2. 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

  3. Special Issue: Environmental Chemicals and Neurotoxicity Oxidative stress in MeHg-induced neurotoxicity

    PubMed Central

    Farina, Marcelo; Aschner, Michael; Rocha, João B. T.

    2011-01-01

    Methylmercury (MeHg) is an environmental toxicant that leads to long-lasting neurological and developmental deficits in animals and humans. Although the molecular mechanisms mediating MeHg-induced neurotoxicity are not completely understood, several lines of evidence indicate that oxidative stress represents a critical event related to the neurotoxic effects elicited by this toxicant. The objective of this review is to summarize and discuss data from experimental and epidemiological studies that have been important in clarifying the molecular events which mediate MeHg-induced oxidative damage and, consequently, toxicity. Although unanswered questions remain, the electrophilic properties of MeHg and its ability to oxidize thiols have been reported to play decisive roles to the oxidative consequences observed after MeHg exposure. However, a close examination of the relationship between low levels of MeHg necessary to induce oxidative stress and the high amounts of sulfhydryl-containing antioxidants in mammalian cells (e.g., glutathione) have led to the hypothesis that nucleophilic groups with extremely high affinities for MeHg (e.g., selenols) might represent primary targets in MeHg-induced oxidative stress. Indeed, the inhibition of antioxidant selenoproteins during MeHg poisoning in experimental animals has corroborated this hypothesis. The levels of different reactive species (superoxide anion, hydrogen peroxide and nitric oxide) have been reported to be increased in MeHg-exposed systems, and the mechanisms concerning these increments seem to involve a complex sequence of cascading molecular events, such as mitochondrial dysfunction, excitotoxicity, intracellular calcium dyshomeostasis and decreased antioxidant capacity. This review also discusses potential therapeutic strategies to counteract MeHg-induced toxicity and oxidative stress, emphasizing the use of organic selenocompounds, which generally present higher affinity for MeHg when compared to the classically

  4. P-Glycoprotein Transport of Neurotoxic Pesticides.

    PubMed

    Lacher, Sarah E; Skagen, Kasse; Veit, Joachim; Dalton, Rachel; Woodahl, Erica L

    2015-10-01

    P-glycoprotein (P-gp) has been associated with a number of neurodegenerative diseases, including Parkinson's disease, although the mechanisms remain unclear. Altered transport of neurotoxic pesticides has been proposed in Parkinson's disease, but it is unknown whether these pesticides are P-gp substrates. We used three in vitro transport models, stimulation of ATPase activity, xenobiotic-induced cytotoxicity, and inhibition of rhodamine-123 efflux, to evaluate P-gp transport of diazinon, dieldrin, endosulfan, ivermectin, maneb, 1-methyl-4-phenyl-4-phenylpyridinium ion (MPP(+)), and rotenone. Diazinon and rotenone stimulated ATPase activity in P-gp-expressing membranes, with Vmax values of 22.4 ± 2.1 and 16.8 ± 1.0 nmol inorganic phosphate/min per mg protein, respectively, and Km values of 9.72 ± 3.91 and 1.62 ± 0.51 µM, respectively, compared with the P-gp substrate verapamil, with a Vmax of 20.8 ± 0.7 nmol inorganic phosphate/min per mg protein and Km of 0.871 ± 0.172 μM. None of the other pesticides stimulated ATPase activity. We observed an increased resistance to MPP(+) and rotenone in LLC-MDR1-WT cells compared with LLC-vector cells, with 15.4- and 2.2-fold increases in EC50 values, respectively. The resistance was reversed in the presence of the P-gp inhibitor verapamil. None of the other pesticides displayed differential cytotoxicity. Ivermectin was the only pesticide to inhibit P-gp transport of rhodamine-123, with an IC50 of 0.249 ± 0.048 μM. Our data demonstrate that dieldrin, endosulfan, and maneb are not P-gp substrates or inhibitors. We identified diazinon, MPP(+), and rotenone as P-gp substrates, although further investigation is needed to understand the role of P-gp transport in their disposition in vivo and associations with Parkinson's disease.

  5. [Neurotoxicity of 1-bromopropane in rats].

    PubMed

    Ohnishi, A; Ishidao, T; Kasai, T; Arashidani, K; Hori, H

    1999-03-01

    Neurotoxicity of 1-bromopropane (1-BP) used as an alternative solvent of fluorocarbons was experimentally studied. Eight rats in the experimental group were exposed to 1-BP at 1500 ppm for six hours a day, five days a week for four weeks in an exposure chamber. Another eight rats in the control group were exposed to room air in a similar exposure chamber as those in the experimental group. During the latter half of the fourth week of exposure, all the rats in the experimental group showed a loss of body weight and ataxic gait compared with control rats. At the end of the fourth week, the rats in both groups were perfused through the ascending aorta and fixed. The cerebellum, medulla oblongata, spinal cord and peripheral nerve were processed for histopathological studies. No statistically significant difference in the frequency of axonal degeneration in both peroneal and sural nerves was found between the experimental and control groups. In the cerebellum, the frequency of degeneration of Purkinje cells in both the vermis and hemisphere was higher in the experimental group than in the control group (P < 0.05). There was no significant difference in the frequency of myelin ovoids in the fifth thoracic and in the third cervical posterior columns of the spinal cord between control and experimental groups. There was also no significant difference in the frequency of axonal swelling in the nucleus gracilis of the medulla oblongata between control and experimental groups. Ataxic gait was considered to be induced by degeneration of Purkinje cells in the cerebellum due to 1-BP exposure. However, degenerative findings of nerve fibers in the peripheral nerve, spinal posterior column and nucleus gracilis of the medulla oblongata due to 1-BP exposure were not evident. At the end of the fourth week of exposure, rats in the experimental group showed loss of body weight and markedly decreased motor activities, and it was considered that they would die if we continued the exposure

  6. Phantom limb pain as a manifestation of paclitaxel neurotoxicity.

    PubMed

    Khattab, J; Terebelo, H R; Dabas, B

    2000-07-01

    Paclitaxel is a chemotherapeutic agent with activity directed against several malignancies. It has multiple adverse effects including neurotoxicity. We describe 2 patients with prior amputation who experienced phantom limb pain (PLP) after receiving paclitaxel therapy. A third patient experienced disabling neurotoxicity in the extremity of a prior ulnar nerve and tendon transposition after receiving paclitaxel. This unique syndrome should be identified as a direct causal effect of paclitaxel. In this report, we review the pathophysiology of PLP and treatment options. Physicians should be aware that PLP can occur after initiation of paclitaxel.

  7. Cancer Treatment-Induced Neurotoxicity: A Focus on Newer Treatments

    PubMed Central

    Stone, Jacqueline B.; DeAngelis, Lisa M.

    2016-01-01

    Neurotoxicity from traditional chemotherapy and radiotherapy is widely recognized. The adverse effects of newer therapeutics such as biological and immunotherapeutic agents are less familiar and they are also associated with significant neurotoxicity in the central and peripheral nervous systems. This review addresses the main toxicities of cancer treatment by symptom with a focus on the newer therapeutics. Recognition of these patterns of toxicity is important as drug discontinuation or dose adjustment may prevent further neurologic injury. Also, knowledge of these toxicities helps to differentiate treatment-related symptoms from progression of cancer or its involvement of the nervous system. PMID:26391778

  8. Aromatic small molecules remodel toxic soluble oligomers of amyloid beta through three independent pathways.

    PubMed

    Ladiwala, Ali Reza A; Dordick, Jonathan S; Tessier, Peter M

    2011-02-04

    In protein conformational disorders ranging from Alzheimer to Parkinson disease, proteins of unrelated sequence misfold into a similar array of aggregated conformers ranging from small oligomers to large amyloid fibrils. Substantial evidence suggests that small, prefibrillar oligomers are the most toxic species, yet to what extent they can be selectively targeted and remodeled into non-toxic conformers using small molecules is poorly understood. We have evaluated the conformational specificity and remodeling pathways of a diverse panel of aromatic small molecules against mature soluble oligomers of the Aβ42 peptide associated with Alzheimer disease. We find that small molecule antagonists can be grouped into three classes, which we herein define as Class I, II, and III molecules, based on the distinct pathways they utilize to remodel soluble oligomers into multiple conformers with reduced toxicity. Class I molecules remodel soluble oligomers into large, off-pathway aggregates that are non-toxic. Moreover, Class IA molecules also remodel amyloid fibrils into the same off-pathway structures, whereas Class IB molecules fail to remodel fibrils but accelerate aggregation of freshly disaggregated Aβ. In contrast, a Class II molecule converts soluble Aβ oligomers into fibrils, but is inactive against disaggregated and fibrillar Aβ. Class III molecules disassemble soluble oligomers (as well as fibrils) into low molecular weight species that are non-toxic. Strikingly, Aβ non-toxic oligomers (which are morphologically indistinguishable from toxic soluble oligomers) are significantly more resistant to being remodeled than Aβ soluble oligomers or amyloid fibrils. Our findings reveal that relatively subtle differences in small molecule structure encipher surprisingly large differences in the pathways they employ to remodel Aβ soluble oligomers and related aggregated conformers.

  9. A novel in vitro metabolomics approach for neurotoxicity testing, proof of principle for methyl mercury chloride and caffeine.

    PubMed

    van Vliet, Erwin; Morath, Siegfried; Eskes, Chantra; Linge, Jens; Rappsilber, Juri; Honegger, Paul; Hartung, Thomas; Coecke, Sandra

    2008-01-01

    There is a need for more efficient methods giving insight into the complex mechanisms of neurotoxicity. Testing strategies including in vitro methods have been proposed to comply with this requirement. With the present study we aimed to develop a novel in vitro approach which mimics in vivo complexity, detects neurotoxicity comprehensively, and provides mechanistic insight. For this purpose we combined rat primary re-aggregating brain cell cultures with a mass spectrometry (MS)-based metabolomics approach. For the proof of principle we treated developing re-aggregating brain cell cultures for 48 h with the neurotoxicant methyl mercury chloride (0.1-100 microM) and the brain stimulant caffeine (1-100 microM) and acquired cellular metabolic profiles. To detect toxicant-induced metabolic alterations the profiles were analysed using commercial software which revealed patterns in the multi-parametric dataset by principal component analyses (PCA), and recognised the most significantly altered metabolites. PCA revealed concentration-dependent cluster formations for methyl mercury chloride (0.1-1 microM), and treatment-dependent cluster formations for caffeine (1-100 microM) at sub-cytotoxic concentrations. Four relevant metabolites responsible for the concentration-dependent alterations following methyl mercury chloride treatment could be identified using MS-MS fragmentation analysis. These were gamma-aminobutyric acid, choline, glutamine, creatine and spermine. Their respective mass ion intensities demonstrated metabolic alterations in line with the literature and suggest that the metabolites could be biomarkers for mechanisms of neurotoxicity or neuroprotection. In addition, we evaluated whether the approach could identify neurotoxic potential by testing eight compounds which have target organ toxicity in the liver, kidney or brain at sub-cytotoxic concentrations. PCA revealed cluster formations largely dependent on target organ toxicity indicating possible potential

  10. Translational Biomarkers of Neurotoxicity: A Health and Environmental Sciences Institute Perspective on The Way Forward

    EPA Science Inventory

    Neurotoxicity has been linked to a number of common drugs and chemicals, yet efficient and accurate methods to detect it are lacking. There is a need for more sensitive and specific biomarkers of neurotoxicity that can help diagnose and predict neurotoxicity that are relevant acr...

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  13. Broadband terahertz dynamics of propylene glycol monomer and oligomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koda, Shota; Mori, Tatsuya; Kojima, Seiji

    2016-12-01

    We investigated the broadband terahertz spectra (0.1-5.0 THz) of glass-forming liquids, propylene glycol (PG), its oligomers poly (propylene glycol)s (PPGs), and poly (propylene glycol) diglycidyl ether (PPG-de) using broadband terahertz time-domain spectroscopy and low-frequency Raman scattering. The numerical value of the dielectric loss at around 1.5 THz, which is the peak position of broad peaks in all samples, decreased as the molecular weight increased. Furthermore, the peak at around 1.5 THz is insensitive to the molecular weight. For PPGs, the side chain effect of the oligomer was observed in the terahertz region. Based on the experimental and calculation results for the PPGs and PPG-de, whose end groups are epoxy groups, the beginnings of the increases in the observed dielectric loss above 3.5 THz of the PPGs are assigned to the OH bending vibration. The higher value of the dielectric loss in the terahertz region for the PPG-de can be the tail of a broad peak located in the MHz region. The difference between the Raman susceptibility and dielectric loss reflects the difference in the observable molecular dynamics between the infrared and Raman spectroscopies.

  14. 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.

  15. Charge transfer interactions in oligomer coated gold nanoclusters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Newmai, M. Boazbou; Kumar, Pandian Senthil

    2016-05-01

    Gold nanoclusters were synthesized by a bottom-up synergistic approach of in-situ oligomerization of the monomer, N-vinyl pyrrolidone (NVP) and simultaneous weak reduction of Au-NVP complexes in the absence of any other external energy sources, thereby making these tiny gold clusters as the most elemental building blocks to construct further novel nano/microstructures with application potentials. It is well-known that metal clusters with less than 2 nm size do not show the usual surface plasmon band, because of the presence of a band-gap at the fermi level. Nevertheless, our present oligomer coated gold clusters show a discrete intense band at around 630 nm, which could very well be attributed to the charge transfer between the oligomer chain and the surface Au atoms. Such kind of sacrificial plasmon induced charge transfer interaction, observed for the very first time to the best of our knowledge, were also strongly corroborated through the enhancement / shifting of specific vibrational / rotational peaks as observed from the FTIR and Raman measurements as a function of the metal oxidation states, thus representing a new prototype for an efficient solar energy conversion probe.

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

    PubMed

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

    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 Aβ9-40, resulting from two atomistic molecular dynamics simulations in explicit solvent, each of 200 ns, starting from two distinct structures.

  17. 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.

  18. Low molecular weight oligomers of amyloid peptides display beta-barrel conformations: a replica exchange molecular dynamics study in explicit solvent.

    PubMed

    De Simone, Alfonso; Derreumaux, Philippe

    2010-04-28

    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 micros show that low molecular weight oligomers in explicit solvent consist of beta-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 beta-barrel assemblies in the early aggregation steps of amyloid-forming systems. Our findings are discussed in terms of oligomers cytotoxicity.

  19. Enhancement of β-amyloid oligomer accumulation after intracerebroventricular injection of streptozotocin, which involves central insulin signaling in a transgenic mouse model.

    PubMed

    Lin, Fangju; Jia, Jianping; Qin, Wei

    2014-11-12

    The β-amyloid (Aβ) oligomer rather than fibrillar Aβ has become the important focus of recent studies on the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Insulin signaling plays important roles in cognitive disease, such as AD. However, in-vivo evidence for the link between central insulin signaling and the Aβ oligomer are lacking, and the mechanisms underlying the effect of central insulin signaling on AD are still elusive. Our team has established the Presenilin-1 Val97Leu mutant transgenic (PS1V97L) AD mouse model with the intraneuronal Aβ oligomer as the potential initiator for other pathologies, but without extracellular amyloid plaque formation. Using this model, we investigated the roles of disturbed central insulin signaling induced by intracerebroventricular injection of streptozotocin (STZ) in the progression of AD. We observed that PS1V97L mice after intracerebroventricular injection of STZ showed increased Aβ oligomer accumulation and aggravated spatial learning and memory deficit in the absence of diabetes symptoms. Furthermore, STZ administration inhibited the activation of the insulin receptor and enhanced the activation of c-Jun NH2-terminal kinase, which was accompanied by increased production of carboxy-terminal fragments from the amyloid precursor protein, in the brain of PS1V97L mice. Overall, our study provided in-vivo evidence for a role of central insulin signaling in AD progression.

  20. Sedimentation studies on human amylin fail to detect low-molecular-weight oligomers.

    PubMed

    Vaiana, Sara M; Ghirlando, Rodolfo; Yau, Wai-Ming; Eaton, William A; Hofrichter, James

    2008-04-01

    Sedimentation velocity experiments show that only monomers coexist with amyloid fibrils of human islet amyloid-polypeptide. No oligomers containing <100 monomers could be detected, suggesting that the putative toxic oligomers are much larger than those found for the Alzheimer's peptide, Abeta(1-42).

  1. Heat Resistant Characteristics of Major Royal Jelly Protein 1 (MRJP1) Oligomer.

    PubMed

    Moriyama, Takanori; Ito, Aimi; Omote, Sumire; Miura, Yuri; Tsumoto, Hiroki

    2015-01-01

    Soluble royal jelly protein is a candidate factor responsible for mammiferous cell proliferation. Major royal jelly protein 1 (MRJP1), which consists of oligomeric and monomeric forms, is an abundant proliferative protein in royal jelly. We previously reported that MRJP1 oligomer has biochemical heat resistance. Therefore, in the present study, we investigated the effects of several heat treatments (56, 65 and 96°C) on the proliferative activity of MRJP1 oligomer. Heat resistance studies showed that the oligomer molecular forms were slightly maintained until 56℃, but the molecular forms were converted to macromolecular heat-aggregated MRJP1 oligomer at 65℃ and 96℃. But, the growth activity of MRJP1 oligomer treated with 96°C was slightly attenuated when compared to unheated MRJP1 oligomer. On the other hand, the cell proliferation activity was preserved until 96℃ by the cell culture analysis of Jurkat cells. In contrast, those of IEC-6 cells were not preserved even at 56°C. The present observations suggest that the bioactive heat-resistance properties were different by the origin of the cells. The cell proliferation analysis showed that MRJP1 oligomer, but not MRJP2 and MRJP3, significantly increased cell numbers, suggesting that MRJP1 oligomer is the predominant proliferation factor for mammiferous cells.

  2. Amyloid-beta oligomers increase the localization of prion protein at the cell surface.

    PubMed

    Caetano, Fabiana A; Beraldo, Flavio H; Hajj, Glaucia N M; Guimaraes, Andre L; Jürgensen, Sofia; Wasilewska-Sampaio, Ana Paula; Hirata, Pedro H F; Souza, Ivana; Machado, Cleiton F; Wong, Daisy Y-L; De Felice, Fernanda G; Ferreira, Sergio T; Prado, Vania F; Rylett, R Jane; Martins, Vilma R; Prado, Marco A M

    2011-05-01

    In Alzheimer's disease, the amyloid-β peptide (Aβ) interacts with distinct proteins at the cell surface to interfere with synaptic communication. Recent data have implicated the prion protein (PrP(C)) as a putative receptor for Aβ. We show here that Aβ oligomers signal in cells in a PrP(C)-dependent manner, as might be expected if Aβ oligomers use PrP(C) as a receptor. Immunofluorescence, flow cytometry and cell surface protein biotinylation experiments indicated that treatment with Aβ oligomers, but not monomers, increased the localization of PrP(C) at the cell surface in cell lines. These results were reproduced in hippocampal neuronal cultures by labeling cell surface PrP(C). In order to understand possible mechanisms involved with this effect of Aβ oligomers, we used live cell confocal and total internal reflection microscopy in cell lines. Aβ oligomers inhibited the constitutive endocytosis of PrP(C), but we also found that after Aβ oligomer-treatment PrP(C) formed more clusters at the cell surface, suggesting the possibility of multiple effects of Aβ oligomers. Our experiments show for the first time that Aβ oligomers signal in a PrP(C)-dependent way and that they can affect PrP(C) trafficking, increasing its localization at the cell surface.

  3. Wnt-5a occludes Aβ oligomer-induced depression of glutamatergic transmission in hippocampal neurons

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Soluble amyloid-β (Aβ;) oligomers have been recognized to be early and key intermediates in Alzheimer's disease (AD)-related synaptic dysfunction. Aβ oligomers block hippocampal long-term potentiation (LTP) and impair rodent spatial memory. Wnt signaling plays an important role in neural development, including synaptic differentiation. Results We report here that the Wnt signaling activation prevents the synaptic damage triggered by Aβ oligomers. Electrophysiological analysis of Schaffer collaterals-CA1 glutamatergic synaptic transmission in hippocampal slices indicates that Wnt-5a increases the amplitude of field excitatory postsynaptic potentials (fEPSP) and both AMPA and NMDA components of the excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs), without modifying the paired pulse facilitation (PPF). Conversely, in the presence of Aβ oligomers the fEPSP and EPSCs amplitude decreased without modification of the PPF, while the postsynaptic scaffold protein (PSD-95) decreased as well. Co-perfusion of hippocampal slices with Wnt-5a and Aβ oligomers occludes against the synaptic depression of EPSCs as well as the reduction of PSD-95 clusters induced by Aβ oligomers in neuronal cultures. Taken together these results indicate that Wnt-5a and Aβ oligomers inversely modulate postsynaptic components. Conclusion These results indicate that post-synaptic damage induced by Aβ oligomers in hippocampal neurons is prevented by non-canonical Wnt pathway activation. PMID:20205789

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    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

    2016-10-01

    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.

  5. Determination of the electronic structure of thiophene oligomers and extrapolation to polythiophene

    SciTech Connect

    Jones, D.; Guerra, M.; Favaretto, L. ); Modelli, A. ); Fabrizio, M. ); Distefano, G. )

    1990-07-26

    Ionization energies, attachment energies, and electrochemical reduction potentials of thiophene oligomers (n {le} 5) have been determined experimentally (ultraviolet photoelectron and electron transmission spectroscopies and cyclic voltammetry) and theoretically (ionization and attachment energies by MINDO/3). The geometrical parameters of the most stable conformation of 2,2{prime}-bithienyl have been computed at the ab initio STO-3G level with complete relaxation. A short extrapolation of the energy data to the polymer provided accurate and reliable values for important properties of (gas phase) polythiophene, namely, ionization energy (6.9 eV), valence bandwidth (3.2 eV), electron affinity (0.9-1.1 eV), HOMO-LUMO energy gap (5.9 eV), and {lambda}{sub max} (2.7 eV).

  6. 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.

  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 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

  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. Clusterin Binds to Aβ1–42 Oligomers with High Affinity and Interferes with Peptide Aggregation by Inhibiting Primary and Secondary Nucleation*

    PubMed Central

    Beeg, Marten; Stravalaci, Matteo; Romeo, Margherita; Carrá, Arianna Dorotea; Cagnotto, Alfredo; Rossi, Alessandro; Diomede, Luisa; Salmona, Mario

    2016-01-01

    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 Aβ1–42 oligomers, 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 Aβ1–42 oligomers, as evaluated in a recently developed in vivo model in Caenorhabditis 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

  10. X-ray Crystallographic Structure of Oligomers Formed by a Toxic β-Hairpin Derived from α-Synuclein: Trimers and Higher-Order Oligomers.

    PubMed

    Salveson, Patrick J; Spencer, Ryan K; Nowick, James S

    2016-04-06

    Oligomeric assemblies of the protein α-synuclein are thought to cause neurodegeneration in Parkinson's disease and related synucleinopathies. Characterization of α-synuclein oligomers at high resolution is an outstanding challenge in the field of structural biology. The absence of high-resolution structures of oligomers formed by α-synuclein impedes understanding the synucleinopathies at the molecular level. This paper reports the X-ray crystallographic structure of oligomers formed by a peptide derived from residues 36-55 of α-synuclein. The peptide 1a adopts a β-hairpin structure, which assembles in a hierarchical fashion. Three β-hairpins assemble to form a triangular trimer. Three copies of the triangular trimer assemble to form a basket-shaped nonamer. Two nonamers pack to form an octadecamer. Molecular modeling suggests that full-length α-synuclein may also be able to assemble in this fashion. Circular dichroism spectroscopy demonstrates that peptide 1a interacts with anionic lipid bilayer membranes, like oligomers of full-length α-synuclein. LDH and MTT assays demonstrate that peptide 1a is toxic toward SH-SY5Y cells. Comparison of peptide 1a to homologues suggests that this toxicity results from nonspecific interactions with the cell membrane. The oligomers formed by peptide 1a are fundamentally different than the proposed models of the fibrils formed by α-synuclein and suggest that α-Syn36-55, rather than the NAC, may nucleate oligomer formation.

  11. An investigation into the effect of amphiphilic siloxane oligomers on dermal fibroblasts.

    PubMed

    Farrugia, Brooke L; Keddie, Daniel J; George, Graeme A; Lynam, Emily C; Brook, Michael A; Upton, Zee; Dargaville, Tim R

    2012-07-01

    This study investigates the effect of well-defined poly(dimethylsiloxane)-poly(ethylene glycol) (PDMS-PEG) ABA linear block co-oligomers on the proliferation of human dermal fibroblasts. The co-oligomers assessed ranged in molecular weight (MW) from 1335 to 5208 Da and hydrophilic-lipophilic balance (HLB) from 5.9 to 16.6 by varying the number of both PDMS and PEG units. In general, it was found that co-oligomers of low MW or intermediate hydrophilicity significantly reduced fibroblast proliferation. A linear relationship between down-regulation of fibroblast proliferation, and the ratio HLB/MW was observed at concentrations of 0.1 and 1.0 wt % of the oligomers. This enabled the structures with highest efficiency to be determined. These results suggest the possible use of the PEG-PDMS-PEG block co-oligomers as an alternative to silicone gels for hypertrophic scar remediation.

  12. Star-shaped tetrathiafulvalene oligomers towards the construction of conducting supramolecular assembly

    PubMed Central

    Hasegawa, Masashi

    2015-01-01

    Summary The construction of redox-active supramolecular assemblies based on star-shaped and radially expanded tetrathiafulvalene (TTF) oligomers with divergent and extended conjugation is summarized. Star-shaped TTF oligomers easily self-aggregate with a nanophase separation to produce supramolecular structures, and their TTF units stack face-to-face to form columnar structures using the fastener effect. Based on redox-active self-organizing supramolecular structures, conducting nanoobjects are constructed by doping of TTF oligomers with oxidants after the formation of such nanostructures. Although radical cations derived from TTF oligomers strongly interact in solution to produce a mixed-valence dimer and π-dimer, it seems to be difficult to produce nanoobjects of radical cations different from those of neutral TTF oligomers. In some cases, however, radical cations form nanostructured fibers and rods by controlling the supramolecular assembly, oxidation states, and counter anions employed. PMID:26664579

  13. Alginate gels with a combination of calcium and chitosan oligomer mixtures as crosslinkers.

    PubMed

    Feng, Yiming; Kopplin, Georg; Sato, Kimihiko; Draget, Kurt I; Vårum, Kjell M

    2017-01-20

    Alginates are polysaccharides that are widely used in relation to their ability to form gels. Recently we reported that alginates may also form gels with chitosan oligomers as crosslinkers (Khong, Aarstad, Skjåk-Bræk, Draget, & Vårum, 2013). The purpose of the present study was to characterize alginate gels crosslinked with calcium and chitosan oligomers. Using two different alginates of similar molecular weights but different chemical composition, i.e. guluronic acid content of 46 and 68%, we found that both alginates could form homogeneous gels with calcium and chitosan oligomers separately and without syneresis. Systematic combinations of calcium and chitosan oligomers as crosslinkers were tested, showing that up to 50% of the calcium could be substituted with chitosan oligomers without reduction in gel strength or increased syneresis for the alginate with the lowest guluronic acid content. Furthermore, the kinetics of the combined gels were different from pure calcium alginate gels.

  14. Preparation of Chito-Oligomers by Hydrolysis of Chitosan in the Presence of Zeolite as Adsorbent.

    PubMed

    Ibrahim, Khalid A; El-Eswed, Bassam I; Abu-Sbeih, Khaleel A; Arafat, Tawfeeq A; Al Omari, Mahmoud M H; Darras, Fouad H; Badwan, Adnan A

    2016-07-23

    An increasing interest has recently been shown to use chitin/chitosan oligomers (chito-oligomers) in medicine and food fields because they are not only water-soluble, nontoxic, and biocompatible materials, but they also exhibit numerous biological properties, including antibacterial, antifungal, and antitumor activities, as well as immuno-enhancing effects on animals. Conventional depolymerization methods of chitosan to chito-oligomers are either chemical by acid-hydrolysis under harsh conditions or by enzymatic degradation. In this work, hydrolysis of chitosan to chito-oligomers has been achieved by applying adsorption-separation technique using diluted HCl in the presence of different types of zeolite as adsorbents. The chito-oligomers were retrieved from adsorbents and characterized by differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), liquid chromatography/mass spectroscopy (LC/MS), and ninhydrin test.

  15. The Role of Amyloid-β Oligomers 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

  16. Preparation of Chito-Oligomers by Hydrolysis of Chitosan in the Presence of Zeolite as Adsorbent

    PubMed Central

    Ibrahim, Khalid A.; El-Eswed, Bassam I.; Abu-Sbeih, Khaleel A.; Arafat, Tawfeeq A.; Al Omari, Mahmoud M. H.; Darras, Fouad H.; Badwan, Adnan A.

    2016-01-01

    An increasing interest has recently been shown to use chitin/chitosan oligomers (chito-oligomers) in medicine and food fields because they are not only water-soluble, nontoxic, and biocompatible materials, but they also exhibit numerous biological properties, including antibacterial, antifungal, and antitumor activities, as well as immuno-enhancing effects on animals. Conventional depolymerization methods of chitosan to chito-oligomers are either chemical by acid-hydrolysis under harsh conditions or by enzymatic degradation. In this work, hydrolysis of chitosan to chito-oligomers has been achieved by applying adsorption-separation technique using diluted HCl in the presence of different types of zeolite as adsorbents. The chito-oligomers were retrieved from adsorbents and characterized by differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), liquid chromatography/mass spectroscopy (LC/MS), and ninhydrin test. PMID:27455287

  17. Research advances on potential neurotoxicity of quantum dots.

    PubMed

    Wu, Tianshu; Zhang, Ting; Chen, Yilu; Tang, Meng

    2016-03-01

    With rapid development of nanotechnology, quantum dots (QDs) as advanced nanotechnology products have been widely used in biological and biomedical studies, including neuroscience, due to their superior optical properties. In recent years, there has been intense concern regarding the toxicity of QDs with a growing number of studies. However, the knowledge of neurotoxic consequences of QDs applied in living organisms is lagging behind their development, while a potential risk of neurotoxicity arises if mass production of QDs leads to increased exposure and distribution in the nervous system. Owing to the quantum size effect of QDs, they are capable of crossing the blood-brain barrier or moving along neural pathways and entering the brain. Nevertheless, the interactions of QDs with cells and tissues in the central nervous system are not well understood. This review highlighted research advances on the neurotoxicity of QDs in the central nervous system, including oxidative stress injury, elevated cytoplasmic Ca(2+) levels and autophagy to damage in vitro neural cells, and impairments of synaptic transmission and plasticity as well as brain functions in tested animals, with the hope of throwing light on future research directions of QD neurotoxicity, which is a demanding topic that requires further exploration.

  18. Life-threatening motor neurotoxicity in association with bortezomib.

    PubMed

    Gupta, Sunil; Pagliuca, Antonio; Devereux, Steve; Mufti, Ghulam J; Schey, Steve

    2006-07-01

    Bortezomib has been licensed to be used in relapsed and refractory multiple myeloma. It is a promising agent for this incurable condition but our effort is to caution hematologists about the life-threatening neurotoxicity (grade 4) which was seen in two of six patients treated with this agent although the complication cannot definitely be attributed to bortezomib.

  19. Assessment of therapeutic potential of amantadine in methamphetamine induced neurotoxicity.

    PubMed

    Thrash-Williams, Bessy; Ahuja, Manuj; Karuppagounder, Senthilkumar S; Uthayathas, Subramaniam; Suppiramaniam, Vishnu; Dhanasekaran, Muralikrishnan

    2013-10-01

    Methamphetamine epidemic has a broad impact on world's health care system. Its abusive potential and neurotoxic effects remain a challenge for the anti-addiction therapies. In addition to oxidative stress, mitochondrial dysfunction and apoptosis, excitotoxicity is also involved in methamphetamine induced neurotoxicity. The N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) type of glutamate receptor is thought to be one of the predominant mediators of excitotoxicity. There is growing evidence that NMDA receptor antagonists could be one of the therapeutic options to manage excitotoxicity. Amantadine, a well-tolerated and modestly effective antiparkinsonian agent, was found to possess NMDA antagonistic properties and has shown to release dopamine from the nerve terminals. The current study aimed to evaluate the effect of amantadine pre-treatment against methamphetamine induced neurotoxicity. Results showed that methamphetamine treatment had depleted striatal dopamine, generated of reactive oxygen species and decreased activity of complex I in the mitochondria. Interestingly, amantadine, at high dose (10 mg/kg), did not prevent dopamine depletion moreover it exacerbated the behavioral manifestations of methamphetamine toxicity such as akinesia and catalepsy. Only lower dose of amantadine (1 mg/kg) produced significant scavenging of the reactive oxygen species induced by methamphetamine. Overall results from the present study suggest that amantadine should not be used concomitantly with methamphetamine as it may results in excessive neurotoxicity.

  20. Neuroinflammation and Microglia: Considerations and approaches for neurotoxicity assessment

    PubMed Central

    Harry, G. Jean; Kraft, Andrew D.

    2009-01-01

    Background The impact of an inflammatory response, as well as interactions between the immune and nervous systems, are rapidly assuming major roles in neurodegenerative disease and injury. However, it is now appreciated that the exact nature of such responses can differ with each type of insult and interaction. More recently, neuroinflammation and the associated cellular response of microglia are being considered for their contribution to neurotoxicity of environmental agents; yet, to date, the inclusion of inflammatory endpoints into neurotoxicity assessment have relied primarily on relatively limited measures or driven by in vitro models of neurotoxicity. Objective To present background information on relevant biological considerations of neuroinflammation and the microglia response demonstrating the complex integrative nature of these biological processes and raising concern with regards to translation of effects demonstrated in vitro to the in vivo situation. Specific points are addressed that would influence the design and interpretation of neuroinflammation with regards to neurotoxicology assessment. Conclusion There is a complex and dynamic response in the brain to regulate inflammatory processes and maintain a normal homeostatic level. The classification of such responses as beneficial or detrimental is an oversimplification. Neuroinflammation should be considered as a balanced network of processes where subtle modifications can shift the cells toward disparate outcomes. The tendency to over-interpret data obtained in an isolated culture system should be discouraged. Rather, the use of cross-disciplinary approaches to evaluate multiple endpoints should be incorporated into the assessment of inflammatory contributions to the neurotoxicity of environmental exposures. PMID:18798697

  1. Potential Role of Epigenetic Mechanism in Manganese Induced Neurotoxicity

    PubMed Central

    Tarale, Prashant; Chakrabarti, Tapan; Sivanesan, Saravanadevi; Naoghare, Pravin; Bafana, Amit; Krishnamurthi, Kannan

    2016-01-01

    Manganese is a vital nutrient and is maintained at an optimal level (2.5–5 mg/day) in human body. Chronic exposure to manganese is associated with neurotoxicity and correlated with the development of various neurological disorders such as Parkinson's disease. Oxidative stress mediated apoptotic cell death has been well established mechanism in manganese induced toxicity. Oxidative stress has a potential to alter the epigenetic mechanism of gene regulation. Epigenetic insight of manganese neurotoxicity in context of its correlation with the development of parkinsonism is poorly understood. Parkinson's disease is characterized by the α-synuclein aggregation in the form of Lewy bodies in neuronal cells. Recent findings illustrate that manganese can cause overexpression of α-synuclein. α-Synuclein acts epigenetically via interaction with histone proteins in regulating apoptosis. α-Synuclein also causes global DNA hypomethylation through sequestration of DNA methyltransferase in cytoplasm. An individual genetic difference may also have an influence on epigenetic susceptibility to manganese neurotoxicity and the development of Parkinson's disease. This review presents the current state of findings in relation to role of epigenetic mechanism in manganese induced neurotoxicity, with a special emphasis on the development of Parkinson's disease. PMID:27314012

  2. DEVELOPMENTAL NEUROTOXICITY TESTING GUIDELINES: VARIABILITY IN MORPHOMETRIC ASSESSMENTS OF NEUROPATHOLOGY.

    EPA Science Inventory

    The USEPA Developmental Neurotoxicity (DNT) Study Test Guideline (OPPTS 870.6300) calls for neuropathological and morphometric assessments of rat pups on postnatal day (PND) 11 and at study termination (after PND 60). In recent discussions about conducting these studies on pesti...

  3. Neurotoxicity in Aquatic Systems: Evaluation of Anthropogenic Trace Substances

    EPA Science Inventory

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is evaluating methods to screen and prioritize large numbers of chemicals for developmental toxicity, as well as acute and developmental neurotoxicity. In this endeavor, one of our focuses is on contaminants found in drinking water. To exp...

  4. Teriflunomide and monomethylfumarate target HIV-induced neuroinflammation and neurotoxicity.

    PubMed

    Ambrosius, Björn; Faissner, Simon; Guse, Kirsten; von Lehe, Marec; Grunwald, Thomas; Gold, Ralf; Grewe, Bastian; Chan, Andrew

    2017-03-11

    HIV-associated neurocognitive disorders (HAND) affect about 50% of infected patients despite combined antiretroviral therapy (cART). Ongoing compartmentalized inflammation mediated by microglia which are activated by HIV-infected monocytes has been postulated to contribute to neurotoxicity independent from viral replication. Here, we investigated effects of teriflunomide and monomethylfumarate on monocyte/microglial activation and neurotoxicity. Human monocytoid cells (U937) transduced with a minimal HIV-Vector were co-cultured with human microglial cells (HMC3). Secretion of pro-inflammatory/neurotoxic cytokines (CXCL10, CCL5, and CCL2: p < 0.001; IL-6: p < 0.01) by co-cultures was strongly increased compared to microglia in contact with HIV-particles alone. Upon treatment with teriflunomide, cytokine secretion was decreased (CXCL10, 3-fold; CCL2, 2.5-fold; IL-6, 2.2-fold; p < 0.001) and monomethylfumarate treatment led to 2.9-fold lower CXCL10 secretion (p < 0.001). Reduced toxicity of co-culture conditioned media on human fetal neurons by teriflunomide (29%, p < 0.01) and monomethylfumarate (27%, p < 0.05) indicated functional relevance. Modulation of innate immune functions by teriflunomide and monomethylfumarate may target neurotoxic inflammation in the context of HAND.

  5. Chemotherapy-induced neurotoxicity in pediatric solid non-CNS tumor patients: An update on current state of research and recommended future directions.

    PubMed

    Sleurs, Charlotte; Deprez, Sabine; Emsell, Louise; Lemiere, Jurgen; Uyttebroeck, Anne

    2016-07-01

    Neurocognitive sequelae are known to be induced by cranial radiotherapy and central-nervous-system-directed chemotherapy in childhood Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL) and brain tumor patients. However, less evidence exists for solid non-CNS-tumor patients. To get a better understanding of the potential neurotoxic mechanisms of non-CNS-directed chemotherapy during childhood, we performed a comprehensive literature review of this topic. Here, we provide an overview of preclinical and clinical studies investigating neurotoxicity associated with chemotherapy in the treatment of pediatric solid non-CNS tumors. Research to date suggests that chemotherapy has deleterious biological and psychological effects, with animal studies demonstrating histological evidence for neurotoxic effects of specific agents and human studies demonstrating acute neurotoxicity. Although the existing literature suggests potential neurotoxicity throughout neurodevelopment, research into the long-term neurocognitive sequelae in survivors of non-CNS cancers remains limited. Therefore, we stress the critical need for neurodevelopmental focused research in children who are treated for solid non-CNS tumors, since they are at risk for potential neurocognitive impairment.

  6. Role of docosahexaenoic acid in modulating methylmercury-induced neurotoxicity.

    PubMed

    Kaur, Parvinder; Schulz, Kristina; Aschner, Michael; Syversen, Tore

    2007-12-01

    The effect of docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) in modulating methylmercury (MeHg)-induced neurotoxicity was investigated in C6-glial and B35-neuronal cell lines. Gas chromatography measurements indicated increased DHA content in both the cell lines after 24 h supplementation. Mitochondrial activity evaluated by 3-(4, 5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2, 5 diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT) reduction indicated that 10 microM MeHg treatment for 50 min led to a significant (p < 0.001) and similar decrease in MTT activity in both the cell lines. However, DHA pretreatment led to more pronounced depletion (p < 0.05) in the MTT activity in C6 cells as compared to B35 cells. The depletion of glutathione (GSH) content measured with the fluorescent indicator monochlorobimane was more apparent (p < 0.001) in C6 cells treated with DHA and MeHg. The amount of reactive oxygen species (ROS) detected with the fluorescent indicator -- chloromethyl derivative of dichloro dihydro fluorescein diacetate (CMH(2)DCFDA) -- indicated a fourfold increase in C6 cells (p < 0.001) as compared to twofold increase in B35 cells (p < 0.001) upon DHA and MeHg exposure. However, the cell-associated MeHg measurement using (14)C-labeled MeHg indicated a decrease (p < 0.05) in MeHg accumulation upon DHA exposure in both the cell lines. These findings provide experimental evidence that although pretreatment with DHA reduces cell-associated MeHg, it causes an increased ROS (p < 0.001) and GSH depletion (p < 0.05) in C6 cells.

  7. Structural Characteristics of the Alpha-Synuclein Oligomers Stabilized By the Flavonoid Baicalein

    SciTech Connect

    Hong, D.-P.; Fink, A.L.; Uversky, V.N.

    2009-05-18

    The flavonoid baicalein inhibits fibrillation of alpha-synuclein, which is a major component of Lewy bodies in Parkinson's disease. It has been known that baicalein induces the formation of alpha-synuclein oligomers and consequently prevents their fibrillation. In order to evaluate the structural properties of baicalein-stabilized oligomers, we purified oligomer species by HPLC and examined their stability and structure by CD, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, size exclusion chromatography HPLC, small-angle X-ray scattering, and atomic force microscopy. Baicalein-stabilized oligomers are beta-sheet-enriched according to CD and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy analyses. They did not form fibrils even after very prolonged incubation. From small-angle X-ray scattering data and atomic force microscopy images, the oligomers were characterized as quite compact globular species. Oligomers were extremely stable, with a GdmCl C(m)=3.3 M. This high stability explains the previously observed inhibition properties of baicalein against alpha-synuclein fibrillation. These baicalein-stabilized oligomers, added to the solution of aggregating alpha-synuclein, were able to noticeably inhibit its fibrillation. After prolonged coincubation, short fibrils were formed, suggesting an effective interaction of oligomers with monomeric alpha-synuclein. Membrane permeability tests suggested that the baicalein-stabilized oligomers had a mild effect on the integrity of the membrane surface. This effect was rather similar to that of the monomeric protein, suggesting that targeted stabilization of certain alpha-synuclein oligomers might offer a potential strategy for the development of novel Parkinson's disease therapies.

  8. One-Step Synthesis of Precursor Oligomers for Organic Photovoltaics: A Comparative Study between Polymers and Small Molecules.

    PubMed

    Li, Wei; Wang, Daojuan; Wang, Suhao; Ma, Wei; Hedström, Svante; James, David Ian; Xu, Xiaofeng; Persson, Petter; Fabiano, Simone; Berggren, Magnus; Inganäs, Olle; Huang, Fei; Wang, Ergang

    2015-12-16

    Two series of oligomers TQ and rhodanine end-capped TQ-DR were synthesized using a facile one-step method. Their optical, electrical, and thermal properties and photovoltaic performances were systematically investigated and compared. The TQ series of oligomers were found to be amorphous, whereas the TQ-DR series are semicrystalline. For the TQ oligomers, the results obtained in solar cells show that as the chain length of the oligomers increases, an increase in power conversion efficiency (PCE) is obtained. However, when introducing 3-ethylrhodanine into the TQ oligomers as end groups, the PCE of the TQ-DR series of oligomers decreases as the chain length increases. Moreover, the TQ-DR series of oligomers give much higher performances compared to the original amorphous TQ series of oligomers owing to the improved extinction coefficient (ε) and crystallinity afforded by the rhodanine. In particular, the highly crystalline oligomer TQ5-DR, which has the shortest conjugation length shows a high hole mobility of 0.034 cm(2) V(-1) s(-1) and a high PCE of 3.14%, which is the highest efficiency out of all of the six oligomers. The structure-property correlations for all of the oligomers and the TQ1 polymer demonstrate that structural control of enhanced intermolecular interactions and crystallinity is a key for small molecules/oligomers to achieve high mobilities, which is an essential requirement for use in OPVs.

  9. Non-esterified fatty acids generate distinct low-molecular weight amyloid-β (Aβ42) oligomers along pathway different from fibril formation.

    PubMed

    Kumar, Amit; Bullard, Rebekah L; Patel, Pritesh; Paslay, Lea C; Singh, Dipti; Bienkiewicz, Ewa A; Morgan, Sarah E; Rangachari, Vijayaraghavan

    2011-04-19

    Amyloid-β (Aβ) peptide aggregation is known to play a central role in the etiology of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Among various aggregates, low-molecular weight soluble oligomers of Aβ are increasingly believed to be the primary neurotoxic agents responsible for memory impairment. Anionic interfaces are known to influence the Aβ aggregation process significantly. Here, we report the effects of interfaces formed by medium-chain (C9-C12), saturated non-esterified fatty acids (NEFAs) on Aβ42 aggregation. NEFAs uniquely affected Aβ42 aggregation rates that depended on both the ratio of Aβ:NEFA as well the critical micelle concentration (CMC) of the NEFAs. More importantly, irrespective of the kind of NEFA used, we observed that two distinct oligomers, 12-18 mers and 4-5 mers were formed via different pathway of aggregation under specific experimental conditions: (i) 12-18 mers were generated near the CMC in which NEFAs augment the rate of Aβ42 aggregation towards fibril formation, and, (ii) 4-5 mers were formed above the CMC, where NEFAs inhibit fibril formation. The data indicated that both 12-18 mers and 4-5 mers are formed along an alternate pathway called 'off-pathway' that did not result in fibril formation and yet have subtle structural and morphological differences that distinguish their bulk molecular behavior. These observations, (i) reflect the possible mechanism of Aβ aggregation in physiological lipid-rich environments, and (ii) reiterate the fact that all oligomeric forms of Aβ need not be obligatory intermediates of the fibril formation pathway.

  10. Biophysical properties and cellular toxicity of covalent crosslinked oligomers of α-synuclein formed by photoinduced side-chain tyrosyl radicals.

    PubMed

    Borsarelli, Claudio D; Falomir-Lockhart, Lisandro J; Ostatná, Veronika; Fauerbach, Jonathan A; Hsiao, He-Hsuan; Urlaub, Henning; Paleček, Emil; Jares-Erijman, Elizabeth A; Jovin, Thomas M

    2012-08-15

    Alpha-synuclein (αS), a 140 amino acid presynaptic protein, is the major component of the fibrillar aggregates (Lewy bodies) observed in dopaminergic neurons of patients affected by Parkinson's disease. It is currently believed that noncovalent oligomeric forms of αS, arising as intermediates in its aggregation, may constitute the major neurotoxic species. However, attempts to isolate and characterize such oligomers in vitro, and even more so in living cells, have been hampered by their transient nature, low concentration, polymorphism, and inherent instability. In this work, we describe the preparation and characterization of low molecular weight covalently bound oligomeric species of αS obtained by crosslinking via tyrosyl radicals generated by blue-light photosensitization of the metal coordination complex ruthenium (II) tris-bipyridine in the presence of ammonium persulfate. Numerous analytical techniques were used to characterize the αS oligomers: biochemical (anion-exchange chromatography, SDS-PAGE, and Western blotting); spectroscopic (optical: UV/Vis absorption, steady state, dynamic fluorescence, and dynamic light scattering); mass spectrometry; and electrochemical. Light-controlled protein oligomerization was mediated by formation of Tyr-Tyr (dityrosine) dimers through -C-C- bonds acting as covalent bridges, with a predominant involvement of residue Y39. The diverse oligomeric species exhibited a direct effect on the in vitro aggregation behavior of wild-type monomeric αS, decreasing the total yield of amyloid fibrils in aggregation assays monitored by thioflavin T (ThioT) fluorescence and light scattering, and by atomic force microscopy (AFM). Compared to the unmodified monomer, the photoinduced covalent oligomeric species demonstrated increased toxic effects on differentiated neuronal-like SH-SY5Y cells. The results highlight the importance of protein modification induced by oxidative stress in the initial molecular events leading to Parkinson

  11. Brain amyloid-β oligomers in ageing and Alzheimer's disease.

    PubMed

    Lesné, Sylvain E; Sherman, Mathew A; Grant, Marianne; Kuskowski, Michael; Schneider, Julie A; Bennett, David A; Ashe, Karen H

    2013-05-01

    Alzheimer's disease begins about two decades before the onset of symptoms or neuron death, and is believed to be caused by pathogenic amyloid-β aggregates that initiate a cascade of molecular events culminating in widespread neurodegeneration. The microtubule binding protein tau may mediate the effects of amyloid-β in this cascade. Amyloid plaques comprised of insoluble, fibrillar amyloid-β aggregates are the most characteristic feature of Alzheimer's disease. However, the correspondence between the distribution of plaques and the pattern of neurodegeneration is tenuous. This discrepancy has stimulated the investigation of other amyloid-β aggregates, including soluble amyloid-β oligomers. Different soluble amyloid-β oligomers have been studied in several mouse models, but not systematically in humans. Here, we measured three amyloid-β oligomers previously described in mouse models-amyloid-β trimers, Aβ*56 and amyloid-β dimers-in brain tissue from 75 cognitively intact individuals, ranging from young children to the elderly, and 58 impaired subjects with mild cognitive impairment or probable Alzheimer's disease. As in mouse models, where amyloid-β trimers appear to be the fundamental amyloid-β assembly unit of Aβ*56 and are present in young mice prior to memory decline, amyloid-β trimers in humans were present in children and adolescents; their levels rose gradually with age and were significantly above baseline in subjects in their 70s. Aβ*56 levels were negligible in children and young adults, rose significantly above baseline in subjects in their 40s and increased steadily thereafter. Amyloid-β dimers were undetectable until subjects were in their 60s; their levels then increased sharply and correlated with plaque load. Remarkably, in cognitively intact individuals we found strong positive correlations between Aβ*56 and two pathological forms of soluble tau (tau-CP13 and tau-Alz50), and negative correlations between Aβ*56 and two postsynaptic

  12. A comparison of the potency of a novel bispyridinium oxime K203 and currently available oximes (obidoxime, HI-6) to counteract the acute neurotoxicity of sarin in rats.

    PubMed

    Kassa, Jiri; Misik, Jan; Karasova, Jana Zdarova

    2012-11-01

    The neuroprotective effects of a newly developed oxime K203 and currently available oximes (obidoxime, HI-6) in combination with atropine in rats poisoned with sarin were studied. The sarin-induced neurotoxicity was monitored using a functional observatory battery at 2 hr after sarin challenge. The results indicate that the potency of a novel bispyridinium oxime K203 to counteract sarin-induced neurotoxicity is relatively low and roughly corresponds to the neuroprotective efficacy of obidoxime. Among tested oximes, the oxime HI-6 seems to be significanlty more efficacious to counteract acute neurotoxicity of sarin than commonly used obidoxime and a newly developed oxime K203. Thus, the oxime K203 does not provide any beneficial effect for the antidotal treatment of acute poisoning with sarin in comparison with the oxime HI-6 that should be considered to be the best oxime for antidotal treatment of acute sarin poisonings.

  13. Resolution of 8-aminonaphthalene-1,3,6-trisulfonic acid-labeled glucose oligomers in polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis at low gel concentration.

    PubMed

    Cabanes-Macheteau, Marion; Chrambach, Andreas; Taverna, Myriam; Buzás, Zsuzsanna; Berna, Patrick

    2004-01-01

    A discontinuous Tris-Cl/acetate (OAc) buffer system, unprecedently containing OAc as the trailing constituent, and operative in polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (PAGE) at low polyacrylamide concentration (T = 4.8%) is described in the paper. The characteristics of the electrophoretic system are illustrated by the resolution of fluorescent 8-aminonaphthalene-1,3,6-trisulfonic acid (ANTS)-labeled malto-oligosaccharides and dextran homopolymers. In this buffer system, the resolving phase is constituted by Tris-OAc behind a moving boundary formed between the leading chloride ion of Tris-HCl gel buffer and the trailing OAc ion provided by a catholyte of NH(4)OAc. In contrast with the results obtained with Tris-CI/glycinate buffer commonly used in electrophoresis, or with Tris-CI/borate, the best resolution of the glucose oligomers containing 1-4 glucose units in Tris-OAc, pH 8.8, ionic strength of 0.08, was obtained at 4.8% polyacrylamide concentration, using 0.5 M NH(4)OAc, pH 9.5 as the catholyte. Under those conditions, the ANTS-glucose oligomers were separated with mobilities decreasing from glucose to maltohexaose. The linear Ferguson plots (log relative mobility, R(f), vs.%T) of the glucose oligomers show that the surface net charge of those oligomers is inversely related to their sizes, given by the slopes, K(R), of the plots. The molecular weight of the oligomers is directly but nonlinearly related to K(R). The novel electrophoretic system illustrated here for separation of short ANTS-saccharides can be potentially applied to the resolution of other biomolecules such as rapidly migrating DNA, peptides or proteins.

  14. Oligomer formation in the troposphere: from experimental knowledge to 3-D modeling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lemaire, Vincent; Coll, Isabelle; Couvidat, Florian; Mouchel-Vallon, Camille; Seigneur, Christian; Siour, Guillaume

    2016-04-01

    The organic fraction of atmospheric aerosols has proven to be a critical element of air quality and climate issues. However, its composition and the aging processes it undergoes remain insufficiently understood. This work builds on laboratory knowledge to simulate the formation of oligomers from biogenic secondary organic aerosol (BSOA) in the troposphere at the continental scale. We compare the results of two different modeling approaches, a first-order kinetic process and a pH-dependent parameterization, both implemented in the CHIMERE air quality model (AQM) (www.lmd.polytechnique.fr/chimere), to simulate the spatial and temporal distribution of oligomerized secondary organic aerosol (SOA) over western Europe. We also included a comparison of organic carbon (OC) concentrations at two EMEP (European Monitoring and Evaluation Programme) stations. Our results show that there is a strong dependence of the results on the selected modeling approach: while the irreversible kinetic process leads to the oligomerization of about 50 % of the total BSOA mass, the pH-dependent approach shows a broader range of impacts, with a strong dependency on environmental parameters (pH and nature of aerosol) and the possibility for the process to be reversible. In parallel, we investigated the sensitivity of each modeling approach to the representation of SOA precursor solubility (Henry's law constant values). Finally, the pros and cons of each approach for the representation of SOA aging are discussed and recommendations are provided to improve current representations of oligomer formation in AQMs.

  15. Quantitative monitoring of dermal and inhalation exposure to 1,6-hexamethylene diisocyanate monomer and oligomers.

    PubMed

    Fent, Kenneth W; Jayaraj, Karupiah; Ball, Louise M; Nylander-French, Leena A

    2008-04-01

    Respiratory sensitization and occupational asthma are associated with exposure to 1,6-hexamethylene diisocyanate (HDI) in both monomeric and oligomeric forms. The monomer and polymers of diisocyanates differ significantly in their rates of absorption into tissue and their toxicity, and hence may differ in their contribution to sensitization. We have developed and evaluated a liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry (LC-MS) method capable of quantifying HDI and its oligomers (uretidone, biuret, and isocyanurate) in air, tape-stripped skin, and paint samples collected in the automotive refinishing industry. To generate analytical standards, urea derivatives of HDI, biuret, and isocyanurate were synthesized by reaction with 1-(2-methoxyphenyl)piperazine and purified. The urea derivatives were shown to degrade on average by less than 2% per week at -20 degrees C over a 2 month period in occupational samples. The average recovery of HDI and its oligomers from tape was 100% and the limits of detection were 2 and 8 fmol microl(-1), respectively. Exposure assessments were performed on 13 automotive spray painters to evaluate the LC-MS method and the sampling methods under field conditions. Isocyanurate was the most abundant component measured in paint tasks, with median air and skin concentrations of 2.4 mg m(-3) and 4.6 microg mm(-3), respectively. Log-transformed concentrations of HDI (r = 0.79, p < 0.0001) and of isocyanurate (r = 0.71, p < 0.0001) in the skin of workers were correlated with the log-transformed product of air concentration and painting time. The other polyisocyanates were detected on skin for less than 25% of the paint tasks. This LC-MS method provides a valuable tool to investigate inhalation and dermal exposures to specific polyisocyanates and to explore relative differences in the exposure pathways.

  16. Identification and bioactivities of resveratrol oligomers and flavonoids from Carex folliculata seeds.

    PubMed

    Li, Liya; Henry, Geneive E; Seeram, Navindra P

    2009-08-26

    Plants of the Carex genus (Family: Cyperaceae) have attracted recent attention as potential food additives because they contain high levels of bioactive polyphenols commonly found in plant foods. Seven compounds, which included two resveratrol oligomers and five flavonoids, were isolated from seeds of Carex folliculata L. (northern long sedge), a forage prevalent in the northern United States. The compounds were identified by (1)H and (13)C nuclear magnetic resonance and mass spectrometry data. The resveratrol oligomers were pallidol (1), a resveratrol dimer reported to be present in levels equivalent to those of resveratrol in red wine, and kobophenol A (2), a resveratrol tetramer with a unique 2,3,4,5-tetraaryltetrahydrofuran skeleton. The flavonoids were isoorientin (3), luteolin (4), quercetin (5), 3-O-methylquercetin (6), and rutin (7). Compounds were evaluated for antioxidant activity in the diphenylpicrylhydrazyl (DPPH) radical scavenging assay; cytotoxicity activity against human colon (HCT116, HT29) and breast (MCF7, MDA-MB-231) tumor cell lines; and antibacterial activity against methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). The antioxidant activities of the flavonoids (3-7; IC(50) values ranging from 50 to 200 microM) were comparable to that of ascorbic acid (IC(50) = 60 microM) and superior to those of the resveratrol derivatives (1 and 2; IC(50) > 1000 microM) and butylated hydroxytoluene (BHT; IC(50) = 1500 microM), a commercial antioxidant. In the cytotoxicity and antibacterial bioassays, compounds 4 (IC(50) for HCT116 = 45 microM) and 6 (IC(50) for MRSA = 6.4 microM) were the most active, respectively. Therefore, given the wide availability and underutilization of C. folliculata, this forage may provide a source of bioactive compounds useful for nutraceutical purposes. Also, this is the first reported phytochemical investigation of C. folliculata.

  17. 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

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

    PubMed Central

    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

  19. Fragment C Domain of Tetanus Toxin Mitigates Methamphetamine Neurotoxicity and Its Motor Consequences in Mice

    PubMed Central

    Mendieta, Liliana; Granado, Noelia; Aguilera, José; Tizabi, Yousef

    2016-01-01

    Background: The C-terminal domain of the heavy chain of tetanus toxin (Hc-TeTx) is a nontoxic peptide with demonstrated in vitro and in vivo neuroprotective effects against striatal dopaminergic damage induced by 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium and 6-hydoxydopamine, suggesting its possible therapeutic potential in Parkinson’s disease. Methamphetamine, a widely abused psychostimulant, has selective dopaminergic neurotoxicity in rodents, monkeys, and humans. This study was undertaken to determine whether Hc-TeTx might also protect against methamphetamine-induced dopaminergic neurotoxicity and the consequent motor impairment. Methods: For this purpose, we treated mice with a toxic regimen of methamphetamine (4mg/kg, 3 consecutive i.p. injections, 3 hours apart) followed by 3 injections of 40 ug/kg of Hc-TeTx into grastrocnemius muscle at 1, 24, and 48 hours post methamphetamine treatment. Results: We found that Hc-TeTx significantly reduced the loss of dopaminergic markers tyrosine hydroxylase and dopamine transporter and the increases in silver staining (a well stablished degeneration marker) induced by methamphetamine in the striatum. Moreover, Hc-TeTx prevented the increase of neuronal nitric oxide synthase but did not affect microglia activation induced by methamphetamine. Stereological neuronal count in the substantia nigra indicated loss of tyrosine hydroxylase-positive neurons after methamphetamine that was partially prevented by Hc-TeTx. Importantly, impairment in motor behaviors post methamphetamine treatment were significantly reduced by Hc-TeTx. Conclusions: Here we demonstrate that Hc-TeTx can provide significant protection against acute methamphetamine-induced neurotoxicity and motor impairment, suggesting its therapeutic potential in methamphetamine abusers. PMID:26945022

  20. Feasibility Assessment of Micro-Electrode Chip Assay as a Method of Detecting Neurotoxicity in vitro

    PubMed Central

    Defranchi, Enrico; Novellino, Antonio; Whelan, Maurice; Vogel, Sandra; Ramirez, Tzutzuy; van Ravenzwaay, Ben; Landsiedel, Robert

    2011-01-01

    Detection and characterization of chemically induced toxic effects in the nervous system represent a challenge for the hazard assessment of chemicals. In vivo, neurotoxicological assessments exploit the fact that the activity of neurons in the central and peripheral nervous system has functional consequences. And so far, no in vitro method for evaluating the neurotoxic hazard has yet been validated and accepted for regulatory purpose. The micro-electrode array (MEA) assay consists of a culture chamber into which an integrated array of micro-electrodes is capable of measuring extracellular electrophysiology (spikes and bursts) from electro-active tissues. A wide variety of electrically excitable biological tissues may be placed onto the chips including primary cultures of nervous system tissue. Recordings from this type of in vitro cultured system are non-invasive, give label free evaluations and provide a higher throughput than conventional electrophysiological techniques. In this paper, 20 substances were tested in a blinded study for their toxicity and dose–response curves were obtained from fetal rat cortical neuronal networks coupled to MEAs. The experimental procedure consisted of evaluating the firing activity (spiking rate) and modification/reduction in response to chemical administration. Native/reference activity, 30 min of activity recording per dilution, plus the recovery points (after 24 h) were recorded. The preliminary data, using a set of chemicals with different mode-of-actions (13 known to be neurotoxic, 2 non-neuroactive and not toxic, and 5 non-neuroactive but toxic) show good predictivity (sensitivity: 0.77; specificity: 0.86; accuracy: 0.85). Thus, the MEA with a neuronal network has the potency to become an effective tool to evaluate the neurotoxicity of substances in vitro. PMID:21577249

  1. Developmental neurotoxicity of different classes of biocides in PC-12 cells in vitro.

    PubMed

    Christen, Verena; Rusconi, Manuel; Crettaz, Pierre; Fent, Karl

    2017-04-03

    The detection of developmental neurotoxicity (DNT) of chemicals has high relevance for protection of human health. However, DNT of many biocides is only little known. Furthermore, validated in vitro systems for assessment of DNT are not well established. Here we employed the rat phaeochromocytoma cell line PC-12 to evaluate DNT of 18 frequently used biocides of different classes, including neonicotinoids, pyrethroids, organophosphates, organochlorines, quaternary ammonium compounds, the biocidal active substance piperonylbutoxide, as well as the insect repellent DEET. We determined the outgrowth of neurites in PC-12 cells co-treated with nerve growth factor and different concentrations of biocides for 5days. Furthermore, we determined transcriptional alterations of selected genes that may be associated with DNT, such as camk2α and camk2β, gap-43, neurofilament-h, tubulin-α and tubulin-β. Strong and dose dependent inhibition of neurite outgrowth was induced by azamethiphos and chlorpyrifos, dieldrin and heptachlor, which was correlated with up-regulation of gap-43. No or only weak effects on neurite outgrowth and transcriptional alterations occurred for neonicotinoids acetamiprid, clothianidin, imidacloprid and thiamethoxam, pyrethroids λ-cyhalothrin, cyfluthrin, deltamethrin, and permethrin, the biocidal disinfectants C12-C14-alkyl(ethylbenzyl)dimethylammonium (BAC), benzalkonium chloride and barquat (dimethyl benzyl ammonium chloride), and piperonylbutoxide and diethyltoluamide (DEET). Our study confirms potential developmental neurotoxicity of some biocides and provides first evidence that azamethiphos has the potential to act as a developmental neurotoxic compound. We also demonstrate that inhibition of neurite outgrowth and transcriptional alterations of gap-43 expression correlate, which suggests the employment of gap-43 expression as a biomarker for detection and initial evaluation of potential DNT of chemicals.

  2. Neurotoxic properties of the anabolic androgenic steroids nandrolone and methandrostenolone in primary neuronal cultures.

    PubMed

    Caraci, Filippo; Pistarà, V; Corsaro, A; Tomasello, Flora; Giuffrida, Maria Laura; Sortino, Maria Angela; Nicoletti, Ferdinando; Copani, Agata

    2011-04-01

    Anabolic-androgenic steroid (AAS) abuse is associated with multiple neurobehavioral disturbances. The sites of action and the neurobiological sequels of AAS abuse are unclear at present. We investigated whether two different AASs, nandrolone and methandrostenolone, could affect neuronal survival in culture. The endogenous androgenic steroid testosterone was used for comparison. Both testosterone and nandrolone were neurotoxic at micromolar concentrations, and their effects were prevented by blockade of androgen receptors (ARs) with flutamide. Neuronal toxicity developed only over a 48-hr exposure to the steroids. The cell-impermeable analogues testosterone-BSA and nandrolone-BSA, which preferentially target membrane-associated ARs, were also neurotoxic in a time-dependent and flutamide-sensitive manner. Testosterone-BSA and nandrolone-BSA were more potent than their parent compounds, suggesting that membrane-associated ARs were the relevant sites for the neurotoxic actions of the steroids. Unlike testosterone and nandrolone, toxicity by methandrostenolone and methandrostenolone-BSA was insensitive to flutamide, but it was prevented by the glucocorticoid receptor (GR) antagonist RU-486. Methandrostenolone-BSA was more potent than the parent compound, suggesting that its toxicity relied on the preferential activation of putative membrane-associated GRs. Consistently with the evidence that membrane-associated GRs can mediate rapid effects, a brief challenge with methandrostenolone-BSA was able to promote neuronal toxicity. Activation of putative membrane steroid receptors by nontoxic (nanomolar) concentrations of either nandrolone-BSA or methandrostenolone-BSA became sufficient to increase neuronal susceptibility to the apoptotic stimulus provided by β-amyloid (the main culprit of AD). We speculate that AAS abuse might facilitate the onset or progression of neurodegenerative diseases not usually linked to drug abuse.

  3. Glutamic Acid Not Beneficial for the Prevention of Vincristine Neurotoxicity in Children with Cancer

    PubMed Central

    Bradfield, Scott M.; Sandler, Eric; Geller, Thomas; Tamura, Roy N.; Krischer, Jeffrey P.

    2014-01-01

    Background Vincristine causes known side effects of peripheral sensory, motor, autonomic and cranial neuropathies. No preventive interventions are known. Procedure We performed a randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind trial of oral glutamic acid as a preventive agent in pediatric patients with cancer who would be receiving vincristine therapy for at least 9 consecutive weeks (Stratum 1= Wilms tumor and rhabdomyosarcoma) or 4 consecutive weeks in conjunction with steroids (Stratum 2=Acute lymphoblastic leukemia and Non-Hodgkin lymphoma). At designated time points, a scored neurologic exam using the Modified Balis Pediatric Scale of Peripheral Neuropathies was performed to document neurologic toxicity. Results Between 2007–12, 250 patients were enrolled (Stratum 1=50, Stratum 2=200). The glutamic acid treated group did not have a significantly lower percentage of neurotoxicity compared to placebo treated group either overall or within stratum or age subgroups. The only subgroup which was suggestive of treatment effect was for age. Patients 13 years or older showed a larger benefit in favor of glutamic acid (p=0.055) compared to patients less than 13 years (p=1.00). Constipation was the most frequently reported (14%) Grade II or higher neurotoxicity. Conclusion Vincristine-associated neurotoxicity in pediatric oncology remains a frequent complication of chemotherapy for multiple diagnoses with an approximate 30% of patients affected. Glutamic acid is not effective for prevention in pre-adolescents. There is a suggestion of benefit in patients 13 years or older, but the study was not designed to provide adequate power to test the treatment effect within this age group alone. PMID:25545757

  4. Formation of RNA oligomers on montmorillonite: site of catalysis

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ertem, G.; Ferris, J. P.

    1998-01-01

    Certain montmorillonites catalyze the self condensation of the 5'-phosphorimidazolide of nucleosides in pH 8 aqueous electrolyte solutions at ambient temperatures leading to formation of RNA oligomers. In order to establish the nature of the sites on montmorillonite responsible for this catalytic activity, oligomerization reactions were run with montmorillonites which had been selectively modified (I) at the edges by (a) fluoride treatment, (b) silylation, (c) metaphosphate treatment of the anion exchange sites (II) in the interlayer by (a) saturation with quaternary alkylammonium ions of increasing size, (b) aluminum polyoxo cations. High pressure liquid chromatography, HPLC, analysis of condensation products for their chain lengths and yields indicated that modification at the edges did not affect the catalytic activity to a significant extent, while blocking the interlayer strongly inhibited product formation.

  5. VCD Studies on Chiral Characters of Metal Complex Oligomers

    PubMed Central

    Sato, Hisako; Yamagishi, Akihiko

    2013-01-01

    The present article reviews the results on the application of vibrational circular dichroism (VCD) spectroscopy to the study of stereochemical properties of chiral metal complexes in solution. The chiral characters reflecting on the vibrational properties of metal complexes are revealed by measurements of a series of β-diketonato complexes with the help of theoretical calculation. Attention is paid to the effects of electronic properties of a central metal ion on vibrational energy levels or low-lying electronic states. The investigation is further extended to the oligomers of β-diketonato complex units. The induction of chiral structures is confirmed by the VCD spectra when chiral inert moieties are connected with labile metal ions. These results have demonstrated how VCD spectroscopy is efficient in revealing the static and dynamic properties of mononuclear and multinuclear chiral metal complexes, which are difficult to clarify by means of other spectroscopes. PMID:23296273

  6. VCD studies on chiral characters of metal complex oligomers.

    PubMed

    Sato, Hisako; Yamagishi, Akihiko

    2013-01-07

    The present article reviews the results on the application of vibrational circular dichroism (VCD) spectroscopy to the study of stereochemical properties of chiral metal complexes in solution. The chiral characters reflecting on the vibrational properties of metal complexes are revealed by measurements of a series of β-diketonato complexes with the help of theoretical calculation. Attention is paid to the effects of electronic properties of a central metal ion on vibrational energy levels or low-lying electronic states. The investigation is further extended to the oligomers of β-diketonato complex units. The induction of chiral structures is confirmed by the VCD spectra when chiral inert moieties are connected with labile metal ions. These results have demonstrated how VCD spectroscopy is efficient in revealing the static and dynamic properties of mononuclear and multinuclear chiral metal complexes, which are difficult to clarify by means of other spectroscopes.

  7. Experimental strategy for translational studies of organophosphorus pesticide neurotoxicity based on real-world occupational exposures to chlorpyrifos.

    PubMed

    Lein, Pamela J; Bonner, Matthew R; Farahat, Fayssal M; Olson, James R; Rohlman, Diane S; Fenske, Richard A; Lattal, K Matthew; Lasarev, Michael R; Galvin, Kit; Farahat, Taghreed M; Anger, W Kent

    2012-08-01

    Translational research is needed to understand and predict the neurotoxic consequences associated with repeated occupational exposures to organophosphorus pesticides (OPs). In this report, we describe a research strategy for identifying biomarkers of OP neurotoxicity, and we characterize pesticide application workers in Egypt's Menoufia Governorate who serve as our anchor human population for developing a parallel animal model with similar exposures and behavioral deficits and for examining the influence of human polymorphisms in cytochrome P450 (CYP) and paraoxonase 1 (PON1) enzymes on OP metabolism and toxicity. This population has previously been shown to have high occupational exposures and to exhibit a broad range of neurobehavioral deficits. In addition to observational studies of work practices in the field, questionnaires on demographics, lifestyle and work practices were administered to 146 Egyptian pesticide application workers applying pesticides to the cotton crop. Survey results indicated that the application workforce uses standard operating procedures and standardized equipment provided by Egypt's Ministry of Agriculture, which provides a workforce with a stable work history. We also found that few workers report using personal protective equipment (PPE), which likely contributes to the relatively high exposures reported in these application workers. In summary, this population provides a unique opportunity for identifying biomarkers of OP-induced neurotoxicity associated with occupational exposure.

  8. EGFP oligomers as natural fluorescence and hydrodynamic standards

    PubMed Central

    Vámosi, György; Mücke, Norbert; Müller, Gabriele; Krieger, Jan Wolfgang; Curth, Ute; Langowski, Jörg; Tóth, Katalin

    2016-01-01

    EGFP oligomers are convenient standards for experiments on fluorescent protein-tagged biomolecules. In this study, we characterized their hydrodynamic and fluorescence properties. Diffusion coefficients D of EGFP1–4 were determined by analytical ultracentrifugation with fluorescence detection and by fluorescence correlation spectroscopy (FCS), yielding 83.4…48.2 μm2/s and 97.3…54.8 μm2/s from monomer to tetramer. A “barrels standing in a row” model agreed best with the sedimentation data. Oligomerization red-shifted EGFP emission spectra without any shift in absorption. Fluorescence anisotropy decreased, indicating homoFRET between the subunits. Fluorescence lifetime decreased only slightly (4%) indicating insignificant quenching by FRET to subunits in non-emitting states. FCS-measured D, particle number and molecular brightness depended on dark states and light-induced processes in distinct subunits, resulting in a dependence on illumination power different for monomers and oligomers. Since subunits may be in “on” (bright) or “off” (dark) states, FCS-determined apparent brightness is not proportional to that of the monomer. From its dependence on the number of subunits, the probability of the “on” state for a subunit was determined to be 96% at pH 8 and 77% at pH 6.38, i.e., protonation increases the dark state. These fluorescence properties of EGFP oligomeric standards can assist interpreting results from oligomerized EGFP fusion proteins of biological interest. PMID:27622431

  9. Fluorene- and benzofluorene-cored oligomers as low threshold and high gain amplifying media

    SciTech Connect

    Kazlauskas, Karolis Kreiza, Gediminas; Bobrovas, Olegas; Adomėnienė, Ona; Adomėnas, Povilas; Juršėnas, Saulius; Jankauskas, Vygintas

    2015-07-27

    Deliberate control of intermolecular interactions in fluorene- and benzofluorene-cored oligomers was attempted via introduction of different-length alkyl moieties to attain high emission amplification and low amplified spontaneous emission (ASE) threshold at high oligomer concentrations. Containing fluorenyl peripheral groups decorated with different-length alkyl moieties, the oligomers were found to express weak concentration quenching of emission, yet excellent carrier drift mobilities (close to 10{sup −2} cm{sup 2}/V/s) in the amorphous films. Owing to the larger radiative decay rates (>1.0 × 10{sup 9 }s{sup −1}) and smaller concentration quenching, fluorene-cored oligomers exhibited down to one order of magnitude lower ASE thresholds at higher concentrations as compared to those of benzofluorene counterparts. The lowest threshold (300 W/cm{sup 2}) obtained for the fluorene-cored oligomers at the concentration of 50 wt % in polymer matrix is among the lowest reported for solution-processed amorphous films in ambient conditions, what makes the oligomers promising for lasing application. Great potential in emission amplification was confirmed by high maximum net gain (77 cm{sup −1}) revealed for these compounds. Although the photostability of the oligomers was affected by photo-oxidation, it was found to be comparable to that of various organic lasing materials including some commercial laser dyes evaluated under similar excitation conditions.

  10. Paclitaxel-induced epithelial damage and ectopic MMP-13 expression promotes neurotoxicity in zebrafish

    PubMed Central

    Lisse, Thomas S.; Middleton, Leah J.; Pellegrini, Adriana D.; Martin, Paige B.; Spaulding, Emily L.; Lopes, Olivia; Brochu, Elizabeth A.; Carter, Erin V.; Waldron, Ashley; Rieger, Sandra

    2016-01-01

    Paclitaxel is a microtubule-stabilizing chemotherapeutic agent that is widely used in cancer treatment and in a number of curative and palliative regimens. Despite its beneficial effects on cancer, paclitaxel also damages healthy tissues, most prominently the peripheral sensory nervous system. The mechanisms leading to paclitaxel-induced peripheral neuropathy remain elusive, and therapies that prevent or alleviate this condition are not available. We established a zebrafish in vivo model to study the underlying mechanisms and to identify pharmacological agents that may be developed into therapeutics. Both adult and larval zebrafish displayed signs of paclitaxel neurotoxicity, including sensory axon degeneration and the loss of touch response in the distal caudal fin. Intriguingly, studies in zebrafish larvae showed that paclitaxel rapidly promotes epithelial damage and decreased mechanical stress resistance of the skin before induction of axon degeneration. Moreover, injured paclitaxel-treated zebrafish skin and scratch-wounded human keratinocytes (HEK001) display reduced healing capacity. Epithelial damage correlated with rapid accumulation of fluorescein-conjugated paclitaxel in epidermal basal keratinocytes, but not axons, and up-regulation of matrix-metalloproteinase 13 (MMP-13, collagenase 3) in the skin. Pharmacological inhibition of MMP-13, in contrast, largely rescued paclitaxel-induced epithelial damage and neurotoxicity, whereas MMP-13 overexpression in zebrafish embryos rendered the skin vulnerable to injury under mechanical stress conditions. Thus, our studies provide evidence that the epidermis plays a critical role in this condition, and we provide a previously unidentified candidate for therapeutic interventions. PMID:27035978

  11. Vanadium carcinogenic, immunotoxic and neurotoxic effects: a review of in vitro studies.

    PubMed

    Zwolak, Iwona

    2014-01-01

    Deleterious health effects induced by inorganic vanadium compounds are linked with carcinogenic, immunotoxic and neurotoxic insults. The goal of this review is to provide a summary of mammalian cell culture studies (from the 1990s to most recent) looking into the mode of the above-mentioned adverse actions of vanadium. Regarding the carcinogenicity potential, the key cell-based studies have evidenced the ability of vanadium to induce genotoxic lesions, cell morphological transformation and anti-apoptotic effects in a certain type of cells. Two contradictory effects of vanadium on the immune functions of cells have been observed in cell culture studies. The first effect involves reduction of cell immune responses such as vanadium-dependent inhibition of cytokine-inducible functions, which may underlie the mechanism of vanadium-induced immunosuppression. The second one involves stimulation of immune activity, for example, a vanadium-mediated increase in cytokine production, which may contribute to vanadium-related inflammation. So far, an in vitro evaluation of vanadium neurotoxicity has only been reported in few articles. These papers indicate probable cytotoxic mechanisms resulting from exposure of neurons and glial cells to vanadium. In summary, this literature review collects in vitro reports on adverse vanadium effects and thus provides vanadium researchers with a single, concise source of data.

  12. Quantification of neurotoxic effects on individual neuron cells using optical diffraction tomography (Conference Presentation)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yoon, Jonghee; Yang, Su-a.; Kim, Kyoohyun; Park, YongKeun

    2016-03-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is a common neurodegenerative disease that causes symptoms of postural instability and slowness of movement. Neurodegeneration in dopaminergic neurons at the substantia nigra has been reported as pathologic features, however, detailed mechanisms underlying neurodegeneration are still remain unclear. To investigate a neurodegenerative process, various imaging tools including phase contrast microscopy, electron microscopy, and fluorescence microscopy are utilized. However, these imaging methods provide qualitative information and require invasive approaches such as the use of fluorescence agents or chemical fixation procedures that disturb normal physiological conditions of neuron cells. In order to quantify the neurodegenerative process in a non-invasive manner, we exploited optical diffraction tomography (ODT). ODT is a 3D quantitative phase imaging method that measures 3D refractive index (RI) distributions of a sample which provide quantitative structural (volume, surface area, sphericity) and biochemical (protein concentration, total cellular dry mass) information. We investigated neurotoxic effects of MPP+ on SH-SY5Y cells by using quantitative information obtained from 3D RI distributions. We also performed temporal measurements of 3D RI distributions of an individual SH-SY5Y cell to analyze neurotoxic effects on intracellular vesicle dynamics.

  13. Disruption of zinc neuromodulation by Aß oligomers: therapeutic implications.

    PubMed

    Vogler, Emily C; Busciglio, Jorge

    2014-01-01

    So far, therapeutics focusing on reducing levels of amyloid beta for treatment of Alzheimer's disease have not been successful in completing clinical trials to come to market, suggesting the need of a wider perspective and the consideration of novel targets of intervention to slow or halt the progression of this disease. One such target is soluble amyloid beta in oligomeric forms, which have been demonstrated to bind with high affinity to zinc released during synaptic activity. This review considers the interaction of AβO and zinc and the role of zinc in neurotransmission along with possible neurotoxic effects of this interaction. Finally, it also discusses recent experimental data in animal models that have translated into potential treatments for AD based on the modulation of hyperexcitability and zinc homeostasis.

  14. High-resolution atomic force microscopy of soluble Abeta42 oligomers.

    PubMed

    Mastrangelo, Iris A; Ahmed, Mahiuddin; Sato, Takeshi; Liu, Wei; Wang, Chengpu; Hough, Paul; Smith, Steven O

    2006-04-21

    Soluble oligomers and protofibrils are widely thought to be the toxic forms of the Abeta42 peptide associated with Alzheimer's disease. We have investigated the structure and formation of these assemblies using a new approach in atomic force microscopy (AFM) that yields high-resolution images of hydrated proteins and allows the structure of the smallest molecular weight (MW) oligomers to be observed and characterized. AFM images of monomers, dimers and other low MW oligomers at early incubation times (< 1h) are consistent with a hairpin structure for the monomeric Abeta42 peptide. The low MW oligomers are relatively compact and have significant order. The most constant dimension of these oligomers is their height (approximately 1-3 nm) above the mica surface; their lateral dimensions (width and length) vary between 5 nm and 10nm. Flat nascent protofibrils with lengths of over 40 nm are observed at short incubation times (< or = 3h); their lateral dimensions of 6-8 nm are consistent with a mass-per-length of 9 kDa/nm previously predicted for the elementary fibril subunit. High MW oligomers with lateral dimensions of 15-25 nm and heights ranging from 2-8 nm are common at high concentrations of Abeta. We show that an inhibitor designed to block the sheet-to-sheet packing in Abeta fibrils is able to cap the heights of these oligomers at approximately 4 nm. The observation of fine structure in the high MW oligomers suggests that they are able to nucleate fibril formation. AFM images obtained as a function of incubation time reveal a sequence of assembly from monomers to soluble oligomers and protofibrils.

  15. Thermal Reaction of Cinnamate Oligomers and Their Effect on the Orientational Stability of Liquid Crystals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hah, Hyundae; Sung, Shi‑Joon; Park, Jung‑Ki

    2006-08-01

    Cinnamate groups are well-known for a dimerization reaction upon exposure to ultraviolet irradiation and a thermal reaction after being heated. In this study, to verify the thermal reaction of the cinnamate group in detail, we investigated the thermal crosslinking of cinnamate oligomers. The thermal reaction of cinnamate oligomers of low molecular weight is induced more readily by thermal energy compared with that of cinnamate polymers. This reaction is attributed to a radical reaction involving the carbon-carbon double bond in the cinnamate group. The orientation of the liquid crystal depended on the length of the spacers in the cinnamate oligomers.

  16. Studies on Oligomer Metal Complexes Derived from Bisamic Acid of Pyromellitic Dianhydride and 4-Bromoaniline

    PubMed Central

    Patel, Yogesh S.

    2014-01-01

    Novel oligomer metal complexes (2a–f) of the ligand 2,5-bis((4-bromophenyl)carbamoyl) terephthalic acid (1) were prepared using transition metal salts and characterized by various spectroscopic techniques. The geometry of oligomer metal complexes was carried out by electronic spectral analysis and magnetic measurement studies. Polymeric properties have also been carried out. Ligand was synthesized using pyromellitic dianhydride and 4-bromoaniline. It was duly characterized. All novel synthesized compounds 1 and 2a–f were evaluated for their antibacterial and antifungal activity. The results showed significantly higher antibacterial and antifungal activity of oligomer metal complexes compared to the ligand. PMID:27379295

  17. Studies on Oligomer Metal Complexes Derived from Bisamic Acid of Pyromellitic Dianhydride and 4-Bromoaniline.

    PubMed

    Patel, Yogesh S

    2014-01-01

    Novel oligomer metal complexes (2a-f) of the ligand 2,5-bis((4-bromophenyl)carbamoyl) terephthalic acid (1) were prepared using transition metal salts and characterized by various spectroscopic techniques. The geometry of oligomer metal complexes was carried out by electronic spectral analysis and magnetic measurement studies. Polymeric properties have also been carried out. Ligand was synthesized using pyromellitic dianhydride and 4-bromoaniline. It was duly characterized. All novel synthesized compounds 1 and 2a-f were evaluated for their antibacterial and antifungal activity. The results showed significantly higher antibacterial and antifungal activity of oligomer metal complexes compared to the ligand.

  18. Common structure and toxic function of amyloid oligomers implies a common mechanism of pathogenesis.

    PubMed

    Glabe, Charles G; Kayed, Rakez

    2006-01-24

    Recent findings indicate that soluble amyloid oligomers may represent the primary pathologic species in degenerative diseases. These amyloid oligomers share common structural features and the ability to permeabilize membranes, suggesting that they also share a common primary mechanism of pathogenesis. Membrane permeabilization by amyloid oligomers may initiate a common group of downstream pathologic processes, including intracellular calcium dyshomeostasis, production of reactive oxygen species, altered signaling pathways, and mitochondrial dysfunction that represent key effectors of cellular dysfunction and cell death in amyloid-associated degenerative disease, such as sporadic inclusion-body myositis.

  19. Red-emitting π-conjugated oligomers infused single-wall carbon nanotube sheets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fujimori, Toshihiko; Urita, Koki

    2016-04-01

    We demonstrate the one-step thermal fusion and infusion of pyrene molecules inside single-wall carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs). Despite the presence of metallic-SWCNTs, which behave as a quencher due to gapless electronic states, the nanohybrids consisting of pyrene and/or azupyrene oligomers infused SWCNT sheets exhibit red fluorescence by the ultraviolet, blue, and green light excitations. The wavelength-independent light-emitting behavior is explained by (1) infused PAH oligomers inside semiconducting-SWCNTs and (2) the peculiar π-π interaction through mixed π-conjugated state between the π-conjugated oligomers and non-armchair metallic-SWCNTs.

  20. DEVELOPING AN EXPOSURE-DOSE-RESPONSE MODEL FOR THE ACUTE NEUROTOXICITY OF ORGANIC SOLVENTS: OVERVIEW AND PROGRESS ON IN VITRO MODELS AND DOSIMETRY.

    EPA Science Inventory

    This article provides an overview of the current status of an exposure-dose-response (EDR) model for the volatile organic compound toluene. This model is being developed as a vehicle for understanding the neurotoxicity of organic solvents and will be used to support risk assessme...

  1. Effect of molecular weight of oligomer on ionic diffusion in oligomer electrolytes and its implication for dye-sensitized solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Park, Jong Hyuk; Choi, Kyu Jin; Kim, Junkyung; Kang, Yong Soo; Lee, Sang-Soo

    This study measures the diffusion coefficients of I - and I 3 - in oligomer electrolytes as a function of the molecular weight of oligomers and investigates their effect on the performance of dye-sensitized solar cells (DSSCs). The high-diffusion coefficients of ions in an oligomer electrolyte with a lower molecular weight can help to promote the redox mechanism in DSSCs and thereby increase the short-circuit current density. They can also cause a decrease in the open-circuit voltage since a high-diffusion coefficient of I 3 - is capable of reducing the lifetime of electrons in TiO 2 electrodes. To offset these effects, N-methyl-benzimidazole is added to the oligomer electrolytes, thereby improving the open-circuit voltage and fill factor and, consequently, the overall energy-conversion efficiency, which increases to over 5%. A further test involving storage at a high temperature of 75 °C demonstrates that DSSCs employing the oligomer electrolytes show excellent thermal stability over 200 h.

  2. Large Soluble Oligomers of Amyloid β-Protein from Alzheimer Brain Are Far Less Neuroactive Than the Smaller Oligomers to Which They Dissociate.

    PubMed

    Yang, Ting; Li, Shaomin; Xu, Huixin; Walsh, Dominic M; Selkoe, Dennis J

    2017-01-04

    Soluble oligomers of amyloid β-protein (oAβ) isolated from the brains of Alzheimer's disease (AD) patients have been shown experimentally (in the absence of amyloid plaques) to impair hippocampal synaptic plasticity, decrease synapses, induce tau hyperphosphorylation and neuritic dystrophy, activate microglial inflammation, and impair memory in normal adult rodents. Nevertheless, there has been controversy about what types of oligomers actually confer these AD-like phenotypes. Here, we show that the vast majority of soluble Aβ species obtained from brains of humans who died with confirmed AD elute at high molecular weight (HMW) on nondenaturing size-exclusion chromatography. These species have little or no cytotoxic activity in several bioassays. However, incubation of HMW oAβ in mildly alkaline buffer led to their quantitative dissociation into low molecular weight oligomers (∼8-70 kDa), and these were now far more bioactive: they impaired hippocampal LTP, decreased neuronal levels of β2-adrenergic receptors, and activated microglia in wt mice in vivo Thus, most soluble Aβ assemblies in AD cortex are large and inactive but under certain circumstances can dissociate into smaller, highly bioactive species. Insoluble amyloid plaques likely sequester soluble HMW oligomers, limiting their potential to dissociate. We conclude that conditions that destabilize HMW oligomers or retard the sequestration of their smaller, more bioactive components are important drivers of Aβ toxicity. Selectively targeting these small, cytotoxic forms should be therapeutically beneficial.

  3. Differential effects of amphetamines-induced neurotoxicity on appetitive and aversive Pavlovian conditioning in mice.

    PubMed

    Achat-Mendes, Cindy; Ali, Syed F; Itzhak, Yossef

    2005-06-01

    The abuse of substituted amphetamines such as methamphetamine (METH) and 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA/Ecstasy) can result in neurotoxicity, manifested as the depletion of dopamine (DA) and 5-hydroxytriptamine (5-HT; serotonin) axon terminal markers in humans and animal models. Human METH and MDMA users exhibit impairments in memory and executive functions, which may be a direct consequence of the neurotoxic potential of amphetamines. The objective of this study was to investigate the influence of amphetamines-induced neurotoxicity on Pavlovian learning. Using mouse models of selective DA neurotoxicity (METH; 5 mg/kg x 3), selective 5-HT neurotoxicity (fenfluramine /FEN; 25 mg/kg x 4) and dual DA and 5-HT neurotoxicity (MDMA; 15 mg/kg x 4), appetitive and aversive conditioning were investigated. Dopaminergic neurotoxicity significantly impaired METH and cocaine conditioned place preference (CPP), but had no effect on LiCl-induced conditioned place aversion (CPA). In contrast, serotonergic neurotoxicity significantly enhanced CPP, and had no effect on CPA. Dual dopaminergic/serotonergic neurotoxicity had no apparent effect on CPP; however, CPA was significantly attenuated. Postmortem analysis revealed that significantly diminished levels of DA and 5-HT markers persisted in the striatum, frontal cortex, hippocampus, and amygdala. These findings suggest that amphetamines-induced dopaminergic and serotonergic neurotoxicity exert opposing influences on the affective state produced by subsequent drug reward, while dual dopaminergic/serotonergic neurotoxicity impairs associative learning of aversive conditioning. Furthermore, results revealed that amphetamines-induced DA and 5-HT neurotoxicity modulates appetitive Pavlovian conditioning similar to other DA and 5-HT neurotoxins. Modulation of Pavlovian conditioning by amphetamines-induced neurotoxicity may be relevant to compulsive drug-seeking behavior in METH and MDMA abusers.

  4. 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

  5. Neurotoxicity of developmental hypothyroxinemia and hypothyroidism in rats: Impairments of long-term potentiation are mediated by phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase signaling pathway

    SciTech Connect

    Wang, Yi; Wei, Wei; Wang, Yuan; Dong, Jing; Song, Binbin; Min, Hui; Teng, Weiping; Chen, Jie

    2013-09-01

    Neurotoxicity of iodine deficiency-induced hypothyroidism during developmental period results in serious impairments of brain function, such as learning and memory. These impairments are largely irreversible, and the underlying mechanisms remain unclear. In addition to hypothyroidism, iodine deficiency may cause hypothyroxinemia, a relatively subtle form of thyroid hormone deficiency. Neurotoxicity of developmental hypothyroxinemia also potentially impairs learning and memory. However, more direct evidence of the associations between developmental hypothyroxinemia and impairments of learning and memory should be provided, and the underlying mechanisms remain to be elucidated. Thus, in the present study, we investigated the effects of developmental hypothyroxinemia and hypothyroidism on long-term potentiation (LTP), a widely accepted cellular model of learning and memory, in the hippocampal CA1 region. The activation of the phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K) signaling pathway – a pathway closely associated with synaptic plasticity and learning and memory – was also investigated. Wistar rats were treated with iodine deficient diet or methimazole (MMZ) to induce developmental hypothyroxinemia or hypothyroidism. The results showed that developmental hypothyroxinemia caused by mild iodine deficiency and developmental hypothyroidism caused by severe iodine deficiency or MMZ significantly reduced the field-excitatory postsynaptic potential (f-EPSP) slope and the population spike (PS) amplitude. Decreased activation of the PI3K signaling pathway was also observed in rats subjected to developmental hypothyroxinemia or hypothyroidism. Our results may support the hypothesis that neurotoxicity of both developmental hypothyroxinemia and hypothyroidism causes damages to learning and memory. Our results also suggest that decreased activation of the PI3K signaling pathway may contribute to impairments of LTP caused by neurotoxicity of both developmental hypothyroxinemia and

  6. Neurotoxicity and other pharmacological activities of the snake venom phospholipase A2 OS2: The N-terminal region is more important than enzymatic activity

    PubMed Central

    Rouault, Morgane; Rash, Lachlan D.; Escoubas, Pierre; Boilard, Eric; Bollinger, James; Lomonte, Bruno; Maurin, Thomas; Guillaume, Carole; Canaan, Stéphane; Deregnaucourt, Christiane; Schrével, Joseph; Doglio, Alain; Gutiérrez, José María; Lazdunski, Michel; Gelb, Michael H.; Lambeau, Gérard

    2009-01-01

    Several snake venom secreted phospholipases A2 (sPLA2s) including OS2 exert a variety of pharmacological effects ranging from central neurotoxicity to anti-HIV activity by mechanisms that are not yet fully understood. To conclusively address the role of enzymatic activity and map the key structural elements of OS2 responsible for its pharmacological properties, we have prepared single point OS2 mutants at the catalytic site and large chimeras between OS2 and OS1, an homologous but non toxic sPLA2. Most importantly, we found that the enzymatic activity of the active site mutant H48Q is 500-fold lower than that of the wild-type protein, while central neurotoxicity is only 16-fold lower, providing convincing evidence that catalytic activity is at most a minor factor that determines central neurotoxicity. The chimera approach has identified the N-terminal region (residues 1–22) of OS2, but not the central one (residues 58–89), as crucial for both enzymatic activity and pharmacological effects. The C-terminal region of OS2 (residues 102–119) was found to be critical for enzymatic activity, but not for central neurotoxicity and anti-HIV activity, allowing us to further dissociate enzymatic activity and pharmacological effects. Finally, direct binding studies with the C-terminal chimera which poorly binds to phospholipids while it is still neurotoxic, led to the identification of a subset of brain N-type receptors which may be directly involved in central neurotoxicity. PMID:16669624

  7. Neurotoxicity and other pharmacological activities of the snake venom phospholipase A2 OS2: the N-terminal region is more important than enzymatic activity.

    PubMed

    Rouault, Morgane; Rash, Lachlan D; Escoubas, Pierre; Boilard, Eric; Bollinger, James; Lomonte, Bruno; Maurin, Thomas; Guillaume, Carole; Canaan, Stéphane; Deregnaucourt, Christiane; Schrével, Joseph; Doglio, Alain; Gutiérrez, José María; Lazdunski, Michel; Gelb, Michael H; Lambeau, Gérard

    2006-05-09

    Several snake venom secreted phospholipases A2 (sPLA2s) including OS2 exert a variety of pharmacological effects ranging from central neurotoxicity to anti-HIV activity by mechanisms that are not yet fully understood. To conclusively address the role of enzymatic activity and map the key structural elements of OS2 responsible for its pharmacological properties, we have prepared single point OS2 mutants at the catalytic site and large chimeras between OS2 and OS1, a homologous but nontoxic sPLA2. Most importantly, we found that the enzymatic activity of the active site mutant H48Q is 500-fold lower than that of the wild-type protein, while central neurotoxicity is only 16-fold lower, providing convincing evidence that catalytic activity is at most a minor factor that determines central neurotoxicity. The chimera approach has identified the N-terminal region (residues 1-22) of OS2, but not the central one (residues 58-89), as crucial for both enzymatic activity and pharmacological effects. The C-terminal region of OS2 (residues 102-119) was found to be critical for enzymatic activity, but not for central neurotoxicity and anti-HIV activity, allowing us to further dissociate enzymatic activity and pharmacological effects. Finally, direct binding studies with the C-terminal chimera, which poorly binds to phospholipids while it is still neurotoxic, led to the identification of a subset of brain N-type receptors which may be directly involved in central neurotoxicity.

  8. The double-edged sword: Neurotoxicity of chemotherapy.

    PubMed

    Magge, Rajiv S; DeAngelis, Lisa M

    2015-03-01

    The number of available therapies for hematologic malignancies continues to grow at a rapid pace. Unfortunately, many of these treatments carry both central and peripheral nervous system toxicities, potentially limiting a patient's ability to tolerate a full course of treatment. Neurotoxicity with chemotherapy is common and second only to myelosuppression as a reason to limit dosing. This review addresses the neurotoxicity of newly available therapeutic agents including brentuximab vedotin and blinatumomab as well as classic ones such as methotrexate, vinca alkaloids and platinums. Although peripheral neuropathy is common with many drugs, other complications such as seizures and encephalopathy may require more immediate attention. Rapid recognition of adverse neurologic effects may lead to earlier treatment and appropriate adjustment of dosing regimens. In addition, knowledge of common toxicities may help differentiate chemotherapy-related symptoms from actual progression of cancer into the CNS.

  9. Persistent neurotoxicity from a battery fire: is cadmium the culprit?

    PubMed

    Kilburn, K H; McKinley, K L

    1996-07-01

    Two train conductors had chest tightness, painful breathing, muscle cramps, and nausea after fighting a fire in a battery box under a passenger coach. Shortly thereafter, they became anosmic and had excessive fatigue, persistent headaches, sleep disturbances, irritability, unstable moods, and hypertension. Urinary cadmium and nickel levels were elevated. Neurobehavioral testing showed, in comparison to referents, prolonged reaction times, abnormal balance, prolonged blink reflex latency, severely constricted visual fields, and decreased vibration sense. Test scores showed that immediate verbal and visual recall were normal but delayed recall was reduced. Scores on overlearned information were normal. Tests measuring dexterity, coordination, decision making, and peripheral sensation and discrimination revealed abnormalities. Repeat testing 6 and 12 months after exposure showed persistent abnormalities. Cadmium and vinyl chloride are the most plausible causes of the neurotoxicity, but fumes from the fire may have contained other neurotoxic chemicals.

  10. Functional, Structural, and Neurotoxicity Biomarkers in Integrative Assessment of Concussions

    PubMed Central

    Dambinova, Svetlana A.; Maroon, Joseph C.; Sufrinko, Alicia M.; Mullins, John David; Alexandrova, Eugenia V.; Potapov, Alexander A.

    2016-01-01

    Concussion is a complex, heterogeneous process affecting the brain. Accurate assessment and diagnosis and appropriate management of concussion are essential to ensure that athletes do not prematurely return to play or others to work or active military duty, risking re-injury. To date, clinical diagnosis relies primarily on evaluating subjects for functional impairment using instruments that include neurocognitive testing, subjective symptom report, and neurobehavioral assessments, such as balance and vestibular-ocular reflex testing. Structural biomarkers, defined as advanced neuroimaging techniques and biomarkers assessing neurotoxicity and immunoexcitotoxicity, may complement the use of functional biomarkers. We hypothesize that neurotoxicity AMPA, NMDA, and kainite receptor biomarkers might be utilized as a part of comprehensive approach to concussion evaluations, with the goal of increasing diagnostic accuracy and facilitating treatment planning and prognostic assessment. PMID:27761129

  11. A geometric arrangement algorithm for structure determination of symmetric protein homo-oligomers from NOEs and RDCs.

    PubMed

    Martin, Jeffrey W; Yan, Anthony K; Bailey-Kellogg, Chris; Zhou, Pei; Donald, Bruce R

    2011-11-01

    Nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy is a primary tool to perform structural studies of proteins in physiologically-relevant solution conditions. Restraints on distances between pairs of nuclei in the protein, derived from the nuclear Overhauser effect (NOE), provide information about the structure of the protein in its folded state. NMR studies of symmetric protein homo-oligomers present a unique challenge. Using X-filtered NOESY experiments, it is possible to determine whether an NOE restrains a pair of protons across different subunits or within a single subunit, but current experimental techniques are unable to determine in which subunits the restrained protons lie. Consequently, it is difficult to assign NOEs to particular pairs of subunits with certainty, thus hindering the structural analysis of the oligomeric state. Computational approaches are needed to address this subunit ambiguity, but traditional solutions often rely on stochastic search coupled with simulated annealing and simulations of simplified molecular dynamics, which have many tunable parameters that must be chosen carefully and can also fail to report structures consistent with the experimental restraints. In addition, these traditional approaches rarely provide guarantees on running time or solution quality. We reduce the structure determination of homo-oligomers with cyclic symmetry to computing geometric arrangements of unions of annuli in a plane. Our algorithm, disco, runs in expected O(n²) time, where n is the number of distance restraints, potentially assigned ambiguously. disco is guaranteed to report the exact set of oligomer structures consistent with the distance restraints and also with orientational restraints from residual dipolar couplings (RDCs). We demonstrate our method using two symmetric protein complexes: the trimeric E. coli diacylglycerol kinase (DAGK) and a dimeric mutant of the immunoglobulin-binding domain B1 of streptococcal protein G (GB1). In both cases

  12. A review of the neurotoxicity risk of selected hydrocarbon fuels.

    PubMed

    Ritchie, G D; Still, K R; Alexander, W K; Nordholm, A F; Wilson, C L; Rossi, J; Mattie, D R

    2001-01-01

    Over 1.3 million civilian and military personnel are occupationally exposed to hydrocarbon fuels, emphasizing gasoline, jet fuel, diesel fuel, or kerosene. These exposures may occur acutely or chronically to raw fuel, vapor, aerosol, or fuel combustion exhaust by dermal, respiratory inhalation, or oral ingestion routes, and commonly occur concurrently with exposure to other chemicals and stressors. Hydrocarbon fuels are complex mixtures of 150-260+ aliphatic and aromatic hydrocarbon compounds containing varying concentrations of potential neurotoxicants including benzene, n-hexane, toluene, xylenes, naphthalene, and certain n-C9-C12 fractions (n-propylbenzene, trimethylbenzene isomers). Due to their natural petroleum base, the chemical composition of different hydrocarbon fuels is not defined, and the fuels are classified according to broad performance criteria such as flash and boiling points, complicating toxicological comparisons. While hydrocarbon fuel exposures occur typically at concentrations below permissible exposure limits for their constituent chemicals, it is unknown whether additive or synergistic interactions may result in unpredicted neurotoxicity. The inclusion of up to six performance additives in existing fuel formulations presents additional neurotoxicity challenge. Additionally, exposures to hydrocarbon fuels, typically with minimal respiratory or dermal protection, range from weekly fueling of personal automobiles to waist-deep immersion of personnel in raw fuel during maintenance of aircraft fuel tanks. Occupational exposures may occur on a near daily basis for from several months to over 20 yr. A number of published studies have reported acute or persisting neurotoxic effects from acute, subchronic, or chronic exposure of humans or animals to hydrocarbon fuels, or to certain constituent chemicals of these fuels. This review summarizes human and animal studies of hydrocarbon fuel-induced neurotoxicity and neurobehavioral consequences. It is

  13. Neurotoxicity produced by dibromoacetic acid in drinking water of rats.

    PubMed

    Moser, V C; Phillips, P M; Levine, A B; McDaniel, K L; Sills, R C; Jortner, B S; Butt, M T

    2004-05-01

    An evaluation of potential adverse human health effects of disinfection byproducts requires study of both cancer and noncancer endpoints; however, no studies have evaluated the neurotoxic potential of a common haloacetic acid, dibromoacetic acid (DBA). This study characterized the neurotoxicity of DBA during 6-month exposure in the drinking water of rats. Adolescent male and female Fischer 344 rats were administered DBA at 0, 0.2, 0.6, and 1.5 g/l. On a mg/kg/day basis, the consumed dosages decreased greatly over the exposure period, with average intakes of 0, 20, 72, and 161 mg/kg/day. Weight gain was depressed in the high-concentration group, and concentration-related diarrhea and hair loss were observed early in exposure. Testing with a functional observational battery and motor activity took place before dosing and at 1, 2, 4, and 6 months. DBA produced concentration-related neuromuscular toxicity (mid and high concentrations) characterized by limb weakness, mild gait abnormalities, and hypotonia, as well as sensorimotor depression (all concentrations), with decreased responses to a tail-pinch and click. Other signs of toxicity at the highest concentration included decreased activity and chest clasping. Neurotoxicity was evident as early as one month, but did not progress with continued exposure. The major neuropathological finding was degeneration of spinal cord nerve fibers (mid and high concentrations). Cellular vacuolization in spinal cord gray matter (mostly) and in white matter (occasionally) tracts was also observed. No treatment-related changes were seen in brain, eyes, peripheral nerves, or peripheral ganglia. The lowest-observable effect level for neurobehavioral changes was 20 mg/kg/day (produced by 0.2 g/l, lowest concentration tested), whereas this dosage was a no-effect level for neuropathological changes. These studies suggest that neurotoxicity should be considered in the overall hazard evaluation of haloacetic acids.

  14. The dopamine transporter: role in neurotoxicity and human disease

    SciTech Connect

    Bannon, Michael J. . E-mail: mbannon@med.wayne.edu

    2005-05-01

    The dopamine transporter (DAT) is a plasma membrane transport protein expressed exclusively within a small subset of CNS neurons. It plays a crucial role in controlling dopamine-mediated neurotransmission and a number of associated behaviors. This review focuses on recent data elucidating the role of the dopamine transporter in neurotoxicity and a number of CNS disorders, including Parkinson disease, drug abuse, and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)

  15. Manganese: Recent advances in understanding its transport and neurotoxicity

    SciTech Connect

    Aschner, Michael . E-mail: Michael.Aschner@vanderbilt.edu; Guilarte, Tomas R.; Schneider, Jay S.; Zheng Wei

    2007-06-01

    The present review is based on presentations from the meeting of the Society of Toxicology in San Diego, CA (March 2006). It addresses recent developments in the understanding of the transport of manganese (Mn) into the central nervous system (CNS), as well as brain imaging and neurocognitive studies in non-human primates aimed at improving our understanding of the mechanisms of Mn neurotoxicity. Finally, we discuss potential therapeutic modalities for treating Mn intoxication in humans.

  16. Exploration of Prostate Cancer Treatment Induced Neurotoxicity with Neuroimaging

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2008-05-01

    AD_________________ Award Number: W81XWH-06-1-0033 TITLE: Exploration of Prostate Cancer Treatment Induced...Prostate Cancer Treatment Induced Neurotoxicity with Neuroimaging 5b. GRANT NUMBER W81XWH-06-1-0033 5c. PROGRAM ELEMENT NUMBER 6. AUTHOR(S) Jeri...consequences on brain health of prostate cancer treatments in men despite data suggesting that ADT may cause memory or other cognitive impairments. Our study

  17. Toxicity testing of neurotoxic pesticides in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Meyer, Dean; Williams, Phillip L

    2014-01-01

    The use of pesticides is ubiquitous worldwide, and these chemicals exert adverse effects on both target and nontarget species. Understanding the modes of action of pesticides, as well as quantifying exposure concentration and duration, is an important goal of clinicians and environmental health scientists. Some chemical exposures result in adverse effects on the nervous system. The nematode Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans) is a model lab organism well established for studying neurotoxicity, since the components of its nervous system are mapped and known, and most of its neurotransmitters correspond to human homologs. This review encompasses published studies in which C. elegans nematodes were exposed to pesticides with known neurotoxic actions. Endpoints measured include changes in locomotion, feeding behavior, brood size, growth, life span, and cell death. From data presented, evidence indicates that C. elegans can serve a role in assessing the effects of neurotoxic pesticides at the sublethal cellular level, thereby advancing our understanding of the mechanisms underlying toxicity induced by these chemicals. A proposed toxicity testing scheme for water-soluble chemicals is also included.

  18. In vitro neurotoxic hazard characterisation of dinitrophenolic herbicides.

    PubMed

    Heusinkveld, Harm J; van Vliet, Arie C; Nijssen, Peter C G; Westerink, Remco H S

    2016-06-11

    Dinitrophenolic compounds are powerful toxicants with a long history of use in agriculture and industry. While (high) human exposure levels are not uncommon, in particular for agricultural workers during the spraying season, the neurotoxic mechanism(s) that underlie the human health effects are largely unknown. We therefore investigated the in vitro effects of two dinitrophenolic herbicides (DNOC and dinoseb) on a battery of neurotoxicity endpoints in (dopaminergic) rat PC12 cells. Cell viability, mitochondrial activity, oxidative stress and caspase activation were assessed using fluorescence-based bioassays (CFDA, alamar Blue, H2DCFDA and Ac-DEVD-AMC, respectively), whereas changes in intracellular [Ca(2+)]i were assessed using single-cell fluorescence microscopy with Fura-2AM. The combined results demonstrate that exposure to both DNOC and dinoseb is linked to calcium release from the endoplasmic reticulum and activation of caspase-mediated apoptotic pathways. In subsequent experiments, immunofluorescent labelling with specific antibodies was used to determine changes in intracellular α-synuclein levels, demonstrating that both DNOC and dinoseb increase levels of intracellular α-synuclein. The combined results indicate that in vitro exposure to DNOC and dinoseb activates pathways that are not only involved in acute neurotoxicity but also in long-term effects as seen in neurodegeneration.

  19. Peripheral ammonia as a mediator of methamphetamine neurotoxicity.

    PubMed

    Halpin, Laura E; Yamamoto, Bryan K

    2012-09-19

    Ammonia is metabolized by the liver and has established neurological effects. The current study examined the possibility that ammonia contributes to the neurotoxic effects of methamphetamine (METH). The results show that a binge dosing regimen of METH to the rat increased plasma and brain ammonia concentrations that were paralleled by evidence of hepatotoxicity. The role of peripheral ammonia in the neurotoxic effects of METH was further substantiated by the demonstration that the enhancement of peripheral ammonia excretion blocked the increases in brain and plasma ammonia and attenuated the long-term depletions of dopamine and serotonin typically produced by METH. Conversely, the localized perfusion of ammonia in combination with METH, but not METH alone or ammonia alone, into the striatum recapitulated the neuronal damage produced by the systemic administration of METH. Furthermore, this damage produced by the local administration of ammonia and METH was blocked by the GYKI 52466 [4-(8-methyl-9H-1,3-dioxolo[4,5-h][2,3]benzodiazepin-5-yl)-benzamine hydrochloride], an AMPA receptor antagonist. These findings highlight the importance of ammonia derived from the periphery as a small-molecule mediator of METH neurotoxicity and more broadly emphasize the importance of peripheral organ damage as a possible mechanism that mediates the neuropathology produced by drugs of abuse and other neuroactive molecules.

  20. Phytochemicals Mediated Remediation of Neurotoxicity Induced by Heavy Metals.

    PubMed

    Gupta, Vivek Kumar; Singh, Shweta; Agrawal, Anju; Siddiqi, Nikhat Jamal; Sharma, Bechan

    2015-01-01

    Almost all the environmental components including both the abiotic and biotic factors have been consistently threatened by excessive contamination of heavy metals continuously released from various sources. Different heavy metals have been reported to generate adverse effects in many ways. Heavy metals induced neurotoxicity and impairment in signalling cascade leading to cell death (apoptosis) has been indicated by several workers. On one hand, these metals are required by the cellular systems to regulate various biological functions of normal cells, while on the other their biomagnification in the cellular systems produces adverse effects. The mechanism by which the heavy metals induce neurotoxicity follows free radicals production pathway(s) specially the generation of reactive oxygen species and reactive nitrogen species. These free radicals produced in excess have been shown to create an imbalance between the oxidative and antioxidative systems leading to emergence of oxidative stress, which may cause necrosis, DNA damage, and many neurodegenerative disorders. This mini review summarizes the current knowledge available on the protective role of varied natural products isolated from different herbs/plants in imparting protection against heavy metals (cadmium, lead, arsenic, and mercury) mediated neurotoxicity.

  1. Homocysteine excess: delineating the possible mechanism of neurotoxicity and depression.

    PubMed

    Bhatia, Pankaj; Singh, Nirmal

    2015-12-01

    Homocysteine (Hcy) is a nonproteogenic sulfur containing amino acid derived from dietary methionine through demethylation. Homocysteine can be re-methylated to methionine [precursor of S-adenosylmethionine (SAM)] via the re-methylation or 5-methyltetrahydrofolate pathway or undergoes transsulfuration to form cysteine by the action of metabolic enzymes and cofactors. Impaired metabolism due to genetic alteration in metabolic enzymes (methionine synthase, methyltetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR), cystathionine β-synthase (CβS), and cystathionine-γ-lyase (CγL) or deficiency in cofactors (vitamin B6 , B12 , folate) may lead to acquired metabolic anomaly known as hyperhomocysteinemia. Hcy excess decreases the S-adenosylmethionine (SAM)-dependent synthesis of catecholamines, viz. dopamine, norepinephrine, epinephrine, and noncatecholamine, viz. serotonin (5-HT), due to genetic alteration in key enzyme MTHFR in the homocysteine metabolism pathway that leads to depression. Thus, hyperhomocysteinemia (HHcy)-induced SAM level is influenced by the single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) MTHFR C677T. Furthermore, HHcy leads to production of precarious neurotoxic product homocysteic acid (HCA) and cysteine sulfinic acid (CSA) which acts as an N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor agonist and has neurotoxic effects on dopaminergic neurons. In the current review, an attempt has been made to discuss the neurotoxic effects of HHcy in the pathogenesis of depression.

  2. Glial Reactivity in Resistance to Methamphetamine-Induced Neurotoxicity

    PubMed Central

    Friend, Danielle M.; Keefe, Kristen A.

    2013-01-01

    Neurotoxic regimens of methamphetamine (METH) result in reactive microglia and astrocytes in striatum. Prior data indicate that rats with partial dopamine (DA) loss resulting from prior exposure to METH are resistant to further decreases in striatal DA when re-exposed to METH 30 days later. Such resistant animals also do not show an activated microglia phenotype, suggesting a relation between microglial activation and METH-induced neurotoxicity. To date, the astrocyte response in such resistance has not been examined. Thus, this study examined glial-fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) and CD11b protein expression in striata of animals administered saline or a neurotoxic regimen of METH on postnatal days 60 and/or 90 (Saline:Saline, Saline:METH, METH:Saline, METH:METH). Consistent with previous work, animals experiencing acute toxicity (Saline:METH) showed both activated microglia and astocytes, whereas those resistant to the acute toxicity (METH:METH) did not show activated microglia. Interestingly, GFAP expression remained elevated in rats exposed to METH at PND60 (METH:Saline), and was not elevated further in resistant rats treated for the second time with METH (METH:METH). These data suggest that astrocytes remain reactive up to 30 days post-METH exposure. Additionally, these data indicate that astrocyte reactivity does not reflect acute, METH-induced DA terminal toxicity, whereas microglial reactivity does. PMID:23414433

  3. Developmental neurotoxic effects of Malathion on 3D neurosphere system

    PubMed Central

    Salama, Mohamed; Lotfy, Ahmed; Fathy, Khaled; Makar, Maria; El-emam, Mona; El-gamal, Aya; El-gamal, Mohamed; Badawy, Ahmad; Mohamed, Wael M.Y.; Sobh, Mohamed

    2015-01-01

    Developmental neurotoxicity (DNT) refers to the toxic effects induced by various chemicals on brain during the early childhood period. As human brains are vulnerable during this period, various chemicals would have significant effects on brains during early childhood. Some toxicants have been confirmed to induce developmental toxic effects on CNS; however, most of agents cannot be identified with certainty. This is because available animal models do not cover the whole spectrum of CNS developmental periods. A novel alternative method that can overcome most of the limitations of the conventional techniques is the use of 3D neurosphere system. This in-vitro system can recapitulate many of the changes during the period of brain development making it an ideal model for predicting developmental neurotoxic effects. In the present study we verified the possible DNT of Malathion, which is one of organophosphate pesticides with suggested possible neurotoxic effects on nursing children. Three doses of Malathion (0.25 μM, 1 μM and 10 μM) were used in cultured neurospheres for a period of 14 days. Malathion was found to affect proliferation, differentiation and viability of neurospheres, these effects were positively correlated to doses and time progress. This study confirms the DNT effects of Malathion on 3D neurosphere model. Further epidemiological studies will be needed to link these results to human exposure and effects data. PMID:27054080

  4. Phytochemicals Mediated Remediation of Neurotoxicity Induced by Heavy Metals

    PubMed Central

    Gupta, Vivek Kumar; Singh, Shweta; Agrawal, Anju; Siddiqi, Nikhat Jamal; Sharma, Bechan

    2015-01-01

    Almost all the environmental components including both the abiotic and biotic factors have been consistently threatened by excessive contamination of heavy metals continuously released from various sources. Different heavy metals have been reported to generate adverse effects in many ways. Heavy metals induced neurotoxicity and impairment in signalling cascade leading to cell death (apoptosis) has been indicated by several workers. On one hand, these metals are required by the cellular systems to regulate various biological functions of normal cells, while on the other their biomagnification in the cellular systems produces adverse effects. The mechanism by which the heavy metals induce neurotoxicity follows free radicals production pathway(s) specially the generation of reactive oxygen species and reactive nitrogen species. These free radicals produced in excess have been shown to create an imbalance between the oxidative and antioxidative systems leading to emergence of oxidative stress, which may cause necrosis, DNA damage, and many neurodegenerative disorders. This mini review summarizes the current knowledge available on the protective role of varied natural products isolated from different herbs/plants in imparting protection against heavy metals (cadmium, lead, arsenic, and mercury) mediated neurotoxicity. PMID:26618004

  5. Caffeine prevents human prion protein-mediated neurotoxicity through the induction of autophagy.

    PubMed

    Moon, Ji-Hong; Lee, Ju-Hee; Park, Jin-Young; Kim, Sung-Wook; Lee, You-Jin; Kang, Seog-Jin; Seol, Jae-Won; Ahn, Dong-Choon; Park, Sang-Youel

    2014-08-01

    The human prion protein (PrP) fragment PrP(106‑126) possesses the majority of the pathogenic properties associated with the infectious scrapie isoform of PrP, known as PrPSc. The accumulation of PrPSc in the brain of humans and animals affects the central nervous system. Recent epidemiological studies have suggested that caffeine, one of the major components of coffee, exerts protective effects against the development of neurodegeneration. However, the protective effects of caffeine against prion disease have not been reported to date. In this study, we therefore investigated the effects of caffeine on PrP-mediated neurotoxicity. The protein expression of the autophagosomal marker, LC3-II, was increased by caffeine in a dose-dependent manner, and the autophagy induced by caffeine protected the neuronal cells against PrP(106‑126)‑induced cell death. On the contrary, the downregulation of LC3-II using the autophagy inhibitors, 3-methyladenine (3-ΜΑ) and wortmannin, prevented the caffeine-mediated neuroprotective effects. To the best of our knowledge, the present study provides the first evidence that treatment with caffeine protects human neuronal cells against prion‑mediated neurotoxicity and these neuroprotective effects are mediated by caffeine-induced autophagy signals. Our data suggest that treatment with caffeine may be a novel therapeutic strategy for prion peptide‑induced apoptosis.

  6. Phosphorylation promotes neurotoxicity in a C. elegans model of TDP-43 proteinopathy

    PubMed Central

    Liachko, Nicole F.; Guthrie, Chris R.; Kraemer, Brian C.

    2010-01-01

    Neurodegenerative disorders characterized by neuronal and glial lesions containing aggregated pathological TDP-43 protein in the cytoplasm, nucleus, or neurites are collectively referred to as TDP-43 proteinopathies. Lesions containing aggregated TDP-43 protein are a hallmark of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and frontotemporal lobar degeneration with ubiquitinated inclusions (FTLD-U). In addition, mutations in human TDP-43 cause ALS. We have developed a C. elegans model of TDP-43 proteinopathies to study the cellular, molecular, and genetic underpinnings of TDP-43 mediated neurotoxicity. Expression of normal human TDP-43 in all C. elegans neurons causes moderate motor defects, while ALS-mutant G290A, A315T, or M337V TDP-43 transgenes cause severe motor dysfunction. The model recapitulates some characteristic features of ALS and FTLD-U including age-induced decline in motor function, decreased lifespan, and degeneration of motor neurons accompanied by hyperphosphorylation, truncation, and ubiquitination of TDP-43 protein that accumulates in detergent insoluble protein deposits. In C. elegans, TDP-43 neurotoxicity is independent of activity of the cell death caspase CED-3. Furthermore, phosphorylation of TDP-43 at serine residues 409/410 drives mutant TDP-43 toxicity. This model provides a tractable system for further dissection of the cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying TDP-43 neuropathology. PMID:21123567

  7. Developmental neurotoxicity of organophosphate flame retardants in early life stages of Japanese medaka (Oryzias latipes).

    PubMed

    Sun, Liwei; Tan, Hana; Peng, Tao; Wang, Sisi; Xu, Wenbin; Qian, Haifeng; Jin, Yuanxiang; Fu, Zhengwei

    2016-12-01

    Because brominated flame retardants are being banned or phased out worldwide, organophosphate flame retardants have been used as alternatives on a large scale and have thus become ubiquitous environmental contaminants; this raises great concerns about their environmental health risk and toxicity. Considering that previous research has identified the nervous system as a sensitive target, Japanese medaka were used as an aquatic organism model to evaluate the developmental neurotoxicity of 4 organophosphate flame retardants: triphenyl phosphate, tri-n-butyl phosphate, tris(2-butoxyethyl) phosphate, and tris(2-chloroethyl) phosphate (TCEP). The embryo toxicity test showed that organophosphate flame retardant exposure could decrease hatchability, delay time to hatching, increase the occurrence of malformations, reduce body length, and slow heart rate. Regarding locomotor behavior, exposure to the tested organophosphate flame retardants (except TCEP) for 96 h resulted in hypoactivity for medaka larvae in both the free-swimming and the dark-to-light photoperiod stimulation test. Changes of acetylcholinesterase activity and transcriptional responses of genes related to the nervous system likely provide a reasonable explanation for the neurobehavioral disruption. Overall, the present study clearly demonstrates the developmental neurotoxicity of various organophosphate flame retardants with very different potency and contribute to the determination of which organophosphate flame retardants are appropriate substitutes, as well as the consideration of whether regulations are reasonable and required. Environ Toxicol Chem 2016;35:2931-2940. © 2016 SETAC.

  8. Mechanism of TiO2 nanoparticle-induced neurotoxicity in zebrafish (Danio rerio).

    PubMed

    Sheng, Lei; Wang, Ling; Su, Mingyu; Zhao, Xiaoyang; Hu, Renping; Yu, Xiaohong; Hong, Jie; Liu, Dong; Xu, Bingqing; Zhu, Yunting; Wang, Han; Hong, Fashui

    2016-02-01

    Zebrafish (Danio rerio) has been used historically for evaluating the toxicity of environmental and aqueous toxicants, and there is an emerging literature reporting toxic effects of manufactured nanoparticles (NPs) in zebrafish embryos. Few researches, however, are focused on the neurotoxicity on adult zebrafish after subchronic exposure to TiO2 NPs. This study was designed to evaluate the morphological changes, alterations of neurochemical contents, and expressions of memory behavior-related genes in zebrafish brains caused by exposures to 5, 10, 20, and 40 μg/L TiO2 NPs for 45 consecutive days. Our data indicated that spatial recognition memory and levels of norepinephrine, dopamine, and 5-hydroxytryptamine were significantly decreased and NO levels were markedly elevated, and over proliferation of glial cells, neuron apoptosis, and TiO2 NP aggregation were observed after low dose exposures of TiO2 NPs. Furthermore, the low dose exposures of TiO2 NPs significantly activated expressions of C-fos, C-jun, and BDNF genes, and suppressed expressions of p38, NGF, CREB, NR1, NR2ab, and GluR2 genes. These findings imply that low dose exposures of TiO2 NPs may result in the brain damages in zebrafish, provide a developmental basis for evaluating the neurotoxicity of subchronic exposure, and raise the caution of aquatic application of TiO2 NPs.

  9. Curcumin Protects β-Lactoglobulin Fibril Formation and Fibril-Induced Neurotoxicity in PC12Cells

    PubMed Central

    Mazaheri, Mansooreh; Moosavi-Movahedi, Ali Akbar; Saboury, Ali Akbar; Khodagholi, Fariba; Shaerzadeh, Fatemeh; Sheibani, Nader

    2015-01-01

    In this study the β-lactoglobulin fibrillation, in the presence or absence of lead ions, aflatoxin M1 and curcumin, was evaluated using ThT fluorescence, Circular dichroism spectroscopy and atomic force microscopy. To investigate the toxicity of the different form of β-Lg fibrils, in the presence or absence of above toxins and curcumin, we monitored changes in the level of reactive oxygen species and morphology of the differentiated neuron-like PC12 cells. The cell viability, cell body area, average neurite length, neurite width, number of primary neurites, percent of bipolar cells and node/primary neurite ratios were used to assess the growth and complexity of PC12 cells exposed to different form of β-Lg fibrils. Incubation of β-Lg with curcumin resulted in a significant decrease in ROS levels even in the presence of lead ions and aflatoxin M1. The β-Lg fibrils formed in the presence of lead ions and aflatoxin M1 attenuated the growth and complexity of PC12 cells compared with other form of β-Lg fibrils. However, the adverse effects of these toxins and protein fibrils were negated in the presence of curcumin. Furthermore, the antioxidant and inhibitory effects of curcumin protected PC12 cells against fibril neurotoxicity and enhanced their survival. Thus, curcumin may provide a protective effect toward β-Lg, and perhaps other protein, fibrils mediated neurotoxicity. PMID:26186474

  10. The need for developmental neurotoxicity studies in risk assessment for developmental toxicity.

    PubMed

    Hass, Ulla

    2006-08-01

    The estimated frequencies of neurodevelopmental disorders in children are relatively high, i.e. around 12%. The developing central nervous system appears to be especially susceptible to toxic insults and several developmental neurotoxicants, some with widespread occupational or consumer exposure, have been identified in humans and experimental animals. Cross-species comparability between human and experimental animals supports the assumption that developmental neurotoxicity (DNT) effects in animals indicate a potential to affect development in humans. The proposed Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) developmental neurotoxicity study (TG 426) provides an outline of behavioural and morphological endpoints that are relevant to human neurodevelopment, and the guideline is expectedly adopted during 2006. Hopefully, this may contribute to inclusion of sufficient regulatory testing for DNT in the new EU chemical regulation REACH (Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals). At present, DNT testing is not included in REACH and that gives rise to concern, as there is a recognized need for DNT testing in order to protect the susceptible developing brain.

  11. Cultured networks of excitatory projection neurons and inhibitory interneurons for studying human cortical neurotoxicity.

    PubMed

    Xu, Jin-Chong; Fan, Jing; Wang, Xueqing; Eacker, Stephen M; Kam, Tae-In; Chen, Li; Yin, Xiling; Zhu, Juehua; Chi, Zhikai; Jiang, Haisong; Chen, Rong; Dawson, Ted M; Dawson, Valina L

    2016-04-06

    Translating neuroprotective treatments from discovery in cell and animal models to the clinic has proven challenging. To reduce the gap between basic studies of neurotoxicity and neuroprotection and clinically relevant therapies, we developed a human cortical neuron culture system from human embryonic stem cells or human inducible pluripotent stem cells that generated both excitatory and inhibitory neuronal networks resembling the composition of the human cortex. This methodology used timed administration of retinoic acid to FOXG1(+) neural precursor cells leading to differentiation of neuronal populations representative of the six cortical layers with both excitatory and inhibitory neuronal networks that were functional and homeostatically stable. In human cortical neuronal cultures, excitotoxicity or ischemia due to oxygen and glucose deprivation led to cell death that was dependent on N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptors, nitric oxide (NO), and poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase (PARP) (a cell death pathway called parthanatos that is distinct from apoptosis, necroptosis, and other forms of cell death). Neuronal cell death was attenuated by PARP inhibitors that are currently in clinical trials for cancer treatment. This culture system provides a new platform for the study of human cortical neurotoxicity and suggests that PARP inhibitors may be useful for ameliorating excitotoxic and ischemic cell death in human neurons.

  12. Apobec1 Promotes Neurotoxicity-Induced Dedifferentiation of Müller Glial Cells.

    PubMed

    Xiao, Jian; Li, Xue; Chen, Lan; Han, Xin; Zhao, Wei; Li, Lianlian; Chen, Jie-Guang

    2017-02-02

    Retinal Müller glial cells in mammals acquire stem and progenitor cell properties after neurotoxic treatment. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying proliferation and dedifferentiation of adult Müller cells in the mammalian retina were unclear. In this study, treatments with N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) plus epidermal growth factor (EGF) led to the proliferation of Müller cells and expression of stem cell markers including Nanog and Nestin in the retina. The increased mRNA for Nanog and Nestin were coincident with reduced methylation of a Nanog promoter and a Nestin enhancer specific in the neural stem cells, respectively. We found that Apolipoprotein B mRNA editing catalytic subunit 1 (Apobec1) was upregulated early in the retina treated with NMDA and EGF. Moreover, overexpression of Apobec1 in primary Müller cells increased expression of Nestin and reduced methylation of the Nestin enhancer. The data suggest that neurotoxicity-induced Apobec1 may promote expression of Nestin and help cell cycle reentry of retinal Müller cells via DNA demethylation. This study provides novel insights into the molecular mechanisms underlying dedifferentiation and proliferation of Müller cells in the mammalian retina.

  13. Developmental Neurotoxicity of Methamidophos in the Embryo-Larval Stages of Zebrafish

    PubMed Central

    He, Xiaowei; Gao, Jiawei; Dong, Tianyu; Chen, Minjian; Zhou, Kun; Chang, Chunxin; Luo, Jia; Wang, Chao; Wang, Shoulin; Chen, Daozhen; Zhou, Zuomin; Tian, Ying; Xia, Yankai; Wang, Xinru

    2016-01-01

    Methamidophos is a representative organophosphate insecticide. The knowledge of its developmental neurotoxicity is limited, especially for zebrafish in the early stages of their life. Four hour post-fertilization (hpf) zebrafish embryos were exposed to several environmentally relevant concentrations of methamidophos (0, 25, and 500 μg/L) for up to 72 hpf. Locomotor behavior was then studied in the zebrafish larvae at this timepoint. Acridine orange (AO) staining was carried out in the zebrafish larvae, and the mRNA levels of genes associated with neural development (mbp and syn2a) were analyzed by reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). The number of escape responders for mechanical stimulation was significantly decreased in exposed groups. AO staining showed noticeable signs of apoptosis mainly in the brain. In addition, the mRNA levels of mbp and syn2a were both significantly down-regulated in exposed groups. Our study provides the first evidence that methamidophos exposure can cause developmental neurotoxicity in the early stages of zebrafish life, which may be caused by the effect of methamidophos on neurodevelopmental genes and the activation of cell apoptosis in the brain. PMID:28036051

  14. Astragalus Polysaccharide Suppresses 6-Hydroxydopamine-Induced Neurotoxicity in Caenorhabditis elegans

    PubMed Central

    Li, Haifeng; Ding, Fei; Wang, Hongyu; Han, Wenjing; Ma, Fangli; Hu, Minghua; Ma, Chung Wah

    2016-01-01

    Astragalus membranaceus is a medicinal plant traditionally used in China for a variety of conditions, including inflammatory and neural diseases. Astragalus polysaccharides are shown to reduce the adverse effect of levodopa which is used to treat Parkinson's disease (PD). However, the neuroprotective effect of Astragalus polysaccharides per se in PD is lacking. Using Caenorhabditis elegans models, we investigated the protective effect of astragalan, an acidic polysaccharide isolated from A. membranaceus, against the neurotoxicity of 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA), a neurotoxin that can induce parkinsonism. We show that 6-OHDA is able to degenerate dopaminergic neurons and lead to the deficiency of food-sensing behavior and a shorter lifespan in C. elegans. Interestingly, these degenerative symptoms can be attenuated by astragalan treatment. Astragalan is also shown to alleviate oxidative stress through reducing reactive oxygen species level and malondialdehyde content and increasing superoxide dismutase and glutathione peroxidase activities and reduce the expression of proapoptotic gene egl-1 in 6-OHDA-intoxicated nematodes. Further studies reveal that astragalan is capable of elevating the decreased acetylcholinesterase activity induced by 6-OHDA. Together, our results demonstrate that the protective effect of astragalan against 6-OHDA neurotoxicity is likely due to the alleviation of oxidative stress and regulation of apoptosis pathway and cholinergic system and thus provide an important insight into the therapeutic potential of Astragalus polysaccharide in neurodegeneration. PMID:27885333

  15. PGC-1α controls mitochondrial biogenesis and dynamics in lead-induced neurotoxicity

    PubMed Central

    Dabrowska, Aleksandra; Venero, Jose Luis; Iwasawa, Ryota; Hankir, Mohammed-khair; Rahman, Sunniyat; Boobis, Alan; Hajji, Nabil

    2015-01-01

    Due to its role in regulation of mitochondrial function, PGC1α is emerging as an important player in ageing and neurodegenerative disorders. PGC1α exerts its neuroprotective effects by promoting mitochondrial biogenesis (MB) and functioning. However, the precise regulatory role of PGC1α in the control of mitochondrial dynamics (MD) and neurotoxicity is still unknown. Here we elucidate the role of PGC1α in vitro and in vivo in the regulatory context of MB and MD in response to lead (II) acetate as a relevant model of neurotoxicity. We show that there is an adaptive response (AR) to lead, orchestrated by the BAP31-calcium signalling system operating between the ER and mitochondria. We find that this hormetic response is controlled by a cell-tolerated increase of PGC1α expression, which in turn induces a balanced expression of fusion/fission genes by binding to their promoters and implying its direct role in regulation of MD. However, dysregulation of PGC1α expression through either stable downregulation or overexpression, renders cells more susceptible to lead insult leading to mitochondrial fragmentation and cell death. Our data provide novel evidence that PGC1α expression is a key regulator of MD and the maintenance of tolerated PGC1α expression may offer a promising strategy for neuroprotective therapies. PMID:26363853

  16. PGC-1α controls mitochondrial biogenesis and dynamics in lead-induced neurotoxicity.

    PubMed

    Dabrowska, Aleksandra; Venero, Jose Luis; Iwasawa, Ryota; Hankir, Mohammed-Khair; Rahman, Sunniyat; Boobis, Alan; Hajji, Nabil

    2015-09-01

    Due to its role in regulation of mitochondrial function, PGC1α is emerging as an important player in ageing and neurodegenerative disorders. PGC1α exerts its neuroprotective effects by promoting mitochondrial biogenesis (MB) and functioning. However, the precise regulatory role of PGC1α in the control of mitochondrial dynamics (MD) and neurotoxicity is still unknown. Here we elucidate the role of PGC1αin vitro and in vivo in the regulatory context of MB and MD in response to lead (II) acetate as a relevant model of neurotoxicity. We show that there is an adaptive response (AR) to lead, orchestrated by the BAP31-calcium signalling system operating between the ER and mitochondria. We find that this hormetic response is controlled by a cell-tolerated increase of PGC1α expression, which in turn induces a balanced expression of fusion/fission genes by binding to their promoters and implying its direct role in regulation of MD. However, dysregulation of PGC1α expression through either stable downregulation or overexpression, renders cells more susceptible to lead insult leading to mitochondrial fragmentation and cell death. Our data provide novel evidence that PGC1α expression is a key regulator of MD and the maintenance of tolerated PGC1α expression may offer a promising strategy for neuroprotective therapies.

  17. Star-shaped pi-conjugated oligomers and their applications in organic electronics and photonics.

    PubMed

    Kanibolotsky, Alexander L; Perepichka, Igor F; Skabara, Peter J

    2010-07-01

    Strategies for the design and construction of non-linear, 2D and 3D conjugated macromolecules are presented in this critical review. The materials, termed here as star-shaped structures, feature a core unit which may or may not provide conjugated links between arms that radiate like spokes from a central axle. The arms of the macromolecules consist of linear oligomers or irregular conjugated chains lacking a formal repeat unit. The cores range from simple atoms to single or fused aromatic units and can provide a high level of symmetry to the overall structure. The physical properties of the star-shaped materials can be markedly different to their simple, linear conjugated analogues. These differences are highlighted and we report on anomalies in absorption/emission characteristics, electronic energy levels, thermal properties and morphology of thin films. We provide numerous examples for the application of star-shaped conjugated macromolecules in organic semiconductor devices; a comparison of their device performance with those comprising analogous linear systems provides clear evidence that the star-shaped compounds are an important class of material in organic electronics. Moreover, these structures are monodisperse, well-defined, discrete molecules with 100% synthetic reproducibility, and possess high purity and excellent solubility in common organic solvents. They feature many of the attributes of plastic materials (good film-forming properties, thermal stability, flexibility) and are therefore extremely attractive alternatives to conjugated polymers (210 references).

  18. Neurotoxic exposures and effects: gender and sex matter! Hänninen Lecture 2011.

    PubMed

    Mergler, Donna

    2012-08-01

    Although males and females differ both biologically and in their social and power relations throughout their life span, research in environmental and occupational neurotoxicology often ignore sex and/or gender as a characteristic that requires in-depth consideration. The neurotoxicology literature continues to confuse the terms sex (biological attributes) and gender (socially constructed roles and behavior) and the words are still used interchangeably. Throughout the lifespan, sex and gender are in interaction and both may play a role in influencing exposure and effect. Studies that have examined both males and females, provide evidence for sex differences in toxicokinetics and responses to neurotoxic assault as well as gender differences in exposure patterns, biomarkers of exposure, neurobehavioral performance and social consequences. Integrating sex and gender considerations into research in neurotoxicology would not only provide us with a better understanding of the mechanisms and pathways that lead to toxic assault, but also provide a means to improve preventive intervention strategies.

  19. Fish embryo toxicity test: identification of compounds with weak toxicity and analysis of behavioral effects to improve prediction of acute toxicity for neurotoxic compounds.

    PubMed

    Klüver, Nils; König, Maria; Ortmann, Julia; Massei, Riccardo; Paschke, Albrecht; Kühne, Ralph; Scholz, Stefan

    2015-06-02

    The fish embryo toxicity test has been proposed as an alternative for the acute fish toxicity test, but concerns have been raised for its predictivity given that a few compounds have been shown to exhibit a weak acute toxicity in the fish embryo. In order to better define the applicability domain and improve the predictive capacity of the fish embryo test, we performed a systematic analysis of existing fish embryo and acute fish toxicity data. A correlation analysis of a total of 153 compounds identified 28 compounds with a weaker or no toxicity in the fish embryo test. Eleven of these compounds exhibited a neurotoxic mode of action. We selected a subset of eight compounds with weaker or no embryo toxicity (cyanazine, picloram, aldicarb, azinphos-methyl, dieldrin, diquat dibromide, endosulfan, and esfenvalerate) to study toxicokinetics and a neurotoxic mode of action as potential reasons for the deviating fish embryo toxicity. Published fish embryo LC50 values were confirmed by experimental analysis of zebrafish embryo LC50 according to OECD guideline 236. Except for diquat dibromide, internal concentration analysis did not indicate a potential relation of the low sensitivity of fish embryos to a limited uptake of the compounds. Analysis of locomotor activity of diquat dibromide and the neurotoxic compounds in 98 hpf embryos (exposed for 96 h) indicated a specific effect on behavior (embryonic movement) for the neurotoxic compounds. The EC50s of behavior for neurotoxic compounds were close to the acute fish toxicity LC50. Our data provided the first evidence that the applicability domain of the fish embryo test (LC50s determination) may exclude neurotoxic compounds. However, neurotoxic compounds could be identified by changes in embryonic locomotion. Although a quantitative prediction of acute fish toxicity LC50 using behavioral assays in fish embryos may not yet be possible, the identification of neurotoxicity could trigger the conduction of a conventional fish

  20. Reactive Processing with Difunctional Oligomers to Increase Interfacial Adhesion in Polymer Blends

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    O'Brien, Charles; Rice+, Kevin; Dadmun, Mark

    2000-03-01

    The intoduction of blocky copolymers represents a possible method of compatibilizing two immiscible polymers in a blend. However, copolymers do not diffuse quickly to the interface of a polymer blend system. Therefore, reactive processing is being investigated as a means to form in-situ compatibilizers for polymer blends. A model system composed of poly(bisphenol A-co-epichlorohydrin) blended with poly(ethylene oxide) that is compatibilized with difunctional oligomers that are the same structure as the blend components is currently under investigation. It is expected that the oligomers can undergo an addition copolymerization during processing to create the blocky copolymers at the biphasic interface. Initial tensile measurements show that the addition of the reactive oligomers improves the properties of the blend. Additionally, preliminary results indicate that reactive oligomers may act as plasticizers and continue to polymerize at room temperature after the blend is removed from the melt mixer if insufficiently mixed.

  1. Enhanced Emission of Highly Labeled DNA Oligomers near Silver Metallic Surfaces

    PubMed Central

    Malicka, Joanna; Gryczynski, Ignacy; Lakowicz, Joseph R.

    2009-01-01

    Fluorescein is a widely used fluorescent probe in DNA analysis. One difficulty with fluorescein is its self-quenching due to resonance energy transfer between the residues, which results in decreased intensities with increasing labeling density. We examined the emission spectral properties of DNA oligomers labeled with one or five fluorescein residues. The emission intensity of the more highly labeled oligomer was decreased due to self-quenching. The self-quenching was mostly eliminated when this oligomer was held ~90 Å from the surface of metallic silver particles. The intensities increased 7- and 19-fold for the oligomers with one or five fluoresceins, respectively. The increased intensity did not result in increased photobleaching. These results suggest the use of substrates coated with silver particles for increased sensitivity on DNA arrays or for DNA analysis. PMID:14632044

  2. Microwave assisted synthesis of bithiophene based donor-acceptor-donor oligomers and their optoelectronic performances

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bathula, Chinna; Buruga, Kezia; Lee, Sang Kyu; Khazi, Imtiyaz Ahmed M.; Kang, Youngjong

    2017-07-01

    In this article we present the synthesis of two novel bithiophene based symmetrical π conjugated oligomers with donor-acceptor-donor (D-A-D) structures by microwave assisted PdCl2(dppf) catalyzed Suzuki coupling reaction. These molecules contain electron rich bithiophene as a donor, dithienothiadiazole[3,4-c]pyridine and phthalic anhydride units as acceptors. The shorter reaction time, excellent yields and easy product isolation are the advantages of this method. The photophysical prerequisites for electronic application such as strong and broad optical absorption, thermal stability, and compatible energy levels were determined for synthesized oligomers. Optical band gap for the oligomers is found to be 1.72-1.90 eV. The results demonstrated the novel oligomers to be promising candidates in organic optoelectronic applications.

  3. The Anti-Prion Antibody 15B3 Detects Toxic Amyloid-β Oligomers

    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

  4. Salt anions promote the conversion of HypF-N into amyloid-like oligomers and modulate the structure of the oligomers and the monomeric precursor state.

    PubMed

    Campioni, Silvia; Mannini, Benedetta; López-Alonso, Jorge P; Shalova, Irina N; Penco, Amanda; Mulvihill, Estefania; Laurents, Douglas V; Relini, Annalisa; Chiti, Fabrizio

    2012-12-07

    An understanding of the solution factors contributing to the rate of aggregation of a protein into amyloid oligomers, to the modulation of the conformational state populated prior to aggregation and to the structure/morphology of the resulting oligomers is one of the goals of present research in this field. We have studied the influence of six different salts on the conversion of the N-terminal domain of Escherichiacoli HypF (HypF-N) into amyloid-like oligomers under conditions of acidic pH. Our results show that salts having different anions (NaCl, NaClO(4), NaI, Na(2)SO(4)) accelerate oligomerization with an efficacy that follows the electroselectivity series of the anions (SO(4)(2-)≥ ClO(4)(-)>I(-)>Cl(-)). By contrast, salts with different cations (NaCl, LiCl, KCl) have similar effects. We also investigated the effect of salts on the structure of the final and initial states of HypF-N aggregation. The electroselectivity series does not apply to the effect of anions on the structure of the oligomers. By contrast, it applies to their effect on the content of secondary structure and on the exposure of hydrophobic clusters of the monomeric precursor state. The results therefore indicate that the binding of anions to the positively charged residues of HypF-N at low pH is the mechanism by which salts modulate the rate of oligomerization and the structure of the monomeric precursor state but not the structure of the resulting oligomers. Overall, the data contribute to rationalize the effect of salts on amyloid-like oligomer formation and to explain the role of charged biological macromolecules in protein aggregation processes.

  5. Bacterial Resistance to Antisense Peptide Phosphorodiamidate Morpholino Oligomers

    PubMed Central

    Puckett, Susan E.; Reese, Kaleb A.; Mitev, Georgi M.; Mullen, Valerie; Johnson, Rudd C.; Pomraning, Kyle R.; Mellbye, Brett L.; Tilley, Lucas D.; Iversen, Patrick L.; Freitag, Michael

    2012-01-01

    Peptide phosphorodiamidate morpholino oligomers (PPMOs) are synthetic DNA mimics that bind cRNA and inhibit bacterial gene expression. The PPMO (RFF)3RXB-AcpP (where R is arginine, F, phenylalanine, X is 6-aminohexanoic acid, B is β-alanine, and AcpP is acyl carrier protein) is complementary to 11 bases of the essential gene acpP (which encodes acyl carrier protein). The MIC of (RFF)3RXB-AcpP was 2.5 μM (14 μg/ml) in Escherichia coli W3110. The rate of spontaneous resistance of E. coli to (RFF)3RXB-AcpP was 4 × 10−7 mutations/cell division. A spontaneous (RFF)3RXB-AcpP-resistant mutant (PR200.1) was isolated. The MIC of (RFF)3RXB-AcpP was 40 μM (224 μg/ml) for PR200.1. The MICs of standard antibiotics for PR200.1 and W3110 were identical. The sequence of acpP was identical in PR200.1 and W3110. PR200.1 was also resistant to other PPMOs conjugated to (RFF)3RXB or peptides with a similar composition or pattern of cationic and nonpolar residues. Genomic sequencing of PR200.1 identified a mutation in sbmA, which encodes an active transport protein. In separate experiments, a (RFF)3RXB-AcpP-resistant isolate (RR3) was selected from a transposome library, and the insertion was mapped to sbmA. Genetic complementation of PR200.1 or RR3 with sbmA restored susceptibility to (RFF)3RXB-AcpP. Deletion of sbmA caused resistance to (RFF)3RXB-AcpP. We conclude that resistance to (RFF)3RXB-AcpP was linked to the peptide and not the phosphorodiamidate morpholino oligomer, dependent on the composition or repeating pattern of amino acids, and caused by mutations in sbmA. The data further suggest that (RFF)3R-XB PPMOs may be transported across the plasma membrane by SbmA. PMID:22985881

  6. Bacterial resistance to antisense peptide phosphorodiamidate morpholino oligomers.

    PubMed

    Puckett, Susan E; Reese, Kaleb A; Mitev, Georgi M; Mullen, Valerie; Johnson, Rudd C; Pomraning, Kyle R; Mellbye, Brett L; Tilley, Lucas D; Iversen, Patrick L; Freitag, Michael; Geller, Bruce L

    2012-12-01

    Peptide phosphorodiamidate morpholino oligomers (PPMOs) are synthetic DNA mimics that bind cRNA and inhibit bacterial gene expression. The PPMO (RFF)(3)RXB-AcpP (where R is arginine, F, phenylalanine, X is 6-aminohexanoic acid, B is β-alanine, and AcpP is acyl carrier protein) is complementary to 11 bases of the essential gene acpP (which encodes acyl carrier protein). The MIC of (RFF)(3)RXB-AcpP was 2.5 μM (14 μg/ml) in Escherichia coli W3110. The rate of spontaneous resistance of E. coli to (RFF)(3)RXB-AcpP was 4 × 10(-7) mutations/cell division. A spontaneous (RFF)(3)RXB-AcpP-resistant mutant (PR200.1) was isolated. The MIC of (RFF)(3)RXB-AcpP was 40 μM (224 μg/ml) for PR200.1. The MICs of standard antibiotics for PR200.1 and W3110 were identical. The sequence of acpP was identical in PR200.1 and W3110. PR200.1 was also resistant to other PPMOs conjugated to (RFF)(3)RXB or peptides with a similar composition or pattern of cationic and nonpolar residues. Genomic sequencing of PR200.1 identified a mutation in sbmA, which encodes an active transport protein. In separate experiments, a (RFF)(3)RXB-AcpP-resistant isolate (RR3) was selected from a transposome library, and the insertion was mapped to sbmA. Genetic complementation of PR200.1 or RR3 with sbmA restored susceptibility to (RFF)(3)RXB-AcpP. Deletion of sbmA caused resistance to (RFF)(3)RXB-AcpP. We conclude that resistance to (RFF)(3)RXB-AcpP was linked to the peptide and not the phosphorodiamidate morpholino oligomer, dependent on the composition or repeating pattern of amino acids, and caused by mutations in sbmA. The data further suggest that (RFF)(3)R-XB PPMOs may be transported across the plasma membrane by SbmA.

  7. Optically and redox-active ferroceneacetylene polymers and oligomers

    PubMed

    Plenio; Hermann; Sehring

    2000-05-15

    The palladium-catalyzed Sonogashira reaction can be used to build optically active, oligomeric 1,2,3-substituted ferrocenes up to the tetramer, as well as polymers, by sequential coupling of optically active (ee > 98 %), planar chiral iodoferroceneacetylenes and ferroceneacetylenes. (SFC)-1-Iodoferrocene-2-carbaldehyde (1) was reduced to the alcohol and methylated to give the corresponding methyl ether, which was Sonogashira-coupled with HC(triple bond)CSiEt3, resulting in (RFc)-1-(C(triple bond)CSiEt3)-2-methoxymethylferrocene (4) (79%, three steps). Orthometalation with tBuLi followed by quenching with 1,2-diodoethane gave (RFc)-1-(C(triple bond)CSiEt3)-2-methoxymethyl-3-iodoferrocene (5). Deprotection of the acetylene with nBu4NF resulted in (RFc)-1-ethynyl-2-methoxymethyl-3-iodoferrocene (6), which was Sonogashira-coupled with itself to produce an optically active polymer. Deprotection of 4 with nBu4NF and Sonogashira coupling of the product with 5 resulted in the dinuclear ferrocene 9. Deprotection of 9 and coupling with 5, followed by deprotection of the resulting acetylene 11, gave the trinuclear ferrocene 12. Another such sequence involving 11 and 5 produced a tetranuclear ferrocene 13. To study the electronic communication in such oligomers in more detail, two symmetrical, closely interrelated, trinuclear ferrocenes 18 and 19 were synthesized. The redox potentials of all the ferrocenes and the ferroceneacetylene polymer were determined by cyclic and square-wave voltammetry. All the metallocenes were investigated by UV/Vis spectroscopy. A linear relationship was found between lambdamax and l/n (n=number of ferrocene units in the oligomer). The polymer displayed two redox waves in the cyclic voltammogram, at 0.65 and 0.795 V. The corresponding mixed-valence oligoferrocene cations were synthesized from four ferroceneacetylenes, and their metal-metal charge transfer bands were examined by UV/Vis-NIR. The resonance exchange integrals Had, calculated on the

  8. Comparative neurochemical profile of 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine and its metabolite alpha-methyldopamine on key targets of MDMA neurotoxicity.

    PubMed

    Escubedo, E; Abad, S; Torres, I; Camarasa, J; Pubill, D

    2011-01-01

    The neurotoxicity of MDMA or "Ecstasy" in rats is selectively serotonergic, while in mice it is both dopaminergic and serotonergic. MDMA metabolism may play a key role in this neurotoxicity. The function of serotonin and dopamine transporter and the effect of MDMA and its metabolites on them are essential to understand MDMA neurotoxicity. The aim of the present study was to investigate and compare the effects of MDMA and its metabolite alpha-methyldopamine (MeDA) on several molecular targets, mainly the dopamine and serotonin transporter functionality, to provide evidence for the role of this metabolite in the neurotoxicity of MDMA in rodents. MeDA had no affinity for the serotonin transporter but competed with serotonin for its uptake. It had no persistent effects on the functionalism of the serotonin transporter, in contrast to the effect of MDMA. Moreover, MeDA inhibited the uptake of dopamine into the serotonergic terminal and also MAO(B) activity. MeDA inhibited dopamine uptake with a lower IC(50) value than MDMA. After drug washout, the inhibition by MeDA persisted while that of MDMA was significantly reduced. The effect of MDMA on the dopamine transporter is related with dopamine release from vesicular stores, as this inhibition disappeared in reserpine-treated animals. However, the effect of MeDA seems to be a persistent conformational change of this transporter. Moreover, in contrast with MDMA, MeDA did not show affinity for nicotinic receptors, so no effects of MeDA derived from these interactions can be expected. The metabolite reduced cell viability at lower concentrations than MDMA. Apoptosis plays a key role in MDMA induced cellular toxicity but necrosis is the major process involved in MeDA cytotoxicity. We conclude that MeDA could protect against the serotonergic lesion induced by MDMA but potentiate the dopaminergic lesion as a result of the persistent blockade of the dopamine transporter induced this metabolite.

  9. Oligomer formation of the gB glycoprotein of herpes simplex virus type 1.

    PubMed Central

    Highlander, S L; Goins, W F; Person, S; Holland, T C; Levine, M; Glorioso, J C

    1991-01-01

    Oligomer formation of the gB glycoprotein of herpes simplex virus type 1 was studied by sedimentation analysis of radioactively labeled infected cell and virion lysates. Fractions from sucrose gradients were precipitated with a pool of gB-specific monoclonal antibodies and analyzed by sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE). Pulse-labeled gB from infected cell was synthesized as monomers and converted to oligomers posttranslationally. The oligomers from infected cells and from virions sedimented as dimers, and there was no evidence of higher-molecular-weight forms. To identify amino acid sequences of gB that contribute to oligomer formation, pairs of mutant plasmids were transfected into Vero cells and superinfected with a gB-null mutant virus to stimulate plasmid-specified gene expression. Radioactively labeled lysates were precipitated with antibodies and examined by SDS-PAGE. Polypeptides from cotransfections were precipitated with an antibody that recognized amino acid sequences present in only one of the two polypeptides. A coprecipitated polypeptide lacking the antibody target epitope was presumed to contain the sequences necessary for oligomer formation. Using this technique, two noncontiguous sites for oligomer formation were detected. An upstream site was localized between residues 93 and 282, and a downstream site was localized between residues 596 and 711. Oligomer formation resulted from molecular interactions between two upstream sites, between two downstream sites, and between an upstream and a downstream site. A schematic diagram of a gB oligomer is presented that is consistent with these data. Images PMID:1649330

  10. Low Molecular Weight Oligomers with Aromatic Backbone as Efficient Nonviral Gene Vectors.

    PubMed

    Luan, Chao-Ran; Liu, Yan-Hong; Zhang, Ji; Yu, Qing-Ying; Huang, Zheng; Wang, Bing; Yu, Xiao-Qi

    2016-05-04

    A series of oligomers were synthesized via ring-opening polymerization. Although the molecular weights of these oligomers are only ∼2.5 kDa, they could efficiently bind and condense DNA into nanoparticles. These oligomers gave comparable transfection efficiency (TE) to PEI 25 kDa, while their TE could even increase with the presence of serum, and up to 65 times higher TE than PEI was obtained. The excellent serum tolerance was also confirmed by TEM, flow cytometry, and BSA adsorption assay. Moreover, structure-activity relationship studies revealed some interesting factors. First, oligomers containing aromatic rings in the backbone showed better DNA binding ability. These materials could bring more DNA cargo into the cells, leading to much better TE. Second, the isomerism of the disubstituted phenyl group on the oligomer backbone has large effect on the transfection. The ortho-disubstituted ones gave at least 1 order of magnitude higher TE than meta- or para-disubstituted oligomers. Gel electrophoresis involving DNase and heparin indicated that the difficulty to release DNA might contribute to the lower TE of the latter. Such clues may help us to design novel nonviral gene vectors with high efficiency and biocompatibility.

  11. Liquid crystalline thermosets from ester, ester-imide, and ester-amide oligomers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dingemans, Theodorous J. (Inventor); Weiser, Erik S. (Inventor); St. Clair, Terry L. (Inventor)

    2005-01-01

    Main chain thermotropic liquid crystal esters, ester-imides, and ester-amides were prepared from AA, BB, and AB type monomeric materials and were end-capped with phenylacetylene, phenylmaleimide, or nadimide reactive end-groups. The resulting reactive end-capped liquid crystal oligomers exhibit a variety of improved and preferred physical properties. The end-capped liquid crystal oligomers are thermotropic and have, preferably, molecular weights in the range of approximately 1000-15,000 grams per mole. The end-capped liquid crystal oligomers have broad liquid crystalline melting ranges and exhibit high melt stability and very low melt viscosities at accessible temperatures. The end-capped liquid crystal oligomers are stable for up to an hour in the melt phase. These properties make the end-capped liquid crystal oligomers highly processable by a variety of melt process shape forming and blending techniques including film extrusion, fiber spinning, reactive injection molding (RIM), resin transfer molding (RTM), resin film injection (RFI), powder molding, pultrusion, injection molding, blow molding, plasma spraying and thermo-forming. Once processed and shaped, the end-capped liquid crystal oligomers were heated to further polymerize and form liquid crystalline thermosets (LCT). The fully cured products are rubbers above their glass transition temperatures. The resulting thermosets display many properties that are superior to their non-end-capped high molecular weight analogs.

  12. Liquid Crystalline Thermosets from Ester, Ester-Imide, and Ester-Amide Oligomers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dingemans, Theodornus J. (Inventor); Weiser, Erik S. (Inventor); SaintClair, Terry L. (Inventor)

    2005-01-01

    Main chain thermotropic liquid crystal esters, ester-imides, and ester-amides were prepared from AA, BB, and AB type monomeric materials and were end-capped with phenylacetylene, phenylmaleimide, or nadimide reactive end-groups. The resulting reactive end-capped liquid crystal oligomers exhibit a variety of improved and preferred physical properties. The end-capped liquid crystal oligomers are thermotropic and have, preferably, molecular weights in the range of approximately 1000-15,OOO grams per mole. The end-capped liquid crystal oligomers have broad liquid crystalline melting ranges and exhibit high melt stability and very low melt viscosities at accessible temperatures. The end-capped liquid crystal oligomers are stable for up to an hour in the melt phase. These properties make the end-capped liquid crystal oligomers highly processable by a variety of melt process shape forming and blending techniques including film extrusion, fiber spinning, reactive injection molding (RIM), resin transfer molding (RTM), resin film injection (RFI), powder molding, pultrusion, injection molding, blow molding, plasma spraying and thermo-forming. Once processed and shaped, the end- capped liquid crystal oligomers were heated to further polymerize and form liquid crystalline thermosets (LCT). The fully cured products are rubbers above their glass transition temperatures. The resulting thermosets display many properties that are superior to their non-end-capped high molecular weight analogs.

  13. π-Conjugated Discrete Oligomers Containing Planar and Nonplanar Aromatic Motifs.

    PubMed

    Li, Ji; Terec, Anamaria; Wang, Yue; Joshi, Hrishikesh; Lu, Yunpeng; Sun, Handong; Stuparu, Mihaiela C

    2017-03-01

    A new family of π-conjugated oligomers featuring a nonplanar polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon, corannulene, and a planar aromatic unit, thiophene, is synthesized through an iterative metal-catalyzed coupling protocol. The two structural motifs are connected through an acetylene linkage. In the shorter oligomers, a thiophene unit is attached to one or two corannulenes. In the higher analogues, two, three, and four thiophene units are placed in an alternating fashion with three, four, and five corannulene units, respectively. Photophysical studies reveal extended π-effects that initially increase and then attenuate as a function of the oligomer length. Notably, longer oligomers are found to be highly active for nonlinear absorption and emission properties. The oligomer with three corannulene and two thiophene units exhibits a two-photon absorption cross section of 600 GM and two-photon-excited intense green luminescence. This work, therefore, introduces the concept of combining planar and nonplanar aromatic motifs in the design of π-conjugated discrete oligomers, establishes synthetic feasibility of such hybrid materials, reports on their photophysical properties that is anticipated to have significant implications for future research targets, and features the discovery that corannulene derivatives can exhibit excellent nonlinear optical activity when extended through π-bridges.

  14. α-Synuclein Oligomers Induced by Docosahexaenoic Acid Affect Membrane Integrity

    PubMed Central

    Fecchio, Chiara; De Franceschi, Giorgia; Relini, Annalisa; Greggio, Elisa; Dalla Serra, Mauro; Bubacco, Luigi; Polverino de Laureto, Patrizia

    2013-01-01

    A key feature of Parkinson disease is the aggregation of α-synuclein and its intracellular deposition in fibrillar form. Increasing evidence suggests that the pathogenicity of α-synuclein is correlated with the activity of oligomers formed in the early stages of its aggregation process. Oligomers toxicity seems to be associated with both their ability to bind and affect the integrity of lipid membranes. Previously, we demonstrated that α-synuclein forms oligomeric species in the presence of docosahexaenoic acid and that these species are toxic to cells. Here we studied how interaction of these oligomers with membranes results in cell toxicity, using cellular membrane-mimetic and cell model systems. We found that α-synuclein oligomers are able to interact with large and small unilamellar negatively charged vesicles acquiring an increased amount of α-helical structure, which induces small molecules release. We explored the possibility that oligomers effects on membranes could be due to pore formation, to a detergent-like effect or to fibril growth on the membrane. Our biophysical and cellular findings are consistent with a model where α-synuclein oligomers are embedded into the lipid bilayer causing transient alteration of membrane permeability. PMID:24312431

  15. Effect of Zn(2+) ions on the assembly of amylin oligomers: insight into the molecular mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Wineman-Fisher, Vered; Miller, Yifat

    2016-08-03

    Amylin is an endocrine hormone and is a member of the family of amyloid peptides and proteins that emerge as potential scaffolds by self-assembly processes. Zn(2+) ions can bind to amylin peptides to form self-assembled Zn(2+)-amylin oligomers. In the current work the binding sites of Zn(2+) ions in the self-assembled amylin oligomers at various concentrations of zinc have been investigated. Our results yield two conclusions. First, in the absence of Zn(2+) ions polymorphic states (i.e. various classes of amylin oligomers) are obtained, but when Zn(2+) ions bind to amylin peptides to form Zn(2+)-amylin oligomers, the polymorphism is decreased, i.e. Zn(2+) ions bind only to specific classes of amylin. At low concentrations of Zn(2+) ions the polymorphism is smaller than at high concentrations. Second, the structural features of the self-assembled amylin oligomers are not affected by the presence of Zn(2+) ions. This study proposes new molecular mechanisms of the self-assembly of Zn(2+)-amylin oligomers.

  16. Acyclovir-Induced Neurotoxicity: A Case Report and Review of Literature.

    PubMed

    Chowdhury, Mohammed Andaleeb; Derar, Nada; Hasan, Syed; Hinch, Bryan; Ratnam, Shoba; Assaly, Ragheb

    2016-01-01

    Neurotoxicity can develop as a side effect of intravenous acyclovir use in patients with renal impairment. It is underreported in clinical practice and often confused with worsening herpes encephalitis. We present a 69-year-old woman with end-stage renal disease on hemodialysis with acyclovir neurotoxicity treated with daily extended hemodialysis sessions. Daily hemodialysis for extended period may shorten the neurotoxicity period and can help with faster return to normal mentation. A high index of suspicion is warranted to diagnose acyclovir-induced neurotoxicity.

  17. Severe Dopaminergic Neurotoxicity in Primates After a Common Recreational Dose Regimen of MDMA (``Ecstasy'')

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ricaurte, George A.; Yuan, Jie; Hatzidimitriou, George; Cord, Branden J.; McCann, Una D.

    2002-09-01

    The prevailing view is that the popular recreational drug (+/-)3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA, or ``ecstasy'') is a selective serotonin neurotoxin in animals and possibly in humans. Nonhuman primates exposed to several sequential doses of MDMA, a regimen modeled after one used by humans, developed severe brain dopaminergic neurotoxicity, in addition to less pronounced serotonergic neurotoxicity. MDMA neurotoxicity was associated with increased vulnerability to motor dysfunction secondary to dopamine depletion. These results have implications for mechanisms of MDMA neurotoxicity and suggest that recreational MDMA users may unwittingly be putting themselves at risk, either as young adults or later in life, for developing neuropsychiatric disorders related to brain dopamine and/or serotonin deficiency.

  18. Dynamin self-assembly and the vesicle scission mechanism: how dynamin oligomers cleave the membrane neck of clathrin-coated pits during endocytosis.

    PubMed

    Pawlowski, Nikolaus

    2010-12-01

    Recently, Gao et al. and Chappie et al. elucidated the crystal structures of the polytetrameric stalk domain of the dynamin-like virus resistance protein, MxA, and of the G-domain dimer of the large, membrane-deforming GTPase, dynamin, respectively. Combined, they provide a hypothetical oligomeric structure for the complete dynamin protein. Here, it is discussed how the oligomers are expected to form and how they participate in dynamin mediated vesicle fission during the process of endocytosis. The proposed oligomeric structure is compared with the novel mechanochemical model of dynamin function recently proposed by Bashkirov et al. and Pucadyil and Schmid. In conclusion, the new model of the dynamin oligomer has the potential to explain how short self-limiting fissogenic dynamin assemblies are formed and how concerted GTP hydrolysis is achieved. The oligomerisation of two other dynamin superfamily proteins, the guanylate binding proteins (GBPs) and the immunity-related GTPases (IRGs), is addressed briefly.

  19. Cyclen-based lipidic oligomers as potential gene delivery vehicles.

    PubMed

    Yi, Wen-Jing; Zhang, Qin-Fang; Zhang, Ji; Liu, Qiang; Ren, Laifeng; Chen, Qian-Ming; Guo, Liandi; Yu, Xiao-Qi

    2014-03-01

    A series of cyclen-based linear oligomers bearing hydrophobic long chains (lipopolymers Cy-LC, where Cy and LC represent cyclen-based linear backbone and hydrophobic long chain substituents, respectively) were designed and synthesized. The effects of type and degree of substitution (DS) of hydrophobic long chains on the transfection efficiency were systematically studied. The nitrogen atoms with relatively strong basicity on the cyclen ensure their good DNA binding ability, which was confirmed by gel retardation and ethidium bromide exclusion assays. Lipopolyplexes could be formed as nanoparticles with suitable sizes and zeta potentials for gene transfection. In vitro gene delivery experiments revealed that the linoleic acid (LIN) substituted material Cy-LIN has better transfection efficiency than 25 kDa polyethylenimine in the absence or in the presence of serum. 3-(4,5-Dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide and hemolysis assays showed low cytotoxicity and good biocompatibility of the lipopolyplexes. Fluorescent labeled DNA was used to study the cellular uptake and intracellular distribution of transfected DNA. Flow cytometry results suggested that a long chain is necessary for efficient cellular uptake, and images from confocal laser scanning microscopy showed that after 4h transfection, most of the fluorescent labeled DNA accumulated in the perinuclear region, which was required for efficient gene expression. Moreover, it was also found that the DS of the hydrophobic moiety can adjust the balance between DNA binding ability and dissociation of polyplexes, significantly affecting the transfection efficiency.

  20. Synthesis and Characterization of Poly (Arylene Ether Benzimidazole) Oligomers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Leonard, Michael J.

    1995-01-01

    Several poly(arylene ether benzimidazole) oligomers were prepared by the nucleophilic aromatic substitution reaction of a bisphenol benzimidazole and various alkyl-substituted aromatic bisphenols with an activated aromatic dihalide in N, N-dimethylacetarnide. Moderate to high molecular weight terpolymers were obtained in all cases, as shown by their inherent viscosities, which ranged from 0.50 to 0.87 dL g(sup -1). Glass transition temperatures (T(sub g)s) of polymer powders ranged from 267-280 C. Air-dried unoriented thin film T(sub g)s were markedly lower than those of the powders, whereas T(sub g)s of films dried in a nitrogen atmosphere were identical to those of the corresponding powders. In addition, air-dried films were dark amber and brittle, whereas nitrogen-dried films were yellow and creasable. Nitrogen-dried films showed slightly higher thin-film tensile properties than the air-dried films, as well.

  1. Amyloid beta oligomers induce impairment of neuronal insulin receptors.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Wei-Qin; De Felice, Fernanda G; Fernandez, Sara; Chen, Hui; Lambert, Mary P; Quon, Michael J; Krafft, Grant A; Klein, William L

    2008-01-01

    Recent studies have indicated an association between Alzheimer's disease (AD) and central nervous system (CNS) insulin resistance. However, the cellular mechanisms underlying the link between these two pathologies have not been elucidated. Here we show that signal transduction by neuronal insulin receptors (IR) is strikingly sensitive to disruption by soluble Abeta oligomers (also known as ADDLs). ADDLs are known to accumulate in AD brain and have recently been implicated as primary candidates for initiating deterioration of synapse function, composition, and structure. Using mature cultures of hippocampal neurons, a preferred model for studies of synaptic cell biology, we found that ADDLs caused a rapid and substantial loss of neuronal surface IRs specifically on dendrites bound by ADDLs. Removal of dendritic IRs was associated with increased receptor immunoreactivity in the cell body, indicating redistribution of the receptors. The neuronal response to insulin, measured by evoked IR tyrosine autophosphorylation, was greatly inhibited by ADDLs. Inhibition also was seen with added glutamate or potassium-induced depolarization. The effects on IR function were completely blocked by NMDA receptor antagonists, tetrodotoxin, and calcium chelator BAPTA-AM. Downstream from the IR, ADDLs induced a phosphorylation of Akt at serine473, a modification associated with neurodegenerative and insulin resistance diseases. These results identify novel factors that affect neuronal IR signaling and suggest that insulin resistance in AD brain is a response to ADDLs, which disrupt insulin signaling and may cause a brain-specific form of diabetes as part of an overall pathogenic impact on CNS synapses.

  2. Structure and stability of oligomer/α-cyclodextrin inclusion complexes.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hunt, Marcus; Villar, Silvia; Gomez, Marian; Tonelli, Alan; Balik, Maury

    2007-03-01

    Cyclomaltohexaose (α-cyclodextrin, α-CD) can form inclusion complexes (ICs) with polymer molecules in the columnar crystal in which α-CD molecules stack to form a molecular tube. Complementary water vapor sorption and wide-angle X-ray diffractomery (WAXD) were performed on oligomer/α-CD ICs to probe their structures and stabilities. To discern the effect of guest molecule hydrophobicity on water adsorption isotherms, polyethylene glycol (PEG, MW = 600 g/mol) and hexatriacontane (HTC) guests were used. Sorption isotherms for PEG/α-CD IC are similar to those obtained for pure α-CD and PEG, suggesting the presence of dethreaded PEG in the sample. WAXD collected before and after water vapor sorption of PEG/α-CD IC indicated a partial conversion from columnar to cage crystal structure, the thermodynamically preferred structure for pure α-CD, due to dethreading of PEG. This behavior does not occur for HTC/α-CD IC. Sorption isotherms collected at 20, 30, 40 and 50 C allowed the calculation of differential heats of adsorption and integral entropies of adsorbed water, while solid-state ^13C NMR suggested a dramatic increase in HTC and α-CD mobilities upon complexation.

  3. Oligomer Formation of Tau Protein Hyperphosphorylated in Cells*

    PubMed Central

    Tepper, Katharina; Biernat, Jacek; Kumar, Satish; Wegmann, Susanne; Timm, Thomas; Hübschmann, Sabrina; Redecke, Lars; Mandelkow, Eva-Maria; Müller, Daniel J.; Mandelkow, Eckhard

    2014-01-01

    Abnormal phosphorylation (“hyperphosphorylation”) and aggregation of Tau protein are hallmarks of Alzheimer disease and other tauopathies, but their causative connection is still a matter of debate. Tau with Alzheimer-like phosphorylation is also present in hibernating animals, mitosis, or during embryonic development, without leading to pathophysiology or neurodegeneration. Thus, the role of phosphorylation and the distinction between physiological and pathological phosphorylation needs to be further refined. So far, the systematic investigation of highly phosphorylated Tau was difficult because a reliable method of preparing reproducible quantities was not available. Here, we generated full-length Tau (2N4R) in Sf9 cells in a well defined phosphorylation state containing up to ∼20 phosphates as judged by mass spectrometry and Western blotting with phospho-specific antibodies. Despite the high concentration in living Sf9 cells (estimated ∼230 μm) and high phosphorylation, the protein was not aggregated. However, after purification, the highly phosphorylated protein readily formed oligomers, whereas fibrils were observed only rarely. Exposure of mature primary neuronal cultures to oligomeric phospho-Tau caused reduction of spine density on dendrites but did not change the overall cell viability. PMID:25339173

  4. HAMLET forms annular oligomers when deposited with phospholipid monolayers.

    PubMed

    Baumann, Anne; Gjerde, Anja Underhaug; Ying, Ming; Svanborg, Catharina; Holmsen, Holm; Glomm, Wilhelm R; Martinez, Aurora; Halskau, Oyvind

    2012-04-20

    Recently, the anticancer activity of human α-lactalbumin made lethal to tumor cells (HAMLET) has been linked to its increased membrane affinity in vitro, at neutral pH, and ability to cause leakage relative to the inactive native bovine α-lactalbumin (BLA) protein. In this study, atomic force microscopy resolved membrane distortions and annular oligomers (AOs) produced by HAMLET when deposited at neutral pH on mica together with a negatively charged lipid monolayer. BLA, BAMLET (HAMLET's bovine counterpart) and membrane-binding Peptide C, corresponding to BLA residues 75-100, also form AO-like structures under these conditions but at higher subphase concentrations than HAMLET. The N-terminal Peptide A, which binds to membranes at acidic but not at neutral pH, did not form AOs. This suggests a correlation between the capacity of the proteins/peptides to integrate into the membrane at neutral pH-as observed by liposome content leakage and circular dichroism experiments-and the formation of AOs, albeit at higher concentrations. Formation of AOs, which might be important to HAMLET's tumor toxic action, appears related to the increased tendency of the protein to populate intermediately folded states compared to the native protein, the formation of which is promoted by, but not uniquely dependent on, the oleic acid molecules associated with HAMLET.

  5. Carboxybetaine methacrylate oligomer modified nylon for circulating tumor cells capture.

    PubMed

    Dong, Chaoqun; Wang, Huiyu; Zhang, Zhuo; Zhang, Tao; Liu, Baorui

    2014-10-15