WorldWideScience

Sample records for neural protein synuclein

  1. Molecular ageing of alpha- and Beta-synucleins: protein damage and repair mechanisms.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vasanthy Vigneswara

    Full Text Available Abnormal α-synuclein aggregates are hallmarks of a number of neurodegenerative diseases. Alpha synuclein and β-synucleins are susceptible to post-translational modification as isoaspartate protein damage, which is regulated in vivo by the action of the repair enzyme protein L-isoaspartyl O-methyltransferase (PIMT. We aged in vitro native α-synuclein, the α-synuclein familial mutants A30P and A53T that give rise to Parkinsonian phenotypes, and β-synuclein, at physiological pH and temperature for a time course of up to 20 days. Resolution of native α-synuclein and β-synuclein by two dimensional techniques showed the accumulation of a number of post-translationally modified forms of both proteins. The levels of isoaspartate formed over the 20 day time course were quantified by exogenous methylation with PIMT using S-Adenosyl-L-[(3H-methyl]methionine as a methyl donor, and liquid scintillation counting of liberated (3H-methanol. All α-synuclein proteins accumulated isoaspartate at ∼1% of molecules/day, ∼20 times faster than for β-synuclein. This disparity between rates of isoaspartate was confirmed by exogenous methylation of synucleins by PIMT, protein resolution by one-dimensional denaturing gel electrophoresis, and visualisation of (3H-methyl esters by autoradiography. Protein silver staining and autoradiography also revealed that α-synucleins accumulated stable oligomers that were resistant to denaturing conditions, and which also contained isoaspartate. Co-incubation of approximately equimolar β-synuclein with α-synuclein resulted in a significant reduction of isoaspartate formed in all α-synucleins after 20 days of ageing. Co-incubated α- and β-synucleins, or α, or β synucleins alone, were resolved by non-denaturing size exclusion chromatography and all formed oligomers of ∼57.5 kDa; consistent with tetramerization. Direct association of α-synuclein with β-synuclein in column fractions or from in vitro ageing co

  2. Interaction between -Synuclein and Other Proteins in Neurodegenerative Disorders

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kurt A. Jellinger

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Protein aggregation is a common characteristic of many neurodegenerative disorders, and the interaction between pathological/toxic proteins to cause neurodegeneration is a hot topic of current neuroscience research. Despite clinical, genetic, and experimental differences, evidence increasingly indicates considerable overlap between synucleinopathies and tauopathies or other protein-misfolding diseases. Inclusions, characteristics of these disorders, also occurring in other neurodegenerative diseases, suggest interactions of pathological proteins engaging common downstream pathways. Novel findings that have shifted our understanding in the role of pathologic proteins in the pathogenesis of Parkinson and Alzheimer diseases have confirmed correlations/overlaps between these and other neurodegenerative disorders. The synergistic effects of α-synuclein, hyperphosphorylated tau, amyloid-β, and other pathologic proteins, and the underlying molecular pathogenic mechanisms, including induction and spread of protein aggregates, are critically reviewed, suggesting a dualism or triad of neurodegeneration in protein-misfolding disorders, although the etiology of most of these processes is still mysterious.

  3. The mitochondrial chaperone protein TRAP1 mitigates α-Synuclein toxicity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Erin K Butler

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available Overexpression or mutation of α-Synuclein is associated with protein aggregation and interferes with a number of cellular processes, including mitochondrial integrity and function. We used a whole-genome screen in the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster to search for novel genetic modifiers of human [A53T]α-Synuclein-induced neurotoxicity. Decreased expression of the mitochondrial chaperone protein tumor necrosis factor receptor associated protein-1 (TRAP1 was found to enhance age-dependent loss of fly head dopamine (DA and DA neuron number resulting from [A53T]α-Synuclein expression. In addition, decreased TRAP1 expression in [A53T]α-Synuclein-expressing flies resulted in enhanced loss of climbing ability and sensitivity to oxidative stress. Overexpression of human TRAP1 was able to rescue these phenotypes. Similarly, human TRAP1 overexpression in rat primary cortical neurons rescued [A53T]α-Synuclein-induced sensitivity to rotenone treatment. In human (nonneuronal cell lines, small interfering RNA directed against TRAP1 enhanced [A53T]α-Synuclein-induced sensitivity to oxidative stress treatment. [A53T]α-Synuclein directly interfered with mitochondrial function, as its expression reduced Complex I activity in HEK293 cells. These effects were blocked by TRAP1 overexpression. Moreover, TRAP1 was able to prevent alteration in mitochondrial morphology caused by [A53T]α-Synuclein overexpression in human SH-SY5Y cells. These results indicate that [A53T]α-Synuclein toxicity is intimately connected to mitochondrial dysfunction and that toxicity reduction in fly and rat primary neurons and human cell lines can be achieved using overexpression of the mitochondrial chaperone TRAP1. Interestingly, TRAP1 has previously been shown to be phosphorylated by the serine/threonine kinase PINK1, thus providing a potential link of PINK1 via TRAP1 to α-Synuclein.

  4. Glucocerebrosidase Deficiency in Drosophila Results in α-Synuclein-Independent Protein Aggregation and Neurodegeneration.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marie Y Davis

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Mutations in the glucosidase, beta, acid (GBA1 gene cause Gaucher's disease, and are the most common genetic risk factor for Parkinson's disease (PD and dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB excluding variants of low penetrance. Because α-synuclein-containing neuronal aggregates are a defining feature of PD and DLB, it is widely believed that mutations in GBA1 act by enhancing α-synuclein toxicity. To explore this hypothesis, we deleted the Drosophila GBA1 homolog, dGBA1b, and compared the phenotypes of dGBA1b mutants in the presence and absence of α-synuclein expression. Homozygous dGBA1b mutants exhibit shortened lifespan, locomotor and memory deficits, neurodegeneration, and dramatically increased accumulation of ubiquitinated protein aggregates that are normally degraded through an autophagic mechanism. Ectopic expression of human α-synuclein in dGBA1b mutants resulted in a mild enhancement of dopaminergic neuron loss and increased α-synuclein aggregation relative to controls. However, α-synuclein expression did not substantially enhance other dGBA1b mutant phenotypes. Our findings indicate that dGBA1b plays an important role in the metabolism of protein aggregates, but that the deleterious consequences of mutations in dGBA1b are largely independent of α-synuclein. Future work with dGBA1b mutants should reveal the mechanism by which mutations in dGBA1b lead to accumulation of protein aggregates, and the potential influence of this protein aggregation on neuronal integrity.

  5. Metformin lowers Ser-129 phosphorylated α-synuclein levels via mTOR-dependent protein phosphatase 2A activation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pérez-Revuelta, B I; Hettich, M M; Ciociaro, A; Rotermund, C; Kahle, P J; Krauss, S; Di Monte, D A

    2014-05-08

    Phospho-Ser129 α-synuclein is the modified form of α-synuclein that occurs most frequently within Parkinson's disease pathological inclusions. Here we demonstrate that the antidiabetic drug metformin significantly reduces levels of phospho-Ser129 α-synuclein and the ratio of phospho-Ser129 α-synuclein to total α-synuclein. This effect was documented in vitro in SH-SY5Y and HeLa cells as well as in primary cultures of hippocampal neurons. In vitro work also elucidated the mechanisms underlying metformin's action. Following metformin exposure, decreased phospho-Ser129 α-synuclein was not strictly dependent on induction of AMP-activated protein kinase, a primary target of the drug. On the other hand, metformin-induced phospho-Ser129 α-synuclein reduction was consistently associated with inhibition of mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) and activation of protein phosphatase 2A (PP2A). Evidence supporting a key role of mTOR/PP2A signaling included the finding that, similar to metformin, the canonical mTOR inhibitor rapamycin was capable of lowering the ratio of phospho-Ser129 α-synuclein to total α-synuclein. Furthermore, no decrease in phosphorylated α-synuclein occurred with either metformin or rapamycin when phosphatase activity was inhibited, supporting a direct relationship between mTOR inhibition, PP2A activation and protein dephosphorylation. A final set of experiments confirmed the effectiveness of metformin in vivo in wild-type C57BL/6 mice. Addition of the drug to food or drinking water lowered levels of phospho-Ser129 α-synuclein in the brain of treated animals. These data reveal a new mechanism leading to α-synuclein dephosphorylation that could be targeted for therapeutic intervention by drugs like metformin and rapamycin.

  6. Copper(II) Binding to ?-Synuclein, the Parkinson?s Protein

    OpenAIRE

    Lee, Jennifer C.; Gray, Harry B.; Winkler, Jay R.

    2008-01-01

    Variations in tryptophan fluorescence intensities confirm that copper(II) interacts with α-synuclein, a protein implicated in Parkinson’s disease. Trp4 fluorescence decay kinetics measured for the F4W protein show that Cu(II) binds tightly (K_d ∼ 100 nM) near the N-terminus at pH 7. Work on a F4W/H50S mutant indicates that a histidine imidazole is not a ligand in this high-affinity site.

  7. Urea and thiourea modified polypropyleneimine dendrimers clear intracellular α-synuclein aggregates in a human cell line

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Laumann, Kristoffer; Boas, Ulrik; Larsen, Hjalte Martin

    2015-01-01

    Synucleinopathies are neurodegenerative pathologies in which disease progression is closely correlated to brain accumulation of insoluble α-synuclein, a small protein abundantly expressed in neural tissue. Here, two types of modified polypropyleneimine (PPI) dendrimers having either urea or methy......Synucleinopathies are neurodegenerative pathologies in which disease progression is closely correlated to brain accumulation of insoluble α-synuclein, a small protein abundantly expressed in neural tissue. Here, two types of modified polypropyleneimine (PPI) dendrimers having either urea...

  8. Intracellular formation of α-synuclein oligomers and the effect of heat shock protein 70 characterized by confocal single particle spectroscopy

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Levin, Johannes [Department of Neurology, Ludwig-Maximilians-University, Marchioninistr. 15, 81377 Munich (Germany); German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases – DZNE, Site Munich, Feodor-Lynen-Str. 17, 81377 Munich (Germany); Hillmer, Andreas S. [Center for Neuropathology and Prion Research, Ludwig-Maximilians-University, Feodor-Lynen-Str. 23, 81377 Munich (Germany); Högen, Tobias [Department of Neurology, Ludwig-Maximilians-University, Marchioninistr. 15, 81377 Munich (Germany); McLean, Pamela J. [Department of Neuroscience, Mayo Clinic, Jacksonville, FL 32224 (United States); Giese, Armin, E-mail: armin.giese@med.uni-muenchen.de [Center for Neuropathology and Prion Research, Ludwig-Maximilians-University, Feodor-Lynen-Str. 23, 81377 Munich (Germany)

    2016-08-12

    Synucleinopathies such as dementia with Lewy bodies or Parkinson’s disease are characterized by intracellular deposition of pathologically aggregated α-synuclein. The details of the molecular pathogenesis of PD and especially the conditions that lead to intracellular aggregation of α-synuclein and the role of these aggregates in cell death remain unknown. In cell free in vitro systems considerable knowledge about the aggregation processes has been gathered. In comparison, the knowledge about these aggregation processes in cells is far behind. In cells α-synuclein aggregates can be toxic. However, the crucial particle species responsible for decisive steps in pathogenesis such as seeding a continuing aggregation process and triggering cell death remain to be identified. In order to understand the complex nature of intracellular α-synuclein aggregate formation, we analyzed fluorescent particles formed by venus and α-synuclein-venus fusion proteins and α-synuclein-hemi-venus fusion proteins derived from gently lyzed cells. With these techniques we were able to identify and characterize α-synuclein oligomers formed in cells. Especially the use of α-synuclein-hemi-venus fusion proteins enabled us to identify very small α-synuclein oligomers with high sensitivity. Furthermore, we were able to study the molecular effect of heat shock protein 70, which is known to inhibit α-synuclein aggregation in cells. Heat shock protein 70 does not only influence the size of α-synuclein oligomers, but also their quantity. In summary, this approach based on fluorescence single particle spectroscopy, that is suited for high throughput measurements, can be used to detect and characterize intracellularly formed α-synuclein aggregates and characterize the effect of molecules that interfere with α-synuclein aggregate formation. - Highlights: • Single particle spectroscopy detects intracellular formed α-synuclein aggregates. • Fusion proteins allow detection of protein

  9. Domain a' of protein disulfide isomerase plays key role in inhibiting alpha-synuclein fibril formation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, Han; Wang, Lei; Wang, Chih-chen

    2010-07-01

    alpha-Synuclein (alpha Syn) is the main component of Lewy bodies formed in midbrain dopaminergic neurons which is a pathological characteristic of Parkinson's disease. It has been recently showed to induce endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress and impair ER functions. However, the mechanism of how ER responds to alpha Syn toxicity is poorly understood. In the present study, we found that protein disulfide isomerase (PDI), a stress protein abundant in ER, effectively inhibits alpha Syn fibril formation in vitro. In PDI molecule with a structure of abb'xa'c, domain a' was found to be essential and sufficient for PDI to inhibit alpha Syn fibril formation. PDI was further found to be more avid for binding with intermediate species formed during alpha Syn fibril formation, and the binding was more intensive in the later lag phase. Our results provide new insight into the role of PDI in protecting ER from the deleterious effects of misfolded protein accumulation in many neurodegenerative diseases.

  10. γ-Synuclein antibodies have neuroprotective potential on neuroretinal cells via proteins of the mitochondrial apoptosis pathway.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Corina Wilding

    Full Text Available The family of synuclein proteins (α, β and γ are related to neurodegenerative disease e.g. Parkinson disease and Morbus Alzheimer. Additionally, a connection between γ-synuclein and glaucoma, a neurodegenerative disease characterized by a progressive loss of retinal ganglion cells, which finally leads to blindness, exists. The reason for the development of glaucoma is still unknown. Recent studies evaluating the participation of immunological components, demonstrate complex changed antibody reactivities in glaucoma patients in comparison to healthy people, showing not only up-regulations (e.g. alpha-fodrin antibody but also down-regulations (e.g. γ-synuclein antibody of antibodies in glaucoma patients. Up-regulated antibodies could be auto-aggressive, but the role of down-regulated antibodies is still unclear. Previous studies show a significant influence of the serum and the antibodies of glaucoma patients on protein expression profiles of neuroretinal cells. The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of γ-synuclein antibody on the viability and reactive oxygen species levels of a neuroretinal cell line (RGC-5 as well as their interaction with cellular proteins. We found a protective effect of γ-synuclein antibody resulting in an increased viability (up to 15% and decreased reactive oxygen species levels (up to -12% of glutamate and oxidative stressed RGC-5. These can be traced back to anti-apoptotic altered protein expressions in the mitochondrial apoptosis pathway indicated by mass spectrometry and validated by microarray analysis such as active caspase 3, bcl-2 associated-x-protein, S100A4, voltage-dependent anion channel, extracellular-signal-regulated-kinase (down-regulated and baculoviral IAP repeat-containing protein 6, phosphorylated extracellular-signal-regulated-kinase (up-regulated. These changed protein expression are triggered by the γ-synuclein antibody internalization of RGC-5 we could see in immunohistochemical

  11. Protein/lipid coaggregates are formed during α-synuclein-induced disruption of lipid bilayers

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    van Maarschalkerweerd, Andreas; Vetri, Valeria; Langkilde, Annette Eva

    2014-01-01

    the molecular mechanisms behind potential amyloid-mediated toxic effects, is still missing. Interaction between amyloid aggregates and the lipid cell membrane is expected to play a key role in the disease progress. Here, we present experimental data based on hybrid analysis of two-photon-microscopy, solution......Amyloid formation is associated with neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson's disease (PD). Significant α-synuclein (αSN) deposition in lipid-rich Lewy bodies is a hallmark of PD. Nonetheless, an unraveling of the connection between neurodegeneration and amyloid fibrils, including...... small-angle X-ray scattering and circular dichroism data. Data show in real time changes in liposome morphology and stability upon protein addition and reveal that membrane disruption mediated by amyloidogenic αSN is associated with dehydration of anionic lipid membranes and stimulation of protein...

  12. The Neuroprotective Role of Protein Quality Control in Halting the Development of Alpha-Synuclein Pathology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Destiny-Love Manecka

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Synucleinopathies are a family of neurodegenerative disorders that comprises Parkinson’s disease, dementia with Lewy bodies, and multiple system atrophy. Each of these disorders is characterized by devastating motor, cognitive, and autonomic consequences. Current treatments for synucleinopathies are not curative and are limited to improvement of quality of life for affected individuals. Although the underlying causes of these diseases are unknown, a shared pathological hallmark is the presence of proteinaceous inclusions containing the α-synuclein (α-syn protein in brain tissue. In the past few years, it has been proposed that these inclusions arise from the self-templated, prion-like spreading of misfolded and aggregated forms of α-syn throughout the brain, leading to neuronal dysfunction and death. In this review, we describe how impaired protein homeostasis is a prominent factor in the α-syn aggregation cascade, with alterations in protein quality control (PQC pathways observed in the brains of patients. We discuss how PQC modulates α-syn accumulation, misfolding and aggregation primarily through chaperoning activity, proteasomal degradation, and lysosome-mediated degradation. Finally, we provide an overview of experimental data indicating that targeting PQC pathways is a promising avenue to explore in the design of novel neuroprotective approaches that could impede the spreading of α-syn pathology and thus provide a curative treatment for synucleinopathies.

  13. Overexpression of alpha-synuclein at non-toxic levels increases dopaminergic cell death induced by copper exposure via modulation of protein degradation pathways.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anandhan, Annadurai; Rodriguez-Rocha, Humberto; Bohovych, Iryna; Griggs, Amy M; Zavala-Flores, Laura; Reyes-Reyes, Elsa M; Seravalli, Javier; Stanciu, Lia A; Lee, Jaekwon; Rochet, Jean-Christophe; Khalimonchuk, Oleh; Franco, Rodrigo

    2015-09-01

    Gene multiplications or point mutations in alpha (α)-synuclein are associated with familial and sporadic Parkinson's disease (PD). An increase in copper (Cu) levels has been reported in the cerebrospinal fluid and blood of PD patients, while occupational exposure to Cu has been suggested to augment the risk to develop PD. We aimed to elucidate the mechanisms by which α-synuclein and Cu regulate dopaminergic cell death. Short-term overexpression of wild type (WT) or mutant A53T α-synuclein had no toxic effect in human dopaminergic cells and primary midbrain cultures, but it exerted a synergistic effect on Cu-induced cell death. Cell death induced by Cu was potentiated by overexpression of the Cu transporter protein 1 (Ctr1) and depletion of intracellular glutathione (GSH) indicating that the toxic effects of Cu are linked to alterations in its intracellular homeostasis. Using the redox sensor roGFP, we demonstrated that Cu-induced oxidative stress was primarily localized in the cytosol and not in the mitochondria. However, α-synuclein overexpression had no effect on Cu-induced oxidative stress. WT or A53T α-synuclein overexpression exacerbated Cu toxicity in dopaminergic and yeast cells in the absence of α-synuclein aggregation. Cu increased autophagic flux and protein ubiquitination. Impairment of autophagy by overexpression of a dominant negative Atg5 form or inhibition of the ubiquitin/proteasome system (UPS) with MG132 enhanced Cu-induced cell death. However, only inhibition of the UPS stimulated the synergistic toxic effects of Cu and α-synuclein overexpression. Our results demonstrate that α-synuclein stimulates Cu toxicity in dopaminergic cells independent from its aggregation via modulation of protein degradation pathways. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. Sequence Determinants for Amyloid Fibrillogenesis of Human alpha-Synuclein.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zibaee, Shahin; Jakes, Ross; Fraser, Graham; Serpell, Louise C; Crowther, R Anthony; Goedert, Michel

    2007-11-23

    Parkinson's disease (PD) and dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB) are characterized by the presence of filamentous inclusions in nerve cells. These filaments are amyloid fibrils that are made of the protein alpha-synuclein, which is genetically linked to rare cases of PD and DLB. beta-Synuclein, which shares 60% identity with alpha-synuclein, is not found in the inclusions. Furthermore, while recombinant alpha-synuclein readily assembles into amyloid fibrils, beta-synuclein fails to do so. It has been suggested that this may be due to the lack in beta-synuclein of a hydrophobic region that spans residues 73-83 of alpha-synuclein. Here, fibril assembly of recombinant human alpha-synuclein, alpha-synuclein deletion mutants, beta-synuclein and beta/alpha-synuclein chimeras was assayed quantitatively by thioflavin T fluorescence and semi-quantitatively by transmission electron microscopy. Deletion of residues 73-83 from alpha-synuclein did not abolish filament formation. Furthermore, a chimera of beta-synuclein with alpha-synuclein(73-83) inserted was significantly less fibrillogenic than wild-type alpha-synuclein. These findings, together with results obtained using a number of recombinant synucleins, showed a correlation between fibrillogenesis and mean beta-strand propensity, hydrophilicity and charge of the amino acid sequences. The combination of these simple physicochemical properties with a previously described calculation of beta-strand contiguity allowed us to design mutations that changed the fibrillogenic propensity of alpha-synuclein in predictable ways.

  15. Alpha-synuclein immunopositive aggregates in the myenteric plexus of the aging Fischer 344 rat.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phillips, Robert J; Walter, Gary C; Ringer, Brittany E; Higgs, Katherine M; Powley, Terry L

    2009-11-01

    Dystrophic axons and terminals are common in the myenteric plexus and smooth muscle of the gastrointestinal (GI) tract of aged rats. In young adult rats, alpha-synuclein in its normal state is abundant throughout the myenteric plexus, making this protein-which is prone to fibrillization-a candidate marker for axonopathies in the aged rat. To determine if aggregation of alpha-synuclein is involved in the formation of age-related enteric neuropathies, we sampled the stomach, small intestine and large intestine of adult, middle-aged, and aged virgin male Fischer 344 rats stained for alpha-synuclein in both its normal and pathological states. Alpha-synuclein-positive dystrophic axons and terminals were present throughout the GI tract of middle-aged and aged rats, with immunohistochemical double labeling demonstrating co-localization within nitric oxide synthase-, calretinin-, calbindin-, or tyrosine hydroxylase-positive markedly swollen neurites. However, other dystrophic neurites positive for each of these four markers were not co-reactive for alpha-synuclein. Similarly, a subpopulation of alpha-synuclein inclusions contained deposits immunostained with an anti-tau phospho-specific Ser(262) antibody, but not all of these hyperphosphorylated tau-positive aggregates were co-localized with alpha-synuclein. The presence of heteroplastic and potentially degenerating neural elements and protein aggregates both positive and negative for alpha-synuclein suggests a complex chronological relationship between the onset of degenerative changes and the accumulation of misfolded proteins. Additionally, proteins other than alpha-synuclein appear to be involved in age-related axonopathies. Finally, this study establishes the utility of the aging Fischer 344 rat for the study of synucleopathies and tauopathies in the GI tract.

  16. Identification of synaptosomal proteins binding to monomeric and oligomeric α-synuclein.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cristine Betzer

    Full Text Available Monomeric α-synuclein (αSN species are abundant in nerve terminals where they are hypothesized to play a physiological role related to synaptic vesicle turn-over. In Parkinson's disease (PD and dementia with Lewy body (DLB, αSN accumulates as aggregated soluble oligomers in terminals, axons and the somatodendritic compartment and insoluble filaments in Lewy inclusions and Lewy neurites. The autosomal dominant heritability associated to mutations in the αSN gene suggest a gain of function associated to aggregated αSN. We have conducted a proteomic screen to identify the αSN interactome in brain synaptosomes. Porcine brain synaptosomes were fractionated, solubilized in non-denaturing detergent and subjected to co-immunoprecipitation using purified recombinant human αSN monomers or oligomers as bait. The isolated αSN binding proteins were identified with LC-LTQ-orbitrap tandem mass spectrometry and quantified by peak area using Windows client application, Skyline Targeted Proteomic Environment. Data are available via ProteomeXchange with identifier PXD001462. To quantify the preferential binding an average fold increase was calculated by comparing binding to monomer and oligomer. We identified 10 proteins preferentially binding monomer, and 76 binding preferentially to oligomer and a group of 92 proteins not displaying any preferred conformation of αSN. The proteomic data were validated by immunoprecipitation in both human and porcine brain extracts using antibodies against monomer αSN interactors: Abl interactor 1, and myelin proteolipid protein, and oligomer interactors: glutamate decarboxylase 2, synapsin 1, glial fibrillary acidic protein, and VAMP-2. We demonstrate the existence of αSN conformation selective ligands and present lists of proteins, whose identity and functions will be useful for modeling normal and pathological αSN dependent processes.

  17. Metallothionein, Copper and Alpha-Synuclein in Alpha-Synucleinopathies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Okita, Yuho; Rcom-H'cheo-Gauthier, Alexandre N; Goulding, Michael; Chung, Roger S; Faller, Peter; Pountney, Dean L

    2017-01-01

    Metallothioneins (MTs) are proteins that function by metal exchange to regulate the bioavailability of metals, such as zinc and copper. Copper functions in the brain to regulate mitochondria, neurotransmitter production, and cell signaling. Inappropriate copper binding can result in loss of protein function and Cu(I)/(II) redox cycling can generate reactive oxygen species. Copper accumulates in the brain with aging and has been shown to bind alpha-synuclein and initiate its aggregation, the primary aetiological factor in Parkinson's disease (PD), and other alpha-synucleinopathies. In PD, total tissue copper is decreased, including neuromelanin-bound copper and there is a reduction in copper transporter CTR-1. Conversely cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) copper is increased. MT-1/2 expression is increased in activated astrocytes in alpha-synucleinopathies, yet expression of the neuronal MT-3 isoform may be reduced. MTs have been implicated in inflammatory states to perform one-way exchange of copper, releasing free zinc and recent studies have found copper bound to alpha-synuclein is transferred to the MT-3 isoform in vitro and MT-3 is found bound to pathological alpha-synuclein aggregates in the alpha-synucleinopathy, multiple systems atrophy. Moreover, both MT and alpha-synuclein can be released and taken up by neural cells via specific receptors and so may interact both intra- and extra-cellularly. Here, we critically review the role of MTs in copper dyshomeostasis and alpha-synuclein aggregation, and their potential as biomarkers and therapeutic targets.

  18. Proteasome impairment by α-synuclein.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lisa Zondler

    Full Text Available Parkinson's disease (PD is the second most prevalent neurodegenerative disorder worldwide and characterized by the loss of dopaminergic neurons in the patients' midbrains. Both the presence of the protein α-synuclein in intracellular protein aggregates in surviving neurons and the genetic linking of the α-synuclein encoding gene point towards a major role of α-synuclein in PD etiology. The exact pathogenic mechanisms of PD development are not entirely described to date, neither is the specific role of α-synuclein in this context. Previous studies indicate that one aspect of α-synuclein-related cellular toxicity might be direct proteasome impairment. The 20/26S proteasomal machinery is an important instrument of intracellular protein degradation. Thus, direct proteasome impairment by α-synuclein might explain or at least contribute to the formation of intracellular protein aggregates. Therefore this study investigates direct proteasomal impairment by α-synuclein both in vitro using recombinant α-synuclein and isolated proteasomes as well as in living cells. Our experiments demonstrate that the impairment of proteasome activity by α-synuclein is highly dependent upon the cellular background and origin. We show that recombinant α-synuclein oligomers and fibrils scarcely affect 20S proteasome function in vitro, neither does transient α-synuclein expression in U2OS ps 2042 (Ubi(G76V-GFP cells. However, stable expression of both wild-type and mutant α-synuclein in dopaminergic SH-SY5Y and PC12 cells results in a prominent impairment of the chymotrypsin-like 20S/26S proteasomal protein cleavage. Thus, our results support the idea that α-synuclein in a specific cellular environment, potentially present in dopaminergic cells, cannot be processed by the proteasome and thus contributes to a selective vulnerability of dopaminergic cells to α-synuclein pathology.

  19. Detection of hyperphosphorylated tau protein and α-synuclein in spinal cord of patients with Alzheimer’s disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guo YJ

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Yanjun Guo,1,2 Luning Wang,2 Mingwei Zhu,2 Honghong Zhang,3 Yazhuo Hu,3 Zhitao Han,3 Jia Liu,4 Weiqin Zhao,1 Dexin Wang11Department of Neurology, Beijing Friendship Hospital, Capital Medical University, 2Department of Geriatric Neurology, PLA General Hospital, 3Institute of Geriatrics, Chinese PLA General Hospital & Chinese PLA Medical Academy, 4Department of Neurology, Xuanwu Hospital, Capital Medical University, Beijing, People’s Republic of ChinaAbstract: The aim of this study was to investigate the neuropathological features of the spinal cord in patients suffering with Alzheimer’s disease (AD. Spinal cord tissue collected from three AD patients and eight controls was selected for the study. Data were collected at T2, T8, T10, L4, and S2 spinal levels. The sections were subjected to hematoxylin and eosin and Gallyas–Braak staining methods and then were immunostained with antibodies such as phosphorylated tau protein (AT8, α-synuclein, Aβ, amyloid precursor protein , ubiquitin, and TDP-43. Pathological changes exhibited by the biomarkers were detected by microscopy. Neurofibrillary tangles (NFTs were detectable in spinal anterior horn motor neurons in two of the three AD patients. AT8-positive axons or axon-like structures and AT8 expression in glial cells were detected in all three AD cases. Hyperphosphorylation of tau protein was detected in spinal anterior horn cells, glial cells, and axons, and its severity was associated with NFTs in the brain tissue. α-Synuclein-positive Lewy bodies and scattered Lewy-like neuritis were detected in the medial horn of the thoracic spinal cord and ventral sacral gray matter, respectively, in one patient who had AD with Lewy bodies. Neither amyloid deposition nor amyloid precursor protein and TDP-43 expression was detected in the spinal cord of AD patients. Spinal cord of AD patients was observed to contain phosphorylated tau protein and α-synuclein immunoreactive structures, which may play a

  20. Chameleon behaviour of α-synuclein: brownian dynamics simulations of protein aggregation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ilie, Ioana Mariuca

    2015-01-01

    Over the past decades a large number of studies have been carried out in order to determine the physiological function of α-synuclein and its implication in Parkinson's disease. A complementary tool to experiments are computer simulations, which are intensively used for problems for which

  1. Vitamins K interact with N-terminus α-synuclein and modulate the protein fibrillization in vitro. Exploring the interaction between quinones and α-synuclein.

    Science.gov (United States)

    da Silva, Fernanda Luna; Coelho Cerqueira, Eduardo; de Freitas, Mônica Santos; Gonçalves, Daniela Leão; Costa, Lilian Terezinha; Follmer, Cristian

    2013-01-01

    In the last decades, a series of compounds, including quinones and polyphenols, has been described as having anti-fibrillogenic action on α-synuclein (α-syn) whose aggregation is associated to the pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease (PD). Most of these molecules act as promiscuous anti-amyloidogenic agents, interacting with the diverse amyloidogenic proteins (mostly unfolded) through non-specific hydrophobic interactions. Herein we investigated the effect of the vitamins K (phylloquinone, menaquinone and menadione), which are 1,4-naphthoquinone (1,4-NQ) derivatives, on α-syn aggregation, comparing them with other anti-fibrillogenic molecules such as quinones, polyphenols and lipophilic vitamins. Vitamins K delayed α-syn fibrillization in substoichiometric concentrations, leading to the formation of short, sheared fibrils and amorphous aggregates, which are less prone to produce leakage of synthetic vesicles. In seeding conditions, menadione and 1,4-NQ significantly inhibited fibrils elongation, which could be explained by their ability to destabilize preformed fibrils of α-syn. Bidimensional NMR experiments indicate that a specific site at the N-terminal α-syn (Gly31/Lys32) is involved in the interaction with vitamins K, which is corroborated by previous studies suggesting that Lys is a key residue in the interaction with quinones. Together, our data suggest that 1,4-NQ, recently showed up by our group as a potential scaffold for designing new monoamine oxidase inhibitors, is also capable to modulate α-syn fibrillization in vitro. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Amyloid precursor protein and alpha synuclein translation, implications for iron and inflammation in neurodegenerative diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cahill, Catherine M; Lahiri, Debomoy K; Huang, Xudong; Rogers, Jack T

    2009-07-01

    Recent studies that alleles in the hemochromatosis gene may accelerate the onset of Alzheimer's disease by five years have validated interest in the model in which metals (particularly iron) accelerate disease course. Biochemical and biophysical measurements demonstrated the presence of elevated levels of neurotoxic copper zinc and iron in the brains of AD patients. Intracellular levels of APP holoprotein were shown to be modulated by iron by a mechanism that is similar to the translation control of the ferritin L- and H mRNAs by iron-responsive element (IRE) RNA stem loops in their 5' untranslated regions (5'UTRs). More recently a putative IRE-like sequence was hypothesized present in the Parkinsons's alpha synuclein (ASYN) transcript (see [A.L. Friedlich, R.E. Tanzi, J.T. Rogers, The 5'-untranslated region of Parkinson's disease alpha-synuclein messenger RNA contains a predicted iron responsive element, Mol. Psychiatry 12 (2007) 222-223. [6

  3. Life-time expression of the proteins peroxiredoxin, beta-synuclein, PARK7/DJ-1, and stathmin in the primary visual andprimary somatosensory cortices in rats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael R. R. Böhm

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Four distinct proteins are regulated in the aging neuroretina and may may be regulated in the cerebral cortex, too: peroxiredoxin, beta-synuclein, PARK[Parkinson disease(autosomal recessive, early onset]7/DJ-1, and Stathmin. Thus, we performed a comparative analysis of these proteins in the the primary somatosensory cortex (S1 and primary visual cortex (V1 in rats, in order to detect putative common development-, maturation- and age-related changes. The expressions of peroxiredoxin, beta-synuclein, PARK[Parkinson disease (autosomal recessive, early onset]7/DJ-1, and Stathmin were compared in the newborn, juvenile, adult, and aged S1 and V1. Western blot, quantitative reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction, and immunohistochemistry analyses were employed to determine whether the changes identified by proteomics were verifiable at the cellular and molecular levels. All of the proteins were detected in both of the investigated cortical areas. Changes in the expressions of the four proteins were found throughout the life-time of the rats. Peroxiredoxin expression remained unchanged over life-time. Beta-Synuclein expression was massively increased up to the adult stage of life in both the S1 and V1. PARK[Parkinson disease (autosomal recessive, early onset]7/DJ-1 exhibited a massive up-regulation in both the S1 and V1 at all ages. Stathmin expression was massively down regulated after the neonatal period in both the S1 and V1. The detected protein alterations were analogous to their retinal profiles. This study is the first to provide evidence that peroxiredoxin, beta-synuclein, PARK[Parkinson disease (autosomal recessive, early onset]7/DJ-1, and Stathmin are associated with postnatal maturation and aging in both the S1 and V1 of rats. These changes may indicate their involvement in key functional pathways and may account for the onset or progression of age-related pathologies.

  4. Prolongation of chemically-induced methemoglobinemia in mice lacking α-synuclein: A novel pharmacologic and toxicologic phenotype

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yien-Ming Kuo

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The protein α-synuclein is considered central to the pathogenesis of Parkinson disease (PD on genetic and histopathological grounds. It is widely expressed in fetal life and continues to be highly expressed in adult neural tissues, red blood cells and platelets, while the remainder of adult tissues are reported to have little or no expression. Despite cellular and molecular evidence for a role in neuronal function including synaptic vesicle trafficking, neurotransmitter release, mitochondrial function, lipid metabolism, neurogenesis, neuroprotection, and neuromelanin biosynthesis, mice ablated for the gene encoding α-synuclein (Snca have little or no neurological phenotype. Thus, nearly 20 years of intensive study have yet to reveal conclusively what the normal function of this highly abundant protein is in the nervous system. Interestingly, α-synuclein has also been shown to have enzymatic activity as a ferrireductase capable of reducing Fe+3 to Fe+2. Given its abundant expression in red blood cells, we set out to explore the role of α-synuclein in converting chemically-induced Fe+3 methemoglobin to normal Fe+2 hemoglobin. Initial in vivo experiments with the potent methemoglobin inducer, para-aminopropiophenone and its active metabolite, 4-hydroxy para-aminopropiophenone, demonstrated significantly greater and more prolonged methemoglobinemia in Snca−/− mice compared to Snca+/+ mice. In vitro experiments with red blood cells, however, and in vivo experiments in genetically engineered mouse strains that differ in their α-synuclein expression in various tissues, including the nervous system, red blood cells and liver, revealed that contrary to the initial hypothesis, a lack of expression of α-synuclein in red blood cells did not correlate with higher levels or more prolonged duration of methemoglobinemia. Instead, the greater sensitivity to chemically induced methemoglobinemia correlated with the absence of hepatic α-synuclein

  5. Coordination features and affinity of the Cu²+ site in the α-synuclein protein of Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dudzik, Christopher G; Walter, Eric D; Millhauser, Glenn L

    2011-03-22

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is the second most prevalent age-related, neurodegenerative disorder, affecting >1% of the population over the age of 60. PD pathology is marked by intracellular inclusions composed primarily of the protein α-synuclein (α-syn). These inclusions also contain copper, and the interaction of Cu(2+) with α-syn may play an important role in PD fibrillogenesis. Here we report the stoichiometry, affinity, and coordination structure of the Cu(2+)-α-syn complex. Electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) titrations show that monomeric α-syn binds 1.0 equiv of Cu(2+) at the protein N-terminus. Next, an EPR competition technique demonstrates that α-syn binds Cu(2+) with a K(d) of ≈0.10 nM. Finally, EPR and electron spin echo modulation (ESEEM) applied to a suite of mutant and truncated α-syn constructs reveal a coordination sphere arising from the N-terminal amine, the Asp2 amide backbone and side chain carboxyl group, and the His50 imidazole. The high binding affinity identified here, in accord with previous measurements, suggests that copper uptake and sequestration may be a part of α-syn's natural function, perhaps modulating copper's redox properties. The findings further suggest that the long-range interaction between the N-terminus and His50 may have a weakening effect on the interaction of α-syn with lipid membranes, thereby mobilizing monomeric α-syn and hastening fibrillogenesis.

  6. α-Synuclein-induced lysosomal dysfunction occurs through disruptions in protein trafficking in human midbrain synucleinopathy models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mazzulli, Joseph R; Zunke, Friederike; Isacson, Ole; Studer, Lorenz; Krainc, Dimitri

    2016-02-16

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is an age-related neurodegenerative disorder characterized by the accumulation of protein aggregates comprised of α-synuclein (α-syn). A major barrier in treatment discovery for PD is the lack of identifiable therapeutic pathways capable of reducing aggregates in human neuronal model systems. Mutations in key components of protein trafficking and cellular degradation machinery represent important risk factors for PD; however, their precise role in disease progression and interaction with α-syn remains unclear. Here, we find that α-syn accumulation reduced lysosomal degradation capacity in human midbrain dopamine models of synucleinopathies through disrupting hydrolase trafficking. Accumulation of α-syn at the cell body resulted in aberrant association with cis-Golgi-tethering factor GM130 and disrupted the endoplasmic reticulum-Golgi localization of rab1a, a key mediator of vesicular transport. Overexpression of rab1a restored Golgi structure, improved hydrolase trafficking and activity, and reduced pathological α-syn in patient neurons. Our work suggests that enhancement of lysosomal hydrolase trafficking may prove beneficial in synucleinopathies and indicates that human midbrain disease models may be useful for identifying critical therapeutic pathways in PD and related disorders.

  7. Alpha-synuclein is a cellular ferrireductase

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Davies, Paul; Moualla, Dima; Brown, David R

    2011-01-01

    α-synuclein (αS) is a cellular protein mostly known for the association of its aggregated forms with a variety of diseases that include Parkinson's disease and Dementia with Lewy Bodies. While the role of α...

  8. S-Nitrosylating protein disulphide isomerase mediates α-synuclein aggregation caused by methamphetamine exposure in PC12 cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Xiao-Fang; Wang, Ai-Feng; Chen, Ling; Huang, En-Ping; Xie, Wei-Bing; Liu, Chao; Huang, Wei-Ye; Chen, Chuan-Xiang; Qiu, Ping-Ming; Wang, Hui-Jun

    2014-10-01

    Methamphetamine (METH) belongs to Amphetamine-type stimulants, METH abusers are at high risk of neurodegenerative disorders, including Parkinson's disease (PD). However, there are still no effective treatments to METH-induced neurodegeneration because its mechanism remains unknown. In order to investigate METH's neurotoxic mechanism, we established an in vitro PD pathology model by exposing PC12 cells to METH. We found the expression of nitric oxide synthase (NOS), nitric oxide (NO) and α-synuclein (α-syn) was significantly increased after METH treatment for 24h, in addition, the aggregattion of α-syn and the S-nitrosylation of protein disulphideisomerase(PDI) were also obviously enhanced. When we exposed PC12 cells to the NOS inhibitor N-nitro-L-arginine(L-NNA) with METH together, the L-NNA obviously inhibited these changes induced by METH. While when we exposed PC12 cells to the precursor of NO L-Arginine together with METH, the L-Arginine resulted in the opposite effect compared to L-NNA. And when we knocked down the PDI gene, the L-NNA did not have this effect. Therefore, PDI plays a significant role in neurological disorders related to α-syn aggregation, and it suggests that PDI could be as a potential target to prevent METH-induced neurodegeneration. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Biophysics of α-synuclein induced membrane remodelling

    OpenAIRE

    Shi, Zheng; Sachs, Jonathan; Rhoades, Elizabeth; Baumgart, Tobias

    2015-01-01

    α-synuclein is an intrinsically disordered protein whose aggregation is a hallmark of Parkinson’s disease. In neurons, α-synuclein is thought to play important roles in mediating both endo- and exocytosis of synaptic vesicles through interactions with either the lipid bilayer or other proteins. Upon membrane binding, the N-terminus of α-synuclein forms a helical structure and inserts into the hydrophobic region of the outer membrane leaflet. However, membrane structural changes induced by α-s...

  10. Neural Networks for protein Structure Prediction

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bohr, Henrik

    1998-01-01

    This is a review about neural network applications in bioinformatics. Especially the applications to protein structure prediction, e.g. prediction of secondary structures, prediction of surface structure, fold class recognition and prediction of the 3-dimensional structure of protein backbones...

  11. Differential expression of alpha-synuclein in hippocampal neurons.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katsutoshi Taguchi

    Full Text Available α-Synuclein is the major pathological component of synucleinopathies including Parkinson's disease and dementia with Lewy bodies. Recent studies have demonstrated that α-synuclein also plays important roles in the release of synaptic vesicles and synaptic membrane recycling in healthy neurons. However, the precise relationship between the pathogenicity and physiological functions of α-synuclein remains to be elucidated. To address this issue, we investigated the subcellular localization of α-synuclein in normal and pathological conditions using primary mouse hippocampal neuronal cultures. While some neurons expressed high levels of α-synuclein in presynaptic boutons and cell bodies, other neurons either did not or only very weakly expressed the protein. These α-synuclein-negative cells were identified as inhibitory neurons by immunostaining with specific antibodies against glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD, parvalbumin, and somatostatin. In contrast, α-synuclein-positive synapses were colocalized with the excitatory synapse marker vesicular glutamate transporter-1. This expression profile of α-synuclein was conserved in the hippocampus in vivo. In addition, we found that while presynaptic α-synuclein colocalizes with synapsin, a marker of presynaptic vesicles, it is not essential for activity-dependent membrane recycling induced by high potassium treatment. Exogenous supply of preformed fibrils generated by recombinant α-synuclein was shown to promote the formation of Lewy body (LB -like intracellular aggregates involving endogenous α-synuclein. GAD-positive neurons did not form LB-like aggregates following treatment with preformed fibrils, however, exogenous expression of human α-synuclein allowed intracellular aggregate formation in these cells. These results suggest the presence of a different mechanism for regulation of the expression of α-synuclein between excitatory and inhibitory neurons. Furthermore, α-synuclein expression

  12. Biophysics of α-synuclein induced membrane remodelling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shi, Zheng; Sachs, Jonathan N; Rhoades, Elizabeth; Baumgart, Tobias

    2015-06-28

    α-Synuclein is an intrinsically disordered protein whose aggregation is a hallmark of Parkinson's disease. In neurons, α-synuclein is thought to play important roles in mediating both endo- and exocytosis of synaptic vesicles through interactions with either the lipid bilayer or other proteins. Upon membrane binding, the N-terminus of α-synuclein forms a helical structure and inserts into the hydrophobic region of the outer membrane leaflet. However, membrane structural changes induced by α-synuclein are still largely unclear. Here we report a substantial membrane area expansion induced by the binding of α-synuclein monomers. This measurement is accomplished by observing the increase of membrane area during the binding of α-synuclein to pipette-aspirated giant vesicles. The extent of membrane area expansion correlates linearly with the density of α-synuclein on the membrane, revealing a constant area increase induced by the binding per α-synuclein molecule. The area expansion per synuclein is found to exhibit a strong dependence on lipid composition, but is independent of membrane tension and vesicle size. Fragmentation or tubulation of the membrane follows the membrane expansion process. However, contrary to BAR domain proteins, no distinct tubulation-transition density can apparently be identified for α-synuclein, suggesting a more complex membrane curvature generation mechanism. Consideration of α-synuclein's membrane binding free energy and biophysical properties of the lipid bilayer leads us to conclude that membrane expansion by α-synuclein results in thinning of the bilayer. These membrane thinning and tubulation effects may underlie α-synuclein's role in mediating cell trafficking processes such as endo- and exocytosis.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  14. Urea and thiourea modified polypropyleneimine dendrimers clear intracellular α-synuclein aggregates in a human cell line.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laumann, Kristoffer; Boas, Ulrik; Larsen, Hjalte M; Heegaard, Peter M H; Bergström, Ann-Louise

    2015-01-12

    Synucleinopathies are neurodegenerative pathologies in which disease progression is closely correlated to brain accumulation of insoluble α-synuclein, a small protein abundantly expressed in neural tissue. Here, two types of modified polypropyleneimine (PPI) dendrimers having either urea or methylthiourea (MTU) surface functional groups were investigated in a cellular model of synucleinopathy. Dendrimers are synthetic macromolecules that may be produced in a range of well-defined molecular sizes. Using cellomics array scan high-content screening, we show that both types of dendrimers are able to significantly reduce intracellular levels of α-synuclein aggregates dependent on the concentration, the type and molecular size of the dendrimer with the bigger size MTU-dendrimers having the highest potency. The intracellular clearance of α-synuclein aggregates by dendrimers was achieved at noncytotoxic concentrations.

  15. Partial Peptide of α-Synuclein Modified with Small-Molecule Inhibitors Specifically Inhibits Amyloid Fibrillation of α-Synuclein

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wataru Yoshida

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available We have previously reported that pyrroloquinoline quinone (PQQ prevents the amyloid formation of α-synuclein, amyloid β1–42 (Aβ1–42, and mouse prion protein. Moreover, PQQ-modified α-synuclein and a proteolytic fragment of the PQQ-modified α-synuclein are able to inhibit the amyloid formation of α-synuclein. Here, we identified the peptide sequences that play an important role as PQQ-modified specific peptide inhibitors of α-synuclein. We demonstrate that the PQQ-modified α-Syn36–46 peptide, which is a partial sequence of α-synuclein, prevented α-synuclein amyloid fibril formation but did not inhibit Aβ1–42 fibril formation. In addition, the α-synuclein partial peptide modified with other small-molecule inhibitors, Baicalein and epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG, prevented α-synuclein fibril formation. Currently reported quinone amyloid inhibitors do not have selectivity toward protein molecules. Therefore, our achievements provide a novel strategy for the development of targeted specific amyloid formation inhibitors: the combination of quinone compounds with specific peptide sequence from target proteins involved in amyloid formation.

  16. Membrane interactions of oligomeric alpha-synuclein : potential role in Parkinson's disease

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Rooijen, Bart D; Claessens, Mireille M A E; Subramaniam, Vinod

    alpha-Synuclein is a small neuronal protein that has been implicated to play an important role in Parkinson's disease. Genetic mutations and multiplications in the alpha-synuclein gene can cause familial forms of the disease. In aggregated fibrillar form, alpha-synuclein is the main component of

  17. Antibodies against alpha-synuclein reduce oligomerization in living cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas Näsström

    Full Text Available Recent research implicates soluble aggregated forms of α-synuclein as neurotoxic species with a central role in the pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease and related disorders. The pathway by which α-synuclein aggregates is believed to follow a step-wise pattern, in which dimers and smaller oligomers are initially formed. Here, we used H4 neuroglioma cells expressing α-synuclein fused to hemi:GFP constructs to study the effects of α-synuclein monoclonal antibodies on the early stages of aggregation, as quantified by Bimolecular Fluorescence Complementation assay. Widefield and confocal microscopy revealed that cells treated for 48 h with monoclonal antibodies internalized antibodies to various degrees. C-terminal and oligomer-selective α-synuclein antibodies reduced the extent of α-synuclein dimerization/oligomerization, as indicated by decreased GFP fluorescence signal. Furthermore, ELISA measurements on lysates and conditioned media from antibody treated cells displayed lower α-synuclein levels compared to untreated cells, suggesting increased protein turnover. Taken together, our results propose that extracellular administration of monoclonal antibodies can modify or inhibit early steps in the aggregation process of α-synuclein, thus providing further support for passive immunization against diseases with α-synuclein pathology.

  18. Fish Synucleins: An Update

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mattia Toni

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Synucleins (syns are a family of proteins involved in several human neurodegenerative diseases and tumors. Since the first syn discovery in the brain of the electric ray Torpedo californica, members of the same family have been identified in all vertebrates and comparative studies have indicated that syn proteins are evolutionary conserved. No counterparts of syns were found in invertebrates suggesting that they are vertebrate-specific proteins. Molecular studies showed that the number of syn members varies among vertebrates. Three genes encode for α-, β- and γ-syn in mammals and birds. However, a variable number of syn genes and encoded proteins is expressed or predicted in fish depending on the species. Among biologically verified sequences, four syn genes were identified in fugu, encoding for α, β and two γ (γ1 and γ2 isoforms, whereas only three genes are expressed in zebrafish, which lacks α-syn gene. The list of “non verified” sequences is much longer and is often found in sequence databases. In this review we provide an overview of published papers and known syn sequences in agnathans and fish that are likely to impact future studies in this field. Indeed, fish models may play a key role in elucidating some of the molecular mechanisms involved in physiological and pathological functions of syn proteins.

  19. Ambroxol effects in glucocerebrosidase and α-synuclein transgenic mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Migdalska-Richards, Anna; Daly, Liam; Bezard, Erwan; Schapira, Anthony H V

    2016-11-01

    Gaucher disease is caused by mutations in the glucocerebrosidase 1 gene that result in deficiency of the lysosomal enzyme glucocerebrosidase. Both homozygous and heterozygous glucocerebrosidase 1 mutations confer an increased risk for developing Parkinson disease. Current estimates indicate that 10 to 25% of Parkinson patients carry glucocerebrosidase 1 mutations. Ambroxol is a small molecule chaperone that has been shown to increase glucocerebrosidase activity in vitro. This study investigated the effect of ambroxol treatment on glucocerebrosidase activity and on α-synuclein and phosphorylated α-synuclein protein levels in mice. Mice were treated with ambroxol for 12 days. After the treatment, glucocerebrosidase activity was measured in the mouse brain lysates. The brain lysates were also analyzed for α-synuclein and phosphorylated α-synuclein protein levels. Ambroxol treatment resulted in increased brain glucocerebrosidase activity in (1) wild-type mice, (2) transgenic mice expressing the heterozygous L444P mutation in the murine glucocerebrosidase 1 gene, and (3) transgenic mice overexpressing human α-synuclein. Furthermore, in the mice overexpressing human α-synuclein, ambroxol treatment decreased both α-synuclein and phosphorylated α-synuclein protein levels. Our work supports the proposition that ambroxol should be further investigated as a potential novel disease-modifying therapy for treatment of Parkinson disease and neuronopathic Gaucher disease to increase glucocerebrosidase activity and decrease α-synuclein and phosphorylated α-synuclein protein levels. Ann Neurol 2016;80:766-775. © 2016 The Authors. Annals of Neurology published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of American Neurological Association.

  20. Potassium depolarization and raised calcium induces α-synuclein aggregates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Follett, Jordan; Darlow, Bonnie; Wong, Mathew B; Goodwin, Jacob; Pountney, Dean L

    2013-05-01

    α-Synuclein is the key aggregating protein in Parkinson's disease (PD), which is characterized by cytoplasmic protein inclusion bodies, termed Lewy bodies, thought to increase longevity of the host neuron by sequestering toxic soluble α-synuclein oligomers. Previous post-mortem studies have shown relative sparing of neurons in PD that are positive for the Ca(2+) buffering protein, calbindin, and recent cell culture and in vitro studies have shown that α-synuclein aggregation can be induced by Ca(2+). We hypothesized that depolarization with potassium resulting in raised Ca(2+) in a PD cell culture model will lead to the formation of α-synuclein protein aggregates and that the intracellular Ca(2+) buffer, BAPTA-AM, may suppress their formation. Live cell fluorescence microscopy was performed to monitor changes in intracellular free calcium in HEK293T, SH-SY5Y neuroblastoma or stably transfected HEK293T/α-synuclein cells. Raised intracellular free Ca(2+) was consistently observed in cells treated with KCl, but not controls. Immunohistochemistry analysis on cells 48-72 h after K(+) treatment revealed two subsets of cells with either large (>2 μm), perinuclear α-synuclein aggregates or multiple smaller (5 μM. Quantitative analysis revealed a significant increase in the number of cells bearing α-synuclein cytoplasmic inclusions in both HEK293T/α-synuclein and SHSY-5Y cells when transient intracellular raised Ca(2+) was induced (p = 0.001). BAPTA-AM pre-loading significantly suppressed α-synuclein aggregates (p = 0.001) and the intracellular free Ca(2+) transient. This study indicates that raised intracellular Ca(2+) mediated by K(+) depolarization can lead to α-synuclein aggregation.

  1. Lewy Body Variant of Alzheimer's Disease: Selective Neocortical Loss of t-SNARE Proteins and Loss of MAP2 and α-Synuclein in Medial Temporal Lobe

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elizabeta B. Mukaetova-Ladinska

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Lewy bodies (LBs appear in the brains of nondemented individuals and also occur in a range of neurodegenerative disorders, such as dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB and Parkinson's disease. A number of people with a definite diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease (AD also exhibit these intraneuronal inclusions in allo- and/or neocortical areas. The latter, referred to as Lewy body variant of AD (LBV, bears a clinical resemblance to AD in terms of age at onset, duration of illness, cognitive impairment, and illness severity. Since the presence of LBs is accompanied by neuronal cytoskeleton changes, it is possible that the latter may influence neuronal connectivity via alterations to the synaptic network. To address this, we examined the expression of synaptic proteins (synaptophysin, syntaxin, SNAP-25, and α-synuclein and two cytoskeletal proteins (tau and MAP2 in the brain tissue of subjects enrolled in a population-based autopsy study (n = 47. They were divided into groups with no memory problems (control group, n = 15, LBV (n = 5, AD devoid of LBs (n = 17, cerebrovascular dementia (n = 3, and mixed dementia (n = 7. The LBV and AD groups had a similar degree of cognitive impairment and neuropathological staging in terms of Braak staging and CERAD score. In comparison with the control group and the dementia groups without LBs, the LBV group had significantly lower levels of syntaxin and SNAP-25 (23% in the neocortex, and depletion of MAP2 (64%, SNAP-25 (34%, and α-synuclein (44% proteins in the medial temporal lobes. These findings suggest that the t-SNARE complex deficit present in LBV may be associated with the presence of LB-related pathology and may explain the more profound cholinergic loss seen in these patients.

  2. Alpha-synuclein gene deletion decreases brain palmitate uptake and alters the palmitate metabolism in the absence of alpha-synuclein palmitate binding

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Golovko, Mikhail Y; Færgeman, Nils J.; Cole, Nelson B

    2005-01-01

    Alpha-synuclein is an abundant protein in the central nervous system that is associated with a number of neurodegenerative disorders, including Parkinson's disease. Its physiological function is poorly understood, although recently it was proposed to function as a fatty acid binding protein....... To better define a role for alpha-synuclein in brain fatty acid uptake and metabolism, we infused awake, wild-type, or alpha-synuclein gene-ablated mice with [1-(14)C]palmitic acid (16:0) and assessed fatty acid uptake and turnover kinetics in brain phospholipids. Alpha-synuclein deficiency decreased brain...

  3. Tissue transglutaminase catalyzes the formation of alpha-synuclein crosslinks in Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andringa, G; Lam, K Y; Chegary, M; Wang, X; Chase, T N; Bennett, M C

    2004-05-01

    In Parkinson's disease (PD), conformational changes in the alpha-synuclein monomer precede the formation of Lewy bodies. We examined postmortem PD and undiseased (control) substantia nigra for evidence of pathological crosslinking of alpha-synuclein by tissue transglutaminase (tTG) using immunohistochemistry, immunoprecipitation, and Western blot. Consistent with previous reports, we found that both tTG and its substrate-characteristic N(epsilon)-(gamma-glutamyl)-lysine crosslink are increased in PD nigral dopamine neurons. Furthermore, both the tTG protein and its substrate crosslink coprecipitated with alpha-synuclein in extracts of PD substantia nigra. Unexpectedly, the isodipeptide crosslink was detected in the alpha-synuclein monomer as well as in higher molecular mass oligomers of alpha-synuclein. Although the intramolecularly crosslinked alpha-synuclein monomer was present in control tissue, it was highly enriched in PD substantia nigra. Conversely, significantly less uncrosslinked alpha-synuclein remained in the postimmunoprecipitate lysate of PD tissue than in control. Crosslinked alpha-synuclein, formed at the expense of the total alpha-synuclein monomer, correlated with disease progression. These results demonstrate that much of the alpha-synuclein monomer in PD nigra is crosslinked by tTG and thus may be functionally impaired. This modification appears to be an early step in PD pathogenesis, preceding the aggregation of alpha-synuclein in Lewy bodies.

  4. Low CSF levels of both α-synuclein and the α-synuclein cleaving enzyme neurosin in patients with synucleinopathy.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Malin Wennström

    Full Text Available Neurosin is a protease that in vitro degrades α-synuclein, the main constituent of Lewy bodies found in brains of patients with synucleinopathy including Parkinson's disease (PD and dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB. Several studies have reported reduced cerebrospinal fluid (CSF levels of α-synuclein in synucleinopathy patients and recent data also proposes a significant role of α-synuclein in the pathophysiology of Alzheimer's disease (AD. To investigate potential links between neurosin and its substrate α-synuclein in vivo we used a commercially available sandwich ELISA and an in-house developed direct ELISA to quantify CSF levels of α-synuclein and neurosin in patients diagnosed with DLB, PD and PD dementia (PDD versus AD patients and non-demented controls. We found that patients with synucleinopathy displayed lower CSF levels of neurosin and α-synuclein compared to controls and AD patients. In contrast, AD patients demonstrated significantly increased CSF α-synuclein but similar neurosin levels compared to non-demented controls. Further, CSF neurosin and α-synuclein concentrations were positively associated in controls, PD and PDD patients and both proteins were highly correlated to CSF levels of phosphorylated tau in all investigated groups. We observed no effect of gender or presence of the apolipoprotein Eε4 allele on neither neurosin or α-synuclein CSF levels. In concordance with the current literature our study demonstrates decreased CSF levels of α-synuclein in synucleinopathy patients versus AD patients and controls. Importantly, decreased α-synuclein levels in patients with synucleinopathy appear linked to low levels of the α-synuclein cleaving enzyme neurosin. In contrast, elevated levels of α-synuclein in AD patients were not related to any altered CSF neurosin levels. Thus, altered CSF levels of α-synuclein and neurosin in patients with synucleinopathy versus AD may not only mirror disease-specific neuropathological

  5. Targeting α-synuclein oligomers

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    van Diggelen, Femke

    2017-01-01

    Parkinson’s Disease (PD) is a complex disease, characterised by degeneration of neocortical, limbic and nigrostriatal neurons. It is unknown what initiates neurodegeneration, but soluble oligomers of the protein α-synuclein (αSn) seem to be particularly toxic, compared to insoluble fibrils....... Although there is currently no cure for PD, αSn oligomers (αSOs) are a potential therapeutic target, but a major drawback it that little is known about the nature of PD-associated αSOs. The scientific literature describes a wide variety of protocols to generate αSOs in vitro, with a subsequent...

  6. Alpha-synuclein suppression by targeted small interfering RNA in the primate substantia nigra.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alison L McCormack

    Full Text Available The protein alpha-synuclein is involved in the pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease and other neurodegenerative disorders. Its toxic potential appears to be enhanced by increased protein expression, providing a compelling rationale for therapeutic strategies aimed at reducing neuronal alpha-synuclein burden. Here, feasibility and safety of alpha-synuclein suppression were evaluated by treating monkeys with small interfering RNA (siRNA directed against alpha-synuclein. The siRNA molecule was chemically modified to prevent degradation by exo- and endonucleases and directly infused into the left substantia nigra. Results compared levels of alpha-synuclein mRNA and protein in the infused (left vs. untreated (right hemisphere and revealed a significant 40-50% suppression of alpha-synuclein expression. These findings could not be attributable to non-specific effects of siRNA infusion since treatment of a separate set of animals with luciferase-targeting siRNA produced no changes in alpha-synuclein. Infusion with alpha-synuclein siRNA, while lowering alpha-synuclein expression, had no overt adverse consequences. In particular, it did not cause tissue inflammation and did not change (i the number and phenotype of nigral dopaminergic neurons, and (ii the concentrations of striatal dopamine and its metabolites. The data represent the first evidence of successful anti-alpha-synuclein intervention in the primate substantia nigra and support further development of RNA interference-based therapeutics.

  7. Discriminating lysosomal membrane protein types using dynamic neural network.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tripathi, Vijay; Gupta, Dwijendra Kumar

    2014-01-01

    This work presents a dynamic artificial neural network methodology, which classifies the proteins into their classes from their sequences alone: the lysosomal membrane protein classes and the various other membranes protein classes. In this paper, neural networks-based lysosomal-associated membrane protein type prediction system is proposed. Different protein sequence representations are fused to extract the features of a protein sequence, which includes seven feature sets; amino acid (AA) composition, sequence length, hydrophobic group, electronic group, sum of hydrophobicity, R-group, and dipeptide composition. To reduce the dimensionality of the large feature vector, we applied the principal component analysis. The probabilistic neural network, generalized regression neural network, and Elman regression neural network (RNN) are used as classifiers and compared with layer recurrent network (LRN), a dynamic network. The dynamic networks have memory, i.e. its output depends not only on the input but the previous outputs also. Thus, the accuracy of LRN classifier among all other artificial neural networks comes out to be the highest. The overall accuracy of jackknife cross-validation is 93.2% for the data-set. These predicted results suggest that the method can be effectively applied to discriminate lysosomal associated membrane proteins from other membrane proteins (Type-I, Outer membrane proteins, GPI-Anchored) and Globular proteins, and it also indicates that the protein sequence representation can better reflect the core feature of membrane proteins than the classical AA composition.

  8. Analysis of sheep α-synuclein provides a molecular strategy for the reduction of fibrillation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bickle, Lungisa; Hopwood, John J; Karageorgos, Litsa

    2017-03-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) presents with neuropathological inclusions called Lewy bodies, which are primarily composed of fibrillar α-synuclein. Recently, we characterized sheep with Gaucher disease and since GBA1 mutations represent the highest genetic risk factor for PD, we have investigated α-synuclein fibrillation in the sheep. Here we demonstrate that differences in six amino acid residues between sheep and human α-synuclein significantly alter in vitro fibril formation. Circular dichroism of recombinant human and sheep α-synuclein show that both proteins adopt the same secondary structure. Fibrils from human and sheep α-synuclein formed at pH7.0 or 4.5 were analyzed by Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM). Unexpectedly, sheep α-synuclein form fibrils much less readily than human α-synuclein and this difference was more pronounced at the lysosomal pH of 4.5. Aggregation-propensity and intrinsic-solubility analysis revealed that sheep α-synuclein had lower aggregation-propensity and higher solubility. As a result of these observations, TEM was used to analyze fibrils formed at pH4.5 of various "sheep-like" human or "human-like" sheep mutant α-synucleins, together with their wild-type forms. Thioflavin T was used to monitor in situ α-synuclein fibril formation at pH7.0 and 4.5. Results show that "sheep-like" human α-synuclein has substantially lower fibril aggregation, and "human-like" sheep α-synuclein aggregates faster than wild-type forms, respectively. Seeding with WT human α-synuclein showed that "sheep-like" human α-synuclein could not be seeded, providing further evidence that sheep sequence is resistant to fibrillation. These findings provide new avenues to prevent/reduce fibrillation in PD, which may aid in the development of therapies. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. α-Synuclein Amyloids Hijack Prion Protein to Gain Cell Entry, Facilitate Cell-to-Cell Spreading and Block Prion Replication.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aulić, Suzana; Masperone, Lara; Narkiewicz, Joanna; Isopi, Elisa; Bistaffa, Edoardo; Ambrosetti, Elena; Pastore, Beatrice; De Cecco, Elena; Scaini, Denis; Zago, Paola; Moda, Fabio; Tagliavini, Fabrizio; Legname, Giuseppe

    2017-08-30

    The precise molecular mechanism of how misfolded α-synuclein (α-Syn) accumulates and spreads in synucleinopathies is still unknown. Here, we show the role of the cellular prion protein (PrP C ) in mediating the uptake and the spread of recombinant α-Syn amyloids. The in vitro data revealed that the presence of PrP C fosters the higher uptake of α-Syn amyloid fibrils, which was also confirmed in vivo in wild type (Prnp +/+ ) compared to PrP knock-out (Prnp -/- ) mice. Additionally, the presence of α-Syn amyloids blocked the replication of scrapie prions (PrP Sc ) in vitro and ex vivo, indicating a link between the two proteins. Indeed, whilst PrP C is mediating the internalization of α-Syn amyloids, PrP Sc is not able to replicate in their presence. This observation has pathological relevance, since several reported case studies show that the accumulation of α-Syn amyloid deposits in Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease patients is accompanied by a longer disease course.

  10. α-Synuclein can inhibit SNARE-mediated vesicle fusion through direct interactions with lipid bilayers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeWitt, David C; Rhoades, Elizabeth

    2013-04-09

    The native function of α-synuclein is thought to involve regulation of synaptic vesicle trafficking. Recent work has also implicated a role in neurotransmission, possibly through interactions with the proteins involved in synaptic vesicle fusion. Here, we demonstrate that α-synuclein inhibits SNARE-mediated vesicle fusion through binding the membrane, without a direct interaction between α-synuclein and any of the SNARE proteins. This work supports a model in which α-synuclein plays a role in the regulation of vesicle fusion by modulating properties of the lipid bilayer.

  11. High-Density Single-Layer Coating of Gold Nanoparticles onto Multiple Substrates by Using an Intrinsically Disordered Protein of α-Synuclein for Nanoapplications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhak, Ghibom; Lee, Junghee; Kim, Chang-Hyun; Chung, Dong Young; Kang, Jin Hyoun; Oh, Soojung; Lee, Jungsup; Kang, Jin Soo; Yoo, Ji Mun; Yang, Jee Eun; Rhoo, Kun Yil; Park, Sunghak; Lee, Somin; Nam, Ki Tae; Jeon, Noo Li; Jang, Jyongsik; Hong, Byung Hee; Sung, Yung-Eun; Yoon, Myung-Han; Paik, Seung R

    2017-03-15

    Functional graffiti of nanoparticles onto target surface is an important issue in the development of nanodevices. A general strategy has been introduced here to decorate chemically diverse substrates with gold nanoparticles (AuNPs) in the form of a close-packed single layer by using an omni-adhesive protein of α-synuclein (αS) as conjugated with the particles. Since the adsorption was highly sensitive to pH, the amino acid sequence of αS exposed from the conjugates and its conformationally disordered state capable of exhibiting structural plasticity are considered to be responsible for the single-layer coating over diverse surfaces. Merited by the simple solution-based adsorption procedure, the particles have been imprinted to various geometric shapes in 2-D and physically inaccessible surfaces of 3-D objects. The αS-encapsulated AuNPs to form a high-density single-layer coat has been employed in the development of nonvolatile memory, fule-cell, solar-cell, and cell-culture platform, where the outlying αS has played versatile roles such as a dielectric layer for charge retention, a sacrificial layer to expose AuNPs for chemical catalysis, a reaction center for silicification, and biointerface for cell attachment, respectively. Multiple utilizations of the αS-based hybrid NPs, therefore, could offer great versatility to fabricate a variety of NP-integrated advanced materials which would serve as an indispensable component for widespread applications of high-performance nanodevices.

  12. The Parkinson’s disease-associated protein α-synuclein disrupts stress signaling – a possible implication for methamphetamine use?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shaoxiao Wang

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available The human neuronal protein α-synuclein (α-syn has been linked by a plethora of studies as a causative factor in sporadic Parkinson’s disease (PD. To speed the pace of discovery about the biology and pathobiology of α-syn, organisms such as yeast, worms, and flies have been used to investigate the mechanisms by which elevated levels of α-syn are toxic to cells and to screen for drugs and genes that suppress this toxicity. We recently reported [Wang et al. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci.(2012 109: 16119–16124] that human α-syn, at high expression levels, disrupts stress-activated signal transduction pathways in both yeast and human neuroblastoma cells. Disruption of these signaling pathways ultimately leads to vulnerability to stress and to cell death. Here we discuss how the disruption of cell signaling by α-syn may have relevance to the parkinsonism that is associated with the abuse of the drug methamphetamine (meth.

  13. Neural Network Algorithm for Prediction of Secondary Protein Structure

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Zikrija Avdagic; Elvir Purisevic; Emir Buza; Zlatan Coralic

    2009-01-01

    .... In this paper we describe the method and results of using CB513 as a dataset suitable for development of artificial neural network algorithms for prediction of secondary protein structure with MATLAB...

  14. Oligomeric alpha-synuclein and its role in neuronal death.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, David R

    2010-05-01

    Alpha-synuclein is a natively unfolded protein associated with a number of neurodegenerative disorders that include Parkinson's disease. In the past, research has focused on the fibrillar form of the protein. Current research now indicates that oligomeric alpha-synuclein is the form of the protein most likely to causes neuronal death. Recent research has suggested that a unique oligomer associated with the copper binding capacity of the protein is the neurotoxic form of the protein. This review looks at the evidence for this possibility.

  15. Sphingosine kinases modulate the secretion of amyloid β precursor protein from SH-SY5Y neuroblastoma cells: the role of α-synuclein.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jesko, Henryk; Okada, Taro; Strosznajder, Robert P; Nakamura, Shun-ichi

    2014-01-01

    Sphingosine kinases (SphK 1&2) are involved in the regulation of cell survival, differentiation and neurotransmitter secretion. Current data suggest potential links between sphingolipid signalling, α-synuclein (ASN) and Alzheimer's disease (AD). Our aim was to investigate the possible role of SphKs and ASN in the regulation of the production and secretion of the amyloid β precursor protein (APP). We have previously shown that ASN intensified the secretion and toxicity of amyloid β (Aβ) to the point where it caused cell death. Our current results show that APP, the precursor protein for Aβ, is also influenced by ASN. The stable overexpression of wtASN in SH-SY5Y cells caused a three-fold, significant increase of the cellular APP level. This suggests that the influence of ASN on Aβ metabolism may actually occur at the level of APP protein rather than only through the changes of its cleavage into Aβ. To elucidate the mechanisms of APP modulation the cells were exposed to S1P and an SphK inhibitor (SKI). 72 h S1P treatment at 5 µM caused a nearly 50% reduction of the cellular APP signal. S1P also caused a tendency towards higher APP secretion, though the results were insignificant. The inhibition of SphKs decreased medium APP levels in a dose-dependent manner, reaching significance at 5 µM SKI with a correspondingly elevated intracellular level. Thus, it is reasonable to expect that in fact the influence of SphK activity on APP might be pro-secretory. This would also be in agreement with numerous articles on SphK-dependent secretion in the literature. The chronic nature of AD further suggests that subtle alterations in APP metabolism could have the potential to drive important changes in brain condition.

  16. Peculiarities of copper binding to alpha-synuclein.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahmad, Atta; Burns, Colin S; Fink, Anthony L; Uversky, Vladimir N

    2012-01-01

    Heavy metals have been implicated as the causative agents for the pathogenesis of the most prevalent neurodegenerative disease. Various mechanisms have been proposed to explain the toxic effects of metals ranging from metal-induced oxidation of protein to metal-induced changes in the protein conformation. Aggregation of a-synuclein is implicated in Parkinson's disease (PD), and various metals, including copper, constitute a prominent group of alpha-synuclein aggregation enhancers. In this study, we have systematically characterized the a-synuclein-Cu21 binding sites and analyzed the possible role of metal binding in a-synuclein fibrillation using a set of biophysical techniques, such as electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR), electron spin-echo envelope modulation (ESEEM), circular dichroism (CD), and size exclusion chromatography (SEC). Our analyses indicated that a-synuclein possesses at least two binding sites for Cu21. We have been able to locate one of the binding sites in the N-terminal region. Furthermore, based on the EPR studies of model peptides and Beta-synuclein, we concluded that the suspected His residue did not appear to participate in strong Cu21 binding.

  17. Monoubiquitylation of alpha-synuclein by seven in absentia homolog (SIAH) promotes its aggregation in dopaminergic cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rott, Ruth; Szargel, Raymonde; Haskin, Joseph; Shani, Vered; Shainskaya, Alla; Manov, Irena; Liani, Esti; Avraham, Eyal; Engelender, Simone

    2008-02-08

    alpha-Synuclein plays a major role in Parkinson disease. Unraveling the mechanisms of alpha-synuclein aggregation is essential to understand the formation of Lewy bodies and their involvement in dopaminergic cell death. alpha-Synuclein is ubiquitylated in Lewy bodies, but the role of alpha-synuclein ubiquitylation has been mysterious. We now report that the ubiquitin-protein isopeptide ligase seven in absentia homolog (SIAH) directly interacts with and monoubiquitylates alpha-synuclein and promotes its aggregation in vitro and in vivo, which is toxic to cells. Mass spectrometry analysis demonstrates that SIAH monoubiquitylates alpha-synuclein at lysines 12, 21, and 23, which were previously shown to be ubiquitylated in Lewy bodies. SIAH ubiquitylates lysines 10, 34, 43, and 96 as well. Suppression of SIAH expression by short hairpin RNA to SIAH-1 and SIAH-2 abolished alpha-synuclein monoubiquitylation in dopaminergic cells, indicating that endogenous SIAH ubiquitylates alpha-synuclein. Moreover, SIAH co-immunoprecipitated with alpha-synuclein from brain extracts. Inhibition of proteasomal, lysosomal, and autophagic pathways, as well as overexpression of a ubiquitin mutant less prone to deubiquitylation, G76A, increased monoubiquitylation of alpha-synuclein by SIAH. Monoubiquitylation increased the aggregation of alpha-synuclein in vitro. At the electron microscopy level, monoubiquitylated alpha-synuclein promoted the formation of massive amounts of amorphous aggregates. Monoubiquitylation also increased alpha-synuclein aggregation in vivo as observed by increased formation of alpha-synuclein inclusion bodies within dopaminergic cells. These inclusions are toxic to cells, and their formation was prevented when endogenous SIAH expression was suppressed. Our data suggest that monoubiquitylation represents a possible trigger event for alpha-synuclein aggregation and Lewy body formation.

  18. Combining neural networks for protein secondary structure prediction

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Riis, Søren Kamaric

    1995-01-01

    In this paper structured neural networks are applied to the problem of predicting the secondary structure of proteins. A hierarchical approach is used where specialized neural networks are designed for each structural class and then combined using another neural network. The submodels are designed...... by using a priori knowledge of the mapping between protein building blocks and the secondary structure and by using weight sharing. Since none of the individual networks have more than 600 adjustable weights over-fitting is avoided. When ensembles of specialized experts are combined the performance...

  19. Site-specific copper-catalyzed oxidation of α-synuclein: tightening the link between metal binding and protein oxidative damage in Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miotto, Marco C; Rodriguez, Esaú E; Valiente-Gabioud, Ariel A; Torres-Monserrat, Valentina; Binolfi, Andrés; Quintanar, Liliana; Zweckstetter, Markus; Griesinger, Christian; Fernández, Claudio O

    2014-05-05

    Amyloid aggregation of α-synuclein (AS) has been linked to the pathological effects associated with Parkinson's disease (PD). Cu(II) binds specifically at the N-terminus of AS and triggers its aggregation. Site-specific Cu(I)-catalyzed oxidation of AS has been proposed as a plausible mechanism for metal-enhanced AS amyloid formation. In this study, Cu(I) binding to AS was probed by NMR spectroscopy, in combination with synthetic peptide models, site-directed mutagenesis, and C-terminal-truncated protein variants. Our results demonstrate that both Met residues in the motif (1)MDVFM(5) constitute key structural determinants for the high-affinity binding of Cu(I) to the N-terminal region of AS. The replacement of one Met residue by Ile causes a dramatic decrease in the binding affinity for Cu(I), whereas the removal of both Met residues results in a complete lack of binding. Moreover, these Met residues can be oxidized rapidly after air exposure of the AS-Cu(I) complex, whereas Met-116 and Met-127 in the C-terminal region remain unaffected. Met-1 displays higher susceptibility to oxidative damage compared to Met-5 because it is directly involved in both Cu(II) and Cu(I) coordination, resulting in closer exposure to the reactive oxygen species that may be generated by the redox cycling of copper. Our findings support a mechanism where the interaction of AS with copper ions leads to site-specific metal-catalyzed oxidation in the protein under physiologically relevant conditions. In light of recent biological findings, these results support a role for AS-copper interactions in neurodegeneration in PD.

  20. Functionalization of α-synuclein fibrils

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simona Povilonienė

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The propensity of peptides and proteins to form self-assembled structures has very promising applications in the development of novel nanomaterials. Under certain conditions, amyloid protein α-synuclein forms well-ordered structures – fibrils, which have proven to be valuable building blocks for bionanotechnological approaches. Herein we demonstrate the functionalization of fibrils formed by a mutant α-synuclein that contains an additional cysteine residue. The fibrils have been biotinylated via thiol groups and subsequently joined with neutravidin-conjugated gold nanoparticles. Atomic force microscopy and transmission electron microscopy confirmed the expected structure – nanoladders. The ability of fibrils (and of the additional components to assemble into such complex structures offers new opportunities for fabricating novel hybrid materials or devices.

  1. RNA Interference of Human α-Synuclein in Mouse.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Young-Cho; Miller, Adam; Lins, Livia C R F; Han, Sang-Woo; Keiser, Megan S; Boudreau, Ryan L; Davidson, Beverly L; Narayanan, Nandakumar S

    2017-01-01

    α-Synuclein is postulated to play a key role in the pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease (PD). Aggregates of α-synuclein contribute to neurodegeneration and cell death in humans and in mouse models of PD. Here, we use virally mediated RNA interference to knockdown human α-synuclein in mice. We used an siRNA design algorithm to identify eight siRNA sequences with minimal off-targeting potential. One RNA-interference sequence (miSyn4) showed maximal protein knockdown potential in vitro. We then designed AAV vectors expressing miSyn4 and injected them into the mouse substantia nigra. miSyn4 was robustly expressed and did not detectably change dopamine neurons, glial proliferation, or mouse behavior. We then injected AAV2-miSyn4 into Thy1-hSNCA mice over expressing α-synuclein and found decreased human α-synuclein (hSNCA) in both midbrain and cortex. In separate mice, co-injection of AAV2-hSNCA and AAV2-miSyn4 demonstrated decreased hSNCA expression and rescue of hSNCA-mediated behavioral deficits. These data suggest that virally mediated RNA interference can knockdown hSNCA in vivo, which could be helpful for future therapies targeting human α-synuclein.

  2. alpha-Synuclein budding yeast model: toxicity enhanced by impaired proteasome and oxidative stress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharma, Nijee; Brandis, Katrina A; Herrera, Sara K; Johnson, Brandon E; Vaidya, Tulaza; Shrestha, Ruja; Debburman, Shubhik K

    2006-01-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is a common neurodegenerative disorder that results from the selective loss of midbrain dopaminergic neurons. Misfolding and aggregation of the protein alpha-synuclein, oxidative damage, and proteasomal impairment are all hypotheses for the molecular cause of this selective neurotoxicity. Here, we describe a Saccharomyces cerevisiae model to evaluate the misfolding, aggregation, and toxicity-inducing ability of wild-type alpha-synuclein and three mutants (A30P, A53T, and A30P/A53T), and we compare regulation of these properties by dysfunctional proteasomes and by oxidative stress. We found prominent localization of wild-type and A53T alpha-synuclein near the plasma membrane, supporting known in vitro lipid-binding ability. In contrast, A30P was mostly cytoplasmic, whereas A30P/A53T displayed both types of fluorescence. Surprisingly, alpha-synuclein was not toxic to several yeast strains tested. When yeast mutants for the proteasomal barrel (doa3-1) were evaluated, delayed alpha-synuclein synthesis and membrane association were observed; yeast mutant for the proteasomal cap (sen3-1) exhibited increased accumulation and aggregation of alpha-synuclein. Both sen3-1and doa3-1 mutants exhibited synthetic lethality with alpha-synuclein. When yeasts were challenged with an oxidant (hydrogen peroxide), alpha-synuclein was extremely lethal to cells that lacked manganese superoxide dismutase Mn-SOD (sod2Delta) but not to cells that lacked copper, zinc superoxide dismutase Cu,Zn-SOD (sod1Delta). Despite the toxicity, sod2Delta cells never displayed intracellular aggregates of alpha-synuclein. We suggest that the toxic alpha-synuclein species in yeast are smaller than the visible aggregates, and toxicity might involve alpha-synuclein membrane association. Thus, yeasts have emerged effective organisms for characterizing factors and mechanisms that regulate alpha-synuclein toxicity.

  3. Ubiquitinylation of α-Synuclein by Carboxyl Terminus Hsp70-Interacting Protein (CHIP) Is Regulated by Bcl-2-Associated Athanogene 5 (BAG5)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chau, Hien; Lozano, Andres M.; Hyman, Bradley T.; McLean, Pamela J.

    2011-01-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is a common neurodegenerative condition in which abnormalities in protein homeostasis, or proteostasis, may lead to accumulation of the protein α-synuclein (α-syn). Mutations within or multiplications of the gene encoding α-syn are known to cause genetic forms of PD and polymorphisms in the gene are recently established risk factors for idiopathic PD. α-syn is a major component of Lewy bodies, the intracellular proteinaceous inclusions which are pathological hallmarks of most forms of PD. Recent evidence demonstrates that α-syn can self associate into soluble oligomeric species and implicates these α-syn oligomers in cell death. We have previously shown that carboxyl terminus of Hsp70-interacting protein (CHIP), a co-chaperone molecule with E3 ubiquitin ligase activity, may reduce the levels of toxic α-syn oligomers. Here we demonstrate that α-syn is ubiquitinylated by CHIP both in vitro and in cells. We find that the products from ubiquitinylation by CHIP include both monoubiquitinylated and polyubiquitinylated forms of α-syn. We also demonstrate that CHIP and α-syn exist within a protein complex with the co-chaperone bcl-2-associated athanogene 5 (BAG5) in brain. The interaction of CHIP with BAG5 is mediated by Hsp70 which binds to the tetratricopeptide repeat domain of CHIP and the BAG domains of BAG5. The Hsp70-mediated association of BAG5 with CHIP results in inhibition of CHIP E3 ubiquitin ligase activity and subsequently reduces α-syn ubiquitinylation. Furthermore, we use a luciferase-based protein-fragment complementation assay of α-syn oligomerization to investigate regulation of α-syn oligomers by CHIP in living cells. We demonstrate that BAG5 mitigates the ability of CHIP to reduce α-syn oligomerization and that non-ubiquitinylated α-syn has an increased propensity for oligomerization. Thus, our results identify CHIP as an E3 ubiquitin ligase of α-syn and suggest a novel function for BAG5 as a modulator of CHIP E3

  4. Ubiquitinylation of α-synuclein by carboxyl terminus Hsp70-interacting protein (CHIP is regulated by Bcl-2-associated athanogene 5 (BAG5.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lorraine V Kalia

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available Parkinson's disease (PD is a common neurodegenerative condition in which abnormalities in protein homeostasis, or proteostasis, may lead to accumulation of the protein α-synuclein (α-syn. Mutations within or multiplications of the gene encoding α-syn are known to cause genetic forms of PD and polymorphisms in the gene are recently established risk factors for idiopathic PD. α-syn is a major component of Lewy bodies, the intracellular proteinaceous inclusions which are pathological hallmarks of most forms of PD. Recent evidence demonstrates that α-syn can self associate into soluble oligomeric species and implicates these α-syn oligomers in cell death. We have previously shown that carboxyl terminus of Hsp70-interacting protein (CHIP, a co-chaperone molecule with E3 ubiquitin ligase activity, may reduce the levels of toxic α-syn oligomers. Here we demonstrate that α-syn is ubiquitinylated by CHIP both in vitro and in cells. We find that the products from ubiquitinylation by CHIP include both monoubiquitinylated and polyubiquitinylated forms of α-syn. We also demonstrate that CHIP and α-syn exist within a protein complex with the co-chaperone bcl-2-associated athanogene 5 (BAG5 in brain. The interaction of CHIP with BAG5 is mediated by Hsp70 which binds to the tetratricopeptide repeat domain of CHIP and the BAG domains of BAG5. The Hsp70-mediated association of BAG5 with CHIP results in inhibition of CHIP E3 ubiquitin ligase activity and subsequently reduces α-syn ubiquitinylation. Furthermore, we use a luciferase-based protein-fragment complementation assay of α-syn oligomerization to investigate regulation of α-syn oligomers by CHIP in living cells. We demonstrate that BAG5 mitigates the ability of CHIP to reduce α-syn oligomerization and that non-ubiquitinylated α-syn has an increased propensity for oligomerization. Thus, our results identify CHIP as an E3 ubiquitin ligase of α-syn and suggest a novel function for BAG5 as a

  5. Porcine gamma-synuclein: molecular cloning, expression analysis, chromosomal localization and functional expression

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Frandsen, Pernille Munk; Madsen, Lone Bruhn; Bendixen, Christian

    2009-01-01

    The γ-synuclein protein is involved in breast carcinogenesis and has also been implicated in other forms of cancer and in ocular diseases. Furthermore, γ-synuclein is believed to have a role in certain neurodegenerative diseases, such as Parkinson's disease and Alzheimer's disease. This work...

  6. Structural Investigations of on-pathway Oligomers of α-Synuclein

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pedersen, Martin Nors; Horvath, Istvan; Weise, Christoph F.

    ). "Hunting the Chameleon: Structural Conformations of the Intrinsically Disordered Protein Alpha-Synuclein." Chembiochem 13(6): 761-768. Giehm, L., et al. (2011). "Low-resolution structure of a vesicle disrupting alpha-synuclein oligomer that accumulates during fibrillation." Proceedings of the National...

  7. A Protein Aggregation Inhibitor, Leuco-Methylthioninium Bis(Hydromethanesulfonate, Decreases α-Synuclein Inclusions in a Transgenic Mouse Model of Synucleinopathy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karima Schwab

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available α-Synuclein (α-Syn aggregation is a pathological feature of synucleinopathies, neurodegenerative disorders that include Parkinson’s disease (PD. We have tested whether N,N,N′,N′-tetramethyl-10H-phenothiazine-3,7-diaminium bis(hydromethanesulfonate (leuco-methylthioninium bis(hydromethanesulfonate; LMTM, a tau aggregation inhibitor, affects α-Syn aggregation in vitro and in vivo. Both cellular and transgenic models in which the expression of full-length human α-Syn (h-α-Syn fused with a signal sequence peptide to promote α-Syn aggregation were used. Aggregated α-Syn was observed following differentiation of N1E-115 neuroblastoma cells transfected with h-α-Syn. The appearance of aggregated α-Syn was inhibited by LMTM, with an EC50 of 1.1 μM, with minimal effect on h-α-Syn mRNA levels being observed. Two independent lines of mice (L58 and L62 transgenic for the same fusion protein accumulated neuronal h-α-Syn that, with aging, developed into fibrillary inclusions characterized by both resistance to proteinase K (PK-cleavage and their ability to bind thiazin red. There was a significant decrease in α-Syn-positive neurons in multiple brain regions following oral treatment of male and female mice with LMTM administered daily for 6 weeks at 5 and 15 mg MT/kg. The early aggregates of α-Syn and the late-stage fibrillar inclusions were both susceptible to inhibition by LMTM, a treatment that also resulted in the rescue of movement and anxiety-related traits in these mice. The results suggest that LMTM may provide a potential disease modification therapy in PD and other synucleinopathies through the inhibition of α-Syn aggregation.

  8. The Anticholinesterase Phenserine and Its Enantiomer Posiphen as 5′Untranslated-Region-Directed Translation Blockers of the Parkinson’s Alpha Synuclein Expression

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sohan Mikkilineni

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available There is compelling support for limiting expression of alpha-synuclein (α-syn in the brains of Parkinson’s disease (PD patients. An increase of SNCA gene copy number can genetically cause familial PD where increased dose of this pathogenic protein correlates with severity of symptoms (triplication of the SNCA gene causes dementia in PD patients. Gene promoter polymorphisms were shown to increase α-synuclein expression as a risk for PD. Cholinesterase inhibitors can clinically slow cognitive decline in the later stages of PD etiology similar to their widespread use in Alzheimer’s disease (AD. Pertinent to this, we identified that the well-tolerated anticholinesterase, phenserine, blocked neural SNCA mRNA translation and tested for targeting via its 5′untranslated region (5′UTR in a manner similar to its action to limit the expression of the AD-specific amyloid precursor protein (APP. Posiphen, its better-tolerated (+ enantiomer (devoid of anticholinesterase action, repressed neural α-synuclein translation. Primary metabolic analogs of posiphen were, likewise, characterized using primary fetal neurons grown ex vivo from the brains of Parkinson’s transgenic mice expressing the human SNCA gene.

  9. Tubulin Polymerization-promoting Protein (TPPP/p25α) Promotes Unconventional Secretion of α-Synuclein through Exophagy by Impairing Autophagosome-Lysosome Fusion

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ejlerskov, Patrick; Rasmussen, Izabela; Nielsen, Troels Tolstrup

    2013-01-01

    increase in the basal level of α-synuclein secreted into the medium. Secretion was strictly dependent on autophagy and could be up-regulated (trehalose and Rab1A) or down-regulated (3-methyladenine and ATG5 shRNA) by enhancers or inhibitors of autophagy or by modulating minus-end-directed (HDAC6 sh...

  10. α-Synuclein aggregation, seeding and inhibition by scyllo-inositol

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ibrahim, Tarek [Biological Sciences, Sunnybrook Research Institute (Canada); Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathobiology, University of Toronto, Toronto, M4N 3M5, ON (Canada); McLaurin, JoAnne, E-mail: jmclaurin@sri.utoronto.ca [Biological Sciences, Sunnybrook Research Institute (Canada); Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathobiology, University of Toronto, Toronto, M4N 3M5, ON (Canada)

    2016-01-15

    Recent literature demonstrates the accelerated aggregation of α-synuclein, a protein implicated in the pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease (PD), by the presence of preformed fibrillar conformers in vitro. Furthermore, these preformed fibrillar seeds are suggested to accelerate pathological induction in vivo when injected into the brains of mice. Variation in the results of in vivo studies is proposed to be caused by α-synuclein conformational variants. To investigate the impact of amino acid sequence on seeding efficiency, human and mouse α-synuclein seeds, which vary at 7 amino acid residues, were generated and cross-seeding kinetics studied. Using transmission electron microscopy (TEM), we confirmed that mouse α-synuclein aggregated more rapidly than human α-synuclein. Subsequently, we determined that seeding of human and mouse α-synuclein was more rapid in the presence of seeds generated from the same species. In addition, an established amyloid inhibitor, scyllo-inositol, was examined for potential inhibitory effects on α-synuclein aggregation. TEM analysis of protein:inhibitor assays demonstrated that scyllo-inositol inhibits the aggregation of α-synuclein, suggesting the therapeutic potential of the small molecule in PD. - Highlights: • Mouse α-syn fibrillizes in a significantly shorter timeframe than human α-syn. • Seeding of monomers is more efficient when seeds originate from the same species. • scyllo-Inositol has anti-aggregation effects on mouse and human α-syn.

  11. Ambroxol effects in glucocerebrosidase and α‐synuclein transgenic mice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Migdalska‐Richards, Anna; Daly, Liam; Bezard, Erwan

    2016-01-01

    Objective Gaucher disease is caused by mutations in the glucocerebrosidase 1 gene that result in deficiency of the lysosomal enzyme glucocerebrosidase. Both homozygous and heterozygous glucocerebrosidase 1 mutations confer an increased risk for developing Parkinson disease. Current estimates indicate that 10 to 25% of Parkinson patients carry glucocerebrosidase 1 mutations. Ambroxol is a small molecule chaperone that has been shown to increase glucocerebrosidase activity in vitro. This study investigated the effect of ambroxol treatment on glucocerebrosidase activity and on α‐synuclein and phosphorylated α‐synuclein protein levels in mice. Methods Mice were treated with ambroxol for 12 days. After the treatment, glucocerebrosidase activity was measured in the mouse brain lysates. The brain lysates were also analyzed for α‐synuclein and phosphorylated α‐synuclein protein levels. Results Ambroxol treatment resulted in increased brain glucocerebrosidase activity in (1) wild‐type mice, (2) transgenic mice expressing the heterozygous L444P mutation in the murine glucocerebrosidase 1 gene, and (3) transgenic mice overexpressing human α‐synuclein. Furthermore, in the mice overexpressing human α‐synuclein, ambroxol treatment decreased both α‐synuclein and phosphorylated α‐synuclein protein levels. Interpretation Our work supports the proposition that ambroxol should be further investigated as a potential novel disease‐modifying therapy for treatment of Parkinson disease and neuronopathic Gaucher disease to increase glucocerebrosidase activity and decrease α‐synuclein and phosphorylated α‐synuclein protein levels. Ann Neurol 2016;80:766–775 PMID:27859541

  12. Carbosilane dendrimers affect the fibrillation of α-synuclein

    Science.gov (United States)

    Milowska, Katarzyna; Gomez-Ramirez, Rafael; de la Mata, Francisco Javier; Gabryelak, Teresa; Bryszewska, Maria

    2015-12-01

    Participation of α-synuclein (ASN) in the pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease is undeniable. This protein is important for functioning of neurons. Conformational changes in ASN and its aggregation result in neurodegeneration. Therefore, the factors preventing aggregation need to be identified. The search for the potential agents preventing fibrillation of proteins in neurodegenerative diseases has also involved polymers such as dendrimers. The aim of this study was to examine the role of carbosilane dendrimers (CBS) in α-synuclein fibrillation process and to assess the structural changes in α-synuclein under the influence of dendrimers. ASN interactions with carbosilane dendrimers were examined by measuring the zeta potential. The fibrillation and structural changes were examined using CD spectroscopy. The results obtained in this study suggest that carbosilane dendrimers can be potential inhibitors of ASN fibril formation. The fact that dendrimers can prevent ASN fibrillation in suspension is important for further research because it may lead to the design of effective pharmacological strategies.

  13. Structural and functional characterization of two alpha-synuclein strains

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bousset, Luc; Pieri, Laura; Ruiz-Arlandis, Gemma; Gath, Julia; Jensen, Poul Henning; Habenstein, Birgit; Madiona, Karine; Olieric, Vincent; Böckmann, Anja; Meier, Beat H.; Melki, Ronald

    2013-10-01

    α-synuclein aggregation is implicated in a variety of diseases including Parkinson’s disease, dementia with Lewy bodies, pure autonomic failure and multiple system atrophy. The association of protein aggregates made of a single protein with a variety of clinical phenotypes has been explained for prion diseases by the existence of different strains that propagate through the infection pathway. Here we structurally and functionally characterize two polymorphs of α-synuclein. We present evidence that the two forms indeed fulfil the molecular criteria to be identified as two strains of α-synuclein. Specifically, we show that the two strains have different structures, levels of toxicity, and in vitro and in vivo seeding and propagation properties. Such strain differences may account for differences in disease progression in different individuals/cell types and/or types of synucleinopathies.

  14. α-Synuclein and anti-α-synuclein antibodies in Parkinson's disease, atypical Parkinson syndromes, REM sleep behavior disorder, and healthy controls.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lynnae M Smith

    Full Text Available α-synuclein is thought to play a key role in Parkinson's disease (PD because it is the major protein in Lewy bodies, and because its gene mutations, duplication, and triplication are associated with early-onset PD. There are conflicting reports as to whether serum and plasma concentrations of α-synuclein and anti-α-synuclein antibodies differ between PD and control subjects. The objectives of this study were to compare the levels of α-synuclein and its antibodies between individuals with typical PD (n=14, atypical Parkinson syndromes (n=11, idiopathic rapid eye movement sleep behavior disorder (n=10, and healthy controls (n=9, to assess the strength of association between these serum proteins, and to determine group sizes needed for a high probability (80% power of detecting statistical significance for 25% or 50% differences between typical PD and control subjects for these measurements. Analysis of log-transformed data found no statistically significant differences between groups for either α-synuclein or its antibodies. The concentrations of these proteins were weakly correlated (Spearman rho=0.16. In subjects with typical PD and atypical Parkinson syndromes, anti-α-synuclein antibody levels above 1.5 µg/ml were detected only in subjects with no more than four years of clinical disease. Power analysis indicated that 236 and 73 samples per group would be required for an 80% probability that 25% and 50% differences, respectively, in mean α-synuclein levels between typical PD and control subjects would be statistically significant; for anti-α-synuclein antibodies, 283 and 87 samples per group would be required. Our findings are consistent with those previous studies which suggested that serum concentrations of α-synuclein and its antibodies are not significantly altered in PD.

  15. Alpha-synuclein and its role in metal binding: relevance to Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wright, Josephine A; Brown, David R

    2008-02-15

    Parkinson's disease and some other neurodegenerative disorders are associated with a protein that can aggregate and form fibrils called alpha-synuclein. Like many other proteins associated with neurodegenerative disorders, this protein has no known function, and the mechanism by which it could cause diseases is poorly defined. It was recently suggested that it binds copper. This review assesses what is known about alpha-synuclein and its interaction with metals. (c) 2007 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  16. Phosphorylated α-Synuclein-Copper Complex Formation in the Pathogenesis of Parkinson's Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loera-Arias, Maria De Jesus; Saucedo-Cardenas, Odila; Garcia-Garcia, Aracely

    2017-01-01

    Parkinson's disease is the second most important neurodegenerative disorder worldwide. It is characterized by the presence of Lewy bodies, which are mainly composed of α-synuclein and ubiquitin-bound proteins. Both the ubiquitin proteasome system (UPS) and autophagy-lysosomal pathway (ALS) are altered in Parkinson's disease, leading to aggregation of proteins, particularly α-synuclein. Interestingly, it has been observed that copper promotes the protein aggregation process. Additionally, phosphorylation of α-synuclein along with copper also affects the protein aggregation process. The interrelation among α-synuclein phosphorylation and its capability to interact with copper, with the subsequent disruption of the protein degradation systems in the neurodegenerative process of Parkinson's disease, will be analyzed in detail in this review. PMID:29333317

  17. Phosphorylated α-Synuclein-Copper Complex Formation in the Pathogenesis of Parkinson’s Disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juan Antonio Castillo-Gonzalez

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Parkinson’s disease is the second most important neurodegenerative disorder worldwide. It is characterized by the presence of Lewy bodies, which are mainly composed of α-synuclein and ubiquitin-bound proteins. Both the ubiquitin proteasome system (UPS and autophagy-lysosomal pathway (ALS are altered in Parkinson’s disease, leading to aggregation of proteins, particularly α-synuclein. Interestingly, it has been observed that copper promotes the protein aggregation process. Additionally, phosphorylation of α-synuclein along with copper also affects the protein aggregation process. The interrelation among α-synuclein phosphorylation and its capability to interact with copper, with the subsequent disruption of the protein degradation systems in the neurodegenerative process of Parkinson’s disease, will be analyzed in detail in this review.

  18. Neural network definitions of highly predictable protein secondary structure classes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lapedes, A. [Los Alamos National Lab., NM (United States)]|[Santa Fe Inst., NM (United States); Steeg, E. [Toronto Univ., ON (Canada). Dept. of Computer Science; Farber, R. [Los Alamos National Lab., NM (United States)

    1994-02-01

    We use two co-evolving neural networks to determine new classes of protein secondary structure which are significantly more predictable from local amino sequence than the conventional secondary structure classification. Accurate prediction of the conventional secondary structure classes: alpha helix, beta strand, and coil, from primary sequence has long been an important problem in computational molecular biology. Neural networks have been a popular method to attempt to predict these conventional secondary structure classes. Accuracy has been disappointingly low. The algorithm presented here uses neural networks to similtaneously examine both sequence and structure data, and to evolve new classes of secondary structure that can be predicted from sequence with significantly higher accuracy than the conventional classes. These new classes have both similarities to, and differences with the conventional alpha helix, beta strand and coil.

  19. Cu(II) and dopamine bind to α‐synuclein and cause large conformational changes

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Tavassoly, Omid; Nokhrin, Sergiy; Dmitriev, Oleg Y; Lee, Jeremy S

    2014-01-01

    α‐Synuclein (AS) is an intrinsically disordered protein that can misfold and aggregate to form Lewy bodies in dopaminergic neurons, a classic hallmark of Parkinson's disease. The binding of Cu(II...

  20. α-Synuclein Dimers Impair Vesicle Fission during Clathrin-Mediated Synaptic Vesicle Recycling

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Audrey T. Medeiros

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available α-Synuclein is a presynaptic protein that regulates synaptic vesicle (SV trafficking. In Parkinson’s disease (PD and several other neurodegenerative disorders, aberrant oligomerization and aggregation of α-synuclein lead to synaptic dysfunction and neurotoxicity. Despite evidence that α-synuclein oligomers are generated within neurons under physiological conditions, and that altering the balance of monomers and oligomers contributes to disease pathogenesis, how each molecular species of α-synuclein impacts SV trafficking is currently unknown. To address this, we have taken advantage of lamprey giant reticulospinal (RS synapses, which are accessible to acute perturbations via axonal microinjection of recombinant proteins. We previously reported that acute introduction of monomeric α-synuclein inhibited SV recycling, including effects on the clathrin pathway. Here, we report the effects of α-synuclein dimers at synapses. Similar to monomeric α-synuclein, both recombinant α-synuclein dimers that were evaluated bound to small liposomes containing anionic lipids in vitro, but with reduced efficacy. When introduced to synapses, the α-synuclein dimers also induced SV recycling defects, which included a build up of clathrin-coated pits (CCPs with constricted necks that were still attached to the plasma membrane, a phenotype indicative of a vesicle fission defect. Interestingly, both α-synuclein dimers induced longer necks on CCPs as well as complex, branching membrane tubules, which were distinct from the CCPs induced by a dynamin inhibitor, Dynasore. In contrast, monomeric α-synuclein induced a buildup of free clathrin-coated vesicles (CCVs, indicating an inhibition of clathrin-mediated endocytosis at a later stage during the clathrin uncoating process. Taken together, these data further support the conclusion that excess α-synuclein impairs SV recycling. The data additionally reveal that monomeric and dimeric α-synuclein produce

  1. [Neuropathology and pathophysiology of Parkinson's disease: Focus on α-synuclein].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prigent, Alice; Lionnet, Arthur; Corbillé, Anne-Gaëlle; Derkinderen, Pascal

    2017-03-01

    The past 20 years has witnessed tremendous progress in our understanding of Parkinson's disease. It is now well established that α-synuclein, a presynaptic neuronal protein, is not only a marker but also an actor of the disease. In this review, we discuss the advances that have been obtained in neuropathology using α-synuclein immunohistochemistry and the role of this protein in the spread of the disease. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  2. Concentration dependence of alpha-synuclein fibril length assessed by quantitative atomic force microscopy and statistical-mechanical theory

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Raaij, Martijn E; van Gestel, Jeroen; Segers-Nolten, Ine M J; de Leeuw, Simon W; Subramaniam, Vinod

    2008-01-01

    The initial concentration of monomeric amyloidogenic proteins is a crucial factor in the in vitro formation of amyloid fibrils. We use quantitative atomic force microscopy to study the effect of the initial concentration of human alpha-synuclein on the mean length of mature alpha-synuclein fibrils,

  3. LK6/Mnk2a is a new kinase of alpha synuclein phosphorylation mediating neurodegeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Shiqing; Xie, Jiang; Xia, Ying; Yu, Shu; Gu, Zhili; Feng, Ruili; Luo, Guanghong; Wang, Dong; Wang, Kai; Jiang, Meng; Cheng, Xiao; Huang, Hai; Zhang, Wu; Wen, Tieqiao

    2015-07-29

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is a movement disorder due to the loss of dopaminergic (DA) neurons in the substantia nigra. Alpha-synuclein phosphorylation and α-synuclein inclusion (Lewy body) become a main contributor, but little is known about their formation mechanism. Here we used protein expression profiling of PD to construct a model of their signalling network from drsophila to human and nominate major nodes that regulate PD development. We found in this network that LK6, a serine/threonine protein kinase, plays a key role in promoting α-synuclein Ser129 phosphorylation by identification of LK6 knockout and overexpression. In vivo test was further confirmed that LK6 indeed enhances α-synuclein phosphorylation, accelerates the death of dopaminergic neurons, reduces the climbing ability and shortens the the life span of drosophila. Further, MAP kinase-interacting kinase 2a (Mnk2a), a human homolog of LK6, also been shown to make α-synuclein phosphorylation and leads to α-synuclein inclusion formation. On the mechanism, the phosphorylation mediated by LK6 and Mnk2a is controlled through ERK signal pathway by phorbolmyristate acetate (PMA) avtivation and PD98059 inhibition. Our findings establish pivotal role of Lk6 and Mnk2a in unprecedented signalling networks, may lead to new therapies preventing α-synuclein inclusion formation and neurodegeneration.

  4. Structure, function and toxicity of alpha-synuclein: the Bermuda triangle in synucleinopathies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Villar-Piqué, Anna; Lopes da Fonseca, Tomás; Outeiro, Tiago Fleming

    2016-10-01

    Parkinson's disease belongs to a group of currently incurable neurodegenerative disorders characterized by the misfolding and accumulation of alpha-synuclein aggregates that are commonly known as synucleinopathies. Clinically, synucleinopathies are heterogeneous, reflecting the somewhat selective neuronal vulnerability characteristic of each disease. The precise molecular underpinnings of synucleinopathies remain unclear, but the process of aggregation of alpha-synuclein appears as a central event. However, there is still no consensus with respect to the toxic forms of alpha-synuclein, hampering our ability to use the protein as a target for therapeutic intervention. To decipher the molecular bases of synucleinopathies, it is essential to understand the complex triangle formed between the structure, function and toxicity of alpha-synuclein. Recently, important steps have been undertaken to elucidate the role of the protein in both physiological and pathological conditions. Here, we provide an overview of recent findings in the field of alpha-synuclein research, and put forward a new perspective over paradigms that persist in the field. Establishing whether alpha-synuclein has a causative role in all synucleinopathies will enable the identification of targets for the development of novel therapeutic strategies for this devastating group of disorders. Alpha-synuclein is the speculated cornerstone of several neurodegenerative disorders known as Synucleinopathies. Nevertheless, the mechanisms underlying the pathogenic effects of this protein remain unknown. Here, we review the recent findings in the three corners of alpha-synuclein biology - structure, function and toxicity - and discuss the enigmatic roads that have accompanied alpha-synuclein from the beginning. This article is part of a special issue on Parkinson disease. © 2015 International Society for Neurochemistry.

  5. Investigation of intramolecular dynamics and conformations of α-, β- and γ-synuclein.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vanessa C Ducas

    Full Text Available The synucleins are a family of natively unstructured proteins consisting of α-, β-, and γ-synuclein which are primarily expressed in neurons. They have been linked to a wide variety of pathologies, including neurological disorders, such as Parkinson's disease (α-synuclein and dementia with Lewy bodies (α- and β-synuclein, as well as various types of cancers (γ-synuclein. Self-association is a key pathological feature of many of these disorders, with α-synuclein having the highest propensity to form aggregates, while β-synuclein is the least prone. Here, we used a combination of fluorescence correlation spectroscopy and single molecule Förster resonance energy transfer to compare the intrinsic dynamics of different regions of all three synuclein proteins to investigate any correlation with putative functional or dysfunctional interactions. Despite a relatively high degree of sequence homology, we find that individual regions sample a broad range of diffusion coefficients, differing by almost a factor of four. At low pH, a condition that accelerates aggregation of α-synuclein, on average smaller diffusion coefficients are measured, supporting a hypothesis that slower intrachain dynamics may be correlated with self-association. Moreover, there is a surprising inverse correlation between dynamics and bulkiness of the segments. Aside from this observation, we could not discern any clear relationship between the physico-chemical properties of the constructs and their intrinsic dynamics. This work suggests that while protein dynamics may play a role in modulating self-association or interactions with other binding partners, other factors, particularly the local cellular environment, may be more important.

  6. Aggregation of alpha-synuclein induced by the Cu,Zn-superoxide dismutase and hydrogen peroxide system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Kyung Sik; Choi, Soo Young; Kwon, Hyeok Yil; Won, Moo Ho; Kang, Tae Cheon; Kang, Jung Hoon

    2002-03-15

    Alpha-synuclein is a major component of the abnormal protein aggregation in Lewy bodies of Parkinson's disease (PD) and senile plaques of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Previous studies have shown that the aggregation of alpha-synuclein was induced by copper (II) and H(2)O(2) system. Since copper ions could be released from oxidatively damaged Cu,Zn-superoxide dismutase (SOD), we investigated the role of Cu,Zn-SOD in the aggregation of alpha-synuclein. When alpha-synuclein was incubated with both Cu,Zn-SOD and H(2)O(2), alpha-synuclein was induced to be aggregated. This process was inhibited by radical scavengers and spin trapping agents such as 5,5'-dimethyl 1-pyrolline N-oxide and tert-butyl-alpha-phenylnitrone. Copper chelators, diethyldithiocarbamate and penicillamine, also inhibited the Cu,Zn-SOD/H(2)O(2) system-induced alpha-synuclein aggregation. These results suggest that the aggregation of alpha-synuclein is mediated by the Cu,Zn-SOD/H(2)O(2) system via the generation of hydroxyl radical by the free radical-generating function of the enzyme. The Cu,Zn-SOD/H(2)O(2)-induced alpha-synuclein aggregates displayed strong thioflavin-S reactivity, reminiscent of amyloid. These results suggest that the Cu,Zn-SOD/H(2)O(2) system might be related to abnormal aggregation of alpha-synuclein, which may be involved in the pathogenesis of PD and related disorders.

  7. Cortical phosphorylated α-Synuclein levels correlate with brain wave spectra in Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caviness, John N; Lue, Lih-Fen; Hentz, Joseph G; Schmitz, Christopher T; Adler, Charles H; Shill, Holly A; Sabbagh, Marwan N; Beach, Thomas G; Walker, Douglas G

    2016-07-01

    Quantitative EEG features have been identified as surrogates and predictors of cognitive decline/dementia, a common feature of progressive PD. The biochemical correlates for altered quantitative EEG features are unknown. Our primary objective was to test the hypothesis that quantitative EEG measures correlate with cortical levels of phosphorylated α-synuclein, a modified form of the synaptic protein α-synuclein, in PD cases, in contrast to other pathology-associated proteins. A secondary objective was to explore the same correlations among cellular fractions of these proteins. We used posterior cingulate cortex autopsy tissue from 44 PD subjects with various degrees of cognitive decline, who had undergone EEG. In this brain region, which is a major hub of the default mode network, biochemical measurements for levels of phosphorylated α-synuclein, unmodified α-synuclein, amyloid beta peptide, phosphorylated tau, and key synaptic proteins were analyzed and data correlated with spectral EEG measures. Findings revealed significant correlations between background rhythm peak frequency and all bandpower values (highest in delta bandpower) with total phosphorylated α-synuclein, but not any correlation with total α-synuclein, phosphorylated tau protein, amyloid beta peptide, or synaptic proteins. Certain fractions of synaptosomal-associated protein 25 showed correlation with some quantitative EEG measures. These data show an association between increased phosphorylation of α-synuclein and the abnormal EEG signatures of cognitive decline. Results suggest that quantitative EEG may provide an in vivo approximation of phosphorylated α-synuclein in PD cortex. This adds to previous evidence that quantitative EEG measures can be considered valid biomarkers of PD cognitive decline. © 2016 International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society. © 2016 International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society.

  8. Alpha-synuclein is a cellular ferrireductase.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davies, Paul; Moualla, Dima; Brown, David R

    2011-01-10

    α-synuclein (αS) is a cellular protein mostly known for the association of its aggregated forms with a variety of diseases that include Parkinson's disease and Dementia with Lewy Bodies. While the role of αS in disease is well documented there is currently no agreement on the physiological function of the normal isoform of the protein. Here we provide strong evidence that αS is a cellular ferrireductase, responsible for reducing iron (III) to bio available iron (II). The recombinant form of the protein has a V(Max) of 2.72 nmols/min/mg and K(m) 23 µM. This activity is also evident in lysates from neuronal cell lines overexpressing αS. This activity is dependent on copper bound to αS as a cofactor and NADH as an electron donor. Overexpression of α-synuclein by cells significantly increases the percentage of iron (II) in cells. The common disease mutations associated with increased susceptibility to PD show no [corrected] differences in activity or iron (II) levels. This discovery may well provide new therapeutic targets for PD and Lewy body dementias.

  9. Alpha-synuclein is a cellular ferrireductase.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paul Davies

    Full Text Available α-synuclein (αS is a cellular protein mostly known for the association of its aggregated forms with a variety of diseases that include Parkinson's disease and Dementia with Lewy Bodies. While the role of αS in disease is well documented there is currently no agreement on the physiological function of the normal isoform of the protein. Here we provide strong evidence that αS is a cellular ferrireductase, responsible for reducing iron (III to bio available iron (II. The recombinant form of the protein has a V(Max of 2.72 nmols/min/mg and K(m 23 µM. This activity is also evident in lysates from neuronal cell lines overexpressing αS. This activity is dependent on copper bound to αS as a cofactor and NADH as an electron donor. Overexpression of α-synuclein by cells significantly increases the percentage of iron (II in cells. The common disease mutations associated with increased susceptibility to PD show no [corrected] differences in activity or iron (II levels. This discovery may well provide new therapeutic targets for PD and Lewy body dementias.

  10. Mapping of rat brain using the Synuclein-1 monoclonal antibody reveals somatodendritic expression of alpha-synuclein in populations of neurons homologous to those vulnerable to Lewy body formation in human synucleopathies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andringa, Gerda; Du, Fu; Chase, Thomas N; Bennett, M Catherine

    2003-10-01

    The neuronal protein alpha-synuclein has been implicated in the pathogenesis of Parkinson disease and other neurodegenerative diseases. Although many studies report that alpha-synuclein expression is restricted to neuronal presynaptic terminals, this protein aggregates in Lewy bodies in somata that are typically distant from their axon terminals. Few studies have addressed this paradox and there has been no compelling explanation proposed for the apparent discrepancy between the locus of neuronal alpha-synuclein expression and the loci of Lewy bodies in the majority of Parkinson disease cases. We explored this issue by extensively characterizing the monoclonal antibody Synuclein-1 (Syn-1) and using this highly selective antibody to map the distribution of alpha-synuclein throughout rat brain and in human substantia nigra (SN). Additionally, alpha-synuclein expression in rat SN detected by 2 polyclonal antibodies against alpha-synuclein was compared with that detected by the Syn-1 antibody. In contrast with many previous reports, alpha-synuclein was detected by Syn-1 in neuronal somata and dendrites in restricted brain regions, as well as more ubiquitously in axons and terminals. The strongest alpha-synuclein neuronal expression in rat was found in brainstem and cortical regions that are homologous to regions prone to Lewy body formation in humans. The Syn-1 antibody labeled abundant somatodendritic alpha-synuclein in both rat and human SN, a major locus of Lewy body formation and neurodegeneration in Parkinson disease. By contrast, very few immunoreactive somata in the rat SN were labeled by the 2 polyclonal antibodies. We explore possible explanations for the differences in conflicting reports of patterns of alpha-synuclein expression in brain, including differences among antibodies.

  11. α-Synuclein overexpression increases dopamine toxicity in BE(2-M17 cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miller David W

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Oxidative stress has been proposed to be involved in the pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease (PD. A plausible source of oxidative stress in nigral dopaminergic neurons is the redox reactions that specifically involve dopamine and produce various toxic molecules, i.e., free radicals and quinone species. α-Synuclein, a protein found in Lewy bodies characteristic of PD, is also thought to be involved in the pathogenesis of PD and point mutations and multiplications in the gene coding for α-synuclein have been found in familial forms of PD. Results We used dopaminergic human neuroblastoma BE(2-M17 cell lines stably transfected with WT or A30P mutant α-synuclein to characterize the effect of α-synuclein on dopamine toxicity. Cellular toxicity was analyzed by lactate dehydrogenase assay and by fluorescence-activated cell sorter analysis. Increased expression of either wild-type or mutant α-synuclein enhances the cellular toxicity induced by the accumulation of intracellular dopamine or DOPA. Conclusions Our results suggest that an interplay between dopamine and α-synuclein can cause cell death in a neuron-like background. The data presented here are compatible with several models of cytotoxicity, including the formation of α-synuclein oligomers and impairment of the lysosomal degradation.

  12. Seeking a Mechanism for the Toxicity of Oligomeric α-Synuclein

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hazel L. Roberts

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available In a number of neurological diseases including Parkinson’s disease (PD, α‑synuclein is aberrantly folded, forming abnormal oligomers, and amyloid fibrils within nerve cells. Strong evidence exists for the toxicity of increased production and aggregation of α-synuclein in vivo. The toxicity of α-synuclein is popularly attributed to the formation of “toxic oligomers”: a heterogenous and poorly characterized group of conformers that may share common molecular features. This review presents the available evidence on the properties of α-synuclein oligomers and the potential molecular mechanisms of their cellular disruption. Toxic α-synuclein oligomers may impact cells in a number of ways, including the disruption of membranes, mitochondrial depolarization, cytoskeleton changes, impairment of protein clearance pathways, and enhanced oxidative stress. We also examine the relationship between α-synuclein toxic oligomers and amyloid fibrils, in the light of recent studies that paint a more complex picture of α-synuclein toxicity. Finally, methods of studying and manipulating oligomers within cells are described.

  13. Alpha-Synuclein in Parkinson's Disease: From Pathogenetic Dysfunction to Potential Clinical Application.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Lingjia; Pu, Jiali

    2016-01-01

    Parkinson's disease is a neurodegenerative disease/synucleinopathy that develops slowly; however, there is no efficient method of early diagnosis, nor is there a cure. Progressive dopaminergic neuronal cell loss in the substantia nigra pars compacta and widespread aggregation of the α-synuclein protein (encoded by the SNCA gene) in the form of Lewy bodies and Lewy neurites are the neuropathological hallmarks of Parkinson's disease. The SNCA gene has undergone gene duplications, triplications, and point mutations. However, the specific mechanism of α-synuclein in Parkinson's disease remains obscure. Recent research showed that various α-synuclein oligomers, pathological aggregation, and propagation appear to be harmful in certain areas in Parkinson's disease patients. This review summarizes our current knowledge of the pathogenetic dysfunction of α-synuclein associated with Parkinson's disease and highlights current approaches that seek to develop this protein as a possible diagnostic biomarker and therapeutic target.

  14. MIDBRAIN CATECHOLAMINERGIC NEURONS CO-EXPRESS α-SYNUCLEIN AND TAU IN PROGRESSIVE SUPRANUCLEAR PALSY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    María Elena eErro Aguirre

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Objective: To analyze the frequency and distribution of α-synuclein deposits in progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP.Methods: The brains of 25 cases of pathologically confirmed PSP were evaluated with immunohistochemistry for α-synuclein and tau. Multiple immunofluorescent stains were applied to analyze the expression of tau and α-synuclein aggregates in catecholaminergic neurons. Patients’ clinical symptoms were retrospectively recorded. Results: Deposits α-synuclein in the form of typical Lewy bodies (LBs were only found in two PSP cases (8% that fulfilled the clinical subtype of PSP known as Richardson’s syndrome (RS. LBs were present in the locus ceruleus, substantia nigra pars compacta, basal forebrain, amygdala and cingulated cortex in a distribution mimicking that of Parkinson’s disease. Triple-immunolabeling revealed co-expression of α-synuclein and tau proteins in some tyrosine hydroxilase-positive neurons of the locus ceruleus and substantia nigra pars compacta.Conclusions: There is no apparent clinical correlation between the presence of LBs in PSP. Tau protein co-aggregate with α-synuclein in catecholaminergic neurons of PSP brains suggesting a synergistic interaction between the two proteins. This is in keeping with the current view of neurodegenerative disorders as ‘misfolded protein diseases’.

  15. SMG1 identified as a regulator of Parkinson's disease-associated alpha-synuclein through siRNA screening.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henderson-Smith, Adrienne; Chow, Donald; Meechoovet, Bessie; Aziz, Meraj; Jacobson, Sandra A; Shill, Holly A; Sabbagh, Marwan N; Caviness, John N; Adler, Charles H; Driver-Dunckley, Erika D; Beach, Thomas G; Yin, Hongwei; Dunckley, Travis

    2013-01-01

    Synucleinopathies are a broad class of neurodegenerative disorders characterized by the presence of intracellular protein aggregates containing α-synuclein protein. The aggregated α-synuclein protein is hyperphosphorylated on serine 129 (S129) compared to the unaggregated form of the protein. While the precise functional consequences of S129 hyperphosphorylation are still being clarified, numerous in vitro and in vivo studies suggest that S129 phosphorylation is an early event in α-synuclein dysfunction and aggregation. Identifying the kinases and phosphatases that regulate this critical phosphorylation event may ultimately prove beneficial by allowing pharmacological mitigation of synuclein dysfunction and toxicity in Parkinson's disease and other synucleinopathies. We report here the development of a high-content, fluorescence-based assay to quantitate levels of total and S129 phosphorylated α-synuclein protein. We have applied this assay to conduct high-throughput loss-of-function screens with siRNA libraries targeting 711 known and predicted human kinases and 206 phosphatases. Specifically, knockdown of the phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase related kinase SMG1 resulted in significant increases in the expression of pS129 phosphorylated α-synuclein (p-syn). Moreover, SMG1 protein levels were significantly reduced in brain regions with high p-syn levels in both dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB) and Parkinson's disease with dementia (PDD). These findings suggest that SMG1 may play an important role in increased α-synuclein pathology during the course of PDD, DLB, and possibly other synucleinopathies.

  16. SMG1 identified as a regulator of Parkinson's disease-associated alpha-synuclein through siRNA screening.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adrienne Henderson-Smith

    Full Text Available Synucleinopathies are a broad class of neurodegenerative disorders characterized by the presence of intracellular protein aggregates containing α-synuclein protein. The aggregated α-synuclein protein is hyperphosphorylated on serine 129 (S129 compared to the unaggregated form of the protein. While the precise functional consequences of S129 hyperphosphorylation are still being clarified, numerous in vitro and in vivo studies suggest that S129 phosphorylation is an early event in α-synuclein dysfunction and aggregation. Identifying the kinases and phosphatases that regulate this critical phosphorylation event may ultimately prove beneficial by allowing pharmacological mitigation of synuclein dysfunction and toxicity in Parkinson's disease and other synucleinopathies. We report here the development of a high-content, fluorescence-based assay to quantitate levels of total and S129 phosphorylated α-synuclein protein. We have applied this assay to conduct high-throughput loss-of-function screens with siRNA libraries targeting 711 known and predicted human kinases and 206 phosphatases. Specifically, knockdown of the phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase related kinase SMG1 resulted in significant increases in the expression of pS129 phosphorylated α-synuclein (p-syn. Moreover, SMG1 protein levels were significantly reduced in brain regions with high p-syn levels in both dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB and Parkinson's disease with dementia (PDD. These findings suggest that SMG1 may play an important role in increased α-synuclein pathology during the course of PDD, DLB, and possibly other synucleinopathies.

  17. Influence of RNA interference on the mitochondrial subcellular localization of alpha-synuclein and on the formation of Lewy body-like inclusions in the cytoplasm of human embryonic kidney 293 cells induced by the overexpression of alpha-synuclein☆

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Tao; Liao, Xiaoping; Wen, Guoqiang; Deng, Yidong; Guo, Min; Long, Zhigang; Ouyang, Feng

    2012-01-01

    The specific and effective α-synuclein RNA interference (RNAi) plasmids, and the α-synuclein-pEGFP recombinant plasmids were co-transfected into human embryonic kidney 293 (HEK293) cells using the lipofectamine method. Using an inverted fluorescence microscope, α-synuclein proteins were observed to aggregate in the cytoplasm and nucleus. Wild-type α-synuclein proteins co-localized with mitochondria. Hematoxylin-eosin staining revealed round eosinophilic bodies (Lewy body-like inclusions) in the cytoplasm of some cells transfected with α-synuclein-pEGFP plasmid. However, the formation of Lewy body-like inclusions was not observed following transfection with the RNAi pSYN-1 plasmid. RNAi blocked Lewy body-like inclusions in the cytoplasm of HEK293 cells induced by wild-type α-synuclein overexpression, but RNAi did not affect the subcellular localization of wild-type α-synuclein in mitochondria. PMID:25767480

  18. Multiple pathogenic proteins implicated in neuronopathic Gaucher disease mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, You-hai; Xu, Kui; Sun, Ying; Liou, Benjamin; Quinn, Brian; Li, Rong-hua; Xue, Ling; Zhang, Wujuan; Setchell, Kenneth D R; Witte, David; Grabowski, Gregory A

    2014-08-01

    Gaucher disease, a prevalent lysosomal storage disease (LSD), is caused by insufficient activity of acid β-glucosidase (GCase) and the resultant glucosylceramide (GC)/glucosylsphingosine (GS) accumulation in visceral organs (Type 1) and the central nervous system (Types 2 and 3). Recent clinical and genetic studies implicate a pathogenic link between Gaucher and neurodegenerative diseases. The aggregation and inclusion bodies of α-synuclein with ubiquitin are present in the brains of Gaucher disease patients and mouse models. Indirect evidence of β-amyloid pathology promoting α-synuclein fibrillation supports these pathogenic proteins as a common feature in neurodegenerative diseases. Here, multiple proteins are implicated in the pathogenesis of chronic neuronopathic Gaucher disease (nGD). Immunohistochemical and biochemical analyses showed significant amounts of β-amyloid and amyloid precursor protein (APP) aggregates in the cortex, hippocampus, stratum and substantia nigra of the nGD mice. APP aggregates were in neuronal cells and colocalized with α-synuclein signals. A majority of APP co-localized with the mitochondrial markers TOM40 and Cox IV; a small portion co-localized with the autophagy proteins, P62/LC3, and the lysosomal marker, LAMP1. In cultured wild-type brain cortical neural cells, the GCase-irreversible inhibitor, conduritol B epoxide (CBE), reproduced the APP/α-synuclein aggregation and the accumulation of GC/GS. Ultrastructural studies showed numerous larger-sized and electron-dense mitochondria in nGD cerebral cortical neural cells. Significant reductions of mitochondrial adenosine triphosphate production and oxygen consumption (28-40%) were detected in nGD brains and in CBE-treated neural cells. These studies implicate defective GCase function and GC/GS accumulation as risk factors for mitochondrial dysfunction and the multi-proteinopathies (α-synuclein-, APP- and Aβ-aggregates) in nGD. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University

  19. Metallothionein, Copper and Alpha-Synuclein in Alpha-Synucleinopathies

    OpenAIRE

    Okita, Yuho; Rcom-H'cheo-Gauthier, Alexandre N.; Goulding, Michael; Chung, Roger S.; Faller, Peter; Pountney, Dean L.

    2017-01-01

    Metallothioneins (MTs) are proteins that function by metal exchange to regulate the bioavailability of metals, such as zinc and copper. Copper functions in the brain to regulate mitochondria, neurotransmitter production, and cell signaling. Inappropriate copper binding can result in loss of protein function and Cu(I)/(II) redox cycling can generate reactive oxygen species. Copper accumulates in the brain with aging and has been shown to bind alpha-synuclein and initiate its aggregation, the p...

  20. Induction of α-synuclein aggregate formation by CSF exosomes from patients with Parkinson’s disease and dementia with Lewy bodies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stuendl, Anne; Kunadt, Marcel; Kruse, Niels; Bartels, Claudia; Moebius, Wiebke; Danzer, Karin M.; Mollenhauer, Brit

    2016-01-01

    Extracellular α-synuclein has been proposed as a crucial mechanism for induction of pathological aggregate formation in previously healthy cells. In vitro, extracellular α-synuclein is partially associated with exosomal vesicles. Recently, we have provided evidence that exosomal α-synuclein is present in the central nervous system in vivo. We hypothesized that exosomal α-synuclein species from patients with α-synuclein related neurodegeneration serve as carriers for interneuronal disease transmission. We isolated exosomes from cerebrospinal fluid from patients with Parkinson’s disease, dementia with Lewy bodies, progressive supranuclear palsy as a non-α-synuclein related disorder that clinically overlaps with Parkinson’s disease, and neurological controls. Cerebrospinal fluid exosome numbers, α-synuclein protein content of cerebrospinal fluid exosomes and their potential to induce oligomerization of α-synuclein were analysed. The quantification of cerebrospinal fluid exosomal α-synuclein showed distinct differences between patients with Parkinson’s disease and dementia with Lewy bodies. In addition, exosomal α-synuclein levels correlated with the severity of cognitive impairment in cross-sectional samples from patients with dementia with Lewy bodies. Importantly, cerebrospinal fluid exosomes derived from Parkinson’s disease and dementia with Lewy bodies induce oligomerization of α-synuclein in a reporter cell line in a dose-dependent manner. Our data suggest that cerebrospinal fluid exosomes from patients with Parkinson’s disease and dementia with Lewy bodies contain a pathogenic species of α-synuclein, which could initiate oligomerization of soluble α-synuclein in target cells and confer disease pathology. PMID:26647156

  1. Validation of protein models by a neural network approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fantucci Piercarlo

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The development and improvement of reliable computational methods designed to evaluate the quality of protein models is relevant in the context of protein structure refinement, which has been recently identified as one of the bottlenecks limiting the quality and usefulness of protein structure prediction. Results In this contribution, we present a computational method (Artificial Intelligence Decoys Evaluator: AIDE which is able to consistently discriminate between correct and incorrect protein models. In particular, the method is based on neural networks that use as input 15 structural parameters, which include energy, solvent accessible surface, hydrophobic contacts and secondary structure content. The results obtained with AIDE on a set of decoy structures were evaluated using statistical indicators such as Pearson correlation coefficients, Znat, fraction enrichment, as well as ROC plots. It turned out that AIDE performances are comparable and often complementary to available state-of-the-art learning-based methods. Conclusion In light of the results obtained with AIDE, as well as its comparison with available learning-based methods, it can be concluded that AIDE can be successfully used to evaluate the quality of protein structures. The use of AIDE in combination with other evaluation tools is expected to further enhance protein refinement efforts.

  2. Alpha-synuclein in familial Alzheimer disease: epitope mapping parallels dementia with Lewy bodies and Parkinson disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lippa, C F; Schmidt, M L; Lee, V M; Trojanowski, J Q

    2001-11-01

    Alpha-synuclein is a major component of Lewy bodies (LBs) in Parkinson disease and dementia with LBs and of glial cytoplasmic inclusions in multiple system atrophy. However, epitope mapping for alpha-synuclein is distinctive in different neurodegenerative diseases. The reasons for this are poorly understood but may reflect fundamental differences in disease mechanisms. To investigate the alpha-synuclein epitope mapping properties of LBs in familial Alzheimer disease. We compared LBs in familial Alzheimer disease with those in synucleinopathies by probing 6 brains of persons with familial Alzheimer disease using a panel of antibodies to epitopes spanning the alpha-synuclein protein. Results were compared with data from brains of persons with Parkinson disease, dementia with LBs, and multiple system atrophy. The brains of persons with familial Alzheimer disease showed consistent staining of LBs with all antibodies, similar to Parkinson disease and dementia with LBs but different from alpha-synuclein aggregates that occurred in multiple system atrophy. These data suggest that the epitope profiles of alpha-synuclein in LBs are similar, regardless of whether the biological trigger is related to synuclein or a different genetic pathway. These findings support the hypothesis that the mechanism of alpha-synuclein aggregation is the same within cell types but distinctive between cell types.

  3. Alpha synuclein in Parkinson's disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kragh, Christine Lund; Romero-Ramos, Marina; Halliday, Glenda M

    2014-01-01

    The perception of Parkinson’s disease (PD) as a disease centered on dopaminergic striatonigral neurodegeneration has changed fundamentally since 1997 when the first mutation in the SNCA gene (PARK1) encoding a-synuclein was discovered (Polymeropoulos et al. 1997). This discovery formed the basis...

  4. Pink1 suppresses alpha-synuclein-induced phenotypes in a Drosophila model of Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Todd, Amy M; Staveley, Brian E

    2008-12-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is the most prevalent human neurodegenerative movement disorder and is characterized by a selective and progressive loss of the dopaminergic neurons. Mutations in the genes parkin and PTEN-induced putative kinase 1 (PINK1) result in autosomal recessive forms of PD. It has been suggested that parkin and Pink1 function in the same pathway in Drosophila, with Pink1 acting upstream of parkin. Previous work in our laboratory has shown the ability of parkin to rescue an alpha-synuclein-induced PD-like phenotype in Drosophila. To investigate the ability of Pink1 to protect against alpha-synuclein-induced toxicity, we have performed longevity, mobility, and histological studies to determine whether Drosophila Pink1 can rescue the alpha-synuclein phenotypes. We have found that overexpression of Pink1 results in the rescue of the alpha-synuclein-induced phenotype of premature loss of climbing ability, suppression of degeneration of the ommatidial array, and the suppression of alpha-synuclein-induced developmental defects in the Drosophila eye. These results mark the first demonstration of Pink1 counteracting PD phenotypes in a protein toxicity animal model, and they show that Pink1 is able to impart protection against potentially harmful proteins such as alpha-synuclein that would otherwise result in cellular stress.

  5. Alpha-synuclein oligomers - neurotoxic molecules in Parkinson’s disease and other Lewy body disorders

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin Ingelsson

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available 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.

  6. Chemical properties of lipids strongly affect the kinetics of the membrane-induced aggregation of α-synuclein.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galvagnion, Céline; Brown, James W P; Ouberai, Myriam M; Flagmeier, Patrick; Vendruscolo, Michele; Buell, Alexander K; Sparr, Emma; Dobson, Christopher M

    2016-06-28

    Intracellular α-synuclein deposits, known as Lewy bodies, have been linked to a range of neurodegenerative disorders, including Parkinson's disease. α-Synuclein binds to synthetic and biological lipids, and this interaction has been shown to play a crucial role for both α-synuclein's native function, including synaptic plasticity, and the initiation of its aggregation. Here, we describe the interplay between the lipid properties and the lipid binding and aggregation propensity of α-synuclein. In particular, we have observed that the binding of α-synuclein to model membranes is much stronger when the latter is in the fluid rather than the gel phase, and that this binding induces a segregation of the lipids into protein-poor and protein-rich populations. In addition, α-synuclein was found to aggregate at detectable rates only when interacting with membranes composed of the most soluble lipids investigated here. Overall, our results show that the chemical properties of lipids determine whether or not the lipids can trigger the aggregation of α-synuclein, thus affecting the balance between functional and aberrant behavior of the protein.

  7. Convolutional neural network architectures for predicting DNA–protein binding

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zeng, Haoyang; Edwards, Matthew D.; Liu, Ge; Gifford, David K.

    2016-01-01

    Motivation: Convolutional neural networks (CNN) have outperformed conventional methods in modeling the sequence specificity of DNA–protein binding. Yet inappropriate CNN architectures can yield poorer performance than simpler models. Thus an in-depth understanding of how to match CNN architecture to a given task is needed to fully harness the power of CNNs for computational biology applications. Results: We present a systematic exploration of CNN architectures for predicting DNA sequence binding using a large compendium of transcription factor datasets. We identify the best-performing architectures by varying CNN width, depth and pooling designs. We find that adding convolutional kernels to a network is important for motif-based tasks. We show the benefits of CNNs in learning rich higher-order sequence features, such as secondary motifs and local sequence context, by comparing network performance on multiple modeling tasks ranging in difficulty. We also demonstrate how careful construction of sequence benchmark datasets, using approaches that control potentially confounding effects like positional or motif strength bias, is critical in making fair comparisons between competing methods. We explore how to establish the sufficiency of training data for these learning tasks, and we have created a flexible cloud-based framework that permits the rapid exploration of alternative neural network architectures for problems in computational biology. Availability and Implementation: All the models analyzed are available at http://cnn.csail.mit.edu. Contact: gifford@mit.edu Supplementary information: Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online. PMID:27307608

  8. Convolutional neural network architectures for predicting DNA-protein binding.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zeng, Haoyang; Edwards, Matthew D; Liu, Ge; Gifford, David K

    2016-06-15

    Convolutional neural networks (CNN) have outperformed conventional methods in modeling the sequence specificity of DNA-protein binding. Yet inappropriate CNN architectures can yield poorer performance than simpler models. Thus an in-depth understanding of how to match CNN architecture to a given task is needed to fully harness the power of CNNs for computational biology applications. We present a systematic exploration of CNN architectures for predicting DNA sequence binding using a large compendium of transcription factor datasets. We identify the best-performing architectures by varying CNN width, depth and pooling designs. We find that adding convolutional kernels to a network is important for motif-based tasks. We show the benefits of CNNs in learning rich higher-order sequence features, such as secondary motifs and local sequence context, by comparing network performance on multiple modeling tasks ranging in difficulty. We also demonstrate how careful construction of sequence benchmark datasets, using approaches that control potentially confounding effects like positional or motif strength bias, is critical in making fair comparisons between competing methods. We explore how to establish the sufficiency of training data for these learning tasks, and we have created a flexible cloud-based framework that permits the rapid exploration of alternative neural network architectures for problems in computational biology. All the models analyzed are available at http://cnn.csail.mit.edu gifford@mit.edu Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press.

  9. ProLanGO: Protein Function Prediction Using Neural Machine Translation Based on a Recurrent Neural Network.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cao, Renzhi; Freitas, Colton; Chan, Leong; Sun, Miao; Jiang, Haiqing; Chen, Zhangxin

    2017-10-17

    With the development of next generation sequencing techniques, it is fast and cheap to determine protein sequences but relatively slow and expensive to extract useful information from protein sequences because of limitations of traditional biological experimental techniques. Protein function prediction has been a long standing challenge to fill the gap between the huge amount of protein sequences and the known function. In this paper, we propose a novel method to convert the protein function problem into a language translation problem by the new proposed protein sequence language "ProLan" to the protein function language "GOLan", and build a neural machine translation model based on recurrent neural networks to translate "ProLan" language to "GOLan" language. We blindly tested our method by attending the latest third Critical Assessment of Function Annotation (CAFA 3) in 2016, and also evaluate the performance of our methods on selected proteins whose function was released after CAFA competition. The good performance on the training and testing datasets demonstrates that our new proposed method is a promising direction for protein function prediction. In summary, we first time propose a method which converts the protein function prediction problem to a language translation problem and applies a neural machine translation model for protein function prediction.

  10. Features of alpha-synuclein that could explain the progression and irreversibility of Parkinson's disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Scarlet eGallegos

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Alpha-synuclein is a presynaptic protein expressed throughout the central nervous system, and it is the main component of Lewy bodies, one of the histopathological features of Parkinson’s disease (PD which is a progressive and irreversible neurodegenerative disorder. The conformational flexibility of α-synuclein allows it to adopt different conformations, i.e. bound to membranes or form aggregates, the oligomers are believed to be the more toxic species. In this review, we will focus on two major features of α-synuclein, transmission and toxicity that could help to understand the pathological characteristics of PD. One important feature of α-synuclein is its ability to be transmitted from neuron to neuron using mechanisms such as endocytosis, plasma membrane penetration or through exosomes, thus propagating the Lewy body pathology to different brain regions thereby contributing to the progressiveness of PD. The second feature of α-synuclein is that it confers cytotoxicity to recipient cells, principally when it is in an oligomeric state. This form causes mitochondrial dysfunction, endoplasmic reticulum stress, oxidative stress, proteasome impairment, disruption of plasma membrane and pore formation, and lead to apoptosis pathway activation and consequent cell death. The complexity of α-synuclein oligomerization and formation of toxic species could be a major factor for the irreversibility of PD and could also explain the lack of successful therapies to halt the disease.

  11. α-Synuclein Delays Endoplasmic Reticulum (ER)-to-Golgi Transport in Mammalian Cells by Antagonizing ER/Golgi SNAREs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thayanidhi, Nandhakumar; Helm, Jared R.; Nycz, Deborah C.; Bentley, Marvin; Liang, Yingjian

    2010-01-01

    Toxicity of human α-synuclein when expressed in simple organisms can be suppressed by overexpression of endoplasmic reticulum (ER)-to-Golgi transport machinery, suggesting that inhibition of constitutive secretion represents a fundamental cause of the toxicity. Whether similar inhibition in mammals represents a cause of familial Parkinson's disease has not been established. We tested elements of this hypothesis by expressing human α-synuclein in mammalian kidney and neuroendocrine cells and assessing ER-to-Golgi transport. Overexpression of wild type or the familial disease-associated A53T mutant α-synuclein delayed transport by up to 50%; however, A53T inhibited more potently. The secretory delay occurred at low expression levels and was not accompanied by insoluble α-synuclein aggregates or mistargeting of transport machinery, suggesting a direct action of soluble α-synuclein on trafficking proteins. Co-overexpression of ER/Golgi arginine soluble N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor attachment protein receptors (R-SNAREs) specifically rescued transport, indicating that α-synuclein antagonizes SNARE function. Ykt6 reversed α-synuclein inhibition much more effectively than sec22b, suggesting a possible neuroprotective role for the enigmatic high expression of ykt6 in neurons. In in vitro reconstitutions, purified α-synuclein A53T protein specifically inhibited COPII vesicle docking and fusion at a pre-Golgi step. Finally, soluble α-synuclein A53T directly bound ER/Golgi SNAREs and inhibited SNARE complex assembly, providing a potential mechanism for toxic effects in the early secretory pathway. PMID:20392839

  12. Alpha-synuclein delays endoplasmic reticulum (ER)-to-Golgi transport in mammalian cells by antagonizing ER/Golgi SNAREs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thayanidhi, Nandhakumar; Helm, Jared R; Nycz, Deborah C; Bentley, Marvin; Liang, Yingjian; Hay, Jesse C

    2010-06-01

    Toxicity of human alpha-synuclein when expressed in simple organisms can be suppressed by overexpression of endoplasmic reticulum (ER)-to-Golgi transport machinery, suggesting that inhibition of constitutive secretion represents a fundamental cause of the toxicity. Whether similar inhibition in mammals represents a cause of familial Parkinson's disease has not been established. We tested elements of this hypothesis by expressing human alpha-synuclein in mammalian kidney and neuroendocrine cells and assessing ER-to-Golgi transport. Overexpression of wild type or the familial disease-associated A53T mutant alpha-synuclein delayed transport by up to 50%; however, A53T inhibited more potently. The secretory delay occurred at low expression levels and was not accompanied by insoluble alpha-synuclein aggregates or mistargeting of transport machinery, suggesting a direct action of soluble alpha-synuclein on trafficking proteins. Co-overexpression of ER/Golgi arginine soluble N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor attachment protein receptors (R-SNAREs) specifically rescued transport, indicating that alpha-synuclein antagonizes SNARE function. Ykt6 reversed alpha-synuclein inhibition much more effectively than sec22b, suggesting a possible neuroprotective role for the enigmatic high expression of ykt6 in neurons. In in vitro reconstitutions, purified alpha-synuclein A53T protein specifically inhibited COPII vesicle docking and fusion at a pre-Golgi step. Finally, soluble alpha-synuclein A53T directly bound ER/Golgi SNAREs and inhibited SNARE complex assembly, providing a potential mechanism for toxic effects in the early secretory pathway.

  13. Analysis of alpha-synuclein in malignant melanoma - development of a SRM quantification assay.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Charlotte Welinder

    Full Text Available Globally, malignant melanoma shows a steady increase in the incidence among cancer diseases. Malignant melanoma represents a cancer type where currently no biomarker or diagnostics is available to identify disease stage, progression of disease or personalized medicine treatment. The aim of this study was to assess the tissue expression of alpha-synuclein, a protein implicated in several disease processes, in metastatic tissues from malignant melanoma patients. A targeted Selected Reaction Monitoring (SRM assay was developed and utilized together with stable isotope labeling for the relative quantification of two target peptides of alpha-synuclein. Analysis of alpha-synuclein protein was then performed in ten metastatic tissue samples from the Lund Melanoma Biobank. The calibration curve using peak area ratio (heavy/light versus concentration ratios showed linear regression over three orders of magnitude, for both of the selected target peptide sequences. In support of the measurements of specific protein expression levels, we also observed significant correlation between the protein and mRNA levels of alpha-synuclein in these tissues. Investigating levels of tissue alpha-synuclein may add novel aspect to biomarker development in melanoma, help to understand disease mechanisms and ultimately contribute to discriminate melanoma patients with different prognosis.

  14. Copper(II)-induced self-oligomerization of alpha-synuclein.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paik, S R; Shin, H J; Lee, J H; Chang, C S; Kim, J

    1999-06-15

    alpha-Synuclein is a component of the abnormal protein depositions in senile plaques and Lewy bodies of Alzheimer's disease (AD) and Parkinson's disease respectively. The protein was suggested to provide a possible nucleation centre for plaque formation in AD via selective interaction with amyloid beta/A4 protein (Abeta). We have shown previously that alpha-synuclein has experienced self-oligomerization when Abeta25-35 was present in an orientation-specific manner in the sequence. Here we examine this biochemically specific self-oligomerization with the use of various metals. Strikingly, copper(II) was the most effective metal ion affecting alpha-synuclein to form self-oligomers in the presence of coupling reagents such as dicyclohexylcarbodi-imide or N-(ethoxycarbonyl)-2-ethoxy-1,2-dihydroquinoline. The size distribution of the oligomers indicated that monomeric alpha-synuclein was oligomerized sequentially. The copper-induced oligomerization was shown to be suppressed as the acidic C-terminus of alpha-synuclein was truncated by treatment with endoproteinase Asp-N. In contrast, the Abeta25-35-induced oligomerizations of the intact and truncated forms of alpha-synuclein were not affected. This clearly indicated that the copper-induced oligomerization was dependent on the acidic C-terminal region and that its underlying biochemical mechanism was distinct from that of the Abeta25-35-induced oligomerization. Although the physiological or pathological relevance of the oligomerization remains currently elusive, the common outcome of alpha-synuclein on treatment with copper or Abeta25-35 might be useful in understanding neurodegenerative disorders in molecular terms. In addition, abnormal copper homoeostasis could be considered as one of the risk factors for the development of disorders such as AD or Parkinson's disease.

  15. Modulating α-synuclein misfolding and fibrillation in vitro by agrochemicals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Blanca A Silva

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Blanca A Silva1, Olof Einarsdóttir1, Anthony L Fink1,†, Vladimir N Uversky2,31Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, University of California, Santa Cruz, CA, USA; 2Department of Molecular Medicine, University of South Florida, Tampa, FL, USA; 3Institute for Biological Instrumentation, Russian Academy of Sciences, Pushchino, Moscow Region, Russia †Anthony L Fink passed away on March 2, 2008Abstract: A combination of spectroscopic techniques including atomic force microscopy (AFM and transmission electron microscopy (TEM, was used to analyze the effect of chemically distinct agrochemicals (pesticides, herbicides, and fungicides on the in vitro misfolding and aggregation of a presynaptic intrinsically disordered protein α-synuclein. Despite their differences in chemical properties, almost all the compounds screened affected the α-synuclein fibrillation in a concentration-dependent manner. The morphology of the aggregated α-synuclein was characterized by AFM and TEM techniques. In addition to typical fibrils abundantly found at the equilibrium phase, this analysis revealed the existence of a noticeable nonfibrillar fraction where α-synuclein was present as protofilaments, small oligomers, and large oligomeric species. The aggregated α-synuclein samples were separated into soluble and insoluble fractions by ultracentrifugation and subjected to structural and morphological characterization. Attenuated total reflectance Fourier transform infrared spectroscopic analysis showed that the insoluble α-synuclein fractions possessed a high content of ordered β-structure, whereas the β-structure content of the supernatant pool populated by oligomeric species was noticeably lower. This study provides evidence that chemically distinct agrochemicals can directly interact with α-synuclein to induce structural changes and affect the fibrillation process of this important protein.Keywords: Parkinson's disease, environmental toxins, intrinsically

  16. Biophysics of α-synuclein membrane interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pfefferkorn, Candace M; Jiang, Zhiping; Lee, Jennifer C

    2012-02-01

    Membrane proteins participate in nearly all cellular processes; however, because of experimental limitations, their characterization lags far behind that of soluble proteins. Peripheral membrane proteins are particularly challenging to study because of their inherent propensity to adopt multiple and/or transient conformations in solution and upon membrane association. In this review, we summarize useful biophysical techniques for the study of peripheral membrane proteins and their application in the characterization of the membrane interactions of the natively unfolded and Parkinson's disease (PD) related protein, α-synuclein (α-syn). We give particular focus to studies that have led to the current understanding of membrane-bound α-syn structure and the elucidation of specific membrane properties that affect α-syn-membrane binding. Finally, we discuss biophysical evidence supporting a key role for membranes and α-syn in PD pathogenesis. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Membrane protein structure and function. Copyright © 2011. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  17. α-Synuclein insertion into supported lipid bilayers as seen by in situ X-ray reflectivity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hähl, Hendrik; Möller, Isabelle; Kiesel, Irena; Campioni, Silvia; Riek, Roland; Verdes, Dorinel; Seeger, Stefan

    2015-03-18

    Large aggregates of misfolded α-synuclein inside neuronal cells are the hallmarks of Parkinson's disease. The protein's natural function and its supposed toxicity, however, are believed to be closely related to its interaction with cell and vesicle membranes. Upon this interaction, the protein folds into an α-helical structure and intercalates into the membrane. In this study, we focus on the changes in the lipid bilayer caused by this intrusion. In situ X-ray reflectivity was applied to determine the vertical density structure of the bilayer before and after exposure to α-synuclein. It was found that the α-synuclein insertion, wild type and E57K variant, caused a reduction in bilayer thickness. This effect may be one factor in the membrane pore formation ability of α-synuclein.

  18. Expression of alpha-synuclein during eye development of mice (Mus musculus), chick (Gallus gallus domisticus) and fish (Ctenopharyngodon idella) in a comparison study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seleem, Amin A

    2015-08-01

    Synucleins are small proteins associated with neurodegenerative diseases, alpha-synuclein is a Parkinson's disease-linked protein of ubiquitous expression in the central nervous system. This study aimed at the localization of alpha-synuclein during eye development of mice (Mus musculus), chick (Gallus gallus domisticus) and fish (Ctenopharyngodon idella) by immunohistochemical staining in a comparison study. The results showed that alpha-synuclein expression increased gradually with the development of ciliary body, iris, retina and cornea of mice at E17, P1, P3, P7 and chick at E5, E10, E15 with unequal appearance of alpha-synuclein expression. Also, it was not detected in iridocorneal angle during eye development of mice and chick. Alpha-synuclein expression during fish eye development at P10, P15, P20 was not detected either in the ciliray body or Iris regions and it was pronounced with sharp signals in the highly specialized tissue of the iridocorneal angle at P20. Also, the expression was gradually increased from P15 to P20 in fish retina and cornea. The pattern of expression and distribution of alpha-synuclein during the development of ciliary body and iris of mice, chick and fish has not been previously characterized, The data concluded that alpha-synuclein has important cellular function during eye development of studied animals. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. Copper(II) enhances membrane-bound α-synuclein helix formation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lucas, Heather R; Lee, Jennifer C

    2011-03-01

    Interactions of copper and membranes with α-synuclein have been implicated in pathogenic mechanisms of Parkinson's disease, yet work examining both concurrently is scarce. We have examined the effect of copper(ii) on protein/vesicle binding and found that both the copper(ii) affinity and α-helical content are enhanced for the membrane-bound protein.

  20. Copper(II) enhances membrane-bound α-synuclein helix formation

    OpenAIRE

    Lucas, Heather R.; Lee, Jennifer C.

    2011-01-01

    Interactions of copper and membranes with α-synuclein have been implicated in pathogenic mechanisms of Parkinson’s disease, yet work examining both concurrently is scarce. We have examined the effect of copper(II) on protein/vesicle binding and found that both the copper(II) affinity and α-helical content are enhanced for the membrane-bound protein.

  1. Interaction between alpha-synuclein and metal ions, still looking for a role in the pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bisaglia, Marco; Tessari, Isabella; Mammi, Stefano; Bubacco, Luigi

    2009-01-01

    The most recent literature on the interaction between alpha-synuclein in its several aggregation states and metal ions is discussed. This analysis shows two major types of interactions. Binding sites are present in the C-terminal region, and similar, low affinity (in the millimolar range) is exhibited toward many different metal ions, including copper and iron. A more complex scenario emerges for these latter metal ions, which are also able to coordinate with high affinity (in the micromolar range) to the N-terminal region of alpha-synuclein. Moreover, these redox-active metal ions may induce chemical modifications on the protein in vitro and in the reducing intracellular environment, and these modifications might be relevant for the aggregation properties of alpha-synuclein. Finally, an attempt is made to contextualize the interaction between alpha-synuclein and these metal ions in the framework of the elusive and multifactorial pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease.

  2. Mitochondrial Dysfunction and α-Synuclein Synaptic Pathology in Parkinson’s Disease: Who’s on First?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michela Zaltieri

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Parkinson’s disease (PD is the most common neurodegenerative movement disorder. Its characteristic neuropathological features encompass the loss of dopaminergic neurons of the nigrostriatal system and the presence of Lewy bodies and Lewy neurites. These are intraneuronal and intraneuritic proteinaceous insoluble aggregates whose main constituent is the synaptic protein α-synuclein. Compelling lines of evidence indicate that mitochondrial dysfunction and α-synuclein synaptic deposition may play a primary role in the onset of this disorder. However, it is not yet clear which of these events may come first in the sequel of processes leading to neurodegeneration. Here, we reviewed data supporting either that α-synuclein synaptic deposition precedes and indirectly triggers mitochondrial damage or that mitochondrial deficits lead to neuronal dysfunction and α-synuclein synaptic accumulation. The present overview shows that it is still difficult to establish the exact temporal sequence and contribution of these events to PD.

  3. Elevated alpha-synuclein mRNA levels in individual UV-laser-microdissected dopaminergic substantia nigra neurons in idiopathic Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gründemann, Jan; Schlaudraff, Falk; Haeckel, Olga; Liss, Birgit

    2008-04-01

    The presynaptic protein alpha-synuclein is involved in several neurodegenerative diseases, including Parkinson's disease (PD). In rare familial forms of PD, causal mutations (PARK1) as well as multiplications (PARK4) of the alpha-synuclein gene have been identified. In sporadic, idiopathic PD, abnormal accumulation and deposition of alpha-synuclein might also cause degeneration of dopaminergic midbrain neurons, the clinically most relevant neuronal population in PD. Thus, cell-specific quantification of alpha-synuclein expression-levels in dopaminergic neurons from idiopathic PD patients in comparison to controls would provide essential information about contributions of alpha-synuclein to the etiology of PD. However, a number of previous studies addressing this question at the tissue-level yielded varying results regarding alpha-synuclein expression. To increase specificity, we developed a cell-specific approach for mRNA quantification that also took into account the important issue of variable RNA integrities of the individual human postmortem brain samples. We demonstrate that PCR -amplicon size can confound quantitative gene-expression analysis, in particular of partly degraded RNA. By combining optimized UV-laser microdissection- and quantitative RT-PCR-techniques with suitable PCR assays, we detected significantly elevated alpha-synuclein mRNA levels in individual, surviving neuromelanin- and tyrosine hydroxylase-positive substantia nigra dopaminergic neurons from idiopathic PD brains compared to controls. These results strengthen the pathophysiologic role of transcriptional dysregulation of the alpha-synuclein gene in sporadic PD.

  4. Elevated α-synuclein mRNA levels in individual UV-laser-microdissected dopaminergic substantia nigra neurons in idiopathic Parkinson's disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gründemann, Jan; Schlaudraff, Falk; Haeckel, Olga; Liss, Birgit

    2008-01-01

    The presynaptic protein α-synuclein is involved in several neurodegenerative diseases, including Parkinson's disease (PD). In rare familial forms of PD, causal mutations (PARK1) as well as multiplications (PARK4) of the α-synuclein gene have been identified. In sporadic, idiopathic PD, abnormal accumulation and deposition of α-synuclein might also cause degeneration of dopaminergic midbrain neurons, the clinically most relevant neuronal population in PD. Thus, cell-specific quantification of α-synuclein expression-levels in dopaminergic neurons from idiopathic PD patients in comparison to controls would provide essential information about contributions of α-synuclein to the etiology of PD. However, a number of previous studies addressing this question at the tissue-level yielded varying results regarding α-synuclein expression. To increase specificity, we developed a cell-specific approach for mRNA quantification that also took into account the important issue of variable RNA integrities of the individual human postmortem brain samples. We demonstrate that PCR –amplicon size can confound quantitative gene-expression analysis, in particular of partly degraded RNA. By combining optimized UV-laser microdissection- and quantitative RT–PCR-techniques with suitable PCR assays, we detected significantly elevated α-synuclein mRNA levels in individual, surviving neuromelanin- and tyrosine hydroxylase-positive substantia nigra dopaminergic neurons from idiopathic PD brains compared to controls. These results strengthen the pathophysiologic role of transcriptional dysregulation of the α-synuclein gene in sporadic PD. PMID:18332041

  5. Down-regulation of alpha-synuclein expression can rescue dopaminergic cells from cell death in the substantia nigra of Parkinson's disease rat model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hayashita-Kinoh, Hiromi; Yamada, Masanori; Yokota, Takanori; Mizuno, Yoshikuni; Mochizuki, Hideki

    2006-03-24

    Fibrillization and aggregation of alpha-synuclein may play a critical role in neurodegenerative diseases like Parkinson's diseases. Adeno-associated virus (AAV) vector delivery of an alpha-synuclein ribozyme was tested for its silencing effect on degenerating nigrostriatal neurons in the MPP(+) model of Parkinson's disease. We designed alpha-synuclein ribozyme against human alpha-synuclein gene expression and constructed alpha-synuclein ribozymes-carrying rAAV vector (designated rAAV-SynRz). Co-transfection of rAAV-SynRz and rAAV-alpha-synuclein into HEK293 cells resulted in down-regulation of alpha-synuclein protein expression in vitro. Then, rAAV-SynRz was injected into the substantia nigra (SN) of MPP(+)-treated rats. Cell counts of TH-positive neurons in the SN revealed that rAAV-SynRz significantly protected TH-positive cells against apoptotic death, compared with those of rAAV-EGFP or no rAAV injected rats. Our results indicate that the use of rAAV-SynRz allowed the survival of higher number of TH-positive neurons in SN in the MPP(+) model. Down-regulation of alpha-synuclein expression could be potentially a suitable target for gene therapy of Parkinson's disease.

  6. Yes-associated protein 65 (YAP expands neural progenitors and regulates Pax3 expression in the neural plate border zone.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephen T Gee

    Full Text Available Yes-associated protein 65 (YAP contains multiple protein-protein interaction domains and functions as both a transcriptional co-activator and as a scaffolding protein. Mouse embryos lacking YAP did not survive past embryonic day 8.5 and showed signs of defective yolk sac vasculogenesis, chorioallantoic fusion, and anterior-posterior (A-P axis elongation. Given that the YAP knockout mouse defects might be due in part to nutritional deficiencies, we sought to better characterize a role for YAP during early development using embryos that develop externally. YAP morpholino (MO-mediated loss-of-function in both frog and fish resulted in incomplete epiboly at gastrulation and impaired axis formation, similar to the mouse phenotype. In frog, germ layer specific genes were expressed, but they were temporally delayed. YAP MO-mediated partial knockdown in frog allowed a shortened axis to form. YAP gain-of-function in Xenopus expanded the progenitor populations in the neural plate (sox2(+ and neural plate border zone (pax3(+, while inhibiting the expression of later markers of tissues derived from the neural plate border zone (neural crest, pre-placodal ectoderm, hatching gland, as well as epidermis and somitic muscle. YAP directly regulates pax3 expression via association with TEAD1 (N-TEF at a highly conserved, previously undescribed, TEAD-binding site within the 5' regulatory region of pax3. Structure/function analyses revealed that the PDZ-binding motif of YAP contributes to the inhibition of epidermal and somitic muscle differentiation, but a complete, intact YAP protein is required for expansion of the neural plate and neural plate border zone progenitor pools. These results provide a thorough analysis of YAP mediated gene expression changes in loss- and gain-of-function experiments. Furthermore, this is the first report to use YAP structure-function analyzes to determine which portion of YAP is involved in specific gene expression changes and the

  7. αSynuclein and Mitochondrial Dysfunction: A Pathogenic Partnership in Parkinson’s Disease?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Protter

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Parkinson’s Disease (PD is a complex, chronic, progressive, and debilitating neurodegenerative disorder. Neither a cure nor effective long-term therapy exist and the lack of knowledge of the molecular mechanisms responsible for PD development is a major impediment to therapeutic advances. The protein αSynuclein is a central component in PD pathogenesis yet its cellular targets and mechanism of toxicity remains unknown. Mitochondrial dysfunction is also a common theme in PD patients and this review explores the strong possibility that αSynuclein and mitochondrial dysfunction have an inter-relationship responsible for underlying the disease pathology. Amplifying cycles of mitochondrial dysfunction and αSynuclein toxicity can be envisaged, with either being the disease-initiating factor yet acting together during disease progression. Multiple potential mechanisms exist in which mitochondrial dysfunction and αSynuclein could interact to exacerbate their neurodegenerative properties. Candidates discussed within this review include autophagy, mitophagy, mitochondrial dynamics/fusion/fission, oxidative stress and reactive oxygen species, endoplasmic reticulum stress, calcium, nitrosative stress and αSynuclein Oligomerization.

  8. The influence of N-terminal acetylation on micelle-induced conformational changes and aggregation of α-Synuclein.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Ruzafa

    Full Text Available The biological function of α-Synuclein has been related to binding to lipids and membranes but these interactions can also mediate α-Synuclein aggregation, which is associated to Parkinson's disease and other neuropathologies. In brain tissue α-Synuclein is constitutively N-acetylated, a modification that plays an important role in its conformational propensity, lipid and membrane binding, and aggregation propensity. We studied the interactions of the lipid-mimetic SDS with N-acetylated and non-acetylated α-Synuclein, as well as their early-onset Parkinson's disease variants A30P, E46K and A53T. At low SDS/protein ratios α-Synuclein forms oligomeric complexes with SDS micelles with relatively low α-helical structure. These micellar oligomers can efficiently nucleate aggregation of monomeric α-Synuclein, with successive formation of oligomers, protofibrils, curly fibrils and mature amyloid fibrils. N-acetylation reduces considerably the rate of aggregation of WT α-Synuclein. However, in presence of any of the early-onset Parkinson's disease mutations the protective effect of N-acetylation against micelle-induced aggregation becomes impaired. At higher SDS/protein ratios, N-acetylation favors another conformational transition, in which a second type of α-helix-rich, non-aggregating oligomers become stabilized. Once again, the Parkinson's disease mutations disconnect the influence of N-acetylation in promoting this transition. These results suggest a cooperative link between the N-terminus and the region of the mutations that may be important for α-Synuclein function.

  9. Depressive-like phenotype induced by AAV-mediated overexpression of human α-synuclein in midbrain dopaminergic neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caudal, D; Alvarsson, A; Björklund, A; Svenningsson, P

    2015-11-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is a neurodegenerative disorder characterized by a progressive loss of nigral dopaminergic neurons and by the presence of aggregates containing α-synuclein called Lewy bodies. Viral vector-induced overexpression of α-synuclein in dopaminergic neurons represents a model of PD which recapitulates disease progression better than commonly used neurotoxin models. Previous studies using this model have reported motor and cognitive impairments, whereas depression, mood and anxiety phenotypes are less described. To investigate these psychiatric phenotypes, Sprague-Dawley rats received bilateral injections of a recombinant adeno-associated virus (AAV) vector expressing human α-synuclein or GFP into the substantia nigra pars compacta. Behavior was assessed at two timepoints: 3 and 8 weeks post-injection. We report that nigral α-synuclein overexpression led to a pronounced nigral dopaminergic cell loss accompanied by a smaller cell loss in the ventral tegmental area, and to a decreased striatal density of dopaminergic fibers. The AAV-α-synuclein group exhibited modest, but significant motor impairments 8 weeks after vector administration. The AAV-α-synuclein group displayed depressive-like behavior in the forced swim test after 3 weeks, and reduced sucrose preference at week 8. At both timepoints, overexpression of α-synuclein was linked to a hyperactive hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis regulation of corticosterone. The depressive-like phenotype was also correlated with decreased nigral brain-derived neurotrophic factor and spinophilin levels, and with decreased striatal levels of the activity-regulated cytoskeleton-associated protein. This study demonstrates that AAV-mediated α-synuclein overexpression in dopamine neurons is not only useful to model motor impairments of PD, but also depression. This study also provides evidence that depression in experimental Parkinsonism is correlated to dysregulation of the HPA axis and to

  10. Cross-seeding of prions by aggregated α-synuclein leads to transmissible spongiform encephalopathy.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elizaveta Katorcha

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Aggregation of misfolded proteins or peptides is a common feature of neurodegenerative diseases including Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, Huntington's, prion and other diseases. Recent years have witnessed a growing number of reports of overlap in neuropathological features that were once thought to be unique to only one neurodegenerative disorder. However, the origin for the overlap remains unclear. One possibility is that diseases with mixed brain pathologies might arise from cross-seeding of one amyloidogenic protein by aggregated states of unrelated proteins. In the current study we examined whether prion replication can be induced by cross-seeding by α-synuclein or Aβ peptide. We found that α-synuclein aggregates formed in cultured cells or in vitro display cross-seeding activity and trigger misfolding of the prion protein (PrPC in serial Protein Misfolding Cyclic Amplification reactions, producing self-replicating PrP states characterized by a short C-terminal proteinase K (PK-resistant region referred to as PrPres. Non-fibrillar α-synuclein or fibrillar Aβ failed to cross-seed misfolding of PrPC. Remarkably, PrPres triggered by aggregated α-synuclein in vitro propagated in animals and, upon serial transmission, produced PrPSc and clinical prion disease characterized by spongiosis and astrocytic gliosis. The current study demonstrates that aggregated α-synuclein is potent in cross-seeding of prion protein misfolding and aggregation in vitro, producing self-replicating states that can lead to transmissible prion diseases upon serial passaging in wild type animals. In summary, the current work documents direct cross-seeding between unrelated amyloidogenic proteins associated with different neurodegenerative diseases. This study suggests that early interaction between unrelated amyloidogenic proteins might underlie the etiology of mixed neurodegenerative proteinopathies.

  11. Cross-seeding of prions by aggregated α-synuclein leads to transmissible spongiform encephalopathy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Katorcha, Elizaveta; Makarava, Natallia; Lee, Young Jin; Lindberg, Iris; Monteiro, Mervyn J; Kovacs, Gabor G; Baskakov, Ilia V

    2017-08-01

    Aggregation of misfolded proteins or peptides is a common feature of neurodegenerative diseases including Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, Huntington's, prion and other diseases. Recent years have witnessed a growing number of reports of overlap in neuropathological features that were once thought to be unique to only one neurodegenerative disorder. However, the origin for the overlap remains unclear. One possibility is that diseases with mixed brain pathologies might arise from cross-seeding of one amyloidogenic protein by aggregated states of unrelated proteins. In the current study we examined whether prion replication can be induced by cross-seeding by α-synuclein or Aβ peptide. We found that α-synuclein aggregates formed in cultured cells or in vitro display cross-seeding activity and trigger misfolding of the prion protein (PrPC) in serial Protein Misfolding Cyclic Amplification reactions, producing self-replicating PrP states characterized by a short C-terminal proteinase K (PK)-resistant region referred to as PrPres. Non-fibrillar α-synuclein or fibrillar Aβ failed to cross-seed misfolding of PrPC. Remarkably, PrPres triggered by aggregated α-synuclein in vitro propagated in animals and, upon serial transmission, produced PrPSc and clinical prion disease characterized by spongiosis and astrocytic gliosis. The current study demonstrates that aggregated α-synuclein is potent in cross-seeding of prion protein misfolding and aggregation in vitro, producing self-replicating states that can lead to transmissible prion diseases upon serial passaging in wild type animals. In summary, the current work documents direct cross-seeding between unrelated amyloidogenic proteins associated with different neurodegenerative diseases. This study suggests that early interaction between unrelated amyloidogenic proteins might underlie the etiology of mixed neurodegenerative proteinopathies.

  12. α-Synuclein binds large unilamellar vesicles as an extended helix†

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trexler, Adam J.; Rhoades, Elizabeth

    2010-01-01

    Interactions between the synaptic protein α-Synuclein and cellular membranes may be relevant both to its native function as well as its role in Parkinson’s disease. We use single molecule Förster resonance energy transfer to probe the structure of α-Synuclein bound to detergent micelles and lipid vesicles. We find evidence that it forms a bent-helix when bound to highly curved detergent micelles, whereas it binds more physiological 100 nm diameter lipid vesicles as an elongated helix. Our results highlight the influence of membrane curvature in determining α-Synuclein conformation, which may be important for both its normal and disease-associated functions. PMID:19220042

  13. Alpha-Synuclein Expression Restricts RNA Viral Infections in the Brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beatman, Erica L; Massey, Aaron; Shives, Katherine D; Burrack, Kristina S; Chamanian, Mastooreh; Morrison, Thomas E; Beckham, J David

    2015-12-30

    We have discovered that native, neuronal expression of alpha-synuclein (Asyn) inhibits viral infection, injury, and disease in the central nervous system (CNS). Enveloped RNA viruses, such as West Nile virus (WNV), invade the CNS and cause encephalitis, yet little is known about the innate neuron-specific inhibitors of viral infections in the CNS. Following WNV infection of primary neurons, we found that Asyn protein expression is increased. The infectious titer of WNV and Venezuelan equine encephalitis virus (VEEV) TC83 in the brains of Asyn-knockout mice exhibited a mean increase of 10(4.5) infectious viral particles compared to the titers in wild-type and heterozygote littermates. Asyn-knockout mice also exhibited significantly increased virus-induced mortality compared to Asyn heterozygote or homozygote control mice. Virus-induced Asyn localized to perinuclear, neuronal regions expressing viral envelope protein and the endoplasmic reticulum (ER)-associated trafficking protein Rab1. In Asyn-knockout primary neuronal cultures, the levels of expression of ER signaling pathways, known to support WNV replication, were significantly elevated before and during viral infection compared to those in Asyn-expressing primary neuronal cultures. We propose a model in which virus-induced Asyn localizes to ER-derived membranes, modulates virus-induced ER stress signaling, and inhibits viral replication, growth, and injury in the CNS. These data provide a novel and important functional role for the expression of native alpha-synuclein, a protein that is closely associated with the development of Parkinson's disease. Neuroinvasive viruses such as West Nile virus are able to infect neurons and cause severe disease, such as encephalitis, or infection of brain tissue. Following viral infection in the central nervous system, only select neurons are infected, implying that neurons exhibit innate resistance to viral infections. We discovered that native neuronal expression of alpha-synuclein

  14. Enhanced oligomerization of the alpha-synuclein mutant by the Cu,Zn-superoxide dismutase and hydrogen peroxide system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kang, Jung Hoon; Kim, Kyung Sik

    2003-02-28

    The alpha-synuclein is a major component of Lewy bodies that are found in the brains of patients with Parkinson's disease (PD). Also, two point mutations in this protein, A53T and A30P, are associated with rare familial forms of the disease. We investigated whether there are differences in the Cu,Zn-SOD and hydrogen peroxide system mediated-protein modification between the wild-type and mutant alpha-synucleins. When alpha-synuclein was incubated with both Cu,Zn-SOD and H2O2, then the amount of A53T mutant oligomerization increased relative to that of the wild-type protein. This process was inhibited by radical scavenger, spin-trapping agent, and copper chelator. These results suggest that the oligomerization of alpha-synuclein is mediated by the generation of the hydroxyl radical through the metal-catalyzed reaction. The dityrosine formation of the A53T mutant protein was enhanced relative to that of the wild-type protein. Antioxidant molecules, carnosine, and anserine effectively inhibited the wild-type and mutant proteins' oligomerization. Therefore, these compounds may be explored as potential therapeutic agents for PD patients. The present experiments, in part, may provide an explanation for the association between PD and the alpha-synuclein mutant.

  15. Formation of covalent di-tyrosine dimers in recombinant α-synuclein

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    van Maarschalkerweerd, A; Pedersen, MN; Peterson, H

    2015-01-01

    Parkinson's disease is associated with fibril deposition in the diseased brain. Misfolding events of the intrinsically disordered synaptic protein α-synuclein are suggested to lead to the formation of transient oligomeric and cytotoxic species. The etiology of Parkinson's disease is further assoc...

  16. Rapid Self-assembly of alpha-Synuclein Observed by In Situ Atomic Force Microscopy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hoyer, Wolfgang; Cherny, Dmitry; Subramaniam, Vinod; Jovin, Thomas M.

    2004-01-01

    Self-assembly of α-synuclein resulting in protein aggregates of diverse morphology has been implicated in the pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease and other neurodegenerative disorders known as synucleinopathies. Apart from its biomedical relevance, this aggregation process is representative of the

  17. Explorations of the application of cyanine dyes for quantitative alpha-synuclein detection

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Volkova, K.D.; Kovalska, V.B.; Segers-Nolten, Gezina M.J.; Veldhuis, G.; Veldhuis, G.J.; Subramaniam, Vinod; Yarmoluk, S.M.

    2009-01-01

    We examined the practical aspects of using fluorescent mono (T-284) and trimethinecyanine (SH-516) dyes for detecting and quantifying fibrillar α-synuclein (ASN). We studied the interaction of cyanine dyes with fibrillar proteins using fluorescence spectroscopy and atomic force microscopy. The

  18. Nanoprobing of α-synuclein misfolding and aggregation with atomic force microscopy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Junping; Warnke, Julia; Lyubchenko, Yuri L

    2011-04-01

    Atomic force microscopy (AFM) force spectroscopy is a technique with broad nanomedical applications, widely used for the characterization of molecular interactions on the nanoscale. Here we test this technique to evaluate compounds for influencing the protein aggregation process. The results demonstrate that Zn(2+) or Al(3+) cations bring about a dramatic increase of α-synuclein interactions in unfavorable conditions for α-synuclein misfolding (neutral pH). We did not observe the effect of dopamine at favorable conditions for α-synuclein misfolding (acidic pH). We also found that electrostatic interactions do not play a significant role at acidic pH. These findings are generally in line with previous studies by various techniques. The high sensitivity of AFM force spectroscopy as well as its ability to test compounds for the same experimental system makes AFM an efficient nanotool for rapid analysis of compounds inhibiting early protein aggregation studies and quantitative selection of potential therapeutics for neurodegenerative diseases. Atomic force microscopy is used to interrogate the influence of cations and α-synuclein on the protein aggregation process. The report illustrates an application of AFM to unravel the potential of novel therapeutics on early protein aggregation intrinsic in neurodegenerative diseases. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. Explorations of the application of cyanine dyes for quantitative alpha-synuclein detection

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Volkova, Kateryna D; Kovalska, V B; Segers-Nolten, G M J; Veldhuis, G.; Subramaniam, V; Yarmoluk, S M

    We examined the practical aspects of using fluorescent mono (T-284) and trimethinecyanine (SH-516) dyes for detecting and quantifying fibrillar alpha-synuclein (ASN). We studied the interaction of cyanine dyes with fibrillar proteins using fluorescence spectroscopy and atomic force microscopy. The

  20. Studies of interaction between cyanine dye T-284 and fibrillar alpha-synuclein

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Volkova, Kateryna D; Kovalska, Vladyslava B; Yu Losytskyy, Mykhaylo; Veldhuis, Gertjan; Segers-Nolten, G M J; Tolmachev, Olexiy I; Subramaniam, Vinod; Yarmoluk, Sergiy M

    2010-01-01

    A key feature of Parkinson's disease is the formation and accumulation of amyloid fibrils of the natively unfolded protein α-synuclein (ASN) inside neurons. Recently we have proposed novel sensitive monomethinecyanine dye T-284 as fluorescent probe for quantitative detection of ASN amyloid fibrils.

  1. Studies of Interaction Between Cyanine Dye T-284 and Fibrillar Alpha-Synuclein

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Volkova, Kateryna D.; Kovalska, Vladyslava B.; Losytskyy, Mykhaylo Yu.; Veldhuis, G.J.; Veldhuis, G.; Segers-Nolten, Gezina M.J.; Tolmachev, Olexiy I.; Subramaniam, Vinod; Yarmoluk, Sergiy M.

    2010-01-01

    A key feature of Parkinson’s disease is the formation and accumulation of amyloid fibrils of the natively unfolded protein α-synuclein (ASN) inside neurons. Recently we have proposed novel sensitive monomethinecyanine dye T-284 as fluorescent probe for quantitative detection of ASN amyloid fibrils.

  2. Amyloids of Alpha-Synuclein Affect the Structure and Dynamics of Supported Lipid Bilayers

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Iyer, A.S.; Petersen, N.O.; Claessens, Mireille Maria Anna Elisabeth; Subramaniam, Vinod

    2014-01-01

    Interactions of monomeric alpha-synuclein (αS) with lipid membranes have been suggested to play an important role in initiating aggregation of αS. We have systematically analyzed the distribution and self-assembly of monomeric αS on supported lipid bilayers. We observe that at protein/lipid ratios

  3. Amyloids of alpha-synuclein affect the structure and dynamics of supported lipid bilayers

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Iyer, Aditya; Petersen, Nils O; Claessens, Mireille M A E; Subramaniam, Vinod

    2014-01-01

    Interactions of monomeric alpha-synuclein (αS) with lipid membranes have been suggested to play an important role in initiating aggregation of αS. We have systematically analyzed the distribution and self-assembly of monomeric αS on supported lipid bilayers. We observe that at protein/lipid ratios

  4. The mechanism of sirtuin 2–mediated exacerbation of alpha-synuclein toxicity in models of Parkinson disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Francelle, Laetitia; Pinho, Raquel; Szegö, Éva M.; Martinho, Renato; Munari, Francesca; Lázaro, Diana F.; Moniot, Sébastien; Guerreiro, Patrícia; Fonseca, Luis; Marijanovic, Zrinka; Antas, Pedro; Gerhardt, Ellen; Enguita, Francisco Javier; Fauvet, Bruno; Penque, Deborah; Pais, Teresa Faria; Tong, Qiang; Becker, Stefan; Kügler, Sebastian; Lashuel, Hilal Ahmed; Steegborn, Clemens; Zweckstetter, Markus; Outeiro, Tiago Fleming

    2017-01-01

    Sirtuin genes have been associated with aging and are known to affect multiple cellular pathways. Sirtuin 2 was previously shown to modulate proteotoxicity associated with age-associated neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer and Parkinson disease (PD). However, the precise molecular mechanisms involved remain unclear. Here, we provide mechanistic insight into the interplay between sirtuin 2 and α-synuclein, the major component of the pathognomonic protein inclusions in PD and other synucleinopathies. We found that α-synuclein is acetylated on lysines 6 and 10 and that these residues are deacetylated by sirtuin 2. Genetic manipulation of sirtuin 2 levels in vitro and in vivo modulates the levels of α-synuclein acetylation, its aggregation, and autophagy. Strikingly, mutants blocking acetylation exacerbate α-synuclein toxicity in vivo, in the substantia nigra of rats. Our study identifies α-synuclein acetylation as a key regulatory mechanism governing α-synuclein aggregation and toxicity, demonstrating the potential therapeutic value of sirtuin 2 inhibition in synucleinopathies. PMID:28257421

  5. The mechanism of sirtuin 2-mediated exacerbation of alpha-synuclein toxicity in models of Parkinson disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rita Machado de Oliveira

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Sirtuin genes have been associated with aging and are known to affect multiple cellular pathways. Sirtuin 2 was previously shown to modulate proteotoxicity associated with age-associated neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer and Parkinson disease (PD. However, the precise molecular mechanisms involved remain unclear. Here, we provide mechanistic insight into the interplay between sirtuin 2 and α-synuclein, the major component of the pathognomonic protein inclusions in PD and other synucleinopathies. We found that α-synuclein is acetylated on lysines 6 and 10 and that these residues are deacetylated by sirtuin 2. Genetic manipulation of sirtuin 2 levels in vitro and in vivo modulates the levels of α-synuclein acetylation, its aggregation, and autophagy. Strikingly, mutants blocking acetylation exacerbate α-synuclein toxicity in vivo, in the substantia nigra of rats. Our study identifies α-synuclein acetylation as a key regulatory mechanism governing α-synuclein aggregation and toxicity, demonstrating the potential therapeutic value of sirtuin 2 inhibition in synucleinopathies.

  6. Investigation on the Molecular Interactions Stabilizing the Structure of α-synuclein Fibril: An In silico Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanjeev, Airy; Mattaparthi, Venkata S K

    2017-01-01

    Amyloid fibrils represent stable form of many misfolded proteins associated with numerous diseases like Parkinson's Disease (PD), Type II diabetes and Alzheimer's disease (AD). α-synuclein protein is the principal constituent of Lewy bodies that are considered to be pathological hallmark of PD. Recently, a high resolution structure of α-synuclein protein that stacks together forming fibrils in brains of PD patients were identified. What structural features drive pathology of PD can now be possibly answered from the fibril structure of protein. To understand the molecular interactions those are responsible for the stability of the α- synuclein fibril structure. To study the molecular interactions stabilizing the α-synuclein fibril, we have used a high resolution amyloid fibril structure (PDB ID 2N0A). The molecular interactions in fibril structure were studied using PDBSum server. We then looked into the destabilization of α-synuclein fibril by disrupting the salt-bridge holding the strands and probable methods to decompose fibril into structurally distinct units using Top-domain web-server. The effect of salt-bridges on the stability of the fibril structure was studied by mutating one of the residues involved in the formation of salt-bridge using molecular dynamics simulation. Our results indicate a finite salt-bridge (E46-K80) is crucial for stability of protofibril. Besides, we observed hydrogen bonds and non-bonded contacts involved in fibril stabilization. We noticed α-synuclein dimer predominantly exists in conformations distinct from fibril. We characterized the salient molecular interactions in α-synuclein fibril and these findings may be useful to design potential inhibitors for the treatment of PD. Copyright© Bentham Science Publishers; For any queries, please email at epub@benthamscience.org.

  7. End-to-end Structural Restriction of α-Synuclein and Its Influence on Amyloid Fibril Formation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hong, Chul Suk; Park, Jae Hyung; Choe, Young Jun; Paik, Seung R. [Seoul National University, Seoul (Korea, Republic of)

    2014-09-15

    Relationship between molecular freedom of amyloidogenic protein and its self-assembly into amyloid fibrils has been evaluated with α-synuclein, an intrinsically unfolded protein related to Parkinson's disease, by restricting its structural plasticity through an end-to-end disulfide bond formation between two newly introduced cysteine residues on the N- and C-termini. Although the resulting circular form of α-synuclein exhibited an impaired fibrillation propensity, the restriction did not completely block the protein's interactive core since co-incubation with wild-type α-synuclein dramatically facilitated the fibrillation by producing distinctive forms of amyloid fibrils. The suppressed fibrillation propensity was instantly restored as the structural restriction was unleashed with β-mercaptoethanol. Conformational flexibility of the accreting amyloidogenic protein to pre-existing seeds has been demonstrated to be critical for fibrillar extension process by exerting structural adjustment to a complementary structure for the assembly.

  8. Identification of phosphorylation sites in protein kinase A substrates using artificial neural networks and mass spectrometry

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hjerrild, Majbrit; Stensballe, Allan; Rasmussen, Thomas E

    2011-01-01

    Protein phosphorylation plays a key role in cell regulation and identification of phosphorylation sites is important for understanding their functional significance. Here, we present an artificial neural network algorithm: NetPhosK (http://www.cbs.dtu.dk/services/NetPhosK/) that predicts protein...

  9. Microtubule-associated protein 1b is required for shaping the neural tube.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jayachandran, Pradeepa; Olmo, Valerie N; Sanchez, Stephanie P; McFarland, Rebecca J; Vital, Eudorah; Werner, Jonathan M; Hong, Elim; Sanchez-Alberola, Neus; Molodstov, Aleksey; Brewster, Rachel M

    2016-01-18

    Shaping of the neural tube, the precursor of the brain and spinal cord, involves narrowing and elongation of the neural tissue, concomitantly with other morphogenetic changes that contribue to this process. In zebrafish, medial displacement of neural cells (neural convergence or NC), which drives the infolding and narrowing of the neural ectoderm, is mediated by polarized migration and cell elongation towards the dorsal midline. Failure to undergo proper NC results in severe neural tube defects, yet the molecular underpinnings of this process remain poorly understood. We investigated here the role of the microtubule (MT) cytoskeleton in mediating NC in zebrafish embryos using the MT destabilizing and hyperstabilizing drugs nocodazole and paclitaxel respectively. We found that MTs undergo major changes in organization and stability during neurulation and are required for the timely completion of NC by promoting cell elongation and polarity. We next examined the role of Microtubule-associated protein 1B (Map1b), previously shown to promote MT dynamicity in axons. map1b is expressed earlier than previously reported, in the developing neural tube and underlying mesoderm. Loss of Map1b function using morpholinos (MOs) or δMap1b (encoding a truncated Map1b protein product) resulted in delayed NC and duplication of the neural tube, a defect associated with impaired NC. We observed a loss of stable MTs in these embryos that is likely to contribute to the NC defect. Lastly, we found that Map1b mediates cell elongation in a cell autonomous manner and polarized protrusive activity, two cell behaviors that underlie NC and are MT-dependent. Together, these data highlight the importance of MTs in the early morphogenetic movements that shape the neural tube and reveal a novel role for the MT regulator Map1b in mediating cell elongation and polarized cell movement in neural progenitor cells.

  10. Network dysfunction in α-synuclein transgenic mice and human Lewy body dementia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morris, Meaghan; Sanchez, Pascal E; Verret, Laure; Beagle, Alexander J; Guo, Weikun; Dubal, Dena; Ranasinghe, Kamalini G; Koyama, Akihiko; Ho, Kaitlyn; Yu, Gui-Qiu; Vossel, Keith A; Mucke, Lennart

    2015-11-01

    Dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB) is associated with the accumulation of wild-type human α-synuclein (SYN) in neurons and with prominent slowing of brain oscillations on electroencephalography (EEG). However, it remains uncertain whether the EEG abnormalities are actually caused by SYN. To determine whether SYN can cause neural network abnormalities, we performed EEG recordings and analyzed the expression of neuronal activity-dependent gene products in SYN transgenic mice. We also carried out comparative analyses in humans with DLB. We demonstrate that neuronal expression of SYN in transgenic mice causes a left shift in spectral power that closely resembles the EEG slowing observed in DLB patients. Surprisingly, SYN mice also had seizures and showed molecular hippocampal alterations indicative of aberrant network excitability, including calbindin depletion in the dentate gyrus. In postmortem brain tissues from DLB patients, we found reduced levels of calbindin mRNA in the dentate gyrus. Furthermore, nearly one quarter of DLB patients showed myoclonus, a clinical sign of aberrant network excitability that was associated with an earlier age of onset of cognitive impairments. In SYN mice, partial suppression of epileptiform activity did not alter their shift in spectral power. Furthermore, epileptiform activity in human amyloid precursor protein transgenic mice was not associated with a left shift in spectral power. We conclude that neuronal accumulation of SYN slows brain oscillations and, in parallel, causes aberrant network excitability that can escalate into seizure activity. The potential role of aberrant network excitability in DLB merits further investigation.

  11. G-protein-coupled receptor signaling and neural tube closure defects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shimada, Issei S; Mukhopadhyay, Saikat

    2017-01-30

    Disruption of the normal mechanisms that mediate neural tube closure can result in neural tube defects (NTDs) with devastating consequences in affected patients. With the advent of next-generation sequencing, we are increasingly detecting mutations in multiple genes in NTD cases. However, our ability to determine which of these genes contribute to the malformation is limited by our understanding of the pathways controlling neural tube closure. G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) comprise the largest family of transmembrane receptors in humans and have been historically favored as drug targets. Recent studies implicate several GPCRs and downstream signaling pathways in neural tube development and closure. In this review, we will discuss our current understanding of GPCR signaling pathways in pathogenesis of NTDs. Notable examples include the orphan primary cilia-localized GPCR, Gpr161 that regulates the basal suppression machinery of sonic hedgehog pathway by means of activation of cAMP-protein kinase A signaling in the neural tube, and protease-activated receptors that are activated by a local network of membrane-tethered proteases during neural tube closure involving the surface ectoderm. Understanding the role of these GPCR-regulated pathways in neural tube development and closure is essential toward identification of underlying genetic causes to prevent NTDs. Birth Defects Research 109:129-139, 2017. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    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.

  13. Wild-Type Monomeric α-Synuclein Can Impair Vesicle Endocytosis and Synaptic Fidelity via Tubulin Polymerization at the Calyx of Held.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eguchi, Kohgaku; Taoufiq, Zacharie; Thorn-Seshold, Oliver; Trauner, Dirk; Hasegawa, Masato; Takahashi, Tomoyuki

    2017-06-21

    α-Synuclein is a presynaptic protein the function of which has yet to be identified, but its neuronal content increases in patients of synucleinopathies including Parkinson's disease. Chronic overexpression of α-synuclein reportedly expresses various phenotypes of synaptic dysfunction, but the primary target of its toxicity has not been determined. To investigate this, we acutely loaded human recombinant α-synuclein or its pathological mutants in their monomeric forms into the calyces of Held presynaptic terminals in slices from auditorily mature and immature rats of either sex. Membrane capacitance measurements revealed significant and specific inhibitory effects of WT monomeric α-synuclein on vesicle endocytosis throughout development. However, the α-synuclein A53T mutant affected vesicle endocytosis only at immature calyces, whereas the A30P mutant had no effect throughout. The endocytic impairment by WT α-synuclein was rescued by intraterminal coloading of the microtubule (MT) polymerization blocker nocodazole. Furthermore, it was reversibly rescued by presynaptically loaded photostatin-1, a photoswitcheable inhibitor of MT polymerization, in a light-wavelength-dependent manner. In contrast, endocytic inhibition by the A53T mutant at immature calyces was not rescued by nocodazole. Functionally, presynaptically loaded WT α-synuclein had no effect on basal synaptic transmission evoked at a low frequency, but significantly attenuated exocytosis and impaired the fidelity of neurotransmission during prolonged high-frequency stimulation. We conclude that monomeric WT α-synuclein primarily inhibits vesicle endocytosis via MT overassembly, thereby impairing high-frequency neurotransmission. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Abnormal α-synuclein abundance is associated with synucleinopathies including Parkinson's disease, but neither the primary target of α-synuclein toxicity nor its mechanism is identified. Here, we loaded monomeric α-synuclein directly into mammalian

  14. Cerebrospinal α-synuclein in α-synuclein aggregation disorders: tau/α-synuclein ratio as potential biomarker for dementia with Lewy bodies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Llorens, Franc; Schmitz, Matthias; Varges, Daniela; Kruse, Niels; Gotzmann, Nadine; Gmitterová, Karin; Mollenhauer, Brit; Zerr, Inga

    2016-11-01

    Several studies have addressed the utility of cerebrospinal (CSF) α-synuclein levels as a potential biomarker of α-synuclein aggregation disorders. However, its relevance in the differential diagnostic context of neurodegenerative and movement disorders is still a contentious subject. Here, we report total CSF α-synuclein levels in a cohort of clinically diagnosed α-synuclein-related disorders encompassing Parkinson's disease, Parkinson's disease dementia, dementia with Lewy bodies and multiple system atrophy in comparison to essential tremor and neurological control cases. α-synuclein levels in α-synuclein-related disorders were significantly lower than in controls (p dementia with Lewy bodies samples, tau/α-synuclein ratio showed a good clinical accuracy in discriminating controls from dementia with Lewy bodies cases (AUC = 0.8776) compared to single α-synuclein (AUC = 0.7192) and tau (AUC = 0.7739) levels. In conclusion, α-synuclein alone lacks of clinical value as a biomarker of α-synuclein-related disorders, but in combination with total tau, it may improve the diagnosis of dementia with Lewy bodies.

  15. A Systematic RNAi Screen of Neuroprotective Genes Identifies Novel Modulators of Alpha-Synuclein-Associated Effects in Transgenic Caenorhabditis elegans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jadiya, Pooja; Fatima, Soobiya; Baghel, Tanvi; Mir, Snober S; Nazir, Aamir

    2016-11-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is the second most common progressive neurodegenerative disorder, defined clinically by degeneration of dopaminergic neurons and the development of neuronal Lewy bodies. Current treatments of PD are inadequate due to a limited understanding of molecular events of the disease, thus calling for intense research efforts towards identification of novel therapeutic targets. We carried out the present studies towards identifying novel genetic modulators of PD-associated effects employing a transgenic Caenorhabditis elegans model expressing human alpha-synuclein. Employing a systematic RNA interference (RNAi)-based screening approach, we studied a set of neuroprotective genes of C. elegans with an aim of identifying genes that exhibit protective function under alpha-synuclein expression conditions. Our results reveal a novel set of alpha-synuclein effector genes that modulate alpha-synuclein aggregation and associated effects. The identified genes include those from various gene families including histone demethylase, lactate dehydrogenase, small ribosomal subunit SA protein, cytoskeletal protein, collapsin response mediator protein, and choline kinase. The functional characterization of these genes reveals involvement of signaling mechanisms such as Daf-16 and acetylcholine signaling. Further elucidation of mechanistic pathways associated with these genes will yield additional insights into mediators of alpha-synuclein-induced cytotoxicity and cell death, thereby helping in the identification of potential therapeutic targets for PD.

  16. Wnt/Yes-Associated Protein Interactions During Neural Tissue Patterning of Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bejoy, Julie; Song, Liqing; Zhou, Yi; Li, Yan

    2017-08-31

    Human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs) have special ability to self-assemble into neural spheroids or mini-brain-like structures. During the self-assembly process, Wnt signaling plays an important role in regional patterning and establishing positional identity of hiPSC-derived neural progenitors. Recently, the role of Wnt signaling in regulating Yes-associated protein (YAP) expression (nuclear or cytoplasmic), the pivotal regulator during organ growth and tissue generation, has attracted increasing interests. However, the interactions between Wnt and YAP expression for neural lineage commitment of hiPSCs remain poorly explored. The objective of this study is to investigate the effects of Wnt signaling and YAP expression on the cellular population in three-dimensional (3D) neural spheroids derived from hiPSCs. In this study, Wnt signaling was activated using CHIR99021 for 3D neural spheroids derived from human iPSK3 cells through embryoid body formation. Our results indicate that Wnt activation induces nuclear localization of YAP and upregulates the expression of HOXB4, the marker for hindbrain/spinal cord. By contrast, the cells exhibit more rostral forebrain neural identity (expression of TBR1) without Wnt activation. Cytochalasin D was then used to induce cytoplasmic YAP and the results showed the decreased HOXB4 expression. In addition, the incorporation of microparticles in the neural spheroids was investigated for the perturbation of neural patterning. This study may indicate the bidirectional interactions of Wnt signaling and YAP expression during neural tissue patterning, which have the significance in neurological disease modeling, drug screening, and neural tissue regeneration.

  17. TMEM175 deficiency impairs lysosomal and mitochondrial function and increases α-synuclein aggregation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jinn, Sarah; Drolet, Robert E; Cramer, Paige E; Wong, Andus Hon-Kit; Toolan, Dawn M; Gretzula, Cheryl A; Voleti, Bhavya; Vassileva, Galya; Disa, Jyoti; Tadin-Strapps, Marija; Stone, David J

    2017-02-28

    Parkinson disease (PD) is a neurodegenerative disorder pathologically characterized by nigrostriatal dopamine neuron loss and the postmortem presence of Lewy bodies, depositions of insoluble α-synuclein, and other proteins that likely contribute to cellular toxicity and death during the disease. Genetic and biochemical studies have implicated impaired lysosomal and mitochondrial function in the pathogenesis of PD. Transmembrane protein 175 (TMEM175), the lysosomal K+ channel, is centered under a major genome-wide association studies peak for PD, making it a potential candidate risk factor for the disease. To address the possibility that variation in TMEM175 could play a role in PD pathogenesis, TMEM175 function was investigated in a neuronal model system. Studies confirmed that TMEM175 deficiency results in unstable lysosomal pH, which led to decreased lysosomal catalytic activity, decreased glucocerebrosidase activity, impaired autophagosome clearance by the lysosome, and decreased mitochondrial respiration. Moreover, TMEM175 deficiency in rat primary neurons resulted in increased susceptibility to exogenous α-synuclein fibrils. Following α-synuclein fibril treatment, neurons deficient in TMEM175 were found to have increased phosphorylated and detergent-insoluble α-synuclein deposits. Taken together, data from these studies suggest that TMEM175 plays a direct and critical role in lysosomal and mitochondrial function and PD pathogenesis and highlight this ion channel as a potential therapeutic target for treating PD.

  18. Structural and dynamical insights into the membrane-bound α-synuclein.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Neha Jain

    Full Text Available Membrane-induced disorder-to-helix transition of α-synuclein, a presynaptic protein, has been implicated in a number of important neuronal functions as well as in the etiology of Parkinson's disease. In order to obtain structural insights of membrane-bound α-synuclein at the residue-specific resolution, we took advantage of the fact that the protein is devoid of tryptophan and incorporated single tryptophan at various residue positions along the sequence. These tryptophans were used as site-specific markers to characterize the structural and dynamical aspects of α-synuclein on the negatively charged small unilamellar lipid vesicles. An array of site-specific fluorescence readouts, such as the spectral-shift, quenching efficiency and anisotropy, allowed us to discern various features of the conformational rearrangements occurring at different locations of α-synuclein on the lipid membrane. In order to define the spatial localization of various regions of the protein near the membrane surface, we utilized a unique and sensitive indicator, namely, red-edge excitation shift (REES, which originates when a fluorophore is located in a highly ordered micro-environment. The extent of REES observed at different residue positions allowed us to directly identify the residues that are localized at the membrane-water interface comprising a thin (∼ 15 Å layer of motionally restrained water molecules and enabled us to construct a dynamic hydration map of the protein. The combination of site-specific fluorescence readouts allowed us to unravel the intriguing molecular details of α-synuclein on the lipid membrane in a direct model-free fashion. Additionally, the combination of methodologies described here are capable of distinguishing subtle but important structural alterations of α-synuclein bound to different negatively charged lipids with varied head-group chemistry. We believe that the structural modulations of α-synuclein on the membrane could

  19. In vivo imaging of alpha-synuclein in mouse cortex demonstrates stable expression and differential subcellular compartment mobility.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vivek K Unni

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available Regulation of alpha-synuclein levels within cells is thought to play a critical role in Parkinson's Disease (PD pathogenesis and in other related synucleinopathies. These processes have been studied primarily in reduced preparations, including cell culture. We now develop methods to measure alpha-synuclein levels in the living mammalian brain to study in vivo protein mobility, turnover and degradation with subcellular specificity.We have developed a system using enhanced Green Fluorescent Protein (GFP-tagged human alpha-synuclein (Syn-GFP transgenic mice and in vivo multiphoton imaging to measure alpha-synuclein levels with subcellular resolution. This new experimental paradigm allows individual Syn-GFP-expressing neurons and presynaptic terminals to be imaged in the living mouse brain over a period of months. We find that Syn-GFP is stably expressed by neurons and presynaptic terminals over this time frame and further find that different presynaptic terminals can express widely differing levels of Syn-GFP. Using the fluorescence recovery after photobleaching (FRAP technique in vivo we provide evidence that at least two pools of Syn-GFP exist in terminals with lower levels of mobility than measured previously. These results demonstrate that multiphoton imaging in Syn-GFP mice is an excellent new strategy for exploring the biology of alpha-synuclein and related mechanisms of neurodegeneration.In vivo multiphoton imaging in Syn-GFP transgenic mice demonstrates stable alpha-synuclein expression and differential subcellular compartment mobility within cortical neurons. This opens new avenues for studying alpha-synuclein biology in the living brain and testing new therapeutics for PD and related disorders.

  20. Peripheral Elevation of a Klotho Fragment Enhances Brain Function and Resilience in Young, Aging, and α-Synuclein Transgenic Mice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julio Leon

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Cognitive dysfunction and decreased mobility from aging and neurodegenerative conditions, such as Parkinson and Alzheimer diseases, are major biomedical challenges in need of more effective therapies. Increasing brain resilience may represent a new treatment strategy. Klotho, a longevity factor, enhances cognition when genetically and broadly overexpressed in its full, wild-type form over the mouse lifespan. Whether acute klotho treatment can rapidly enhance cognitive and motor functions or induce resilience is a gap in our knowledge of its therapeutic potential. Here, we show that an α-klotho protein fragment (αKL-F, administered peripherally, surprisingly induced cognitive enhancement and neural resilience despite impermeability to the blood-brain barrier in young, aging, and transgenic α-synuclein mice. αKL-F treatment induced cleavage of the NMDAR subunit GluN2B and also enhanced NMDAR-dependent synaptic plasticity. GluN2B blockade abolished αKL-F-mediated effects. Peripheral αKL-F treatment is sufficient to induce neural enhancement and resilience in mice and may prove therapeutic in humans.

  1. Peripheral Elevation of a Klotho Fragment Enhances Brain Function and Resilience in Young, Aging, and α-Synuclein Transgenic Mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leon, Julio; Moreno, Arturo J; Garay, Bayardo I; Chalkley, Robert J; Burlingame, Alma L; Wang, Dan; Dubal, Dena B

    2017-08-08

    Cognitive dysfunction and decreased mobility from aging and neurodegenerative conditions, such as Parkinson and Alzheimer diseases, are major biomedical challenges in need of more effective therapies. Increasing brain resilience may represent a new treatment strategy. Klotho, a longevity factor, enhances cognition when genetically and broadly overexpressed in its full, wild-type form over the mouse lifespan. Whether acute klotho treatment can rapidly enhance cognitive and motor functions or induce resilience is a gap in our knowledge of its therapeutic potential. Here, we show that an α-klotho protein fragment (αKL-F), administered peripherally, surprisingly induced cognitive enhancement and neural resilience despite impermeability to the blood-brain barrier in young, aging, and transgenic α-synuclein mice. αKL-F treatment induced cleavage of the NMDAR subunit GluN2B and also enhanced NMDAR-dependent synaptic plasticity. GluN2B blockade abolished αKL-F-mediated effects. Peripheral αKL-F treatment is sufficient to induce neural enhancement and resilience in mice and may prove therapeutic in humans. Copyright © 2017 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. Cold denaturation of α-synuclein amyloid fibrils.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ikenoue, Tatsuya; Lee, Young-Ho; Kardos, József; Saiki, Miyu; Yagi, Hisashi; Kawata, Yasushi; Goto, Yuji

    2014-07-21

    Although amyloid fibrils are associated with numerous pathologies, their conformational stability remains largely unclear. Herein, we probe the thermal stability of various amyloid fibrils. α-Synuclein fibrils cold-denatured to monomers at 0-20 °C and heat-denatured at 60-110 °C. Meanwhile, the fibrils of β2-microglobulin, Alzheimer's Aβ1-40/Aβ1-42 peptides, and insulin exhibited only heat denaturation, although they showed a decrease in stability at low temperature. A comparison of structural parameters with positive enthalpy and heat capacity changes which showed opposite signs to protein folding suggested that the burial of charged residues in fibril cores contributed to the cold denaturation of α-synuclein fibrils. We propose that although cold-denaturation is common to both native proteins and misfolded fibrillar states, the main-chain dominated amyloid structures may explain amyloid-specific cold denaturation arising from the unfavorable burial of charged side-chains in fibril cores. © 2014 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  3. Early start of progressive motor deficits in Line 61 α-synuclein transgenic mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rabl, R; Breitschaedel, C; Flunkert, S; Duller, S; Amschl, D; Neddens, J; Niederkofler, V; Rockenstein, E; Masliah, E; Roemer, H; Hutter-Paier, B

    2017-01-31

    Synucleinopathies such as Parkinson's disease or multiple system atrophy are characterized by Lewy bodies in distinct brain areas. These aggregates are mainly formed by α-synuclein inclusions, a protein crucial for synaptic functions in the healthy brain. Transgenic animal models of synucleinopathies are frequently based on over-expression of human wild type or mutated α-synuclein under the regulatory control of different promoters. A promising model is the Line 61 α-synuclein transgenic mouse that expresses the transgene under control of the Thy-1 promoter. Here, we show an extended characterization of this mouse model over age. To this end, we analyzed animals for the progression of human and mouse protein expression levels in different brain areas as well as motor and memory deficits. Our results show, that Line 61 mice exhibited an age dependent increase of α-synuclein protein levels in the hippocampus but not the striatum. While murine α-synuclein was also increased with age, it was lower expressed in Line 61 mice than in non-transgenic littermates. At the age of 9 months animals exhibited increased neuroinflammation. Furthermore, we found that Line 61 mice showed severe motor deficits as early as 1 month of age as assessed by the wire hanging and nest building tests. At later ages, initial motor deficits were validated with the RotaRod, pasta gnawing and beam walk tests. At 8 months of age animals exhibited emotional memory deficits as validated with the contextual fear conditioning test. In summary, our results strengthen and further expand our knowledge about the Line 61 mouse model, emphasizing this mouse model as a valuable in vivo tool to test new compounds directed against synucleinopathies.

  4. A Four-Amino Acid Linker between Repeats in the alpha-Synuclein Sequence Is Important for Fibril Formation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Shvadchak, V.V.; Subramaniam, V.

    2014-01-01

    alpha-Synuclein is a 140-amino acid protein that can switch conformation among intrinsically disordered in solution, helical on a membrane, and beta-sheet in amyloid fibrils. Using the fluorescence of single-tryptophan mutants, we determined the immersion of different regions of the protein into

  5. Immunotherapy targeting α-synuclein, with relevance for future treatment of Parkinson's disease and other Lewy body disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindström, Veronica; Ihse, Elisabet; Fagerqvist, Therese; Bergström, Joakim; Nordström, Eva; Möller, Christer; Lannfelt, Lars; Ingelsson, Martin

    2014-01-01

    Immunotherapy targeting α-synuclein has evolved as a potential therapeutic strategy for neurodegenerative diseases, such as Parkinson's disease, and initial studies on cellular and animal models have shown promising results. α-synuclein vaccination of transgenic mice reduced the number of brain inclusions, whereas passive immunization studies demonstrated that antibodies against the C-terminus of α-synuclein can pass the blood-brain barrier and affect the pathology. In addition, preliminary evidence suggests that transgenic mice treated with an antibody directed against α-synuclein oligomers/protofibrils resulted in reduced levels of such species in the CNS. The underlying mechanisms of immunotherapy are not yet fully understood, but may include antibody-mediated clearance of pre-existing aggregates, prevention of protein propagation between cells and microglia-dependent protein clearance. Thus, immunotherapy targeting α-synuclein holds promise, but needs to be further developed as a future disease-modifying treatment in Parkinson's disease and other α-synucleinopathies.

  6. More than just two peas in a pod: common amyloidogenic properties of tau and alpha-synuclein in neurodegenerative diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Virginia M-Y; Giasson, Benoit I; Trojanowski, John Q

    2004-03-01

    Intracytoplasmic filamentous aggregates, such as neurofibrillary tangles in Alzheimer's disease and Lewy bodies in Parkinson's disease, are composed of the proteins tau and alpha-synuclein, respectively. These pathological inclusions are linked directly to the etiology and mechanisms of disease in a wide spectrum of neurodegenerative disorders, termed 'tauopathies' and 'synucleinopathies'. Emerging evidence indicates that there is frequent overlap of the pathological and clinical features of patients with tauopathies and synucleinopathies, thereby re-enforcing the notion that these disorders might be linked mechanistically. Indeed, several lines of investigation suggest that tau and alpha-synuclein might constitute a unique class of unstructured proteins that assemble predominantly into homopolymeric (rather than heteropolymeric) fibrils, which deposit mainly in separate amyloid inclusions, but occasionally deposit together. Thus, the ability of tau and alpha-synuclein to affect each other directly or indirectly might contribute to the overlap in the clinical and pathological features of tauopathies and synucleinopathies.

  7. Transient β-hairpin formation in α-synuclein monomer revealed by coarse-grained molecular dynamics simulation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yu, Hang; Ma, Wen [Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, Illinois 61801 (United States); Center for Biophysics and Computational Biology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, Illinois 61801 (United States); Han, Wei [Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, Illinois 61801 (United States); Department of Physics, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, Illinois 61801 (United States); Schulten, Klaus, E-mail: kschulte@ks.uiuc.edu [Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, Illinois 61801 (United States); Center for Biophysics and Computational Biology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, Illinois 61801 (United States); Department of Physics, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, Illinois 61801 (United States)

    2015-12-28

    Parkinson’s disease, originating from the intrinsically disordered peptide α-synuclein, is a common neurodegenerative disorder that affects more than 5% of the population above age 85. It remains unclear how α-synuclein monomers undergo conformational changes leading to aggregation and formation of fibrils characteristic for the disease. In the present study, we perform molecular dynamics simulations (over 180 μs in aggregated time) using a hybrid-resolution model, Proteins with Atomic details in Coarse-grained Environment (PACE), to characterize in atomic detail structural ensembles of wild type and mutant monomeric α-synuclein in aqueous solution. The simulations reproduce structural properties of α-synuclein characterized in experiments, such as secondary structure content, long-range contacts, chemical shifts, and {sup 3}J(H{sub N}H{sub C{sub α}})-coupling constants. Most notably, the simulations reveal that a short fragment encompassing region 38-53, adjacent to the non-amyloid-β component region, exhibits a high probability of forming a β-hairpin; this fragment, when isolated from the remainder of α-synuclein, fluctuates frequently into its β-hairpin conformation. Two disease-prone mutations, namely, A30P and A53T, significantly accelerate the formation of a β-hairpin in the stated fragment. We conclude that the formation of a β-hairpin in region 38-53 is a key event during α-synuclein aggregation. We predict further that the G47V mutation impedes the formation of a turn in the β-hairpin and slows down β-hairpin formation, thereby retarding α-synuclein aggregation.

  8. Copper(II) enhances membrane-bound α-synuclein helix formation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lucas, Heather R.

    2011-01-01

    Interactions of copper and membranes with α-synuclein have been implicated in pathogenic mechanisms of Parkinson’s disease, yet work examining both concurrently is scarce. We have examined the effect of copper(II) on protein/vesicle binding and found that both the copper(II) affinity and α-helical content are enhanced for the membrane-bound protein. PMID:21290070

  9. AAV1/2-induced overexpression of A53T-α-synuclein in the substantia nigra results in degeneration of the nigrostriatal system with Lewy-like pathology and motor impairment: a new mouse model for Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ip, Chi Wang; Klaus, Laura-Christin; Karikari, Akua A; Visanji, Naomi P; Brotchie, Jonathan M; Lang, Anthony E; Volkmann, Jens; Koprich, James B

    2017-02-01

    α-Synuclein is a protein implicated in the etiopathogenesis of Parkinson's disease (PD). AAV1/2-driven overexpression of human mutated A53T-α-synuclein in rat and monkey substantia nigra (SN) induces degeneration of nigral dopaminergic neurons and decreases striatal dopamine and tyrosine hydroxylase (TH). Given certain advantages of the mouse, especially it being amendable to genetic manipulation, translating the AAV1/2-A53T α-synuclein model to mice would be of significant value. AAV1/2-A53T α-synuclein or AAV1/2 empty vector (EV) at a concentration of 5.16 x 1012 gp/ml were unilaterally injected into the right SN of male adult C57BL/6 mice. Post-mortem examinations included immunohistochemistry to analyze nigral α-synuclein, Ser129 phosphorylated α-synuclein and TH expression, striatal dopamine transporter (DAT) levels by autoradiography and dopamine levels by high performance liquid chromatography. At 10 weeks, in AAV1/2-A53T α-synuclein mice there was a 33% reduction in TH+ dopaminergic nigral neurons (P AAV1/2-A53T α-synuclein injected mice had widespread nigral and striatal expression of vector-delivered A53T-α-synuclein. Concurrent staining with human PD SN samples using gold standard histological methodology for Lewy pathology detection by proteinase K digestion and application of specific antibody raised against human Lewy body α-synuclein (LB509) and Ser129 phosphorylated α-synuclein (81A) revealed insoluble α-synuclein aggregates in AAV1/2-A53T α-synuclein mice resembling Lewy-like neurites and bodies. In the cylinder test, we observed significant paw use asymmetry in the AAV1/2-A53T α-synuclein group when compared to EV controls at 5 and 9 weeks post injection (P AAV1/2-A53T α-synuclein into the mouse SN leads to persistent motor deficits, neurodegeneration of the nigrostriatal dopaminergic system and development of Lewy-like pathology, thereby reflecting clinical and pathological hallmarks of human PD.

  10. Prediction of Protein Thermostability by an Efficient Neural Network Approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jalal Rezaeenour

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Manipulation of protein stability is important for understanding the principles that govern protein thermostability, both in basic research and industrial applications. Various data mining techniques exist for prediction of thermostable proteins. Furthermore, ANN methods have attracted significant attention for prediction of thermostability, because they constitute an appropriate approach to mapping the non-linear input-output relationships and massive parallel computing. Method: An Extreme Learning Machine (ELM was applied to estimate thermal behavior of 1289 proteins. In the proposed algorithm, the parameters of ELM were optimized using a Genetic Algorithm (GA, which tuned a set of input variables, hidden layer biases, and input weights, to and enhance the prediction performance. The method was executed on a set of amino acids, yielding a total of 613 protein features. A number of feature selection algorithms were used to build subsets of the features. A total of 1289 protein samples and 613 protein features were calculated from UniProt database to understand features contributing to the enzymes’ thermostability and find out the main features that influence this valuable characteristic. Results:At the primary structure level, Gln, Glu and polar were the features that mostly contributed to protein thermostability. At the secondary structure level, Helix_S, Coil, and charged_Coil were the most important features affecting protein thermostability. These results suggest that the thermostability of proteins is mainly associated with primary structural features of the protein. According to the results, the influence of primary structure on the thermostabilty of a protein was more important than that of the secondary structure. It is shown that prediction accuracy of ELM (mean square error can improve dramatically using GA with error rates RMSE=0.004 and MAPE=0.1003. Conclusion: The proposed approach for forecasting problem

  11. Multiple system atrophy: genetic risks and alpha-synuclein mutations [version 1; referees: 2 approved

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Heather T Whittaker

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Multiple system atrophy (MSA is one of the few neurodegenerative disorders where we have a significant understanding of the clinical and pathological manifestations but where the aetiology remains almost completely unknown. Research to overcome this hurdle is gaining momentum through international research collaboration and a series of genetic and molecular discoveries in the last few years, which have advanced our knowledge of this rare synucleinopathy. In MSA, the discovery of α-synuclein pathology and glial cytoplasmic inclusions remain the most significant findings. Families with certain types of α-synuclein mutations develop diseases that mimic MSA, and the spectrum of clinical and pathological features in these families suggests a spectrum of severity, from late-onset Parkinson’s disease to MSA. Nonetheless, controversies persist, such as the role of common α-synuclein variants in MSA and whether this disorder shares a common mechanism of spreading pathology with other protein misfolding neurodegenerative diseases. Here, we review these issues, specifically focusing on α-synuclein mutations.

  12. Prediction of protein hydration sites from sequence by modular neural networks

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ehrlich, L.; Reczko, M.; Bohr, Henrik

    1998-01-01

    The hydration properties of a protein are important determinants of its structure and function. Here, modular neural networks are employed to predict ordered hydration sites using protein sequence information. First, secondary structure and solvent accessibility are predicted from sequence with two...... separate neural networks. These predictions are used as input together with protein sequences for networks predicting hydration of residues, backbone atoms and sidechains. These networks are teined with protein crystal structures. The prediction of hydration is improved by adding information on secondary...... structure and solvent accessibility and, using actual values of these properties, redidue hydration can be predicted to 77% accuracy with a Metthews coefficient of 0.43. However, predicted property data with an accuracy of 60-70% result in less than half the improvement in predictive performance observed...

  13. Identification of phosphorylation sites in protein kinase A substrates using artificial neural networks and mass spectrometry

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hjerrild, M.; Stensballe, A.; Rasmussen, T.E.

    2004-01-01

    Protein phosphorylation plays a key role in cell regulation and identification of phosphorylation sites is important for understanding their functional significance. Here, we present an artificial neural network algorithm: NetPhosK (http://www.cbs.dtu.dk/services/NetPhosK/) that predicts protein...... kinase A (PKA) phosphorylation sites. The neural network was trained with a positive set of 258 experimentally verified PKA phosphorylation sites. The predictions by NetPhosK were! validated using four novel PKA substrates: Necdin, RFX5, En-2, and Wee 1. The four proteins were phosphorylated by PKA...... in vitro and 13 PKA phosphorylation sites were identified by mass spectrometry. NetPhosK was 100% sensitive and 41% specific in predicting PKA sites in the four proteins. These results demonstrate the potential of using integrated computational and experimental methods for detailed investigations...

  14. Interaction between viologen-phosphorus dendrimers and {alpha}-synuclein

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Milowska, Katarzyna, E-mail: milowska@biol.uni.lodz.pl [Department of General Biophysics, Faculty of Biology and Environmental Protection, University of Lodz, Pomorska 141/143, 90-236 Lodz (Poland); Grochowina, Justyna [Department of General Biophysics, Faculty of Biology and Environmental Protection, University of Lodz, Pomorska 141/143, 90-236 Lodz (Poland); Katir, Nadia [Laboratoire de Chimie de Coordination CNRS, 205 route de Narbonne, 31077 Toulouse (France); El Kadib, Abdelkrim [Institute of Nanomaterials and Nanotechnology (INANOTECH)-MAScIR (Moroccan Foundation for Advanced Science, Innovation and Research), ENSET, Avenue de I' Armee Royale, Madinat El Irfane, 10100 Rabat (Morocco); Majoral, Jean-Pierre [Laboratoire de Chimie de Coordination CNRS, 205 route de Narbonne, 31077 Toulouse (France); Bryszewska, Maria; Gabryelak, Teresa [Department of General Biophysics, Faculty of Biology and Environmental Protection, University of Lodz, Pomorska 141/143, 90-236 Lodz (Poland)

    2013-02-15

    In this study the interaction between viologen-phosphorus dendrimers and {alpha}-synuclein (ASN) was examined. Polycationic viologen-phosphorus dendrimers (two positive charges per viologen unit) are novel compounds with relatively unknown properties. The influence of these viologen dendrimers on ASN was tested using fluorimetric and circular dichroism methods. ASN contains four tyrosine residues; therefore, the influence of dendrimers on protein molecular conformation by measuring the changes in the ASN fluorescence in the presence of dendrimers was evaluated. The interaction of dendrimers with free L-tyrosine was also monitored. Results show that viologen-phosphorus dendrimers interact with ASN; they quenched the fluorescence of ASN as well as free tyrosine by dynamic and static ways. However, the quenching was not accompanied by modifications in the ASN secondary structure. - Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Interaction between viologen-phosphorus dendrimers and {alpha}-synuclein (ASN) was investigated. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Viologen-phosphorus dendrimers can quench the fluorescence of tyrosine in ASN. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Dendrimers caused red-shift in maximum of fluorescence. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Viologen-phosphorus dendrimers did not change the secondary structure of ASN.

  15. Copper Binding and Subsequent Aggregation of α-Synuclein Are Modulated by N-Terminal Acetylation and Ablated by the H50Q Missense Mutation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mason, Rebecca J; Paskins, Aimee R; Dalton, Caroline F; Smith, David P

    2016-08-30

    The Parkinson's disease-associated protein α-synuclein exhibits significant conformational heterogeneity. Bacterially expressed α-synuclein is known to bind to copper, resulting in the formation of aggregation-prone compact conformations. However, in vivo, α-synuclein undergoes acetylation at its N-terminus. Here the effect of this modification and the pathological H50Q mutation on copper binding and subsequent conformational transitions were investigated by electrospray ionization-ion mobility spectrometry-mass spectrometry. We demonstrate that acetylation perturbs the ability of α-synuclein to bind copper and that the H50Q missense mutation in the presence of N-terminal acetylation prevents copper binding. These modifications and mutations prevent the formation of the most compact conformations and inhibit copper-induced aggregation.

  16. Altered lysosomal proteins in neural-derived plasma exosomes in preclinical Alzheimer disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goetzl, Edward J; Boxer, Adam; Schwartz, Janice B; Abner, Erin L; Petersen, Ronald C; Miller, Bruce L; Kapogiannis, Dimitrios

    2015-07-07

    Diverse autolysosomal proteins were quantified in neurally derived blood exosomes from patients with Alzheimer disease (AD) and controls to investigate disordered neuronal autophagy. Blood exosomes obtained once from patients with AD (n = 26) or frontotemporal dementia (n = 16), other patients with AD (n = 20) both when cognitively normal and 1 to 10 years later when diagnosed, and case controls were enriched for neural sources by anti-human L1CAM antibody immunoabsorption. Extracted exosomal proteins were quantified by ELISAs and normalized with the CD81 exosomal marker. Mean exosomal levels of cathepsin D, lysosome-associated membrane protein 1 (LAMP-1), and ubiquitinylated proteins were significantly higher and of heat-shock protein 70 significantly lower for AD than controls in cross-sectional studies (p ≤ 0.0005). Levels of cathepsin D, LAMP-1, and ubiquitinylated protein also were significantly higher for patients with AD than for patients with frontotemporal dementia (p ≤ 0.006). Step-wise discriminant modeling of the protein levels correctly classified 100% of patients with AD. Exosomal levels of all proteins were similarly significantly different from those of matched controls in 20 patients 1 to 10 years before and at diagnosis of AD (p ≤ 0.0003). Levels of autolysosomal proteins in neurally derived blood exosomes distinguish patients with AD from case controls and appear to reflect the pathology of AD up to 10 years before clinical onset. These preliminary results confirm in living patients with AD the early appearance of neuronal lysosomal dysfunction and suggest that these proteins may be useful biomarkers in large prospective studies. © 2015 American Academy of Neurology.

  17. Protein distance constraints predicted by neural networks and probability density functions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lund, Ole; Frimand, Kenneth; Gorodkin, Jan

    1997-01-01

    We predict interatomic C-α distances by two independent data driven methods. The first method uses statistically derived probability distributions of the pairwise distance between two amino acids, whilst the latter method consists of a neural network prediction approach equipped with windows taking....... The predictions are based on a data set derived using a new threshold similarity. We show that distances in proteins are predicted more accurately by neural networks than by probability density functions. We show that the accuracy of the predictions can be further increased by using sequence profiles. A threading...

  18. A Human Neural Crest Stem Cell-Derived Dopaminergic Neuronal Model Recapitulates Biochemical Abnormalities in GBA1 Mutation Carriers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shi-Yu Yang

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Numerically the most important risk factor for the development of Parkinson's disease (PD is the presence of mutations in the glucocerebrosidase GBA1 gene. In vitro and in vivo studies show that GBA1 mutations reduce glucocerebrosidase (GCase activity and are associated with increased α-synuclein levels, reflecting similar changes seen in idiopathic PD brain. We have developed a neural crest stem cell-derived dopaminergic neuronal model that recapitulates biochemical abnormalities in GBA1 mutation-associated PD. Cells showed reduced GCase protein and activity, impaired macroautophagy, and increased α-synuclein levels. Advantages of this approach include easy access to stem cells, no requirement to reprogram, and retention of the intact host genome. Treatment with a GCase chaperone increased GCase protein levels and activity, rescued the autophagic defects, and decreased α-synuclein levels. These results provide the basis for further investigation of GCase chaperones or similar drugs to slow the progression of PD.

  19. Ablation of Arg-tRNA-protein transferases results in defective neural tube development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Eunkyoung; Kim, Seonmu; Lee, Jung Hoon; Kwon, Yong Tae; Lee, Min Jae

    2016-08-01

    The arginylation branch of the N-end rule pathway is a ubiquitin-mediated proteolytic system in which post-translational conjugation of Arg by ATE1-encoded Arg-tRNA-protein transferase to N-terminal Asp, Glu, or oxidized Cys residues generates essential degradation signals. Here, we characterized the ATE1-/- mice and identified the essential role of N-terminal arginylation in neural tube development. ATE1-null mice showed severe intracerebral hemorrhages and cystic space near the neural tubes. Expression of ATE1 was prominent in the developing brain and spinal cord, and this pattern overlapped with the migration path of neural stem cells. The ATE1-/- brain showed defective G-protein signaling. Finally, we observed reduced mitosis in ATE1-/- neuroepithelium and a significantly higher nitric oxide concentration in the ATE1-/- brain. Our results strongly suggest that the crucial role of ATE1 in neural tube development is directly related to proper turn-over of the RGS4 protein, which participate in the oxygen-sensing mechanism in the cells. [BMB Reports 2016; 49(8): 443-448].

  20. Proteolytic clearance of extracellular α-synuclein as a new therapeutic approach against Parkinson disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Park, Sang Myun; Kim, Kwang Soo

    2013-01-01

    Many neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer disease and Parkinson disease show similar characteristics. They typically show deposits of protein aggregates, the formation of which is considered important in their pathogenesis. Recently, aggregation-prone proteins have been shown to spread between cells and so may contribute to the pathogenesis of diseases like prion disease. Such a pathogenesis pathway is possibly common to many neurodegenerative diseases. If confirmed, it could allow the development of therapeutic interventions against many such diseases. In Parkinson disease, α-synuclein, a major component of cytosolic protein inclusions named Lewy body, has been shown to be released and taken up by cells, which may facilitate its progressive pathological spreading between cells. Accordingly, inhibition of spreading by targeting extracellular α-synuclein may represent a new therapy against Parkinson disease. Research into the intercellular spreading of extracellular protein aggregations of α-synuclein and its clearance pathway are reviewed here with a focus on the proteolytic clearance pathway as a therapeutic target for the treatment of Parkinson disease. Considering the similar characteristics of aggregation-prone proteins, these clearance systems might allow treatment of other neurodegenerative diseases beyond Parkinson disease.

  1. Non-motor parkinsonian pathology in aging A53T α-synuclein mice is associated with progressive synucleinopathy and altered enzymatic function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farrell, Kaitlin F; Krishnamachari, Sesha; Villanueva, Ernesto; Lou, Haiyan; Alerte, Tshianda N M; Peet, Eloise; Drolet, Robert E; Perez, Ruth G

    2014-02-01

    Aging, the main risk factor for Parkinson's disease (PD), is associated with increased α-synuclein levels in substantia nigra pars compacta (SNc). Excess α-synuclein spurs Lewy-like pathology and dysregulates the activity of protein phosphatase 2A (PP2A). PP2A dephosphorylates many neuroproteins, including the catecholamine rate-limiting enzyme, tyrosine hydroxylase (TH). A loss of nigral dopaminergic neurons induces PD movement problems, but before those abnormalities occur, behaviors such as olfactory loss, anxiety, and constipation often manifest. Identifying mouse models with early PD behavioral changes could provide a model in which to test emerging therapeutic compounds. To this end, we evaluated mice expressing A53T mutant human (A53T) α-synuclein for behavior and α-synuclein pathology in olfactory bulb, adrenal gland, and gut. Aging A53T mice exhibited olfactory loss and anxiety that paralleled olfactory and adrenal α-synuclein aggregation. PP2A activity was also diminished in olfactory and adrenal tissues harboring insoluble α-synuclein. Low adrenal PP2A activity co-occurred with TH hyperactivity, making this the first study to link adrenal synucleinopathy to anxiety and catecholamine dysregulation. Aggregated A53T α-synuclein recombinant protein also had impaired stimulatory effects on soluble recombinant PP2A. Collectively, the data identify an excellent model in which to screen compounds for their ability to block the spread of α-synuclein pathology associated with pre-motor stages of PD. © 2013 The Authors. Journal of Neurochemistry published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of The International Society for Neurochemistry.

  2. Sensitive red protein calcium indicators for imaging neural activity

    OpenAIRE

    Dana, Hod; Mohar, Boaz; Sun, Yi; Narayan, Sujatha; Gordus, Andrew; Hasseman, Jeremy P; Tsegaye, Getahun; Holt, Graham T.; Hu, Amy; Walpita, Deepika; Patel, Ronak; Macklin, John J.; Bargmann, Cornelia I; Ahrens, Misha B.; Schreiter, Eric R

    2016-01-01

    eLife digest Neurons encode information with brief electrical pulses called spikes. Monitoring spikes in large populations of neurons is a powerful method for studying how networks of neurons process information and produce behavior. This activity can be detected using fluorescent protein indicators, or ?probes?, which light up when neurons are active. The best existing probes produce green fluorescence. However, red fluorescent probes would allow us to see deeper into the brain, and could al...

  3. Effects of Trehalose on Thermodynamic Properties of Alpha-synuclein Revealed through Synchrotron Radiation Circular Dichroism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruzza, Paolo; Hussain, Rohanah; Biondi, Barbara; Calderan, Andrea; Tessari, Isabella; Bubacco, Luigi; Siligardi, Giuliano

    2015-01-01

    Many neurodegenerative diseases, including Huntington’s, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases, are characterized by protein misfolding and aggregation. The capability of trehalose to interfere with protein misfolding and aggregation has been recently evaluated by several research groups. In the present work, we studied, by means of synchrotron radiation circular dichroism (SRCD) spectroscopy, the dose-effect of trehalose on α-synuclein conformation and/or stability to probe the capability of this osmolyte to interfere with α-synuclein’s aggregation. Our study indicated that a low trehalose concentration stabilized α-synuclein folding much better than at high concentration by blocking in vitro α-synuclein’s polymerisation. These results suggested that trehalose could be associated with other drugs leading to a new approach for treating Parkinson’s and other brain-related diseases. PMID:25946077

  4. Effects of Trehalose on Thermodynamic Properties of Alpha-synuclein Revealed through Synchrotron Radiation Circular Dichroism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paolo Ruzza

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Many neurodegenerative diseases, including Huntington’s, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases, are characterized by protein misfolding and aggregation. The capability of trehalose to interfere with protein misfolding and aggregation has been recently evaluated by several research groups. In the present work, we studied, by means of synchrotron radiation circular dichroism (SRCD spectroscopy, the dose-effect of trehalose on α-synuclein conformation and/or stability to probe the capability of this osmolyte to interfere with α-synuclein’s aggregation. Our study indicated that a low trehalose concentration stabilized α-synuclein folding much better than at high concentration by blocking in vitro α-synuclein’s polymerisation. These results suggested that trehalose could be associated with other drugs leading to a new approach for treating Parkinson’s and other brain-related diseases.

  5. Knowledge base and neural network approach for protein secondary structure prediction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patel, Maulika S; Mazumdar, Himanshu S

    2014-11-21

    Protein structure prediction is of great relevance given the abundant genomic and proteomic data generated by the genome sequencing projects. Protein secondary structure prediction is addressed as a sub task in determining the protein tertiary structure and function. In this paper, a novel algorithm, KB-PROSSP-NN, which is a combination of knowledge base and modeling of the exceptions in the knowledge base using neural networks for protein secondary structure prediction (PSSP), is proposed. The knowledge base is derived from a proteomic sequence-structure database and consists of the statistics of association between the 5-residue words and corresponding secondary structure. The predicted results obtained using knowledge base are refined with a Backpropogation neural network algorithm. Neural net models the exceptions of the knowledge base. The Q3 accuracy of 90% and 82% is achieved on the RS126 and CB396 test sets respectively which suggest improvement over existing state of art methods. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. In vivo models of alpha-synuclein transmission and propagation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Recasens, Ariadna; Ulusoy, Ayse; Kahle, Philipp J; Di Monte, Donato A; Dehay, Benjamin

    2017-11-29

    The abnormal accumulation of α-synuclein aggregates in neurons, nerve fibers, or glial cells is the hallmark of a group of neurodegenerative diseases known collectively as α-synucleinopathies. Clinical, neuropathological, and experimental evidence strongly suggests that α-synuclein plays a role not only as a trigger of pathological processes at disease inception, but also as a mediator of pathological spreading during disease progression. Specific properties of α-synuclein, such as its ability to pass from one neuron to another, its tendency to aggregate, and its potential to generate self-propagating species, have been described and elucidated in animal models and may contribute to the relentless exacerbation of Parkinson's disease pathology in patients. Animal models used for studying α-synuclein accumulation, aggregation, and propagation are mostly based on three approaches: (1) intra-parenchymal inoculations of exogenous α-synuclein (e.g., synthetic α-synuclein fibrils), (2) transgenic mice, and (3) animals (mice or rats) in which α-synuclein overexpression is induced by viral vector injections. Whereas pathological α-synuclein changes are consistently observed in these models, important differences are also found. In particular, pronounced pathology in transgenic mice and viral vector-injected animals does not appear to involve self-propagating α-synuclein species. A critical discussion of these models reveals their strengths and limitations and provides the basis for recommendations concerning their use for future investigations.

  7. Borna disease virus P protein affects neural transmission through interactions with gamma-aminobutyric acid receptor-associated protein.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peng, Guiqing; Yan, Yan; Zhu, Chengliang; Wang, Shiqun; Yan, Xiaohong; Lu, Lili; Li, Wei; Hu, Jing; Wei, Wei; Mu, Yongxin; Chen, Yanni; Feng, Yong; Gong, Rui; Wu, Kailang; Zhang, Fengmin; Zhang, Xiaolian; Zhu, Ying; Wu, Jianguo

    2008-12-01

    Borna disease virus (BDV) is one of the infectious agents that causes diseases of the central nervous system in a wide range of vertebrate species and, perhaps, in humans. The phosphoprotein (P) of BDV, an essential cofactor of virus RNA-dependent RNA polymerase, is required for virus replication. In this study, we identified the gamma-aminobutyric acid receptor-associated protein (GABARAP) with functions in neurobiology as one of the viral P protein-interacting cellular factors by using an approach of phage display-based protein-protein interaction analysis. Direct binding between GABARAP and P protein was confirmed by coimmunoprecipitation, protein pull-down, and mammalian two-hybrid analyses. GABARAP originally was identified as a linker between the gamma-aminobutyric acid receptor (GABAR) and the microtubule to regulate receptor trafficking and plays important roles in the regulation of the inhibitory neural transmitter gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA). We showed that GABARAP colocalizes with P protein in the cells infected with BDV or transfected with the P gene, which resulted in shifting the localization of GABARAP from the cytosol to the nucleus. We further demonstrated that P protein blocks the trafficking of GABAR, a principal GABA-gated ion channel that plays important roles in neural transmission, to the surface of cells infected with BDV or transfected with the P gene. We proposed that during BDV infection, P protein binds to GABARAP, shifts the distribution of GABARAP from the cytoplasm to the nucleus, and disrupts the trafficking of GABARs to the cell membranes, which may result in the inhibition of GABA-induced currents and in the enhancement of hyperactivity and anxiety.

  8. Application of MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry for study on fibrillar and oligomeric aggregates of alpha-synuclein

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Severinovskaya, O. V.; Kovalska, V B; Losytskyy, M Yu; Cherepanov, V. V.; Subramaniam, V.; Yarmoluk, S M

    2014-01-01

    Aim. To study the α-synuclein (ASN) aggregates of different structural origin, namely amyloid fibrils and spherical oligomers, in comparison with a native protein. Methods. MALDI TOF mass spectrometry and atomic force microscopy (AFM). Results. The mass spectra of native and fibrillar ASN have

  9. Interplay between desolvation and secondary structure in mediating cosolvent and temperature induced alpha-synuclein aggregation

    OpenAIRE

    Anderson, V. L.; Webb, W W; Eliezer, D.

    2012-01-01

    Both increased temperature and moderate concentrations of fluorinated alcohols enhance aggregation of the Parkinson’s disease-associated protein α–synuclein (αS). Here, we investigate the secondary structural rearrangements induced by heating and trifluoroethanol (TFE). At low TFE concentrations, CD spectra feature a negative peak characteristic of disordered polypeptides near 200 nm and a slight shoulder around 220 nm suggesting some polyproline-II content. Upon heating, these peaks weaken, ...

  10. SDS-Induced Fibrillation of α-Synuclein

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Giehm, L.; Oliveira, Cristiano Luis Pinto De; Pedersen, J.S.

    2010-01-01

    A structural investigation of the sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS)-induced fibrillation of α-synuclein (αSN), a 140-amino-acid protein implicated in Parkinson's disease, has been performed. Spectroscopic analysis has been combined with isothermal titration calorimetry, small-angle X-ray scattering......, and transmission electron microscopy to elucidate a fibrillation pathway that is remarkably different from the fibrillation pathway in the absence of SDS. Fibrillation occurs most extensively and most rapidly (starting within 45 min) under conditions where 12 SDS molecules are bound per αSN molecule, which is also...... the range where SDS binding is associated with the highest enthalpy. Fibrillation is only reduced in proportion to the fraction of SDS below 25 mol% SDS in mixed surfactant mixtures with nonionic surfactants and is inhibited by formation of bulk micelles and induction of α-helical structure...

  11. Improving protein disorder prediction by deep bidirectional long short-term memory recurrent neural networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanson, Jack; Yang, Yuedong; Paliwal, Kuldip; Zhou, Yaoqi

    2017-03-01

    Capturing long-range interactions between structural but not sequence neighbors of proteins is a long-standing challenging problem in bioinformatics. Recently, long short-term memory (LSTM) networks have significantly improved the accuracy of speech and image classification problems by remembering useful past information in long sequential events. Here, we have implemented deep bidirectional LSTM recurrent neural networks in the problem of protein intrinsic disorder prediction. The new method, named SPOT-Disorder, has steadily improved over a similar method using a traditional, window-based neural network (SPINE-D) in all datasets tested without separate training on short and long disordered regions. Independent tests on four other datasets including the datasets from critical assessment of structure prediction (CASP) techniques and >10 000 annotated proteins from MobiDB, confirmed SPOT-Disorder as one of the best methods in disorder prediction. Moreover, initial studies indicate that the method is more accurate in predicting functional sites in disordered regions. These results highlight the usefulness combining LSTM with deep bidirectional recurrent neural networks in capturing non-local, long-range interactions for bioinformatics applications. SPOT-disorder is available as a web server and as a standalone program at: http://sparks-lab.org/server/SPOT-disorder/index.php . j.hanson@griffith.edu.au or yuedong.yang@griffith.edu.au or yaoqi.zhou@griffith.edu.au. Supplementary data is available at Bioinformatics online.

  12. Membrane curvature induction and tubulation are common features of synucleins and apolipoproteins

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Varkey, Jobin; Isas, Jose Mario; Mizuno, Naoko

    2010-01-01

    structures are morphologically similar to those generated by amphiphysin, a curvature-inducing protein involved in endocytosis. Unlike amphiphysin, however, synucleins and apolipoproteins do not require any scaffolding domains and curvature induction is mediated by the membrane insertion and wedging...... and enhances endocytosis. Induction of membrane curvature must be under strict regulation in vivo; however, as we find it can also cause disruption of membrane integrity. Because the degree of membrane curvature induction depends on the concerted action of multiple proteins, controlling the local protein...... density of tubulating proteins may be important. How cellular safeguarding mechanisms prevent such potentially toxic events and whether they go awry in disease remains to be determined....

  13. Nanomolar oligomerization and selective co-aggregation of α-synuclein pathogenic mutants revealed by single-molecule fluorescence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sierecki, Emma; Giles, Nichole; Bowden, Quill; Polinkovsky, Mark E.; Steinbeck, Janina; Arrioti, Nicholas; Rahman, Diya; Bhumkar, Akshay; Nicovich, Philip R.; Ross, Ian; Parton, Robert G.; Böcking, Till; Gambin, Yann

    2016-01-01

    Protein aggregation is a hallmark of many neurodegenerative diseases, notably Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease. Parkinson’s disease is characterized by the presence of Lewy bodies, abnormal aggregates mainly composed of α-synuclein. Moreover, cases of familial Parkinson’s disease have been linked to mutations in α-synuclein. In this study, we compared the behavior of wild-type (WT) α-synuclein and five of its pathological mutants (A30P, E46K, H50Q, G51D and A53T). To this end, single-molecule fluorescence detection was coupled to cell-free protein expression to measure precisely the oligomerization of proteins without purification, denaturation or labelling steps. In these conditions, we could detect the formation of oligomeric and pre-fibrillar species at very short time scale and low micromolar concentrations. The pathogenic mutants surprisingly segregated into two classes: one group forming large aggregates and fibrils while the other tending to form mostly oligomers. Strikingly, co-expression experiments reveal that members from the different groups do not generally interact with each other, both at the fibril and monomer levels. Together, this data paints a completely different picture of α-synuclein aggregation, with two possible pathways leading to the development of fibrils. PMID:27892477

  14. Pre-fibrillar α-synuclein mutants cause Parkinson's disease-like non-motor symptoms in Drosophila.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Madhu Babu Gajula Balija

    Full Text Available Parkinson's disease (PD is linked to the formation of insoluble fibrillar aggregates of the presynaptic protein α-Synuclein (αS in neurons. The appearance of such aggregates coincides with severe motor deficits in human patients. These deficits are often preceded by non-motor symptoms such as sleep-related problems in the patients. PD-like motor deficits can be recapitulated in model organisms such as Drosophila melanogaster when αS is pan-neurally expressed. Interestingly, both these deficits are more severe when αS mutants with reduced aggregation properties are expressed in flies. This indicates that that αS aggregation is not the primary cause of the PD-like motor symptoms. Here we describe a model for PD in Drosophila which utilizes the targeted expression of αS mutants in a subset of dopadecarboxylase expressing serotonergic and dopaminergic (DA neurons. Our results show that targeted expression of pre-fibrillar αS mutants not only recapitulates PD-like motor symptoms but also the preceding non-motor symptoms such as an abnormal sleep-like behavior, altered locomotor activity and abnormal circadian periodicity. Further, the results suggest that the observed non-motor symptoms in flies are caused by an early impairment of neuronal functions rather than by the loss of neurons due to cell death.

  15. AAV1/2-induced overexpression of A53T-?-synuclein in the substantia nigra results in degeneration of the nigrostriatal system with Lewy-like pathology and motor impairment: a new mouse model for Parkinson?s disease

    OpenAIRE

    Ip, Chi Wang; Klaus, Laura-Christin; Karikari, Akua A.; Visanji, Naomi P; Brotchie, Jonathan M.; Lang, Anthony E.; Volkmann, Jens; Koprich, James B.

    2017-01-01

    ?-Synuclein is a protein implicated in the etiopathogenesis of Parkinson?s disease (PD). AAV1/2-driven overexpression of human mutated A53T-?-synuclein in rat and monkey substantia nigra (SN) induces degeneration of nigral dopaminergic neurons and decreases striatal dopamine and tyrosine hydroxylase (TH). Given certain advantages of the mouse, especially it being amendable to genetic manipulation, translating the AAV1/2-A53T ?-synuclein model to mice would be of significant value. AAV1/2-A53T...

  16. Epigenetic upregulation of alpha-synuclein in the rats exposed to methamphetamine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiang, Wenda; Li, Ji; Zhang, Zhuang; Wang, Hongxin; Wang, Zhejian

    2014-12-15

    Abuse of methamphetamine (METH) increases the risk of occurrence of Parkinson׳s disease (PD) in the individuals. Increased expression of synaptic protein α-synuclein (encoded by gene Snca) is remarkably associated with the neuronal loss and motor dysfunction in the patients with PD. The present study aimed to explore the epigenetic mechanism underlying the altered expression of α-synuclein in substantia nigra in the rats previously exposed to METH. Exposure to METH induced significant behavioral impairments in the rotarod test and open field test, as well as the upregulation of cytokine synthesis in the substantia nigra. Significantly increased expression of α-synuclein was also observed in the substantia nigra in the rats exposed to METH. Further chromatin immunoprecipitation and bisulfite sequencing studies revealed a significantly decreased cytosine methylation in the Snca promoter region in the rats exposed to METH. It was found that the occupancy of methyl CpG binding protein 2 and DNA methyltransferase 1 in Snca promoter region was also significantly decreased in the substantia nigra in the modeled rats. These results advanced our understanding on the mechanism of the increased incidence of PD in the individuals with history use of METH, and shed novel lights on the development of therapeutic approaches for the patients conflicted with this neurological disorder. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  17. Long-lasting pathological consequences of overexpression-induced α-synuclein spreading in the rat brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rusconi, Raffaella; Ulusoy, Ayse; Aboutalebi, Helia; Di Monte, Donato A

    2018-01-30

    Increased expression of α-synuclein can initiate its long-distance brain transfer, representing a potential mechanism for pathology spreading in age-related synucleinopathies, such as Parkinson's disease. In this study, the effects of overexpression-induced α-synuclein transfer were assessed over a 1-year period after injection of viral vectors carrying human α-synuclein DNA into the rat vagus nerve. This treatment causes targeted overexpression within neurons in the dorsal medulla oblongata and subsequent diffusion of the exogenous protein toward more rostral brain regions. Protein advancement and accumulation in pontine, midbrain, and forebrain areas were contingent upon continuous overexpression, because death of transduced medullary neurons resulted in cessation of spreading. Lack of sustained spreading did not prevent the development of long-lasting pathological changes. Particularly remarkable were findings in the locus coeruleus, a pontine nucleus with direct connections to the dorsal medulla oblongata and greatly affected by overexpression-induced transfer in this model. Data revealed progressive degeneration of catecholaminergic neurons that proceeded long beyond the time of spreading cessation. Neuronal pathology in the locus coeruleus was accompanied by pronounced microglial activation and, at later times, astrocytosis. Interestingly, microglial activation was also featured in another region reached by α-synuclein transfer, the central amygdala, even in the absence of frank neurodegeneration. Thus, overexpression-induced spreading, even if temporary, causes long-lasting pathological consequences in brain regions distant from the site of overexpression but anatomically connected to it. Neurodegeneration may be a consequence of severe protein burden, whereas even a milder α-synuclein accumulation in tissues affected by protein transfer could induce sustained microglial activation. © 2018 The Authors. Aging Cell published by the Anatomical Society and

  18. Alpha-synuclein propagation: New insights from animal models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dehay, Benjamin; Vila, Miquel; Bezard, Erwan; Brundin, Patrik; Kordower, Jeffrey H

    2016-02-01

    Aggregation of alpha-synuclein is implicated in several neurodegenerative diseases collectively termed synucleinopathies. Emerging evidence strongly implicates cell-to-cell transmission of misfolded alpha-synuclein as a common pathogenetic mechanism in synucleinopathies. The impact of alpha-synuclein pathology on neuronal dysfunction and behavioral impairments is being explored in animal models. This review provides an update on how research in animal models supports the concept that misfolded alpha-synuclein spreads from cell to cell and describes how findings in animal models might relate to the disease process in humans. Finally, we discuss the current underlying molecular and cellular mechanisms and future therapeutic strategies targeting alpha-synuclein propagation. © 2015 International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society.

  19. Mutant alpha-synuclein-induced degeneration is reduced by parkin in a fly model of Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haywood, Annika F M; Staveley, Brian E

    2006-05-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) patients show a characteristic loss of motor control caused by the degeneration of dopaminergic neurons. Mutations in the genes that encode alpha-synuclein and parkin have been linked to inherited forms of this disease. The parkin protein functions as a ubiquitin ligase that targets proteins for degradation. Expression of isoforms of human alpha-synuclein in the Drosophila melanogaster nervous system forms the basis of an excellent genetic model that recapitulates phenotypic and behavioural features of PD. Using this model, we analysed the effect of parkin co-expression on the climbing ability of aging flies, their life span, and their retinal degeneration. We have determined that co-expression of parkin can suppress phenotypes caused by expression of mutant alpha-synuclein. In the developing eye, parkin reduces retinal degeneration. When co-expressed in the dopaminergic neurons, the ability to climb is extended over time. If conserved in humans, we suggest that upregulation of parkin may prove a method of suppression for PD induced by mutant forms of alpha-synuclein.

  20. Do natural proteins differ from random sequences polypeptides? Natural vs. random proteins classification using an evolutionary neural network.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Davide De Lucrezia

    Full Text Available Are extant proteins the exquisite result of natural selection or are they random sequences slightly edited by evolution? This question has puzzled biochemists for long time and several groups have addressed this issue comparing natural protein sequences to completely random ones coming to contradicting conclusions. Previous works in literature focused on the analysis of primary structure in an attempt to identify possible signature of evolutionary editing. Conversely, in this work we compare a set of 762 natural proteins with an average length of 70 amino acids and an equal number of completely random ones of comparable length on the basis of their structural features. We use an ad hoc Evolutionary Neural Network Algorithm (ENNA in order to assess whether and to what extent natural proteins are edited from random polypeptides employing 11 different structure-related variables (i.e. net charge, volume, surface area, coil, alpha helix, beta sheet, percentage of coil, percentage of alpha helix, percentage of beta sheet, percentage of secondary structure and surface hydrophobicity. The ENNA algorithm is capable to correctly distinguish natural proteins from random ones with an accuracy of 94.36%. Furthermore, we study the structural features of 32 random polypeptides misclassified as natural ones to unveil any structural similarity to natural proteins. Results show that random proteins misclassified by the ENNA algorithm exhibit a significant fold similarity to portions or subdomains of extant proteins at atomic resolution. Altogether, our results suggest that natural proteins are significantly edited from random polypeptides and evolutionary editing can be readily detected analyzing structural features. Furthermore, we also show that the ENNA, employing simple structural descriptors, can predict whether a protein chain is natural or random.

  1. Extracellular matrix proteins as temporary coating for thin-film neural implants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ceyssens, Frederik; Deprez, Marjolijn; Turner, Neill; Kil, Dries; van Kuyck, Kris; Welkenhuysen, Marleen; Nuttin, Bart; Badylak, Stephen; Puers, Robert

    2017-02-01

    Objective. This study investigates the suitability of a thin sheet of extracellular matrix (ECM) proteins as a resorbable coating for temporarily reinforcing fragile or ultra-low stiffness thin-film neural implants to be placed on the brain, i.e. microelectrocorticographic (µECOG) implants. Approach. Thin-film polyimide-based electrode arrays were fabricated using lithographic methods. ECM was harvested from porcine tissue by a decellularization method and coated around the arrays. Mechanical tests and an in vivo experiment on rats were conducted, followed by a histological tissue study combined with a statistical equivalence test (confidence interval approach, 0.05 significance level) to compare the test group with an uncoated control group. Main results. After 3 months, no significant damage was found based on GFAP and NeuN staining of the relevant brain areas. Significance. The study shows that ECM sheets are a suitable temporary coating for thin µECOG neural implants.

  2. A novel autophagy modulator 6-Bio ameliorates SNCA/α-synuclein toxicity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suresh, S. N.; Chavalmane, Aravinda K.; DJ, Vidyadhara; Yarreiphang, Haorei; Rai, Shashank; Paul, Abhik; Clement, James P.; Alladi, Phalguni Anand; Manjithaya, Ravi

    2017-01-01

    ABSTRACT Parkinson disease (PD) is a life-threatening neurodegenerative movement disorder with unmet therapeutic intervention. We have identified a small molecule autophagy modulator, 6-Bio that shows clearance of toxic SNCA/α-synuclein (a protein implicated in synucleopathies) aggregates in yeast and mammalian cell lines. 6-Bio induces autophagy and dramatically enhances autolysosome formation resulting in SNCA degradation. Importantly, neuroprotective function of 6-Bio as envisaged by immunohistology and behavior analyses in a preclinical model of PD where it induces autophagy in dopaminergic (DAergic) neurons of mice midbrain to clear toxic protein aggregates suggesting that it could be a potential therapeutic candidate for protein conformational disorders. PMID:28350199

  3. Multiple conserved cell adhesion protein interactions mediate neural wiring of a sensory circuit in C. elegans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Byunghyuk; Emmons, Scott W

    2017-09-13

    Nervous system function relies on precise synaptic connections. A number of widely-conserved cell adhesion proteins are implicated in cell recognition between synaptic partners, but how these proteins act as a group to specify a complex neural network is poorly understood. Taking advantage of known connectivity in C. elegans, we identified and studied cell adhesion genes expressed in three interacting neurons in the mating circuits of the adult male. Two interacting pairs of cell surface proteins independently promote fasciculation between sensory neuron HOA and its postsynaptic target interneuron AVG: BAM-2/neurexin-related in HOA binds to CASY-1/calsyntenin in AVG; SAX-7/L1CAM in sensory neuron PHC binds to RIG-6/contactin in AVG. A third, basal pathway results in considerable HOA-AVG fasciculation and synapse formation in the absence of the other two. The features of this multiplexed mechanism help to explain how complex connectivity is encoded and robustly established during nervous system development.

  4. α-Synuclein Oligomers Stabilize Pre-Existing Defects in Supported Bilayers and Propagate Membrane Damage in a Fractal-Like Pattern

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Chaudhary, Himanshu; Iyer, Aditya; Subramaniam, Vinod; Claessens, Mireille M A E

    2016-01-01

    Phospholipid vesicles are commonly used to get insights into the mechanism by which oligomers of amyloidogenic proteins damage membranes. Oligomers of the protein α-synuclein (αS) are thought to create pores in phospholipid vesicles containing a high amount of anionic phospholipids but fail to

  5. Mdm2 mediates FMRP- and Gp1 mGluR-dependent protein translation and neural network activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Dai-Chi; Seimetz, Joseph; Lee, Kwan Young; Kalsotra, Auinash; Chung, Hee Jung; Lu, Hua; Tsai, Nien-Pei

    2017-10-15

    Activating Group 1 (Gp1) metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluRs), including mGluR1 and mGluR5, elicits translation-dependent neural plasticity mechanisms that are crucial to animal behavior and circuit development. Dysregulated Gp1 mGluR signaling has been observed in numerous neurological and psychiatric disorders. However, the molecular pathways underlying Gp1 mGluR-dependent plasticity mechanisms are complex and have been elusive. In this study, we identified a novel mechanism through which Gp1 mGluR mediates protein translation and neural plasticity. Using a multi-electrode array (MEA) recording system, we showed that activating Gp1 mGluR elevates neural network activity, as demonstrated by increased spontaneous spike frequency and burst activity. Importantly, we validated that elevating neural network activity requires protein translation and is dependent on fragile X mental retardation protein (FMRP), the protein that is deficient in the most common inherited form of mental retardation and autism, fragile X syndrome (FXS). In an effort to determine the mechanism by which FMRP mediates protein translation and neural network activity, we demonstrated that a ubiquitin E3 ligase, murine double minute-2 (Mdm2), is required for Gp1 mGluR-induced translation and neural network activity. Our data showed that Mdm2 acts as a translation suppressor, and FMRP is required for its ubiquitination and down-regulation upon Gp1 mGluR activation. These data revealed a novel mechanism by which Gp1 mGluR and FMRP mediate protein translation and neural network activity, potentially through de-repressing Mdm2. Our results also introduce an alternative way for understanding altered protein translation and brain circuit excitability associated with Gp1 mGluR in neurological diseases such as FXS. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  6. Suppressed expression of mitogen-activated protein kinases in hyperthermia induced defective neural tube.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Tianliang; Leng, Zhaoting; Liu, Wenjing; Wang, Xia; Yan, Xue; Yu, Li

    2015-05-06

    Neural tube defects (NTDs) are common congenital malformations. Mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPKs) pathway is involved in many physiological processes. HMGB1 has been showed closely associated with neurulation and NTDs induced by hyperthermia and could activate MAPKs pathway. Since hyperthermia caused increased activation of MAPKs in many systems, the present study aims to investigate whether HMGB1 contributes to hyperthermia induced NTDs through MAPKs pathway. The mRNA levels of MAPKs and HMGB1 between embryonic day 8.5 and 10 (E8.5-10) in hyperthermia induced defective neural tube were detected by real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR). By immunofluorescence and western blotting, the expressions of HMGB1 and phosphorylated MAPKs (ERK1/2, JNK and p38) in neural tubes after hyperthermia were studied. The mRNA levels of MAPKs and HMGB1, as well as the expressions of HMGB1 along with phosphorylated JNK, p38 and ERK, were downregulated in NTDs groups induced by hyperthermia compared with control. The findings suggested that HMGB1 may contribute to hyperthermia induced NTDs formation through decreased cell proliferation due to inhibited phosphorylated ERK1/2 MAPK. Copyright © 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  7. Dopamine-induced conformational changes in alpha-synuclein.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tiago F Outeiro

    2009-09-01

    Full Text Available Oligomerization and aggregation of alpha-synuclein molecules play a major role in neuronal dysfunction and loss in Parkinson's disease [1]. However, alpha-synuclein oligomerization and aggregation have mostly been detected indirectly in cells using detergent extraction methods [2], [3], [4]. A number of in vitro studies showed that dopamine can modulate the aggregation of alpha-synuclein by inhibiting the formation of or by disaggregating amyloid fibrils [5], [6], [7].Here, we show that alpha-synuclein adopts a variety of conformations in primary neuronal cultures using fluorescence lifetime imaging microscopy (FLIM. Importantly, we found that dopamine, but not dopamine agonists, induced conformational changes in alpha-synuclein which could be prevented by blocking dopamine transport into the cell. Dopamine also induced conformational changes in alpha-synuclein expressed in neuronal cell lines, and these changes were also associated with alterations in oligomeric/aggregated species.Our results show, for the first time, a direct effect of dopamine on the conformation of alpha-synuclein in neurons, which may help explain the increased vulnerability of dopaminergic neurons in Parkinson's disease.

  8. Dopamine induces soluble α-synuclein oligomers and nigrostriatal degeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mor, Danielle E; Tsika, Elpida; Mazzulli, Joseph R; Gould, Neal S; Kim, Hanna; Daniels, Malcolm J; Doshi, Shachee; Gupta, Preetika; Grossman, Jennifer L; Tan, Victor X; Kalb, Robert G; Caldwell, Kim A; Caldwell, Guy A; Wolfe, John H; Ischiropoulos, Harry

    2017-11-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is defined by the loss of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra and the formation of Lewy body inclusions containing aggregated α-synuclein. Efforts to explain dopamine neuron vulnerability are hindered by the lack of dopaminergic cell death in α-synuclein transgenic mice. To address this, we manipulated both dopamine levels and α-synuclein expression. Nigrally targeted expression of mutant tyrosine hydroxylase with enhanced catalytic activity increased dopamine levels without damaging neurons in non-transgenic mice. In contrast, raising dopamine levels in mice expressing human A53T mutant α-synuclein induced progressive nigrostriatal degeneration and reduced locomotion. Dopamine elevation in A53T mice increased levels of potentially toxic α-synuclein oligomers, resulting in conformationally and functionally modified species. Moreover, in genetically tractable Caenorhabditis elegans models, expression of α-synuclein mutated at the site of interaction with dopamine prevented dopamine-induced toxicity. These data suggest that a unique mechanism links two cardinal features of PD: dopaminergic cell death and α-synuclein aggregation.

  9. Prediction of protein function using a deep convolutional neural network ensemble

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Evangelia I. Zacharaki

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Background The availability of large databases containing high resolution three-dimensional (3D models of proteins in conjunction with functional annotation allows the exploitation of advanced supervised machine learning techniques for automatic protein function prediction. Methods In this work, novel shape features are extracted representing protein structure in the form of local (per amino acid distribution of angles and amino acid distances, respectively. Each of the multi-channel feature maps is introduced into a deep convolutional neural network (CNN for function prediction and the outputs are fused through support vector machines or a correlation-based k-nearest neighbor classifier. Two different architectures are investigated employing either one CNN per multi-channel feature set, or one CNN per image channel. Results Cross validation experiments on single-functional enzymes (n = 44,661 from the PDB database achieved 90.1% correct classification, demonstrating an improvement over previous results on the same dataset when sequence similarity was not considered. Discussion The automatic prediction of protein function can provide quick annotations on extensive datasets opening the path for relevant applications, such as pharmacological target identification. The proposed method shows promise for structure-based protein function prediction, but sufficient data may not yet be available to properly assess the method’s performance on non-homologous proteins and thus reduce the confounding factor of evolutionary relationships.

  10. Single-channel electrophysiology reveals a distinct and uniform pore complex formed by α-synuclein oligomers in lipid membranes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Felix Schmidt

    Full Text Available Synucleinopathies such as Parkinson's disease, multiple system atrophy and dementia with Lewy bodies are characterized by deposition of aggregated α-synuclein. Recent findings indicate that pathological oligomers rather than fibrillar aggregates may represent the main toxic protein species. It has been shown that α-synuclein oligomers can increase the conductance of lipid bilayers and, in cell-culture, lead to calcium dyshomeostasis and cell death. In this study, employing a setup for single-channel electrophysiology, we found that addition of iron-induced α-synuclein oligomers resulted in quantized and stepwise increases in bilayer conductance indicating insertion of distinct transmembrane pores. These pores switched between open and closed states depending on clamped voltage revealing a single-pore conductance comparable to that of bacterial porins. Pore conductance was dependent on transmembrane potential and the available cation. The pores stably inserted into the bilayer and could not be removed by buffer exchange. Pore formation could be inhibited by co-incubation with the aggregation inhibitor baicalein. Our findings indicate that iron-induced α-synuclein oligomers can form a uniform and distinct pore species with characteristic electrophysiological properties. Pore formation could be a critical event in the pathogenesis of synucleinopathies and provide a novel structural target for disease-modifying therapy.

  11. Evidence from spatial pattern analysis for the anatomical spread of α-synuclein pathology in Parkinson’s disease dementia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Richard A. Armstrong

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this study was to determine whether there is evidence from quantitative morphometry and spatial pattern analysis to support the hypothesis of anatomical spread of -synuclein in Parkinson’s disease dementia (PDD. Hence, clustering of -synuclein-immunoreactive Lewy bodies (LB, Lewy neurites (LN, and Lewy grains (LG was studied in -synuclein-immunolabeled sections of cortical and limbic regions in 12 cases of PDD. The data suggested that: (1 LB, LN, and LG occurred in clusters which in 63% of regions were regularly distributed parallel to the tissue boundary, (2 in approximately 30% of cortical regions, the estimated cluster size of LB, LN, and LG was within the size range of cellular columns associated with the cortico-cortical pathways, (3 regularly distributed clusters were present in anatomically connected regions, and (4 the clustering pattern was similar to that of prion protein (PrPsc deposits in Creutzfeldt-Jacob disease (CJD. The clustering patterns of LB, LN, and LG were similar to those exhibited by cellular inclusions in other synucleinopathies and by PrPsc deposits in prion disease and therefore, anatomical spread of pathogenic -synuclein could be involved in the pathogenesis of PDD.

  12. USP9X deubiquitylating enzyme maintains RAPTOR protein levels, mTORC1 signalling and proliferation in neural progenitors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bridges, Caitlin R; Tan, Men-Chee; Premarathne, Susitha; Nanayakkara, Devathri; Bellette, Bernadette; Zencak, Dusan; Domingo, Deepti; Gecz, Jozef; Murtaza, Mariyam; Jolly, Lachlan A; Wood, Stephen A

    2017-03-24

    USP9X, is highly expressed in neural progenitors and, essential for neural development in mice. In humans, mutations in USP9X are associated with neurodevelopmental disorders. To understand USP9X's role in neural progenitors, we studied the effects of altering its expression in both the human neural progenitor cell line, ReNcell VM, as well as neural stem and progenitor cells derived from Nestin-cre conditionally deleted Usp9x mice. Decreasing USP9X resulted in ReNcell VM cells arresting in G0 cell cycle phase, with a concomitant decrease in mTORC1 signalling, a major regulator of G0/G1 cell cycle progression. Decreased mTORC1 signalling was also observed in Usp9x-null neurospheres and embryonic mouse brains. Further analyses revealed, (i) the canonical mTORC1 protein, RAPTOR, physically associates with Usp9x in embryonic brains, (ii) RAPTOR protein level is directly proportional to USP9X, in both loss- and gain-of-function experiments in cultured cells and, (iii) USP9X deubiquitlyating activity opposes the proteasomal degradation of RAPTOR. EdU incorporation assays confirmed Usp9x maintains the proliferation of neural progenitors similar to Raptor-null and rapamycin-treated neurospheres. Interestingly, loss of Usp9x increased the number of sphere-forming cells consistent with enhanced neural stem cell self-renewal. To our knowledge, USP9X is the first deubiquitylating enzyme shown to stabilize RAPTOR.

  13. Spermidine protects against α-synuclein neurotoxicity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Büttner, Sabrina; Broeskamp, Filomena; Sommer, Cornelia; Markaki, Maria; Habernig, Lukas; Alavian-Ghavanini, Ali; Carmona-Gutierrez, Didac; Eisenberg, Tobias; Michael, Eva; Kroemer, Guido; Tavernarakis, Nektarios; Sigrist, Stephan J; Madeo, Frank

    2014-01-01

    As our society ages, neurodegenerative disorders like Parkinson`s disease (PD) are increasing in pandemic proportions. While mechanistic understanding of PD is advancing, a treatment with well tolerable drugs is still elusive. Here, we show that administration of the naturally occurring polyamine spermidine, which declines continuously during aging in various species, alleviates a series of PD-related degenerative processes in the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster and the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, two established model systems for PD pathology. In the fruit fly, simple feeding with spermidine inhibited loss of climbing activity and early organismal death upon heterologous expression of human α-synuclein, which is thought to be the principal toxic trigger of PD. In this line, administration of spermidine rescued α-synuclein-induced loss of dopaminergic neurons, a hallmark of PD, in nematodes. Alleviation of PD-related neurodegeneration by spermidine was accompanied by induction of autophagy, suggesting that this cytoprotective process may be responsible for the beneficial effects of spermidine administration.

  14. Metal-triggered structural transformations, aggregation, and fibrillation of human alpha-synuclein. A possible molecular NK between Parkinson's disease and heavy metal exposure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uversky, V N; Li, J; Fink, A L

    2001-11-23

    Parkinson's disease involves the aggregation of alpha-synuclein to form fibrils, which are the major constituent of intracellular protein inclusions (Lewy bodies and Lewy neurites) in dopaminergic neurons of the substantia nigra. Occupational exposure to specific metals, especially manganese, copper, lead, iron, mercury, zinc, aluminum, appears to be a risk factor for Parkinson's disease based on epidemiological studies. Elevated levels of several of these metals have also been reported in the substantia nigra of Parkinson's disease subjects. We examined the effect of various metals on the kinetics of fibrillation of recombinant alpha-synuclein and in inducing conformational changes, as monitored by biophysical techniques. Several di- and trivalent metal ions caused significant accelerations in the rate of alpha-synuclein fibril formation. Aluminum was the most effective, along with copper(II), iron(III), cobalt(III), and manganese(II). The effectiveness correlated with increasing ion charge density. A correlation was noted between efficiency in stimulating fibrillation and inducing a conformational change, ascribed to formation of a partially folded intermediate. The potential for ligand bridging by polyvalent metal ions is proposed to be an important factor in the metal-induced conformational changes of alpha-synuclein. The results indicate that low concentrations of some metals can directly induce alpha-synuclein fibril formation.

  15. Pale body-like inclusion formation and neurodegeneration following depletion of 26S proteasomes in mouse brain neurones are independent of α-synuclein.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simon M L Paine

    Full Text Available Parkinson's disease (PD is characterized by the progressive degeneration of substantia nigra pars compacta (SNpc dopaminergic neurones and the formation of Lewy bodies (LB in a proportion of the remaining neurones. α-synuclein is the main component of LB, but the pathological mechanisms that lead to neurodegeneration associated with LB formation remain unclear. Three pivotal elements have emerged in the development of PD: α-synuclein, mitochondria and protein degradation systems. We previously reported a unique model, created by conditional genetic depletion of 26S proteasomes in the SNpc of mice, which mechanistically links these three elements with the neuropathology of PD: progressive neurodegeneration and intraneuronal inclusion formation. Using this model, we tested the hypothesis that α-synuclein was essential for the formation of inclusions and neurodegeneration caused by 26S proteasomal depletion. We found that both of these processes were independent of α-synuclein. This provides an important insight into the relationship between the proteasome, α-synuclein, inclusion formation and neurodegeneration. We also show that the autophagy-lysosomal pathway is not activated in 26S proteasome-depleted neurones. This leads us to suggest that the paranuclear accumulation of mitochondria in inclusions in our model may reflect a role for the ubiquitin proteasome system in mitochondrial homeostasis and that neurodegeneration may be mediated through mitochondrial factors linked to inclusion biogenesis.

  16. Deciphering the glycolipid code of Alzheimer's and Parkinson's amyloid proteins allowed the creation of a universal ganglioside-binding peptide.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nouara Yahi

    Full Text Available A broad range of microbial and amyloid proteins interact with cell surface glycolipids which behave as infectivity and/or toxicity cofactors in human pathologies. Here we have deciphered the biochemical code that determines the glycolipid-binding specificity of two major amyloid proteins, Alzheimer's β-amyloid peptide (Aβ and Parkinson's disease associated protein α-synuclein. We showed that both proteins interact with selected glycolipids through a common loop-shaped motif exhibiting little sequence homology. This 12-residue domain corresponded to fragments 34-45 of α-synuclein and 5-16 of Aβ. By modulating the amino acid sequence of α-synuclein at only two positions in which we introduced a pair of histidine residues found in Aβ, we created a chimeric α-synuclein/Aβ peptide with extended ganglioside-binding properties. This chimeric peptide retained the property of α-synuclein to recognize GM3, and acquired the capacity to recognize GM1 (an Aβ-inherited characteristic. Free histidine (but not tryptophan or asparagine and Zn2+ (but not Na+ prevented this interaction, confirming the key role of His-13 and His-14 in ganglioside binding. Molecular dynamics studies suggested that the chimeric peptide recognized cholesterol-constrained conformers of GM1, including typical chalice-shaped dimers, that are representative of the condensed cholesterol-ganglioside complexes found in lipid raft domains of the plasma membrane of neural cells. Correspondingly, the peptide had a particular affinity for raft-like membranes containing both GM1 and cholesterol. The chimeric peptide also interacted with several other gangliosides, including major brain gangliosides (GM4, GD1a, GD1b, and GT1b but not with neutral glycolipids such as GlcCer, LacCer or asialo-GM1. It could inhibit the binding of Aβ1-42 onto neural SH-SY5Y cells and did not induce toxicity in these cells. In conclusion, deciphering the glycolipid code of amyloid proteins allowed us to

  17. Fluorescent protein-expressing neural progenitor cells as a tool for transplantation studies.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marco Skardelly

    Full Text Available The purpose of this study was to generate quadruple fluorescent protein (QFP transgenic mice as a source for QFP-expressing neural stem and progenitor cells (NSCs/NPCs that could be utilized as a tool for transplantation research. When undifferentiated, these NSCs only express cyan fluorescent protein (CFP; however, upon neuronal differentiation, the cells express yellow fluorescent protein (YFP. During astrocytic differentiation, the cells express green fluorescent protein (GFP, and during oligodendrocytic differentiation, the cells express red fluorescent protein (DsRed. Using immunocytochemistry, immunoblotting, flow cytometry and electrophysiology, quadruple transgenic NPCs (Q-NPCs and GFP-sorted NPCs were comprehensively characterized in vitro. Overall, the various transgenes did not significantly affect proliferation and differentiation of transgenic NPCs in comparison to wild-type NPCs. In contrast to a strong CFP and GFP expression in vitro, NPCs did not express YFP and dsRed either during proliferation or after differentiation in vitro. GFP-positive sorted NPCs, expressing GFP under the control of the human GFAP promoter, demonstrated a significant improvement in astroglial differentiation in comparison to GFP-negative sorted NPCs. In contrast to non-sorted and GFP-positive sorted NPCs, GFP-negative sorted NPCs demonstrated a high proportion of neuronal differentiation and proved to be functional in vitro. At 6 weeks after the intracerebroventricular transplantation of Q-NPCs into neonatal wild-type mice, CFP/DCX (doublecortin double-positive transplanted cells were observed. The Q-NPCs did not express any other fluorescent proteins and did not mature into neuronal or glial cells. Although this model failed to visualize NPC differentiation in vivo, we determined that activation of the NPC glial fibrillary acid protein (GFAP promoter, as indicated by GFP expression, can be used to separate neuronal and glial progenitors as a valuable

  18. NMR mapping of copper binding sites in alpha-synuclein.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sung, Yoon-Hui; Rospigliosi, Carla; Eliezer, David

    2006-01-01

    Copper binding to the Parkinson disease-linked protein alpha-synuclein (aS) has been shown to accelerate its oligomerization in vitro and may therefore play a role in aS-mediated pathology in vivo. We use NMR spectroscopy to identify a number of independent copper binding sites in both the lipid-binding N-terminal domain and the highly acidic C-terminal domain of aS. Most of the sites appear to involve negatively charged amino acid side chains, but binding is also observed to the sole histidine residue located at position 50 and to the N-terminal amino group. Both the N-terminal and the histidine sites, as well as the sites in the C-terminal tail, can also bind copper in the more highly structured conformation adopted by aS upon binding to detergent micelles or lipid vesicles. There is no evidence for the formation of any sites requiring long-range order in the protein.

  19. Transmission of Soluble and Insoluble α-Synuclein to Mice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Daryl R.; Delenclos, Marion; Baine, AnnMarie T.; DeTure, Michael; Murray, Melissa E.; Dickson, Dennis W.; McLean, Pamela J.

    2015-01-01

    The neurodegenerative synucleinopathies, which include Parkinson disease, multiple system atrophy, and Lewy body disease, are characterized by the presence of abundant neuronal inclusions called Lewy bodies and Lewy neurites. These disorders remain incurable and a greater understanding of the pathologic processes is needed for effective treatment strategies to be developed. Recent data suggest that pathogenic misfolding of the presynaptic protein, α-synuclein (α-syn), and subsequent aggregation and accumulation is fundamental to the disease process. It is hypothesized that the misfolded isoform is able to induce misfolding of normal endogenous α-syn, much like what occurs in the prion diseases. Recent work highlighting the seeding effect of pathogenic α-syn has largely focused on the detergent-insoluble species of the protein. In this study we performed intracerebral inoculations of the sarkosyl-insoluble or sarkosyl-soluble fractions of human Lewy body disease brain homogenate and show that both fractions induce CNS pathology in mice at 4 months post-injection. Disease-associated deposits accumulated both near and distal to the site of the injection suggesting a cell-to-cell spread via recruitment of α-syn. These results provide further insight into the prion-like mechanisms of α-syn and suggest that disease-associated α-syn is not homogenous within a single patient but might exist in both soluble and insoluble isoforms. PMID:26574670

  20. Focal adhesion kinase protein regulates Wnt3a gene expression to control cell fate specification in the developing neural plate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fonar, Yuri; Gutkovich, Yoni E.; Root, Heather; Malyarova, Anastasia; Aamar, Emil; Golubovskaya, Vita M.; Elias, Sarah; Elkouby, Yaniv M.; Frank, Dale

    2011-01-01

    Focal adhesion kinase (FAK) is a cytoplasmic tyrosine kinase protein localized to regions called focal adhesions, which are contact points between cells and the extracellular matrix. FAK protein acts as a scaffold to transfer adhesion-dependent and growth factor signals into the cell. Increased FAK expression is linked to aggressive metastatic and invasive tumors. However, little is known about its normal embryonic function. FAK protein knockdown during early Xenopus laevis development anteriorizes the embryo. Morphant embryos express increased levels of anterior neural markers, with reciprocally reduced posterior neural marker expression. Posterior neural plate folding and convergence-extension is also inhibited. This anteriorized phenotype resembles that of embryos knocked down zygotically for canonical Wnt signaling. FAK and Wnt3a genes are both expressed in the neural plate, and Wnt3a expression is FAK dependent. Ectopic Wnt expression rescues this FAK morphant anteriorized phenotype. Wnt3a thus acts downstream of FAK to balance anterior–posterior cell fate specification in the developing neural plate. Wnt3a gene expression is also FAK dependent in human breast cancer cells, suggesting that this FAK–Wnt linkage is highly conserved. This unique observation connects the FAK- and Wnt-signaling pathways, both of which act to promote cancer when aberrantly activated in mammalian cells. PMID:21551070

  1. Integrin-associated protein promotes neuronal differentiation of neural stem/progenitor cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kazuhiko Fujimura

    Full Text Available Neural stem/progenitor cells (NSPCs proliferate and differentiate depending on their intrinsic properties and local environment. During the development of the mammalian nervous system, NSPCs generate neurons and glia sequentially. However, little is known about the mechanism that determines the timing of switch from neurogenesis to gliogenesis. In this study, we established a culture system in which the neurogenic potential of NSPCs is decreased in a time-dependent manner, so that short-term-cultured NSPCs differentiate into more neurons compared with long-term-cultured NSPCs. We found that short-term-cultured NSPCs express high levels of integrin-associated protein form 2 (IAP2; so-called CD47 mRNA using differential display analysis. Moreover, IAP2 overexpression in NSPCs induced neuronal differentiation of NSPCs. These findings reveal a novel mechanism by which IAP2 induces neuronal differentiation of NSPCs.

  2. Alpha-synuclein structure, functions, and interactions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fatemeh Nouri Emamzadeh

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available At present, when a clinical diagnosis of Parkinson′s disease (PD is made, serious damage has already been done to nerve cells of the substantia nigra pars compacta. The diagnosis of PD in its earlier stages, before this irreversible damage, would be of enormous benefit for future treatment strategies designed to slow or halt the progression of this disease that possibly prevents accumulation of toxic aggregates. As a molecular biomarker for the detection of PD in its earlier stages, alpha-synuclein (α-syn, which is a key component of Lewy bodies, in which it is found in an aggregated and fibrillar form, has attracted considerable attention. Here, α-syn is reviewed in details.

  3. Fragile x mental retardation protein regulates proliferation and differentiation of adult neural stem/progenitor cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yuping Luo

    2010-04-01

    Full Text Available Fragile X syndrome (FXS, the most common form of inherited mental retardation, is caused by the loss of functional fragile X mental retardation protein (FMRP. FMRP is an RNA-binding protein that can regulate the translation of specific mRNAs. Adult neurogenesis, a process considered important for neuroplasticity and memory, is regulated at multiple molecular levels. In this study, we investigated whether Fmrp deficiency affects adult neurogenesis. We show that in a mouse model of fragile X syndrome, adult neurogenesis is indeed altered. The loss of Fmrp increases the proliferation and alters the fate specification of adult neural progenitor/stem cells (aNPCs. We demonstrate that Fmrp regulates the protein expression of several components critical for aNPC function, including CDK4 and GSK3beta. Dysregulation of GSK3beta led to reduced Wnt signaling pathway activity, which altered the expression of neurogenin1 and the fate specification of aNPCs. These data unveil a novel regulatory role for Fmrp and translational regulation in adult neurogenesis.

  4. Estimation of adsorption isotherm and mass transfer parameters in protein chromatography using artificial neural networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Gang; Briskot, Till; Hahn, Tobias; Baumann, Pascal; Hubbuch, Jürgen

    2017-03-03

    Mechanistic modeling has been repeatedly successfully applied in process development and control of protein chromatography. For each combination of adsorbate and adsorbent, the mechanistic models have to be calibrated. Some of the model parameters, such as system characteristics, can be determined reliably by applying well-established experimental methods, whereas others cannot be measured directly. In common practice of protein chromatography modeling, these parameters are identified by applying time-consuming methods such as frontal analysis combined with gradient experiments, curve-fitting, or combined Yamamoto approach. For new components in the chromatographic system, these traditional calibration approaches require to be conducted repeatedly. In the presented work, a novel method for the calibration of mechanistic models based on artificial neural network (ANN) modeling was applied. An in silico screening of possible model parameter combinations was performed to generate learning material for the ANN model. Once the ANN model was trained to recognize chromatograms and to respond with the corresponding model parameter set, it was used to calibrate the mechanistic model from measured chromatograms. The ANN model's capability of parameter estimation was tested by predicting gradient elution chromatograms. The time-consuming model parameter estimation process itself could be reduced down to milliseconds. The functionality of the method was successfully demonstrated in a study with the calibration of the transport-dispersive model (TDM) and the stoichiometric displacement model (SDM) for a protein mixture. Copyright © 2017 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. Autoantibodies against homocysteinylated protein in a mouse model of folate deficiency-induced neural tube defects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Denny, Kerina J; Kelly, Christina F; Kumar, Vinod; Witham, Katey L; Cabrera, Robert M; Finnell, Richard H; Taylor, Stephen M; Jeanes, Angela; Woodruff, Trent M

    2016-03-01

    Periconceptional supplementation with folic acid results in a significant reduction in the incidence of neural tube defects (NTDs). Nonetheless, NTDs remain a leading cause of perinatal morbidity and mortality worldwide, and the mechanism(s) by which folate exerts its protective effects are unknown. Homocysteine is an amino acid that accumulates under conditions of folate-deficiency, and is suggested as a risk factor for NTDs. One proposed mechanism of homocysteine toxicity is its accumulation into proteins in a process termed homocysteinylation. Herein, we used a folate-deficient diet in pregnant mice to demonstrate that there is: (i) a significant inverse correlation between maternal serum folate levels and serum homocysteine; (ii) a significant positive correlation between serum homocysteine levels and titers of autoantibodies against homocysteinylated protein; and (iii) a significant increase in congenital malformations and NTDs in mice deficient in serum folate. Furthermore, in mice administered the folate-deplete diet before conception, supplementation with folic acid during the gestational period completely rescued the embryos from congenital defects, and resulted in homocysteinylated protein titers at term that are comparable to that of mice administered a folate-replete diet throughout both the pre- and postconception period. These results demonstrate that a low-folate diet that induces NTDs also increases protein homocysteinylation and the subsequent generation of autoantibodies against homocysteinylated proteins. These data support the hypotheses that homocysteinylation results in neo-self antigen formation under conditions of maternal folate deficiency, and that this process is reversible with folic acid supplementation. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  6. Critical appraisal of pathology transmission in the α-synuclein fibril model of Lewy body disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nouraei, Negin; Mason, Daniel M; Miner, Kristin M; Carcella, Michael A; Bhatia, Tarun N; Dumm, Benjamin K; Soni, Dishaben; Johnson, David A; Luk, Kelvin C; Leak, Rehana K

    2018-01-01

    exhibited somal α-synuclein+ inclusions as well as retrogradely labeled FluoroGold+ somata. However, some afferent brain regions displayed dense retrograde FluoroGold label and no α-synuclein+ inclusions (e.g. medial septum/diagonal band), supporting the selective vulnerability hypothesis. The pattern of inclusions on the contralateral side was consistent with specific spread through commissural connections (e.g. stratum pyramidale of CA3), but again, not all commissural projections exhibited α-synucleinopathy (e.g. hilar mossy cells). The topographical extent of inclusions is displayed here in high-resolution images that afford viewers a rich opportunity to dissect the potential spread of pathology through neural circuitry. Finally, the results of this expository study were leveraged to highlight the challenges and limitations of working with preformed α-synuclein fibrils. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Protein kinase C substrate phosphorylation in relation to neural growth and synaptic plasticity: a common molecular mechanism underlying multiple neural functions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nelson, R.B.

    1987-01-01

    In these studies, we addressed the issues of: (1) whether neural protein kinase C (PKC) substrates might be altered in phosphorylation following induction of long-term potentiation (LTP); (2) whether PKC substrate phosphorylation might be specifically related to a model of neural plasticity other than LTP; and (3) whether the PKC substrates implicated in adult synaptic plasticity might be present in axonal growth cones given reports that high concentrations of PKC are found in these structures. Using quantitative analysis of multiple two-dimensional gels, we found that the two major substrates of exogenous purified PKC in adult hippocampal homogenate are both directly correlated to persistence of LTP. In rhesus monkey cerebral cortex, the proteins corresponding to protein F1 and 80k displayed topographical gradients in /sup 32/P-incorporation along the occipitotemporal visual processing pathway. The phosphorylation of both proteins was 11- and 14-fold higher, respectively, in temporal regions of this pathway implicated in the storage of visual representations, than in occipital regions, which do not appear to directly participate in visual memory functions.

  8. DNCON2: Improved protein contact prediction using two-level deep convolutional neural networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adhikari, Badri; Hou, Jie; Cheng, Jianlin

    2017-12-08

    Significant improvements in the prediction of protein residue-residue contacts are observed in the recent years. These contacts, predicted using a variety of coevolution-based and machine learning methods, are the key contributors to the recent progress in ab initio protein structure prediction, as demonstrated in the recent CASP experiments. Continuing the development of new methods to reliably predict contact maps is essential to further improve ab initio structure prediction. In this paper we discuss DNCON2, an improved protein contact map predictor based on two-level deep convolutional neural networks. It consists of six convolutional neural networks - the first five predict contacts at 6, 7.5, 8, 8.5, and 10 Å distance thresholds, and the last one uses these five predictions as additional features to predict final contact maps. On the free-modeling datasets in CASP10, 11, and 12 experiments, DNCON2 achieves mean precisions of 35%, 50%, and 53.4%, respectively, higher than 30.6% by MetaPSICOV on CASP10 dataset, 34% by MetaPSICOV on CASP11 dataset, and 46.3% by Raptor-X on CASP12 dataset, when top L/5 long-range contacts are evaluated. We attribute the improved performance of DNCON2 to the inclusion of short- and medium-range contacts into training, two-level approach to prediction, use of the state-of-the-art optimization and activation functions, and a novel deep learning architecture that allows each filter in a convolutional layer to access all the input features of a protein of arbitrary length. The web server of DNCON2 is at http://sysbio.rnet.missouri.edu/dncon2/ where training and testing datasets as well as the predictions for CASP10, 11, and 12 free-modeling datasets can also be downloaded. Its source code is available at https://github.com/multicom-toolbox/DNCON2/. chengji@missouri.edu. Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online.

  9. Drug Targeting of alpha-Synuclein Oligomerization in Synucleinopathies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Outeiro, Tiago Fleming; Kazantsev, Aleksey

    2008-04-10

    The heterogeneity of symptoms and disease progression observed in synucleinopathies, of which Parkinson's disease (PD) is the most common representative, poses large problems for the discovery of novel therapeutics. The molecular basis for pathology is currently unclear, both in familial and in sporadic cases. While the therapeutic effects of L-DOPA and dopamine receptor agonists constitute good options for symptomatic treatment in PD, the development of neuroprotective and/or neurorestorative treatments for PD and other synucleinopathies faces significant challenges due to the poor knowledge of the putative targets. Recent experimental evidence strongly suggests a central role for neurotoxic alpha-synuclein oligomeric species in neurodegeneration. The events leading to protein oligomerization, as well as the oligomeric species themselves, are likely amenable to modulation by small molecules, which are beginning to emerge in high throughput compound screens in a variety of model organisms. The therapeutic potential of small molecule modulators of oligomer formation demands further exploration and validation in cellular and animal disease models in order to accelerate human drug development.

  10. Mechanisms in dominant parkinsonism: The toxic triangle of LRRK2, alpha-synuclein, and tau.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taymans, Jean-Marc; Cookson, Mark R

    2010-03-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is generally sporadic but a number of genetic diseases have parkinsonism as a clinical feature. Two dominant genes, alpha-synuclein (SNCA) and leucine-rich repeat kinase 2 (LRRK2), are important for understanding inherited and sporadic PD. SNCA is a major component of pathologic inclusions termed Lewy bodies found in PD. LRRK2 is found in a significant proportion of PD cases. These two proteins may be linked as most LRRK2 PD cases have SNCA-positive Lewy bodies. Mutations in both proteins are associated with toxic effects in model systems although mechanisms are unclear. LRRK2 is an intracellular signaling protein possessing both GTPase and kinase activities that may contribute to pathogenicity. A third protein, tau, is implicated as a risk factor for PD. We discuss the potential relationship between these genes and suggest a model for PD pathogenesis where LRRK2 is upstream of pathogenic effects through SNCA, tau, or both proteins.

  11. Aggregation of alpha-synuclein by a coarse-grained Monte Carlo simulation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farmer, Barry; Pandey, Ras

    Alpha-synuclein, an intrinsic protein abundant in neurons, is believed to be a major cause of neurodegenerative diseases (e.g. Alzheimer, Parkinson's disease). Abnormal aggregation of ASN leads to Lewy bodies with specific morphologies. We investigate the self-organizing structures in a crowded environment of ASN proteins by a coarse-grained Monte Carlo simulation. ASN is a chain of 140 residues. Structure detail of residues is neglected but its specificity is captured via unique knowledge-based residue-residue interactions. Large-scale simulations are performed to analyze a number local and global physical quantities (e.g. mobility profile, contact map, radius of gyration, structure factor) as a function of temperature and protein concentration. Trend in multi-scale structural variations of the protein in a crowded environment is compared with that of a free protein chain.

  12. Conformational equilibria in monomeric alpha-synuclein at the single molecule level

    CERN Document Server

    Sandal, Massimo; Tessari, Isabella; Mammi, Stefano; Bergantino, Elisabetta; Musiani, Francesco; Brucale, Marco; Bubacco, Luigi; Samori', Bruno

    2007-01-01

    Natively unstructured proteins defy the classical "one sequence-one structure" paradigm of protein science. Monomers of these proteins in pathological conditions can aggregate in the cell, a process that underlies socially relevant neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer and Parkinson. A full comprehension of the formation and structure of the so-called misfolded intermediates from which the aggregated states ensue is still lacking. We characterized the folding and the conformational diversity of alpha-synuclein (aSyn), a natively unstructured protein involved in Parkinson disease, by mechanically stretching single molecules of this protein and recording their mechanical properties. These experiments permitted us to directly observe directly and quantify three main classes of conformations that, under in vitro physiological conditions, exist simultaneously in the aSyn sample, including disordered and "beta-like" structures. We found that this class of "beta-like" structures is directly related to aSyn ag...

  13. Prion-like spreading of pathological α-synuclein in brain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Masuda-Suzukake, Masami; Nonaka, Takashi; Hosokawa, Masato; Oikawa, Takayuki; Arai, Tetsuaki; Akiyama, Haruhiko; Mann, David M. A.

    2013-01-01

    α-Synuclein is the major component of filamentous inclusions that constitute the defining characteristic of neurodegenerative α-synucleinopathies. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying α-synuclein accumulation and spread are unclear. Here we show that intracerebral injections of sarkosyl-insoluble α-synuclein from brains of patients with dementia with Lewy bodies induced hyperphosphorylated α-synuclein pathology in wild-type mice. Furthermore, injection of fibrils of recombinant human and mouse α-synuclein efficiently induced similar α-synuclein pathologies in wild-type mice. C57BL/6J mice injected with α-synuclein fibrils developed abundant Lewy body/Lewy neurite-like pathology, whereas mice injected with soluble α-synuclein did not. Immunoblot analysis demonstrated that endogenous mouse α-synuclein started to accumulate 3 months after inoculation, while injected human α-synuclein fibrils disappeared in about a week. These results indicate that α-synuclein fibrils have prion-like properties and inoculation into wild-type brain induces α-synuclein pathology in vivo. This is a new mouse model of sporadic α-synucleinopathy and should be useful for elucidating progression mechanisms and evaluating disease-modifying therapy. PMID:23466394

  14. Root cause investigation of deviations in protein chromatography based on mechanistic models and artificial neural networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Gang; Briskot, Till; Hahn, Tobias; Baumann, Pascal; Hubbuch, Jürgen

    2017-09-15

    In protein chromatography, process variations, such as aging of column or process errors, can result in deviations of the product and impurity levels. Consequently, the process performance described by purity, yield, or production rate may decrease. Based on visual inspection of the UV signal, it is hard to identify the source of the error and almost unfeasible to determine the quantity of deviation. The problem becomes even more pronounced, if multiple root causes of the deviation are interconnected and lead to an observable deviation. In the presented work, a novel method based on the combination of mechanistic chromatography models and the artificial neural networks is suggested to solve this problem. In a case study using a model protein mixture, the determination of deviations in column capacity and elution gradient length was shown. Maximal errors of 1.5% and 4.90% for the prediction of deviation in column capacity and elution gradient length respectively demonstrated the capability of this method for root cause investigation. Copyright © 2017 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  15. G-protein-coupled receptors and localized signaling in the primary cilium during ventral neural tube patterning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hwang, Sun-Hee; Mukhopadhyay, Saikat

    2015-01-01

    The primary cilium is critical in sonic hedgehog (Shh)-dependent ventral patterning of the vertebrate neural tube. Most mutants that cause disruption of the cilium result in decreased Shh signaling in the neural tube. In contrast, mutations in the intraflagellar complex A (IFT-A) and the tubby family protein, Tulp3, result in increased Shh signaling in the neural tube. Proteomic analysis of Tulp3-binding proteins first pointed to the role of the IFT-A complex in trafficking Tulp3 into the cilia. Tulp3 directs trafficking of rhodopsin family G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) to the cilia, suggesting the role of a GPCR in mediating the paradoxical effects of the Tulp3/IFT-A complex in causing increased Shh signaling. Gpr161 has recently been identified as a Tulp3/IFT-A-regulated GPCR that localizes to the primary cilium. A null knock-out mouse model of Gpr161 phenocopies Tulp3 and IFT-A mutants, and causes increased Shh signaling throughout the neural tube. In the absence of Shh, the bifunctional Gli transcription factors are proteolytically processed into repressor forms in a protein kinase A (PKA) -dependent and cilium-dependent manner. Gpr161 activity results in increased cAMP levels in a Gαs -coupled manner, and determines processing of Gli3. Shh signaling also results in removal of Gpr161 from the cilia, suggesting that Gpr161 functions in a positive feedback loop in the Shh pathway. As PKA-null and Gαs mutant embryos also exhibit increased Shh signaling in the neural tube, Gpr161 is a strong candidate for a GPCR that regulates ciliary cAMP levels, and activates PKA in close proximity to the cilia. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  16. Increased intestinal permeability correlates with sigmoid mucosa alpha-synuclein staining and endotoxin exposure markers in early Parkinson's disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christopher B Forsyth

    Full Text Available Parkinson's disease (PD is the second most common neurodegenerative disorder of aging. The pathological hallmark of PD is neuronal inclusions termed Lewy bodies whose main component is alpha-synuclein protein. The finding of these Lewy bodies in the intestinal enteric nerves led to the hypothesis that the intestine might be an early site of PD disease in response to an environmental toxin or pathogen. One potential mechanism for environmental toxin(s and proinflammatory luminal products to gain access to mucosal neuronal tissue and promote oxidative stress is compromised intestinal barrier integrity. However, the role of intestinal permeability in PD has never been tested. We hypothesized that PD subjects might exhibit increased intestinal permeability to proinflammatory bacterial products in the intestine. To test our hypothesis we evaluated intestinal permeability in subjects newly diagnosed with PD and compared their values to healthy subjects. In addition, we obtained intestinal biopsies from both groups and used immunohistochemistry to assess bacterial translocation, nitrotyrosine (oxidative stress, and alpha-synuclein. We also evaluated serum markers of endotoxin exposure including LPS binding protein (LBP. Our data show that our PD subjects exhibit significantly greater intestinal permeability (gut leakiness than controls. In addition, this intestinal hyperpermeability significantly correlated with increased intestinal mucosa staining for E. coli bacteria, nitrotyrosine, and alpha-synuclein as well as serum LBP levels in PD subjects. These data represent not only the first demonstration of abnormal intestinal permeability in PD subjects but also the first correlation of increased intestinal permeability in PD with intestinal alpha-synuclein (the hallmark of PD, as well as staining for gram negative bacteria and tissue oxidative stress. Our study may thus shed new light on PD pathogenesis as well as provide a new method for earlier

  17. MHC class I protein is expressed by neurons and neural progenitors in mid-gestation mouse brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chacon, Marcelo A; Boulanger, Lisa M

    2013-01-01

    Proteins of the major histocompatibility complex class I (MHCI) are known for their role in the vertebrate adaptive immune response, and are required for normal postnatal brain development and plasticity. However, it remains unknown if MHCI proteins are present in the mammalian brain before birth. Here, we show that MHCI proteins are widely expressed in the developing mouse central nervous system at mid-gestation (E9.5-10.5). MHCI is strongly expressed in several regions of the prenatal brain, including the neuroepithelium and olfactory placode. MHCI is expressed by neural progenitors at these ages, as identified by co-expression in cells positive for neuron-specific class III β-tubulin (Tuj1) or for Pax6, a marker of neural progenitors in the dorsal neuroepithelium. MHCI is also co-expressed with nestin, a marker of neural stem/progenitor cells, in olfactory placode, but the co-localization is less extensive in other regions. MHCI is detected in the small population of post-mitotic neurons that are present at this early stage of brain development, as identified by co-expression in cells positive for neuronal microtubule-associated protein-2 (MAP2). Thus MHCI protein is expressed during the earliest stages of neuronal differentiation in the mammalian brain. MHCI expression in neurons and neural progenitors at mid-gestation, prior to the maturation of the adaptive immune system, is consistent with MHCI performing non-immune functions in prenatal brain development. These results raise the possibility that disruption of the levels and/or patterns of MHCI expression in the prenatal brain could contribute to the pathogenesis of neurodevelopmental disorders. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. Neural Network Enhanced Structure Determination of Osteoporosis, Immune System, and Radiation Repair Proteins Project

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The proposed innovation will utilize self learning neural network technology to determine the structure of osteoporosis, immune system disease, and excess radiation...

  19. Expression of human A53T alpha-synuclein in the rat substantia nigra using a novel AAV1/2 vector produces a rapidly evolving pathology with protein aggregation, dystrophic neurite architecture and nigrostriatal degeneration with potential to model the pathology of Parkinson's disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sun Xuan

    2010-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The pathological hallmarks of Parkinson's disease (PD include the presence of alpha-synuclein (α-syn rich Lewy bodies and neurites and the loss of dopaminergic (DA neurons of the substantia nigra (SN. Animal models of PD based on viral vector-mediated over-expression of α-syn have been developed and show evidence of DA toxicity to varying degrees depending on the type of virus used, its concentration, and the serotype of vector employed. To date these models have been variable, difficult to reproduce, and slow in their evolution to achieve a desired phenotype, hindering their use as a model for testing novel therapeutics. To address these issues we have taken a novel vector in this context, that can be prepared in high titer and which possesses an ability to produce neuronally-directed expression, with expression dynamics optimised to provide a rapid rise in gene product expression. Thus, in the current study, we have used a high titer chimeric AAV1/2 vector, to express human A53T α-syn, an empty vector control (EV, or green fluorescent protein (GFP, the latter to control for the possibility that high levels of protein in themselves might contribute to damage. Results We show that following a single 2 μl injection into the rat SN there is near complete coverage of the structure and expression of A53T α-syn or GFP appears throughout the striatum. Within 3 weeks of SN delivery of their respective vectors, aggregations of insoluble α-syn were observed in SN DA neurons. The numbers of DA neurons in the SN were significantly reduced by expression of A53T α-syn (52%, and to a lesser extent by GFP (24%, compared to EV controls (both P P Conclusions In the current implementation of the model, we recapitulate the primary pathological hallmarks of PD, although a proportion of the SN damage may relate to general protein overload and may not be specific for A53T α-syn. Future studies will thus be required to optimise the dose of

  20. Expression of human A53T alpha-synuclein in the rat substantia nigra using a novel AAV1/2 vector produces a rapidly evolving pathology with protein aggregation, dystrophic neurite architecture and nigrostriatal degeneration with potential to model the pathology of Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koprich, James B; Johnston, Tom H; Reyes, M Gabriela; Sun, Xuan; Brotchie, Jonathan M

    2010-10-28

    The pathological hallmarks of Parkinson's disease (PD) include the presence of alpha-synuclein (α-syn) rich Lewy bodies and neurites and the loss of dopaminergic (DA) neurons of the substantia nigra (SN). Animal models of PD based on viral vector-mediated over-expression of α-syn have been developed and show evidence of DA toxicity to varying degrees depending on the type of virus used, its concentration, and the serotype of vector employed. To date these models have been variable, difficult to reproduce, and slow in their evolution to achieve a desired phenotype, hindering their use as a model for testing novel therapeutics. To address these issues we have taken a novel vector in this context, that can be prepared in high titer and which possesses an ability to produce neuronally-directed expression, with expression dynamics optimised to provide a rapid rise in gene product expression. Thus, in the current study, we have used a high titer chimeric AAV1/2 vector, to express human A53T α-syn, an empty vector control (EV), or green fluorescent protein (GFP), the latter to control for the possibility that high levels of protein in themselves might contribute to damage. We show that following a single 2 μl injection into the rat SN there is near complete coverage of the structure and expression of A53T α-syn or GFP appears throughout the striatum. Within 3 weeks of SN delivery of their respective vectors, aggregations of insoluble α-syn were observed in SN DA neurons. The numbers of DA neurons in the SN were significantly reduced by expression of A53T α-syn (52%), and to a lesser extent by GFP (24%), compared to EV controls (both P AAV1/2-A53T α-syn injection produced dystrophic neurites and a significant reduction in tyrosine hydroxylase levels (by 53%, P AAV1/2-GFP condition. In the current implementation of the model, we recapitulate the primary pathological hallmarks of PD, although a proportion of the SN damage may relate to general protein overload and

  1. Localizing Protein in 3D Neural Stem Cell Culture: a Hybrid Visualization Methodology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fai, Stephen; Bennett, Steffany A.L.

    2010-01-01

    The importance of 3-dimensional (3D) topography in influencing neural stem and progenitor cell (NPC) phenotype is widely acknowledged yet challenging to study. When dissociated from embryonic or post-natal brain, single NPCs will proliferate in suspension to form neurospheres. Daughter cells within these cultures spontaneously adopt distinct developmental lineages (neurons, oligodendrocytes, and astrocytes) over the course of expansion despite being exposed to the same extracellular milieu. This progression recapitulates many of the stages observed over the course of neurogenesis and gliogenesis in post-natal brain and is often used to study basic NPC biology within a controlled environment. Assessing the full impact of 3D topography and cellular positioning within these cultures on NPC fate is, however, difficult. To localize target proteins and identify NPC lineages by immunocytochemistry, free-floating neurospheres must be plated on a substrate or serially sectioned. This processing is required to ensure equivalent cell permeabilization and antibody access throughout the sphere. As a result, 2D epifluorescent images of cryosections or confocal reconstructions of 3D Z-stacks can only provide spatial information about cell position within discrete physical or digital 3D slices and do not visualize cellular position in the intact sphere. Here, to reiterate the topography of the neurosphere culture and permit spatial analysis of protein expression throughout the entire culture, we present a protocol for isolation, expansion, and serial sectioning of post-natal hippocampal neurospheres suitable for epifluorescent or confocal immunodetection of target proteins. Connexin29 (Cx29) is analyzed as an example. Next, using a hybrid of graphic editing and 3D modelling softwares rigorously applied to maintain biological detail, we describe how to re-assemble the 3D structural positioning of these images and digitally map labelled cells within the complete neurosphere. This

  2. Sequence and structural features of carbohydrate binding in proteins and assessment of predictability using a neural network

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ahmad Shandar

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Protein-Carbohydrate interactions are crucial in many biological processes with implications to drug targeting and gene expression. Nature of protein-carbohydrate interactions may be studied at individual residue level by analyzing local sequence and structure environments in binding regions in comparison to non-binding regions, which provide an inherent control for such analyses. With an ultimate aim of predicting binding sites from sequence and structure, overall statistics of binding regions needs to be compiled. Sequence-based predictions of binding sites have been successfully applied to DNA-binding proteins in our earlier works. We aim to apply similar analysis to carbohydrate binding proteins. However, due to a relatively much smaller region of proteins taking part in such interactions, the methodology and results are significantly different. A comparison of protein-carbohydrate complexes has also been made with other protein-ligand complexes. Results We have compiled statistics of amino acid compositions in binding versus non-binding regions- general as well as in each different secondary structure conformation. Binding propensities of each of the 20 residue types and their structure features such as solvent accessibility, packing density and secondary structure have been calculated to assess their predisposition to carbohydrate interactions. Finally, evolutionary profiles of amino acid sequences have been used to predict binding sites using a neural network. Another set of neural networks was trained using information from single sequences and the prediction performance from the evolutionary profiles and single sequences were compared. Best of the neural network based prediction could achieve an 87% sensitivity of prediction at 23% specificity for all carbohydrate-binding sites, using evolutionary information. Single sequences gave 68% sensitivity and 55% specificity for the same data set. Sensitivity and specificity

  3. Like prions: the propagation of aggregated tau and α-synuclein in neurodegeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goedert, Michel; Masuda-Suzukake, Masami; Falcon, Benjamin

    2017-02-01

    The abnormal aggregation of a small number of known proteins underlies the most common human neurodegenerative diseases. In tauopathies and synucleinopathies, the normally soluble intracellular proteins tau and α-synuclein become insoluble and filamentous. In recent years, non-cell autonomous mechanisms of aggregate formation have come to the fore, suggesting that nucleation-dependent aggregation may occur in a localized fashion in human tauopathies and synucleinopathies, followed by seed-dependent propagation. There is a long prodromal phase between the formation of protein aggregates and the appearance of the first clinical symptoms, which manifest only after extensive propagation, opening novel therapeutic avenues. © The Author (2016). Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Guarantors of Brain. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  4. A Role for Neuronal Alpha-Synuclein in Gastrointestinal Immunity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stolzenberg, Ethan; Berry, Deborah; Yang, De; Lee, Ernest Y; Kroemer, Alexander; Kaufman, Stuart; Wong, Gerard C L; Oppenheim, Joost J; Sen, Supti; Fishbein, Thomas; Bax, Ad; Harris, Brent; Barbut, Denise; Zasloff, Michael A

    2017-01-01

    Alpha-synuclein (αS) is a nerve cell protein associated with Parkinson disease (PD). Accumulation of αS within the enteric nervous system (ENS) and its traffic from the gut to the brain are implicated in the pathogenesis and progression of PD. αS has no known function in humans and the reason for its accumulation within the ENS is unknown. Several recent studies conducted in rodents have linked αS to immune cell activation in the central nervous system. We hypothesized that αS in the ENS might play a role in the innate immune defenses of the human gastrointestinal (GI) tract. We immunostained endoscopic biopsies for αS from children with documented gastric and duodenal inflammation and intestinal allograft recipients who contracted norovirus. To determine whether αS exhibited immune-modulatory activity, we examined whether human αS induced leukocyte migration and dendritic cell maturation. We showed that the expression of αS in the enteric neurites of the upper GI tract of pediatric patients positively correlated with the degree of acute and chronic inflammation in the intestinal wall. In intestinal allograft subjects who were closely monitored for infection, expression of αS was induced during norovirus infection. We also demonstrated that both monomeric and oligomeric αS have potent chemoattractant activity, causing the migration of neutrophils and monocytes dependent on the presence of the integrin subunit, CD11b, and that both forms of αS stimulate dendritic cell maturation. These findings strongly suggest that αS is expressed within the human ENS to direct intestinal inflammation and implicates common GI infections in the pathogenesis of PD. © 2017 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  5. Insights on the interaction of alpha-synuclein and metals in the pathophysiology of Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carboni, Eleonora; Lingor, Paul

    2015-03-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is the most frequent neurodegenerative movement disorder with severe consequences for patients and caregivers. In the last twenty years of research, alpha-synuclein (αSyn) emerged as a main regulator of PD pathology, both in genetic and sporadic cases. Most importantly, oligomeric and aggregated species of αSyn appear to be pathogenic. In addition, transition metals have been implicated in the disease pathogenesis of PD already for decades. The interaction of metals with αSyn has been shown to trigger the aggregation of this protein. Furthermore, metals can exert cellular toxicity due to their red-ox potential, which leads to the formation of reactive oxygen species, exacerbating the noxious effects of αSyn. Here we give a brief overview on αSyn pathology and the role of metals in the brain and then address in more detail the interaction of αSyn with three disease-relevant transition metals, iron (Fe), copper (Cu) and manganese (Mn). We also discuss possible therapeutic approaches for PD, which are based on these interactions, e.g. chelation therapy and anti-oxidative treatments. Not all mechanisms of alpha-synuclein-mediated toxicity and roles of metals are sufficiently understood. We discuss several aspects, which deserve further investigation in order to shed light on the etiopathology of the disease and enable the development of more specific, innovative drugs for the treatment of PD and other synucleinopathies.

  6. Nascent histamine induces α-synuclein and caspase-3 on human cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Caro-Astorga, Joaquín; Fajardo, Ignacio; Ruiz-Pérez, María Victoria; Sánchez-Jiménez, Francisca; Urdiales, José Luis, E-mail: jlurdial@uma.es

    2014-09-05

    Highlights: • Nascent histamine alters cyclin expression pattern. • Nascent histamine increases expression of α-synuclein. • Nascent histamine activates caspase-3. - Abstract: Histamine (Hia) is the most multifunctional biogenic amine. It is synthetized by histidine decarboxylase (HDC) in a reduced set of mammalian cell types. Mast cells and histaminergic neurons store Hia in specialized organelles until the amine is extruded by exocytosis; however, other immune and cancer cells are able to produce but not store Hia. The intracellular effects of Hia are still not well characterized, in spite of its physiopathological relevance. Multiple functional relationships exist among Hia metabolism/signaling elements and those of other biogenic amines, including growth-related polyamines. Previously, we obtained the first insights for an inhibitory effect of newly synthetized Hia on both growth-related polyamine biosynthesis and cell cycle progression of non-fully differentiated mammalian cells. In this work, we describe progress in this line. HEK293 cells were transfected to express active and inactive versions of GFP-human HDC fusion proteins and, after cell sorting by flow cytometry, the relative expression of a large number of proteins associated with cell signaling were measured using an antibody microarray. Experimental results were analyzed in terms of protein–protein and functional interaction networks. Expression of active HDC induced a cell cycle arrest through the alteration of the levels of several proteins such as cyclin D1, cdk6, cdk7 and cyclin A. Regulation of α-synuclein and caspase-3 was also observed. The analyses provide new clues on the molecular mechanisms underlying the regulatory effects of intracellular newly synthetized Hia on cell proliferation/survival, cell trafficking and protein turnover. This information is especially interesting for emergent and orphan immune and neuroinflammatory diseases.

  7. The inhibitory effect of pyrroloquinoline quinone on the amyloid formation and cytotoxicity of truncated alpha-synuclein

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kobayashi Natsuki

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Parkinson's disease (PD involves the selective damage of dopaminergic neuron cells resulting from the accumulation and fibril formation of alpha-synuclein. Recently, it has been shown that not only full-length alpha-synuclein, but also C-terminal truncated forms exist in the normal brain, as well as Lewy bodies, which are cytoplasmic inclusions in PD. It is known that truncated alpha-synuclein has a much higher ability to aggregate and fibrillate than full-length alpha-synuclein. Since the fibrils and precursor oligomers of alpha-synuclein are cytotoxic to the neuron, inhibitors that prevent the formation of oligomers and/or fibrils might open the way to a novel therapeutic approach to PD. However, no inhibitor for truncated alpha-synuclein has been reported yet. Results In this study, we first characterized the aggregation and cytotoxicity of C-truncated alpha-synuclein119 and alpha-synuclein133 which have been found in both the normal and the pathogenic brain. Alpha-synuclein119 aggregated more rapidly and enhanced significantly the fibril formation of alpha-synuclein. Although both of alpha-synuclein119 and alpha-synuclein133 showed a high cytotoxicity, alpha-synuclein133 showed a similar aggregation with full-length alpha-synuclein and no acceleration effect. We showed that PQQ dramatically inhibits the fibril formation of C-terminal truncated alpha-synuclein110119, and 133 as well as the mixtures of full-length alpha-synuclein with these truncated variants. Moreover, PQQ decreases the cytotoxicity of truncated alpha-synuclein. Conclusions Our results demonstrate that PQQ inhibits the amyloid fibril formation and cytotoxicity of the C-truncated alpha-synuclein variants. We believe that PQQ is a strong candidate for a reagent compound in the treatment of PD.

  8. Transfer functions for protein signal transduction: application to a model of striatal neural plasticity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gabriele Scheler

    Full Text Available We present a novel formulation for biochemical reaction networks in the context of protein signal transduction. The model consists of input-output transfer functions, which are derived from differential equations, using stable equilibria. We select a set of "source" species, which are interpreted as input signals. Signals are transmitted to all other species in the system (the "target" species with a specific delay and with a specific transmission strength. The delay is computed as the maximal reaction time until a stable equilibrium for the target species is reached, in the context of all other reactions in the system. The transmission strength is the concentration change of the target species. The computed input-output transfer functions can be stored in a matrix, fitted with parameters, and even recalled to build dynamical models on the basis of state changes. By separating the temporal and the magnitudinal domain we can greatly simplify the computational model, circumventing typical problems of complex dynamical systems. The transfer function transformation of biochemical reaction systems can be applied to mass-action kinetic models of signal transduction. The paper shows that this approach yields significant novel insights while remaining a fully testable and executable dynamical model for signal transduction. In particular we can deconstruct the complex system into local transfer functions between individual species. As an example, we examine modularity and signal integration using a published model of striatal neural plasticity. The modularizations that emerge correspond to a known biological distinction between calcium-dependent and cAMP-dependent pathways. Remarkably, we found that overall interconnectedness depends on the magnitude of inputs, with higher connectivity at low input concentrations and significant modularization at moderate to high input concentrations. This general result, which directly follows from the properties of

  9. N-Terminal acetylation is critical for forming α-helical oligomer of α-synuclein.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trexler, Adam J; Rhoades, Elizabeth

    2012-05-01

    The aggregation of the protein α-synuclein (AS) is critical to the pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease. Although generally described as an unstructured monomer, recent evidence suggests that the native form of AS may be an α-helical tetramer which resists aggregation. Here, we show that N-terminal acetylation in combination with a mild purification protocol results in an oligomeric form of AS with partial α-helical structure. N-terminal acetylation of AS could have important implications for both the native and pathological structures and functions of AS. Through our demonstration of a recombinant expression system, our results represent an important step toward biochemical and biophysical characterization of this potentially important form of AS. Copyright © 2012 The Protein Society.

  10. Protein radial distribution function (P-RDF) and Bayesian-Regularized Genetic Neural Networks for modeling protein conformational stability: chymotrypsin inhibitor 2 mutants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernández, Michael; Caballero, Julio; Fernández, Leyden; Abreu, José Ignacio; Garriga, Miguel

    2007-11-01

    Development of novel computational approaches for modeling protein properties is a main goal in applied Proteomics. In this work, we reported the extension of the radial distribution function (RDF) scores formalism to proteins for encoding 3D structural information with modeling purposes. Protein-RDF (P-RDF) scores measure spherical distributions on protein 3D structure of 48 amino acids/residues properties selected from the AAindex data base. P-RDF scores were tested for building predictive models of the change of thermal unfolding Gibbs free energy change (DeltaDeltaG) of chymotrypsin inhibitor 2 upon mutations. In this sense, an ensemble of Bayesian-Regularized Genetic Neural Networks (BRGNNs) yielded an optimum nonlinear model for the conformational stability. The ensemble predictor described about 84% and 70% variance of the data in training and test sets, respectively.

  11. Inhibiting α-synuclein oligomerization by stable cell-penetrating β-synuclein fragments recovers phenotype of Parkinson's disease model flies.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ronit Shaltiel-Karyo

    Full Text Available The intracellular oligomerization of α-synuclein is associated with Parkinson's disease and appears to be an important target for disease-modifying treatment. Yet, to date, there is no specific inhibitor for this aggregation process. Using unbiased systematic peptide array analysis, we identified molecular interaction domains within the β-synuclein polypeptide that specifically binds α-synuclein. Adding such peptide fragments to α-synuclein significantly reduced both amyloid fibrils and soluble oligomer formation in vitro. A retro-inverso analogue of the best peptide inhibitor was designed to develop the identified molecular recognition module into a drug candidate. While this peptide shows indistinguishable activity as compared to the native peptide, it is stable in mouse serum and penetrates α-synuclein over-expressing cells. The interaction interface between the D-amino acid peptide and α-synuclein was mapped by Nuclear Magnetic Resonance spectroscopy. Finally, administering the retro-inverso peptide to a Drosophila model expressing mutant A53T α-synuclein in the nervous system, resulted in a significant recovery of the behavioral abnormalities of the treated flies and in a significant reduction in α-synuclein accumulation in the brains of the flies. The engineered retro-inverso peptide can serve as a lead for developing a novel class of therapeutic agents to treat Parkinson's disease.

  12. Expression of the synaptic vesicle proteins VAMPs/synaptobrevins 1 and 2 in non-neural tissues

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ralston, E; Beushausen, S; Ploug, Thorkil

    1994-01-01

    for Vp/Syb 2 detected a protein in the endoplasmic reticulum-Golgi area of skeletal muscle. Thus Vp/Sybs 1 and 2 are not restricted to the nervous system but appear to be co-expressed with cellubrevin in many different tissues. This redundancy of Vp/Sybs in a single cell may be required to control......The VAMPs/synaptobrevins (Vp/Sybs) are small integral membrane proteins. Two isoforms, Vp/Syb 1 and Vp/Syb 2, are considered to be specific to neural tissue. They are associated with synaptic vesicles and are believed to play an important role in neurotransmitter release. A third isoform......, cellubrevin, has recently been found in non-neural tissues. We now report that the distribution of Vp/Syb 1 and Vp/Syb 2 is wider than previously thought. RNA transcripts for both Vp/Syb 1 and Vp/Syb 2 were found in rat skeletal muscle and in several other rat non-neural tissues, and antibodies specific...

  13. TFEB-mediated autophagy rescues midbrain dopamine neurons from α-synuclein toxicity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Decressac, Mickael; Mattsson, Bengt; Weikop, Pia

    2013-01-01

    The aggregation of α-synuclein plays a major role in Parkinson disease (PD) pathogenesis. Recent evidence suggests that defects in the autophagy-mediated clearance of α-synuclein contribute to the progressive loss of nigral dopamine neurons. Using an in vivo model of α-synuclein toxicity, we show...... that the PD-like neurodegenerative changes induced by excess cellular levels of α-synuclein in nigral dopamine neurons are closely linked to a progressive decline in markers of lysosome function, accompanied by cytoplasmic retention of transcription factor EB (TFEB), a major transcriptional regulator...... in both A9 and A10 dopamine neurons. Delayed activation of TFEB function through inhibition of mammalian target of rapamycin blocked α-synuclein induced neurodegeneration and further disease progression. The results provide a mechanistic link between α-synuclein toxicity and impaired TFEB function...

  14. Mechanistic study of the inhibitory activity of Geum urbanum extract against α-Synuclein fibrillation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lobbens, Eva Stephanie; Breydo, Leonid; Pedersen, Thomas Skamris

    2016-01-01

    available targeting stabilization of α-Synuclein in its native state. The aim of the present study was to investigate the inhibitory activity of an ethanolic extract of Geum urbanum against α-Synuclein fibrillation and examine the structural changes of α-Synuclein in the presence of the extract. The anti......-fibrillation and anti-aggregation activities of the plant extract were monitored by thioflavin T fibrillation assays and size exclusion chromatography, while structural changes were followed by circular dichroism, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, intrinsic fluorescence, small angle X-ray scattering and electron....... Based on the structural changes of α-Synuclein in the presence of extract, we propose that Geum urbanum delays α-Synuclein fibrillation either by reducing the fibrillation ability of one or more of the aggregation prone intermediates or by directing α-Synuclein aggregation towards a non-fibrillar state...

  15. Alpha-Synuclein Levels in Blood Plasma Decline with Healthy Aging

    OpenAIRE

    Koehler, Niklas K. U.; Elke Stransky; Mirjam Meyer; Susanne Gaertner; Mona Shing; Martina Schnaidt; Celej, Maria S.; Jovin, Thomas M.; Thomas Leyhe; Christoph Laske; Anil Batra; Gerhard Buchkremer; Andreas J Fallgatter; Dorothee Wernet; Elke Richartz-Salzburger

    2015-01-01

    There is unequivocal evidence that alpha-synuclein plays a pivotal pathophysiological role in neurodegenerative diseases, and in particular in synucleinopathies. These disorders present with a variable extent of cognitive impairment and alpha-synuclein is being explored as a biomarker in CSF, blood serum and plasma. Considering key events of aging that include proteostasis, alpha-synuclein may not only be useful as a marker for differential diagnosis but also for aging per se. To explore this...

  16. Running wheel exercise reduces α-synuclein aggregation and improves motor and cognitive function in a transgenic mouse model of Parkinson's disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wenbo Zhou

    Full Text Available Exercise has been recommended to improve motor function in Parkinson patients, but its value in altering progression of disease is unknown. In this study, we examined the neuroprotective effects of running wheel exercise in mice. In adult wild-type mice, one week of running wheel activity led to significantly increased DJ-1 protein concentrations in muscle and plasma. In DJ-1 knockout mice, running wheel performance was much slower and Rotarod performance was reduced, suggesting that DJ-1 protein is required for normal motor activity. To see if exercise can prevent abnormal protein deposition and behavioral decline in transgenic animals expressing a mutant human form of α-synuclein in all neurons, we set up running wheels in the cages of pre-symptomatic animals at 12 months old. Activity was monitored for a 3-month period. After 3 months, motor and cognitive performance on the Rotarod and Morris Water Maze were significantly better in running animals compared to control transgenic animals with locked running wheels. Biochemical analysis revealed that running mice had significantly higher DJ-1, Hsp70 and BDNF concentrations and had significantly less α-synuclein aggregation in brain compared to control mice. By contrast, plasma concentrations of α-synuclein were significantly higher in exercising mice compared to control mice. Our results suggest that exercise may slow the progression of Parkinson's disease by preventing abnormal protein aggregation in brain.

  17. Running wheel exercise reduces α-synuclein aggregation and improves motor and cognitive function in a transgenic mouse model of Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Wenbo; Barkow, Jessica Cummiskey; Freed, Curt R

    2017-01-01

    Exercise has been recommended to improve motor function in Parkinson patients, but its value in altering progression of disease is unknown. In this study, we examined the neuroprotective effects of running wheel exercise in mice. In adult wild-type mice, one week of running wheel activity led to significantly increased DJ-1 protein concentrations in muscle and plasma. In DJ-1 knockout mice, running wheel performance was much slower and Rotarod performance was reduced, suggesting that DJ-1 protein is required for normal motor activity. To see if exercise can prevent abnormal protein deposition and behavioral decline in transgenic animals expressing a mutant human form of α-synuclein in all neurons, we set up running wheels in the cages of pre-symptomatic animals at 12 months old. Activity was monitored for a 3-month period. After 3 months, motor and cognitive performance on the Rotarod and Morris Water Maze were significantly better in running animals compared to control transgenic animals with locked running wheels. Biochemical analysis revealed that running mice had significantly higher DJ-1, Hsp70 and BDNF concentrations and had significantly less α-synuclein aggregation in brain compared to control mice. By contrast, plasma concentrations of α-synuclein were significantly higher in exercising mice compared to control mice. Our results suggest that exercise may slow the progression of Parkinson's disease by preventing abnormal protein aggregation in brain.

  18. Mechanisms of α-Synuclein Induced Synaptopathy in Parkinson's Disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jessika C. Bridi

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Parkinson's disease (PD is characterized by intracellular inclusions of aggregated and misfolded α-Synuclein (α-Syn, and the loss of dopaminergic (DA neurons in the brain. The resulting motor abnormalities mark the progression of PD, while non-motor symptoms can already be identified during early, prodromal stages of disease. Recent studies provide evidence that during this early prodromal phase, synaptic and axonal abnormalities occur before the degenerative loss of neuronal cell bodies. These early phenotypes can be attributed to synaptic accumulation of toxic α-Syn. Under physiological conditions, α-Syn functions in its native conformation as a soluble monomer. However, PD patient brains are characterized by intracellular inclusions of insoluble fibrils. Yet, oligomers and protofibrils of α-Syn have been identified to be the most toxic species, with their accumulation at presynaptic terminals affecting several steps of neurotransmitter release. First, high levels of α-Syn alter the size of synaptic vesicle pools and impair their trafficking. Second, α-Syn overexpression can either misregulate or redistribute proteins of the presynaptic SNARE complex. This leads to deficient tethering, docking, priming and fusion of synaptic vesicles at the active zone (AZ. Third, α-Syn inclusions are found within the presynaptic AZ, accompanied by a decrease in AZ protein levels. Furthermore, α-Syn overexpression reduces the endocytic retrieval of synaptic vesicle membranes during vesicle recycling. These presynaptic alterations mediated by accumulation of α-Syn, together impair neurotransmitter exocytosis and neuronal communication. Although α-Syn is expressed throughout the brain and enriched at presynaptic terminals, DA neurons are the most vulnerable in PD, likely because α-Syn directly regulates dopamine levels. Indeed, evidence suggests that α-Syn is a negative modulator of dopamine by inhibiting enzymes responsible for its synthesis. In

  19. Combustion-derived nanoparticles, the neuroenteric system, cervical vagus, hyperphosphorylated alpha synuclein and tau in young Mexico City residents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calderón-Garcidueñas, Lilian; Reynoso-Robles, Rafael; Pérez-Guillé, Beatriz; Mukherjee, Partha S; Gónzalez-Maciel, Angélica

    2017-11-01

    Mexico City (MC) young residents are exposed to high levels of fine particulate matter (PM2.5), have high frontal concentrations of combustion-derived nanoparticles (CDNPs), accumulation of hyperphosphorylated aggregated α-synuclein (α-Syn) and early Parkinson's disease (PD). Swallowed CDNPs have easy access to epithelium and submucosa, damaging gastrointestinal (GI) barrier integrity and accessing the enteric nervous system (ENS). This study is focused on the ENS, vagus nerves and GI barrier in young MC v clean air controls. Electron microscopy of epithelial, endothelial and neural cells and immunoreactivity of stomach and vagus to phosphorylated ɑ-synuclein Ser129 and Hyperphosphorylated-Tau (Htau) were evaluated and CDNPs measured in ENS. CDNPs were abundant in erythrocytes, unmyelinated submucosal, perivascular and intramuscular nerve fibers, ganglionic neurons and vagus nerves and associated with organelle pathology. ɑSyn and Htau were present in 25/27 MC gastric,15/26 vagus and 18/27 gastric and 2/26 vagus samples respectively. We strongly suggest CDNPs are penetrating and damaging the GI barrier and reaching preganglionic parasympathetic fibers and the vagus nerve. This work highlights the potential role of CDNPs in the neuroenteric hyperphosphorylated ɑ-Syn and tau pathology as seen in Parkinson and Alzheimer's diseases. Highly oxidative, ubiquitous CDNPs constitute a biologically plausible path into Parkinson's and Alzheimer's pathogenesis. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. The Transgenic Overexpression of α-Synuclein and Not Its Related Pathology Associates with Complex I Inhibition*

    OpenAIRE

    Loeb, Virginie; Yakunin, Eugenia; Saada, Ann; Sharon, Ronit

    2010-01-01

    α-Synuclein (αS) is a protein involved in the cytopathology and genetics of Parkinson disease and is thought to affect mitochondrial complex I activity. Previous studies have shown that mitochondrial toxins and specifically inhibitors of complex I activity enhance αS pathogenesis. Here we show that αS overexpression specifically inhibits complex I activity in dopaminergic cells and in A53T αS transgenic mouse brains. Importantly, our results indicate that the inhibitory effect on complex I ac...

  1. An antiaggregation gene therapy strategy for Lewy body disease utilizing beta-synuclein lentivirus in a transgenic model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hashimoto, M; Rockenstein, E; Mante, M; Crews, L; Bar-On, P; Gage, F H; Marr, R; Masliah, E

    2004-12-01

    Current experimental gene therapy approaches for Parkinson's disease (PD) and dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB) include the use of viral vectors expressing antiapoptosis genes, neurotrophic factors and dopaminergic system enzymes. However, since increasing evidence favors a role for alpha-synuclein accumulation in the pathogenesis of these disorders, an alternative therapy might require the transfer of genes that might block alpha-synuclein accumulation. beta-Synuclein, the nonamyloidogenic homologue of alpha-synuclein, has recently been identified as a potential candidate. Thus, in vivo transfer of genes encoding beta-synuclein might provide a novel approach to the development of experimental treatments for PD and DLB. To assess this possibility and to better understand the mechanisms involved, a lentiviral vector expressing human (h) beta-synuclein (lenti-beta-synuclein) was tested in a transgenic (tg) mouse model of halpha-synuclein aggregation. This study showed that unilateral intracerebral injection of lenti-beta-synuclein reduced the formation of halpha-synuclein inclusions and the accumulation of halpha-synuclein in synapses and ameliorated the neurodegenerative alterations in the tg mice. Both in vivo and in vitro coimmunoprecipitation and immunoblot experiments show that the mechanisms of beta-synuclein neuroprotection involve binding of this molecule to halpha-synuclein and Akt, resulting in the decreased aggregation and accumulation of halpha-synuclein in the synaptic membrane. Together, these data further support a role for beta-synuclein in regulating the conformational state of alpha-synuclein and suggest that this gene transfer approach might have potential for the development of alternative therapies for PD and DLB.

  2. Predicting dihedral angle probability distributions for protein coil residues from primary sequence using neural networks

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Helles, Glennie; Fonseca, Rasmus

    2009-01-01

    residue in the input-window. The trained neural network shows a significant improvement (4-68%) in predicting the most probable bin (covering a 30°×30° area of the dihedral angle space) for all amino acids in the data set compared to first order statistics. An accuracy comparable to that of secondary...

  3. Differentiation of Neural Stem Cells into Oligodendrocytes : Involvement of the Polycomb Group Protein Ezh2

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sher, Falak; Rossler, Reinhard; Brouwer, Nieske; Balasubramaniyan, Veerakumar; Boddeke, Erik; Copray, Sjef

    2008-01-01

    The mechanisms underlying the regulation of neural stem cell (NSC) renewal and maintenance of their multipotency are still not completely understood. Self-renewal of stem cells in general implies repression of genes that encode for cell lineage differentiation. Enhancer of zeste homolog 2 (Ezh2) is

  4. A new method for quantitative immunoblotting of endogenous α-synuclein.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew J Newman

    Full Text Available β-Sheet-rich aggregates of α-synuclein (αSyn are the hallmark neuropathology of Parkinson's disease and related synucleinopathies, whereas the principal native structure of αSyn in healthy cells--unfolded monomer or α-helically folded oligomer--is under debate. Our recent crosslinking analysis of αSyn in intact cells showed that a large portion of endogenous αSyn can be trapped as oligomers, most notably as apparent tetramers. One challenge in such studies is accurately quantifying αSyn Western blot signals among samples, as crosslinked αSyn trends toward increased immunoreactivity. Here, we analyzed this phenomenon in detail and found that treatment with the reducible amine-reactive crosslinker DSP strongly increased αSyn immunoreactivity even after cleavage with the reducing agent β-mercaptoethanol. The effect was observed with all αSyn antibodies tested and in all sample types from human brain homogenates to untransfected neuroblastoma cells, permitting easy detection of endogenous αSyn in the latter, which had long been considered impossible. Coomassie staining of blots before and after several hours of washing revealed complete retention of αSyn after DSP/β-mercaptoethanol treatment, in contrast to a marked loss of αSyn without this treatment. The treatment also enhanced immunodetection of the homologs β- and γ-synuclein and of histones, another group of small, lysine-rich proteins. We conclude that by neutralizing positive charges and increasing protein hydrophobicity, amine crosslinker treatment promotes adhesion of αSyn to blotting membranes. These data help explain the recent report of fixing αSyn blots with paraformaldehyde after transfer, which we find produces similar but weaker effects. DSP/β-mercaptoethanol treatment of Western blots should be particularly useful to quantify low-abundance αSyn forms such as extracellular and post-translationally modified αSyn and splice variants.

  5. Neuropathology in mice expressing mouse alpha-synuclein.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claus Rieker

    Full Text Available α-Synuclein (αSN in human is tightly linked both neuropathologically and genetically to Parkinson's disease (PD and related disorders. Disease-causing properties in vivo of the wildtype mouse ortholog (mαSN, which carries a threonine at position 53 like the A53T human mutant version that is genetically linked to PD, were never reported. To this end we generated mouse lines that express mαSN in central neurons at levels reaching up to six-fold compared to endogenous mαSN. Unlike transgenic mice expressing human wildtype or mutant forms of αSN, these mαSN transgenic mice showed pronounced ubiquitin immunopathology in spinal cord and brainstem. Isoelectric separation of mαSN species revealed multiple isoforms including two Ser129-phosphorylated species in the most severely affected brain regions. Neuronal Ser129-phosphorylated αSN occurred in granular and small fibrillar aggregates and pathological staining patterns in neurites occasionally revealed a striking ladder of small alternating segments staining either for Ser129-phosphorylated αSN or ubiquitin but not both. Axonal degeneration in long white matter tracts of the spinal cord, with breakdown of myelin sheaths and degeneration of neuromuscular junctions with loss of integrity of the presynaptic neurofilament network in mαSN transgenic mice, was similar to what we have reported for mice expressing human αSN wildtype or mutant forms. In hippocampal neurons, the mαSN protein accumulated and was phosphorylated but these neurons showed no ubiquitin immunopathology. In contrast to the early-onset motor abnormalities and muscle weakness observed in mice expressing human αSN, mαSN transgenic mice displayed only end-stage phenotypic alterations that manifested alongside with neuropathology. Altogether these findings show that increased levels of wildtype mαSN does not induce early-onset behavior changes, but drives end-stage pathophysiological changes in murine neurons that are

  6. Divalent metal ions enhance DOPAL-induced oligomerization of alpha-synuclein.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jinsmaa, Yunden; Sullivan, Patricia; Gross, Daniel; Cooney, Adele; Sharabi, Yehonatan; Goldstein, David S

    2014-05-21

    Parkinson disease (PD) features profound striatal dopamine depletion and Lewy bodies containing abundant precipitated alpha-synuclein. Mechanisms linking alpha-synucleinopathy with the death of dopamine neurons remain incompletely understood. One such link may be 3,4-dihydroxyphenylacetaldehyde (DOPAL). All of the intra-neuronal metabolism of dopamine passes through DOPAL, which is toxic. DOPAL also potently oligomerizes alpha-synuclein and alpha-synuclein oligomers are thought to be pathogenic in PD. Another implicated factor in PD pathogenesis is metal ions, and alpha-synuclein contains binding sites for these ions. In this study we tested whether divalent metal ions augment DOPAL-induced oligomerization of alpha-synuclein in cell-free system and in PC12 cells conditionally over-expressing alpha-synuclein. Incubation with divalent metal ions augmented DOPAL-induced oligomerization of alpha-synuclein (Cu(2+)>Fe(2+)>Mn(2+)), whereas monovalent Cu(1+) and trivalent Fe(3+) were without effect. Other dopamine metabolites, dopamine itself, and metal ions alone or in combination with dopamine, also had no effect. Antioxidant treatment with ascorbic acid and divalent cation chelation with EDTA attenuated the augmentation by Cu(2+) of DOPAL-induced alpha-synuclein oligomerization. Incubation of PC12 cells with L-DOPA markedly increased intracellular DOPAL content and promoted alpha-synuclein dimerization. Co-incubation with Cu(2+) amplified (p=0.01), while monoamine oxidase inhibition prevented, L-DOPA-related dimerization of alpha-synuclein (p=0.01). We conclude that divalent metal ions augment DOPAL-induced oligomerization of alpha-synuclein. Drugs that interfere with this interaction might constitute a novel approach for future treatment or prevention approaches. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. ER stress response plays an important role in aggregation of α-synuclein.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiang, Peizhou; Gan, Ming; Ebrahim, Abdul Shukkur; Lin, Wen-Lang; Melrose, Heather L; Yen, Shu-Hui C

    2010-12-13

    Accumulation of filamentous α-synuclein as Lewy bodies is a hallmark of Parkinson's disease. To identify the mechanisms involved in α-synuclein assembly and determine whether the assemblies are cytotoxic, we developed a cell model (3D5) that inducibly expresses wild-type human α-synuclein and forms inclusions that reproduce many morphological and biochemical characteristics of Lewy bodies. In the present study, we evaluated the effects of several histone deacetylase inhibitors on α-synuclein aggregation in 3D5 cells and primary neuronal cultures. These drugs have been demonstrated to protect cells transiently overexpressing α-synuclein from its toxicity. Contrary to transient transfectants, the drug treatment did not benefit 3D5 cells and primary cultures. The treated were less viable and contained more α-synuclein oligomers, active caspases 3 and 9, as well as ER stress markers than non-treated counterparts. The drug-treated, induced-3D5 cells, or primary cultures from transgenic mice overexpressing (<2 fold) α-synuclein, displayed more α-synuclein oligomers and ER stress markers than non-induced or non-transgenic counterparts. Similar effects were demonstrated in cultures treated with tunicamycin, an ER stressor. These effects were blocked by co-treatment with salubrinal, an ER stress inhibitor. In comparison, co-treatment with a pan caspase inhibitor protected cells from demise but did not reduce α-synuclein oligomer accumulation. Our results indicate that an increase of wild-type α-synuclein can elicit ER stress response and sensitize cells to further insults. Most importantly, an increase of ER stress response can promote the aggregation of wild type α-synuclein.

  8. Interaction of Synuclein and Inflammation in Dopaminergic Neurodegeneration

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-06-01

    neurodegenerative disorder behind Alzheimer Disease. It is characterized clinically by resting tremor, slowness of movement, muscle rigidity and postural...other transmitter systems such as the noradrenergic and the serotonergic systems are also affected (Dauer and Przedborski, 2003). Also found within the...over-expression of wild-type -synuclein have been linked to the familial form of PD (Polymerpoulos et al, 1997; Kruger et al, 1998; Masliah et al, 2000

  9. Classifying Membrane Proteins in the Proteome by Using Artificial Neural Networks Based on the Preferential Parameters of Amino Acids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bose, Subrata K.; Browne, Antony; Kazemian, Hassan; White, Kenneth

    Membrane proteins (MPs) are large set of biological macromolecules that play a fundamental role in physiology and pathophysiology for survival. From a pharma-economical perspective, though it is the fact that MPs constitute ˜75% of possible targets for novel drugs but MPs are one of the most understudied groups of proteins in biochemical research. This is mainly because of the technical difficulties of obtaining structural information about trans-membrane regions (these are small sequences that crossways the bilayer lipid membrane). It is quite useful to predict the location of transmembrane segments down the sequence, since these are the elementary structural building blocks defining their topology. There have been several attempts over the last 20 years to develop tools for predicting membrane-spanning regions but current tools are far away from achieving a considerable reliability in prediction. This study aims to exploit the knowledge and current understanding in the field of artificial neural networks (ANNs) in particular data representation through the development of a system to identify and predict membrane-spanning regions by analysing primary amino acids sequence. In this paper we present a novel neural network (NNs) architecture and algorithms for predicting membrane spanning regions from primary amino acids sequences by using their preference parameters.

  10. Natural variation in the thermotolerance of neural function and behavior due to a cGMP-dependent protein kinase.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ken Dawson-Scully

    Full Text Available Although it is acknowledged that genetic variation contributes to individual differences in thermotolerance, the specific genes and pathways involved and how they are modulated by the environment remain poorly understood. We link natural variation in the thermotolerance of neural function and behavior in Drosophila melanogaster to the foraging gene (for, which encodes a cGMP-dependent protein kinase (PKG as well as to its downstream target, protein phosphatase 2A (PP2A. Genetic and pharmacological manipulations revealed that reduced PKG (or PP2A activity caused increased thermotolerance of synaptic transmission at the larval neuromuscular junction. Like synaptic transmission, feeding movements were preserved at higher temperatures in larvae with lower PKG levels. In a comparative assay, pharmacological manipulations altering thermotolerance in a central circuit of Locusta migratoria demonstrated conservation of this neuroprotective pathway. In this circuit, either the inhibition of PKG or PP2A induced robust thermotolerance of neural function. We suggest that PKG and therefore the polymorphism associated with the allelic variation in for may provide populations with natural variation in heat stress tolerance. for's function in behavior is conserved across most organisms, including ants, bees, nematodes, and mammals. PKG's role in thermotolerance may also apply to these and other species. Natural variation in thermotolerance arising from genes involved in the PKG pathway could impact the evolution of thermotolerance in natural populations.

  11. The ciliary proteins Meckelin and Jouberin are required for retinoic acid-dependent neural differentiation of mouse embryonic stem cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Romani, Sveva; Illi, Barbara; De Mori, Roberta; Savino, Mauro; Gleeson, Joseph G; Valente, Enza Maria

    2014-01-01

    The dysfunction of the primary cilium, a complex, evolutionarily conserved, organelle playing an important role in sensing and transducing cell signals, is the unifying pathogenetic mechanism of a growing number of diseases collectively termed "ciliopathies", typically characterized by multiorgan involvement. Developmental defects of the central nervous system (CNS) characterize a subset of ciliopathies showing clinical and genetic overlap, such as Joubert syndrome (JS) and Meckel syndrome (MS). Although several knock-out mice lacking a variety of ciliary proteins have shown the importance of primary cilia in the development of the brain and CNS-derived structures, developmental in vitro studies, extremely useful to unravel the role of primary cilia along the course of neural differentiation, are still missing. Mouse embryonic stem cells (mESCs) have been recently proven to mimic brain development, giving the unique opportunity to dissect the CNS differentiation process along its sequential steps. In the present study we show that mESCs express the ciliary proteins Meckelin and Jouberin in a developmentally-regulated manner, and that these proteins co-localize with acetylated tubulin labeled cilia located at the outer embryonic layer. Further, mESCs differentiating along the neuronal lineage activate the cilia-dependent sonic hedgehog signaling machinery, which is impaired in Meckelin knock-out cells but results unaffected in Jouberin-deficient mESCs. However, both lose the ability to acquire a neuronal phenotype. Altogether, these results demonstrate a pivotal role of Meckelin and Jouberin during embryonic neural specification and indicate mESCs as a suitable tool to investigate the developmental impact of ciliary proteins dysfunction. Copyright © 2014 International Society of Differentiation. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  12. Incorporating deep learning with convolutional neural networks and position specific scoring matrices for identifying electron transport proteins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Le, Nguyen-Quoc-Khanh; Ho, Quang-Thai; Ou, Yu-Yen

    2017-09-05

    In several years, deep learning is a modern machine learning technique using in a variety of fields with state-of-the-art performance. Therefore, utilization of deep learning to enhance performance is also an important solution for current bioinformatics field. In this study, we try to use deep learning via convolutional neural networks and position specific scoring matrices to identify electron transport proteins, which is an important molecular function in transmembrane proteins. Our deep learning method can approach a precise model for identifying of electron transport proteins with achieved sensitivity of 80.3%, specificity of 94.4%, and accuracy of 92.3%, with MCC of 0.71 for independent dataset. The proposed technique can serve as a powerful tool for identifying electron transport proteins and can help biologists understand the function of the electron transport proteins. Moreover, this study provides a basis for further research that can enrich a field of applying deep learning in bioinformatics. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  13. Neural cell adhesion molecule-stimulated neurite outgrowth depends on activation of protein kinase C and the Ras-mitogen-activated protein kinase pathway

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kolkova, K; Novitskaya, V; Pedersen, N

    2000-01-01

    The signal transduction pathways associated with neural cell adhesion molecule (NCAM)-induced neuritogenesis are only partially characterized. We here demonstrate that NCAM-induced neurite outgrowth depends on activation of p59(fyn), focal adhesion kinase (FAK), phospholipase Cgamma (PLCgamma......), protein kinase C (PKC), and the Ras-mitogen-activated protein (MAP) kinase pathway. This was done using a coculture system consisting of PC12-E2 cells grown on fibroblasts, with or without NCAM expression, allowing NCAM-NCAM interactions resulting in neurite outgrowth. PC12-E2 cells were transiently...... propose a model of NCAM signaling involving two pathways: NCAM-Ras-MAP kinase and NCAM-FGF receptor-PLCgamma-PKC, and we propose that PKC serves as the link between the two pathways activating Raf and thereby creating the sustained activity of the MAP kinases necessary for neuronal differentiation....

  14. Piceatannol and Other Wine Stilbenes: A Pool of Inhibitors against α-Synuclein Aggregation and Cytotoxicity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hamza Temsamani

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available The aggregation of α-synuclein is one on the key pathogenic events in Parkinson’s disease. In the present study, we investigated the inhibitory capacities of stilbenes against α-synuclein aggregation and toxicity. Thioflavin T fluorescence, transmission electronic microscopy, and SDS-PAGE analysis were performed to investigate the inhibitory effects of three stilbenes against α-synuclein aggregation: piceatannol, ampelopsin A, and isohopeaphenol. Lipid vesicle permeabilization assays were performed to screen stilbenes for protection against membrane damage induced by aggregated α-synuclein. The viability of PC12 cells was examined using an MTT assay to assess the preventive effects of stilbenes against α-synuclein-induced toxicity. Piceatannol inhibited the formation of α synuclein fibrils and was able to destabilize preformed filaments. It seems to induce the formation of small soluble complexes protecting membranes against α-synuclein-induced damage. Finally, piceatannol protected cells against α-synuclein-induced toxicity. The oligomers tested (ampelopsin A and hopeaphenol were less active.

  15. Long-term polarization of microglia upon alpha-synuclein overexpression in nonhuman primates

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Barkholt, Pernille; Sanchez-Guajardo, Vanesa Maria; Kirik, Denis

    2012-01-01

    response is modulated by events related to ﰇ-synuclein expression in substantia nigra and persists in the long term. The data presented here is in agreement with that previously observed in a recombinant adeno-associated virus (rAAV) ﰇ-synuclein rat model, thereby validating both the findings and the model...

  16. Cholesterol facilitates interactions between α-synuclein oligomers and charge-neutral membranes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    van Maarschalkerweerd, Andreas; Vetri, Valeria; Vestergaard, Bente

    2015-01-01

    composed of anionic lipids, while the more physiologically relevant zwitterionic lipids remain intact. We present experimental evidence for significant morphological changes in zwitterionic membranes containing cholesterol, induced by α-synuclein oligomers. Depending on the lipid composition, model...... of cholesterol for mediating interactions between physiologically relevant membranes and α-synuclein....

  17. Expression of human A53T alpha-synuclein in the rat substantia nigra using a novel AAV1/2 vector produces a rapidly evolving pathology with protein aggregation, dystrophic neurite architecture and nigrostriatal degeneration with potential to model the pathology of Parkinson's disease

    OpenAIRE

    Sun Xuan; Reyes M Gabriela; Johnston Tom H; Koprich James B; Brotchie Jonathan M

    2010-01-01

    Abstract Background The pathological hallmarks of Parkinson's disease (PD) include the presence of alpha-synuclein (α-syn) rich Lewy bodies and neurites and the loss of dopaminergic (DA) neurons of the substantia nigra (SN). Animal models of PD based on viral vector-mediated over-expression of α-syn have been developed and show evidence of DA toxicity to varying degrees depending on the type of virus used, its concentration, and the serotype of vector employed. To date these models have been ...

  18. Direct visualization of alpha-synuclein oligomers reveals previously undetected pathology in Parkinson's disease brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roberts, Rosalind F; Wade-Martins, Richard; Alegre-Abarrategui, Javier

    2015-06-01

    Oligomeric forms of alpha-synuclein are emerging as key mediators of pathogenesis in Parkinson's disease. Our understanding of the exact contribution of alpha-synuclein oligomers to disease is limited by the lack of a technique for their specific detection. We describe a novel method, the alpha-synuclein proximity ligation assay, which specifically recognizes alpha-synuclein oligomers. In a blinded study with post-mortem brain tissue from patients with Parkinson's disease (n = 8, age range 73-92 years, four males and four females) and age- and sex-matched controls (n = 8), we show that the alpha-synuclein proximity ligation assay reveals previously unrecognized pathology in the form of extensive diffuse deposition of alpha-synuclein oligomers. These oligomers are often localized, in the absence of Lewy bodies, to neuroanatomical regions mildly affected in Parkinson's disease. Diffuse alpha-synuclein proximity ligation assay signal is significantly more abundant in patients compared to controls in regions including the cingulate cortex (1.6-fold increase) and the reticular formation of the medulla (6.5-fold increase). In addition, the alpha-synuclein proximity ligation assay labels very early perikaryal aggregates in morphologically intact neurons that may precede the development of classical Parkinson's disease lesions, such as pale bodies or Lewy bodies. Furthermore, the alpha-synuclein proximity ligation assay preferentially detects early-stage, loosely compacted lesions such as pale bodies in patient tissue, whereas Lewy bodies, considered heavily compacted late lesions are only very exceptionally stained. The alpha-synuclein proximity ligation assay preferentially labels alpha-synuclein oligomers produced in vitro compared to monomers and fibrils, while stained oligomers in human brain display a distinct intermediate proteinase K resistance, suggesting the detection of a conformer that is different from both physiological, presynaptic alpha-synuclein

  19. Systematic analysis of non-structural protein features for the prediction of PTM function potential by artificial neural networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dewhurst, Henry M; Torres, Matthew P

    2017-01-01

    Post-translational modifications (PTMs) provide an extensible framework for regulation of protein behavior beyond the diversity represented within the genome alone. While the rate of identification of PTMs has rapidly increased in recent years, our knowledge of PTM functionality encompasses less than 5% of this data. We previously developed SAPH-ire (Structural Analysis of PTM Hotspots) for the prioritization of eukaryotic PTMs based on function potential of discrete modified alignment positions (MAPs) in a set of 8 protein families. A proteome-wide expansion of the dataset to all families of PTM-bearing, eukaryotic proteins with a representational crystal structure and the application of artificial neural network (ANN) models demonstrated the broader applicability of this approach. Although structural features of proteins have been repeatedly demonstrated to be predictive of PTM functionality, the availability of adequately resolved 3D structures in the Protein Data Bank (PDB) limits the scope of these methods. In order to bridge this gap and capture the larger set of PTM-bearing proteins without an available, homologous structure, we explored all available MAP features as ANN inputs to identify predictive models that do not rely on 3D protein structural data. This systematic, algorithmic approach explores 8 available input features in exhaustive combinations (247 models; size 2-8). To control for potential bias in random sampling for holdback in training sets, we iterated each model across 100 randomized, sample training and testing sets-yielding 24,700 individual ANNs. The size of the analyzed dataset and iterative generation of ANNs represents the largest and most thorough investigation of predictive models for PTM functionality to date. Comparison of input layer combinations allows us to quantify ANN performance with a high degree of confidence and subsequently select a top-ranked, robust fit model which highlights 3,687 MAPs, including 10,933 PTMs with a high

  20. Mathematical approach to understand the kinetics of alpha-synuclein aggregation: relevance to Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bharathi, P; Nagabhushan, P; Rao, K S J

    2008-10-01

    alpha-Synuclein aggregation is a hallmark pathological feature in Parkinson's disease (PD). The conversion of alpha-synuclein from soluble monomer to insoluble aggregates through the toxic oligomeric intermediates underlie the neurodegeneration associated with PD. Redox active metal ions such as iron (Fe) and copper (Cu) are known to enhance alpha-synuclein fibrillogenesis. In the present study, we have implemented mathematical approach to monitor the kinetics of aggregation of alpha-synuclein nucleation and elongation constants based on fluorescence studies. In this pretext, we have implemented mathematical simulations like self and absolute analysis. The mathematical model discussed in this paper is the first of its kind and might prove useful for predicting the drug intervention time to prevent alpha-synuclein aggregation and has future clinical application.

  1. Polyphenols in combination with β-cyclodextrin can inhibit and disaggregate α-synuclein amyloids under cell mimicking conditions: A promising therapeutic alternative.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gautam, Saurabh; Karmakar, Sandip; Batra, Radhika; Sharma, Pankaj; Pradhan, Prashant; Singh, Jasdeep; Kundu, Bishwajit; Chowdhury, Pramit K

    2017-05-01

    Parkinson's disease is characterized by the presence of insoluble and neurotoxic aggregates (amyloid fibrils) of an intrinsically disordered protein α-synuclein. In this study we have examined the effects of four naturally occurring polyphenols in combination with β-cyclodextrin (β-CD) on the aggregation of α-synuclein in the presence of macromolecular crowding agents. Our results reveal that even at sub-stoichiometric concentrations of the individual components, the polyphenol-β-CD combination(s) not only inhibited the aggregation of the proteins but was also effective in disaggregating preformed fibrils. Curcumin was found to be the most efficient, followed by baicalein with (-)-epigallocatechin gallate and resveratrol coming in next, the latter two exhibiting very similar effects. Our results suggest that the efficiency of curcumin results from a balanced composition of the phenolic OH groups, benzene rings and flexibility. The latter ensures proper positioning of the functional groups to maximize the underlying interactions with both the monomeric form of α-synuclein and its aggregates. The uniqueness of β-CD was reinforced by the observation that none of the other cyclodextrin variants [α-CD and HP-β-CD] used was as effective, in spite of these possessing better water solubility. Moreover, the fact that the combinations remained effective under conditions of macromolecular crowding suggests that these have the potential to be developed into viable drug compositions in the near future. MTT assays on cell viability independently confirmed this hypothesis wherein these combinations (and the polyphenols alone too) appreciably impeded the toxicity of the prefibrillar α-synuclein aggregates on the mouse neuroblastoma cell lines (N2a cells). Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  2. Single Molecule Characterization of α-Synuclein in Aggregation-Prone States

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trexler, Adam J.; Rhoades, Elizabeth

    2010-01-01

    α-Synuclein (αS) is an intrinsically disordered protein whose aggregation into ordered, fibrillar structures underlies the pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease. A full understanding of the factors that cause its conversion from soluble protein to insoluble aggregate requires characterization of the conformations of the monomer protein under conditions that favor aggregation. Here we use single molecule Förster resonance energy transfer to probe the structure of several aggregation-prone states of αS. Both low pH and charged molecules have been shown to accelerate the aggregation of αS and induce conformational changes in the protein. We find that at low pH, the C-terminus of αS undergoes substantial collapse, with minimal effect on the N-terminus and central region. The proximity of the N- and C-termini and the global dimensions of the protein are relatively unaffected by the C-terminal collapse. Moreover, although compact at low pH, with restricted chain motion, the structure of the C-terminus appears to be random. Low pH has a dramatically different effect on αS structure than the molecular aggregation inducers spermine and heparin. Binding of these molecules gives rise to only minor conformational changes in αS, suggesting that their mechanism of aggregation enhancement is fundamentally different from that of low pH. PMID:21044603

  3. Higher vulnerability and stress sensitivity of neuronal precursor cells carrying an alpha-synuclein gene triplication.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adrian Flierl

    Full Text Available Parkinson disease (PD is a multi-factorial neurodegenerative disorder with loss of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra and characteristic intracellular inclusions, called Lewy bodies. Genetic predisposition, such as point mutations and copy number variants of the SNCA gene locus can cause very similar PD-like neurodegeneration. The impact of altered α-synuclein protein expression on integrity and developmental potential of neuronal stem cells is largely unexplored, but may have wide ranging implications for PD manifestation and disease progression. Here, we investigated if induced pluripotent stem cell-derived neuronal precursor cells (NPCs from a patient with Parkinson's disease carrying a genomic triplication of the SNCA gene (SNCA-Tri. Our goal was to determine if these cells these neuronal precursor cells already display pathological changes and impaired cellular function that would likely predispose them when differentiated to neurodegeneration. To achieve this aim, we assessed viability and cellular physiology in human SNCA-Tri NPCs both under normal and environmentally stressed conditions to model in vitro gene-environment interactions which may play a role in the initiation and progression of PD. Human SNCA-Tri NPCs displayed overall normal cellular and mitochondrial morphology, but showed substantial changes in growth, viability, cellular energy metabolism and stress resistance especially when challenged by starvation or toxicant challenge. Knockdown of α-synuclein in the SNCA-Tri NPCs by stably expressed short hairpin RNA (shRNA resulted in reversal of the observed phenotypic changes. These data show for the first time that genetic alterations such as the SNCA gene triplication set the stage for decreased developmental fitness, accelerated aging, and increased neuronal cell loss. The observation of this "stem cell pathology" could have a great impact on both quality and quantity of neuronal networks and could provide a

  4. Phenolic compounds prevent the oligomerization of α-synuclein and reduce synaptic toxicity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takahashi, Ryoichi; Ono, Kenjiro; Takamura, Yusaku; Mizuguchi, Mineyuki; Ikeda, Tokuhei; Nishijo, Hisao; Yamada, Masahito

    2015-09-01

    Lewy bodies, mainly composed of α-synuclein (αS), are pathological hallmarks of Parkinson's disease and dementia with Lewy bodies. Epidemiological studies showed that green tea consumption or habitual intake of phenolic compounds reduced Parkinson's disease risk. We previously reported that phenolic compounds inhibited αS fibrillation and destabilized preformed αS fibrils. Cumulative evidence suggests that low-order αS oligomers are neurotoxic and critical species in the pathogenesis of α-synucleinopathies. To develop disease modifying therapies for α-synucleinopathies, we examined effects of phenolic compounds (myricetin (Myr), curcumin, rosmarinic acid (RA), nordihydroguaiaretic acid, and ferulic acid) on αS oligomerization. Using methods such as photo-induced cross-linking of unmodified proteins, circular dichroism spectroscopy, the electron microscope, and the atomic force microscope, we showed that Myr and RA inhibited αS oligomerization and secondary structure conversion. The nuclear magnetic resonance analysis revealed that Myr directly bound to the N-terminal region of αS, whereas direct binding of RA to monomeric αS was not detected. Electrophysiological assays for long-term potentiation in mouse hippocampal slices revealed that Myr and RA ameliorated αS synaptic toxicity by inhibition of αS oligomerization. These results suggest that Myr and RA prevent the αS aggregation process, reducing the neurotoxicity of αS oligomers. To develop disease modifying therapies for α-synucleinopathies, we examined effects of phenolic compounds on α-synuclein (αS) oligomerization. Phenolic compounds, especially Myricetin (Myr) and Rosmarinic acid (RA), inhibited αS oligomerization and secondary structure conversion. Myr and RA ameliorated αS synaptic toxicity on the experiment of long-term potentiation. Our results suggest that Myr and RA prevent αS aggregation process and reduce the neurotoxicity of αS oligomers. Phenolic compounds are good

  5. Structural Basis for Partial Redundancy in a Class of Transcription Factors, the LIM Homeodomain Proteins, in Neural Cell Type Specification*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gadd, Morgan S.; Bhati, Mugdha; Jeffries, Cy M.; Langley, David B.; Trewhella, Jill; Guss, J. Mitchell; Matthews, Jacqueline M.

    2011-01-01

    Combinations of LIM homeodomain proteins form a transcriptional “LIM code” to direct the specification of neural cell types. Two paralogous pairs of LIM homeodomain proteins, LIM homeobox protein 3/4 (Lhx3/Lhx4) and Islet-1/2 (Isl1/Isl2), are expressed in developing ventral motor neurons. Lhx3 and Isl1 interact within a well characterized transcriptional complex that triggers motor neuron development, but it was not known whether Lhx4 and Isl2 could participate in equivalent complexes. We have identified an Lhx3-binding domain (LBD) in Isl2 based on sequence homology with the Isl1LBD and show that both Isl2LBD and Isl1LBD can bind each of Lhx3 and Lhx4. X-ray crystal- and small-angle x-ray scattering-derived solution structures of an Lhx4·Isl2 complex exhibit many similarities with that of Lhx3·Isl1; however, structural differences supported by mutagenic studies reveal differences in the mechanisms of binding. Differences in binding have implications for the mode of exchange of protein partners in transcriptional complexes and indicate a divergence in functions of Lhx3/4 and Isl1/2. The formation of weaker Lhx·Isl complexes would likely be masked by the availability of the other Lhx·Isl complexes in postmitotic motor neurons. PMID:22025611

  6. The methyl-CpG binding proteins Mecp2, Mbd2 and Kaiso are dispensable for mouse embryogenesis, but play a redundant function in neural differentiation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Isabel Martín Caballero

    Full Text Available The precise molecular changes that occur when a neural stem (NS cell switches from a programme of self-renewal to commit towards a specific lineage are not currently well understood. However it is clear that control of gene expression plays an important role in this process. DNA methylation, a mark of transcriptionally silent chromatin, has similarly been shown to play important roles in neural cell fate commitment in vivo. While DNA methylation is known to play important roles in neural specification during embryonic development, no such role has been shown for any of the methyl-CpG binding proteins (Mecps in mice.To explore the role of DNA methylation in neural cell fate decisions, we have investigated the function of Mecps in mouse development and in neural stem cell derivation, maintenance, and differentiation. In order to test whether the absence of phenotype in singly-mutant animals could be due to functional redundancy between Mecps, we created mice and neural stem cells simultaneously lacking Mecp2, Mbd2 and Zbtb33. No evidence for functional redundancy between these genes in embryonic development or in the derivation or maintenance of neural stem cells in culture was detectable. However evidence for a defect in neuronal commitment of triple knockout NS cells was found.Although DNA methylation is indispensable for mammalian embryonic development, we show that simultaneous deficiency of three methyl-CpG binding proteins genes is compatible with apparently normal mouse embryogenesis. Nevertheless, we provide genetic evidence for redundancy of function between methyl-CpG binding proteins in postnatal mice.

  7. Effects of Curvature and Composition on α-Synuclein Binding to Lipid Vesicles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Middleton, Elizabeth R.; Rhoades, Elizabeth

    2010-01-01

    Parkinson's disease is characterized by the presence of intracellular aggregates composed primarily of the neuronal protein α-synuclein (αS). Interactions between αS and various cellular membranes are thought to be important to its native function as well as relevant to its role in disease. We use fluorescence correlation spectroscopy to investigate binding of αS to lipid vesicles as a function of the lipid composition and membrane curvature. We determine how these parameters affect the molar partition coefficient of αS, providing a quantitative measure of the binding energy, and calculate the number of lipids required to bind a single protein. Specific anionic lipids have a large effect on the free energy of binding. Lipid chain saturation influences the binding interaction to a lesser extent, with larger partition coefficients measured for gel-phase vesicles than for fluid-phase vesicles, even in the absence of anionic lipid components. Although we observe variability in the binding of the mutant proteins, differences in the free energies of partitioning are less dramatic than with varied lipid compositions. Vesicle curvature has a strong effect on the binding affinity, with a >15-fold increase in affinity for small unilamellar vesicles over large unilamellar vesicles, suggesting that αS may be a curvature-sensing protein. Our findings provide insight into how physical properties of the membrane may modulate interactions of αS with cellular membranes. PMID:20923663

  8. Decreased Levels of VAMP2 and Monomeric Alpha-Synuclein Correlate with Duration of Dementia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vallortigara, Julie; Whitfield, David; Quelch, William; Alghamdi, Amani; Howlett, David; Hortobágyi, Tibor; Johnson, Mary; Attems, Johannes; O'Brien, John T; Thomas, Alan; Ballard, Clive G; Aarsland, Dag; Francis, Paul T

    2016-01-01

    Alpha-synuclein (α-syn) aggregations are the key pathological hallmark of dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB) and Parkinson's disease dementia (PDD), but are also frequently present in Alzheimer's disease (AD). Much remains unknown about the role of α-syn in the synapse and the wider role of synaptic dysfunction in these dementias. Changes in concentrations of key 'SNAP (Soluble N-ethylmaleimide Sensitive Factor Attachment Protein) Receptor' (SNARE) proteins as a consequence of alterations in the aggregation state of α-syn may contribute to synaptic dysfunction in patients with DLB, PDD, and AD and result in impaired cognition. We have studied a large cohort (n = 130) of autopsy confirmed DLB, PDD, AD, and control brains. Using semi-quantitative western blotting, we have demonstrated significant changes across the diagnostic groups of DLB, PDD, and AD in the SNARE and vesicle proteins syntaxin, Munc18, VAMP2, and monomeric α-syn in the prefrontal cortex, with a significant reduction of Munc18 in AD patients (p score before death (p = 0.016). We also identified a significant negative correlation between the duration of dementia and the levels of the binding partners VAMP2 (p = 0.0004) and monomeric α-syn (p = 0.0002). Our findings may indicate that an upregulation of SNARE complex related proteins occurs in the early stages of disease as an attempt at compensating for failing synapses, prior to widespread deposition of pathological α-syn.

  9. Coordination and redox properties of copper interaction with α-synuclein.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valensin, Daniela; Dell'Acqua, Simone; Kozlowski, Henryk; Casella, Luigi

    2016-10-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is a severe neurodegenerative disorder affecting movements. After Alzheimer's disease, it is the most common form of neurodegeneration. PD is characterized by the loss of neurons producing dopamine and by the presence of protein aggregates in the brain, known as Lewy bodies. The main constituent of Lewy bodies is the misfolded form of α-synuclein (αSyn), able to form oligomers and fibrils. In addition to protein aggregation, brain damage induced by oxidative stress, is also a frequent phenomenon in PD. αSyn is able to bind Copper ions in both Cu(II) and Cu(I) oxidation states. The metal binding is also maintained when αSyn interacts with membranes. Interestingly, copper binding to αSyn has strong impact either in protein misfolding or in free radical formation, such to provide a link between protein aggregation and oxidative damage. In this review the role of copper and αSyn in PD is discussed with a particular emphasis to elucidate (i) the interaction between copper and αSyn; (ii) the reactivity and (iii) potential toxicity associated with copper-αSyn complexes. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. [Frequency of the IVS4+66A-G polymorphism in the alpha-synuclein gene in patients with Parkinson's disease in north-western Mexico].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramírez-Jirano, L J; Ruiz-Sandoval, J L; Jiménez-Gil, F J; Ramírez-Vega, J; Vargas-Frutos, E; Gallegos-Arreola, M P

    Parkinson disease (PD) is the second most common neurodegenerative disease of adult onset. Is a progressive movement disorder including tremor, bradykinesia, rigidity and postural instability, with an age onset between 43 and 66 years. Histopathologically, is characterized by a severe loss of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra and inclusions consisting of insoluble protein aggregates called Lewy bodies, this are comprised in part of alpha-synuclein. The etiology of PD is still not fully understood, but genetic analyses, epidemiologic studies and experimental models of PD are providing important new insights into the pathogenesis of PD. To determine allelic and genotypic frequencies of polymorphism IVS4+66A-G in the alpha-synuclein gene and to demonstrate its association with PD in northwest Mexican population. Genomic desoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) from 51 PD patients and 121 persons without PD were achieved by polymerase chain reaction and analyzed the allelic and genotypic distribution in IVS4+66A-G polymorphism of alpha-synuclein gene. The genotypic frequency of IVS4+66AA was 43.1% in PD patients and 38.8% in control group; IVS4+66GG was 2% in PD patients and 4.1% in control group, whereas 54.9% in PD patients and 57.1% in control group were heterozygous. Statistical differences were not observed between groups (p<0.05). Association was not observed between the IVS4+66A-G polymorphism and PD.

  11. Assays for alpha-synuclein aggregation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Giehm, Lise; Lorenzen, Nikolai; Otzen, Daniel

    2011-01-01

    Over the last few decades, protein aggregation gone from being an irritating side product in the test tube to becoming a subject of great interest. This has been stimulated by the realization that a large and growing number of diseases is associated with the formation and accumulation of proteins...... aggregates 1. The ability to form amyloid structures has also been exploited by living systems, where proteins forming fibrils during the normal life-cycle have functional rather than disease associated properties 2; 3; 4; 5. Thus, understanding the structural features of fibrils, as well as the processes...... leading to their formation is important for designing new drugs as well as in development of new nano-biomaterials such as nano-tubes, wires, scaffolds etc. 6. Understanding the process of amyloid formation requires an ability to reproduce this aggregation under controlled circumstances, in other words...

  12. New roles of glycosaminoglycans in α-synuclein aggregation in a cellular model of Parkinson disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sonia Lehri-Boufala

    Full Text Available The causes of Parkinson disease (PD remain mysterious, although some evidence supports mitochondrial dysfunctions and α-synuclein accumulation in Lewy bodies as major events. The abnormal accumulation of α-synuclein has been associated with a deficiency in the ubiquitin-proteasome system and the autophagy-lysosomal pathway. Cathepsin D (cathD, the major lysosomal protease responsible of α-synuclein degradation was described to be up-regulated in PD model. As glycosaminoglycans (GAGs regulate cathD activity, and have been recently suggested to participate in PD physiopathology, we investigated their role in α-synuclein accumulation by their intracellular regulation of cathD activity. In a classical neuroblastoma cell model of PD induced by MPP+, the genetic expression of GAGs-biosynthetic enzymes was modified, leading to an increase of GAGs amounts whereas intracellular level of α-synuclein increased. The absence of sulfated GAGs increased intracellular cathD activity and limited α-synuclein accumulation. GAGs effects on cathD further suggested that specific sequences or sulfation patterns could be responsible for this regulation. The present study identifies, for the first time, GAGs as new regulators of the lysosome degradation pathway, regulating cathD activity and affecting two main biological processes, α-synuclein aggregation and apoptosis. Finally, this opens new insights into intracellular GAGs functions and new fields of investigation for glycobiological approaches in PD and neurobiology.

  13. An ensemble micro neural network approach for elucidating interactions between zinc finger proteins and their target DNA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dutta, Shayoni; Madan, Spandan; Parikh, Harsh; Sundar, Durai

    2016-12-22

    The ability to engineer zinc finger proteins binding to a DNA sequence of choice is essential for targeted genome editing to be possible. Experimental techniques and molecular docking have been successful in predicting protein-DNA interactions, however, they are highly time and resource intensive. Here, we present a novel algorithm designed for high throughput prediction of optimal zinc finger protein for 9 bp DNA sequences of choice. In accordance with the principles of information theory, a subset identified by using K-means clustering was used as a representative for the space of all possible 9 bp DNA sequences. The modeling and simulation results assuming synergistic mode of binding obtained from this subset were used to train an ensemble micro neural network. Synergistic mode of binding is the closest to the DNA-protein binding seen in nature, and gives much higher quality predictions, while the time and resources increase exponentially in the trade off. Our algorithm is inspired from an ensemble machine learning approach, and incorporates the predictions made by 100 parallel neural networks, each with a different hidden layer architecture designed to pick up different features from the training dataset to predict optimal zinc finger proteins for any 9 bp target DNA. The model gave an accuracy of an average 83% sequence identity for the testing dataset. The BLAST e-value are well within the statistical confidence interval of E-05 for 100% of the testing samples. The geometric mean and median value for the BLAST e-values were found to be 1.70E-12 and 7.00E-12 respectively. For final validation of approach, we compared our predictions against optimal ZFPs reported in literature for a set of experimentally studied DNA sequences. The accuracy, as measured by the average string identity between our predictions and the optimal zinc finger protein reported in literature for a 9 bp DNA target was found to be as high as 81% for DNA targets with a consensus sequence

  14. In vitro α-synuclein neurotoxicity and spreading among neurons and astrocytes using Lewy body extracts from Parkinson disease brains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cavaliere, Fabio; Cerf, Loic; Dehay, Benjamin; Ramos-Gonzalez, Paula; De Giorgi, Francesca; Bourdenx, Mathieu; Bessede, Alban; Obeso, Jose A; Matute, Carlos; Ichas, François; Bezard, Erwan

    2017-07-01

    Synucleinopathies are a group of diseases characterized by the presence of intracellular protein aggregates containing α-synuclein (α-syn). While α-syn aggregates have been shown to induce multimodal cellular dysfunctions, uptake and transport mechanisms remain unclear. Using high-content imaging on cortical neurons and astrocytes, we here define the kinetics of neuronal and astrocytic abnormalities induced by human-derived α-syn aggregates grounding the use of such system to identify and test putative therapeutic compounds. We then aimed at characterizing uptake and transport mechanisms using primary cultures of cortical neurons and astrocytes either in single well or in microfluidic chambers allowing connection between cells and cell-types. We report that astrocytes take up α-syn-aggregates far more efficiently than neurons through an endocytic event. We also highlight that active α-syn transport occurs between cells and any cell-types. Of special interest regarding the disease, we also show that uptake and spreading of α-syn from astrocytes to neurons can lead to neuronal death. Altogether, we here show that patients-derived α-synuclein aggregates, which are taken up by neurons and astrocytes, induce a differential endogenous response in the two cell types including a peculiar astrocytic toxic gain-of-function that leads to neuronal death. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Threonine 53 in α-synuclein is conserved in long-living non-primate animals

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Larsen, Knud; Hedegaard, Claus; Bertelsen, Mads Frost

    2009-01-01

    World monkeys. Here, we present DNA sequence analysis of SNCA and the deduced amino acid sequences of α-synuclein cloned from various different species, ranging from fish to mammals, which are known for their long-living potential. In all these investigated species the 53Thr is found. We conclude......, is associated with increased oligomerization toxicity leading to familial early-onset PD in humans. The amino acid in position 53 in α-synuclein is an alanine in humans, great apes and Old World primates. However, this amino acid is a threonine in the α-synuclein of all other examined species, including New...

  16. Intra-axonal protein synthesis - a new target for neural repair?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jeffery L Twiss

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Although initially argued to be a feature of immature neurons with incomplete polarization, there is clear evidence that neurons in the peripheral nervous system retain the capacity for intra-axonal protein synthesis well into adulthood. This localized protein synthesis has been shown to contribute to injury signaling and axon regeneration in peripheral nerves. Recent works point to potential for protein synthesis in axons of the vertebrate central nervous system. mRNAs and protein synthesis machinery have now been documented in lamprey, mouse, and rat spinal cord axons. Intra-axonal protein synthesis appears to be activated in adult vertebrate spinal cord axons when they are regeneration-competent. Rat spinal cord axons regenerating into a peripheral nerve graft contain mRNAs and markers of activated translational machinery. Indeed, levels of some growth-associated mRNAs in these spinal cord axons are comparable to the regenerating sciatic nerve. Markers of active translation tend to decrease when these axons stop growing, but can be reactivated by a second axotomy. These emerging observations raise the possibility that mRNA transport into and translation within axons could be targeted to facilitate regeneration in both the peripheral and central nervous systems.

  17. QRI, a retina-specific gene, encodes an extracellular matrix protein exclusively expressed during neural retina differentiation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Casado, F J; Pouponnot, C; Jeanny, J C; Lecoq, O; Calothy, G; Pierani, A

    1996-02-01

    Neural retina development results from growth arrest of neuroectodermal precursors and differentiation of postmitotic cells. The QRI gene is specifically expressed in Müller retinal glial cells. Its expression coincides with the stage of withdrawal from the cell cycle and establishment of differentiation and is repressed upon induction of retinal cell proliferation by the v-src gene product. In this report, we show that the QR1 gene encodes several glycosylated proteins that are secreted and can either associate with the extracellular matrix or remain diffusible in the medium. By using pulse-chase experiments, the 100-103 kDa forms seem to appear first and are specifically incorporated into the extracellular matrix, whereas the 108 and 60 kDa polypeptides appear later and are detected as soluble forms in the culture medium. We also report that expression of the QR1 gene is developmentally regulated in the chicken. Its mRNA is first detectable at embryonic day 10, reaches a maximal level at embryonic day 15 and is no longer detected at embryonic day 18. Immunolocalization of the QR1 protein in chicken retina sections during development shows that expression of the protein parallels the differentiation pattern of post-miotic cells (in particular Müller cells and rods), corresponding to the two differentiation gradients in the retina: from the ganglion cell layer to the inner nuclear layer and outer nuclear layer, and from the optic nerve to the iris. At embryonic day 10, expression of the QR1 protein(s) is restricted to the optic nerve region and the inner nuclear layer, colocalizing with Müller cell bodies. As development proceeds, QR1 protein localization spreads towards the iris and towards the outer nuclear layer, following Müller cell elongations towards the photoreceptors. Between embryonic days 16 and 18, the QR1 protein is no longer detectable in the optic nerve region and is concentrated around the basal segment of the photoreceptors in the peripheral

  18. A Nuclear Role for miR-9 and Argonaute Proteins in Balancing Quiescent and Activated Neural Stem Cell States

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shauna Katz

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Throughout life, adult neural stem cells (NSCs produce new neurons and glia that contribute to crucial brain functions. Quiescence is an essential protective feature of adult NSCs; however, the establishment and maintenance of this state remain poorly understood. We demonstrate that in the adult zebrafish pallium, the brain-enriched miR-9 is expressed exclusively in a subset of quiescent NSCs, highlighting a heterogeneity within these cells, and is necessary to maintain NSC quiescence. Strikingly, miR-9, along with Argonaute proteins (Agos, is localized to the nucleus of quiescent NSCs, and manipulating their nuclear/cytoplasmic ratio impacts quiescence. Mechanistically, miR-9 permits efficient Notch signaling to promote quiescence, and we identify the RISC protein TNRC6 as a mediator of miR-9/Agos nuclear localization in vivo. We propose a conserved non-canonical role for nuclear miR-9/Agos in controlling the balance between NSC quiescence and activation, a key step in maintaining adult germinal pools.

  19. USP9X deubiquitylating enzyme maintains RAPTOR protein levels, mTORC1 signalling and proliferation in neural progenitors

    OpenAIRE

    Caitlin R. Bridges; Men-Chee Tan; Susitha Premarathne; Devathri Nanayakkara; Bernadette Bellette; Dusan Zencak; Deepti Domingo; Jozef Gecz; Mariyam Murtaza; Jolly, Lachlan A.; Wood, Stephen A.

    2017-01-01

    USP9X, is highly expressed in neural progenitors and, essential for neural development in mice. In humans, mutations in USP9X are associated with neurodevelopmental disorders. To understand USP9X?s role in neural progenitors, we studied the effects of altering its expression in both the human neural progenitor cell line, ReNcell VM, as well as neural stem and progenitor cells derived from Nestin-cre conditionally deleted Usp9x mice. Decreasing USP9X resulted in ReNcell VM cells arresting in G...

  20. Prediction of protein structural features by use of artificial neural networks

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Petersen, Bent

    . There is a huge over-representation of DNA sequences when comparing the amount of experimentally verified proteins with the amount of DNA sequences. The academic and industrial research community therefore has to rely on structure predictions instead of waiting for the time consuming experimentally determined...

  1. Role of Oligomeric a-Synuclein in Mitochondrial Membrane Permeabilization and Neurodegeneration in Parkinson's Disease

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Lee, Sueng-Jae

    2003-01-01

    .... Several groups have developed cell culture models to study the cytotoxic effect of alpha-synuclein, and some of them indeed have observed enhanced cell death when alpha-syn, especially its mutant...

  2. Confocal fluorescence anisotropy and FRAP imaging of α-synuclein amyloid aggregates in living cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M Julia Roberti

    Full Text Available We assessed the intracellular association states of the Parkinson's disease related protein α-synuclein (AS in living cells by transfection with a functional recombinant mutant protein (AS-C4 bearing a tetracysteine tag binding the fluorogenic biarsenical ligands FlAsH and ReAsH, The aggregation states of AS-C4 were assessed by in situ microscopy of molecular translational mobility with FRAP (fluorescence recovery after photobleaching and of local molecular density with confocal fluorescence anisotropy (CFA. FRAP recovery was quantitative and rapid in regions of free protein, whereas AS in larger aggregates was>80% immobile. A small 16% recovery characterized by an apparent diffusion constant of 0.03-0.04 µm(2/s was attributed to the dynamics of smaller, associated forms of AS-C4 and the exchange of mobile species with the larger immobile aggregates. By CFA, the larger aggregates exhibited high brightness and very low anisotropy, consistent with homoFRET between closely packed AS, for which a Förster distance (R(o of 5.3 nm was calculated. Other bright regions had high anisotropy values, close to that of monomeric AS, and indicative of membrane-associated protein with both low mobility and low degree of association. The anisotropy-fluorescence intensity correlations also revealed regions of free protein or of small aggregates, undetectable by conventional fluorescence imaging alone. The combined strategy (FRAP+CFA provides a highly sensitive means for elucidating both the dynamics and structural features of protein aggregates and other intracellular complexes in living cells, and can be extended to other amyloid systems and to drug screening protocols.

  3. Nascent histamine induces α-synuclein and caspase-3 on human cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caro-Astorga, Joaquín; Fajardo, Ignacio; Ruiz-Pérez, María Victoria; Sánchez-Jiménez, Francisca; Urdiales, José Luis

    2014-09-05

    Histamine (Hia) is the most multifunctional biogenic amine. It is synthetized by histidine decarboxylase (HDC) in a reduced set of mammalian cell types. Mast cells and histaminergic neurons store Hia in specialized organelles until the amine is extruded by exocytosis; however, other immune and cancer cells are able to produce but not store Hia. The intracellular effects of Hia are still not well characterized, in spite of its physiopathological relevance. Multiple functional relationships exist among Hia metabolism/signaling elements and those of other biogenic amines, including growth-related polyamines. Previously, we obtained the first insights for an inhibitory effect of newly synthetized Hia on both growth-related polyamine biosynthesis and cell cycle progression of non-fully differentiated mammalian cells. In this work, we describe progress in this line. HEK293 cells were transfected to express active and inactive versions of GFP-human HDC fusion proteins and, after cell sorting by flow cytometry, the relative expression of a large number of proteins associated with cell signaling were measured using an antibody microarray. Experimental results were analyzed in terms of protein-protein and functional interaction networks. Expression of active HDC induced a cell cycle arrest through the alteration of the levels of several proteins such as cyclin D1, cdk6, cdk7 and cyclin A. Regulation of α-synuclein and caspase-3 was also observed. The analyses provide new clues on the molecular mechanisms underlying the regulatory effects of intracellular newly synthetized Hia on cell proliferation/survival, cell trafficking and protein turnover. This information is especially interesting for emergent and orphan immune and neuroinflammatory diseases. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. The cell division control protein 42-Src family kinase-neural Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome protein pathway regulates human proplatelet formation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palazzo, A; Bluteau, O; Messaoudi, K; Marangoni, F; Chang, Y; Souquere, S; Pierron, G; Lapierre, V; Zheng, Y; Vainchenker, W; Raslova, H; Debili, N

    2016-12-01

    Essentials The role of the cytoskeleton during megakaryocyte differentiation was examined. Human megakaryocytes are derived from in vitro cultured CD34(+) cells. Cell division control protein 42 (CDC42) positively regulates proplatelet formation (PPF). Neural Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome protein, the main effector of CDC42 with Src positively regulates PPF. Background Cytoskeletal rearrangements are essential for platelet release. The RHO small GTPase family, as regulators of the actin cytoskeleton, play an important role in proplatelet formation (PPF). In the neuronal system, CDC42 is involved in axon formation, a process that combines elongation and branching as for PPF. Objective To analyze the role of CDC42 and its effectors of the Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome protein (WASP) family in PPF. Methods Human megakaryocytes (MKs) were obtained from CD34(+) cells. Inhibition of CDC42 in MKs was performed with the chemical inhibitor CASIN or with an active or a dominant-negative form of CDC42. The knock-down of N-WASP was obtained with a small hairpin RNA strategy Results Herein, we show that CDC42 activity increased during MK differentiation. The use of the chemical inhibitor CASIN or of an active or a dominant-negative form of CDC42 demonstrated that CDC42 positively regulated PPF in vitro. We determined that N-WASP, but not WASP, regulated PPF. We found that N-WASP knockdown led to a marked decrease in PPF, owing to a defect in the demarcation membrane system (DMS). This was associated with RHOA activation, and a concomitant augmentation in the phosphorylation of mysosin light chain 2. Phosphorylation of N-WASP, creating a primed form of N-WASP, increased during MK differentiation. Phosphorylation inhibition by two Src family kinase inhibitors decreased PPF. Conclusions We conclude that N-WASP positively regulates DMS development and PPF, and that the Src family kinases in association with CDC42 regulate PPF through N-WASP. © 2016 International Society on Thrombosis and

  5. Imaging nanometer-sized α-synuclein aggregates by superresolution fluorescence localization microscopy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roberti, M Julia; Fölling, Jonas; Celej, M Soledad; Bossi, Mariano; Jovin, Thomas M; Jares-Erijman, Elizabeth A

    2012-04-04

    The morphological features of α-synuclein (AS) amyloid aggregation in vitro and in cells were elucidated at the nanoscale by far-field subdiffraction fluorescence localization microscopy. Labeling AS with rhodamine spiroamide probes allowed us to image AS fibrillar structures by fluorescence stochastic nanoscopy with an enhanced resolution at least 10-fold higher than that achieved with conventional, diffraction-limited techniques. The implementation of dual-color detection, combined with atomic force microscopy, revealed the propagation of individual fibrils in vitro. In cells, labeled protein appeared as amyloid aggregates of spheroidal morphology and subdiffraction sizes compatible with in vitro supramolecular intermediates perceived independently by atomic force microscopy and cryo-electron tomography. We estimated the number of monomeric protein units present in these minute structures. This approach is ideally suited for the investigation of the molecular mechanisms of amyloid formation both in vitro and in the cellular milieu. Copyright © 2012 Biophysical Society. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Soluble α-synuclein is a novel modulator of Alzheimer’s disease pathophysiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larson, Megan E.; Sherman, Mathew A.; Greimel, Susan; Kuskowski, Michael; Schneider, Julie A.; Bennett, David A.; Lesné, Sylvain E.

    2012-01-01

    Recent evidence has emphasized soluble species of amyloid-β (Aβ) and tau as pathogenic effectors in AD. Despite the fact that Aβ, tau and α-synuclein (αSyn) can promote each other’s aggregation, the potential contribution of soluble αSyn to Alzheimer’s disease (AD) pathogenesis is unknown. Here, we found a ~2-fold increase over controls in soluble αSyn levels in AD brains in the absence of LB cytopathology. Importantly, soluble αSyn levels were a quantitatively stronger correlate of cognitive impairment than soluble Aβ and tau levels. To examine a putative role for αSyn in modulating cognitive function, we used the Barnes circular maze to assess spatial reference memory in transgenic mice overexpressing human wild-type αSyn. The results revealed that a ~3-fold elevation of αSyn in vivo induced memory deficits similar to those observed in AD mouse models. The neurobiological changes associated with this elevation of soluble αSyn included decreases in selected synaptic vesicle proteins and an alteration of the protein composition of synaptic vesicles. Finally, a synergism between Aβ/APP and human tau appears to be responsible for the abnormal elevation of soluble αSyn in transgenic mice. Altogether, our data reveal an unexpected role for soluble, intraneuronal αSyn in AD pathophysiology. PMID:22836259

  7. 7,8-dihydroxyflavone Ameliorates Motor Deficits Via Suppressing α-synuclein Expression and Oxidative Stress in the MPTP-induced Mouse Model of Parkinson's Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Xiao-Huan; Dai, Chun-Fang; Chen, Long; Zhou, Wei-Tao; Han, Hui-Li; Dong, Zhi-Fang

    2016-07-01

    Parkinson disease (PD) is a neurodegenerative disease characterized by the loss of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra (SN) and diminished dopamine content in the striatum, which is at least partly associated with α-synuclein protein overexpression in these neurons. Recent reports show that 7,8-dihydroxyflavone (DHF), a TrkB agonist, has beneficial effects in animal model of PD. However, it is unclear whether the therapeutic effects of DHF are associated with the expression of α-synuclein. In this study, we investigated the protective effects of DHF on 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP)-induced deficit of motor functions, the loss of dopaminergic neurons and the expression of α-synuclein as well as antioxidative activity in the C57BL/6 mice. Mice were treated with MPTP (30 mg/kg, i.p.) once a day for 5 days to induce dopaminergic neuron death in the SN. DHF (5 mg/kg, i.p.) was administrated once a day from the first day of MPTP injection until 9 days after the last injection of MPTP. Behavioral tests showed that DHF succeeded in ameliorating the impaired motor functions in the MPTP-treated mice. The immunohistochemical assay showed that the amelioration of motor function was accompanied by a reduction in the loss of dopaminergic neurons in the SN and striatum. Western blot analyses showed that DHF prevented the inactivation of TrkB and suppressed α-synuclein overexpression in the SN and striatum following MPTP treatment. Antioxidative activity detection revealed that DHF prevented MPTP-induced reduction in glutathione and total superoxide dismutase activity in the SN and striatum. Taken together, these results indicate that DHF treatment may suppress the accumulation of α-synuclein and oxidative stress via activating TrkB and subsequently block the loss of dopaminergic neurons in the SN and striatum, thereby ameliorating MPTP-induced motor deficits in the C57BL/6 mice. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  8. Thermodynamics imprinting reveals differential binding of metals to alpha-synuclein: relevance to Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bharathi; Rao, K S J

    2007-07-20

    The aggregation of alpha-synuclein is a hallmark feature of Parkinson's disease (PD) and other synucleinopathies. Metals are the significant etiological factors in PD, and their interaction with alpha-synuclein affect dramatically the kinetics of fibrillation in vitro and are proposed to play an important and potential neurodegenerative role in vivo. In the present study, we investigated the stoichiometry of binding of copper [Cu (II)] and iron [Fe (III)] with alpha-synuclein (wild recombinant type and A30P, A53T, E46K mutant forms) using isothermal titration calorimetry (ITC). alpha-Synuclein monomer (wild and mutant forms) titrated by Cu (II), showed two binding sites, with an apparent K(B) of 10(5)M and 10(4)M, respectively. But, alpha-synuclein (wild type and mutant forms) titrated with Fe (III) revealed a K(B) of 10(5)M with single binding site. The present investigation uncovers the detailed binding propensities between metals and alpha-synuclein and has biological implications in PD.

  9. C. elegans model identifies genetic modifiers of alpha-synuclein inclusion formation during aging.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tjakko J van Ham

    2008-03-01

    Full Text Available Inclusions in the brain containing alpha-synuclein are the pathological hallmark of Parkinson's disease, but how these inclusions are formed and how this links to disease is poorly understood. We have developed a C. elegans model that makes it possible to monitor, in living animals, the formation of alpha-synuclein inclusions. In worms of old age, inclusions contain aggregated alpha- synuclein, resembling a critical pathological feature. We used genome-wide RNA interference to identify processes involved in inclusion formation, and identified 80 genes that, when knocked down, resulted in a premature increase in the number of inclusions. Quality control and vesicle-trafficking genes expressed in the ER/Golgi complex and vesicular compartments were overrepresented, indicating a specific role for these processes in alpha-synuclein inclusion formation. Suppressors include aging-associated genes, such as sir-2.1/SIRT1 and lagr-1/LASS2. Altogether, our data suggest a link between alpha-synuclein inclusion formation and cellular aging, likely through an endomembrane-related mechanism. The processes and genes identified here present a framework for further study of the disease mechanism and provide candidate susceptibility genes and drug targets for Parkinson's disease and other alpha-synuclein related disorders.

  10. Amyloid formation and disaggregation of {alpha}-synuclein and its tandem repeat ({alpha}-TR)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bae, Song Yi; Kim, Seulgi; Hwang, Heejin; Kim, Hyun-Kyung; Yoon, Hyun C.; Kim, Jae Ho [Department of Molecular Science and Technology, Graduate School of Interdisciplinary Programs, Ajou University, Suwon 443-749 (Korea, Republic of); Lee, SangYoon, E-mail: sangyoon@ajou.ac.kr [Chronic Inflammatory Disease Research Center, School of Medicine, Ajou University, Suwon 443-749 (Korea, Republic of); Kim, T. Doohun, E-mail: doohunkim@ajou.ac.kr [Department of Molecular Science and Technology, Graduate School of Interdisciplinary Programs, Ajou University, Suwon 443-749 (Korea, Republic of)

    2010-10-01

    Research highlights: {yields} Formation of the {alpha}-synuclein amyloid fibrils by [BIMbF{sub 3}Im]. {yields} Disaggregation of amyloid fibrils by epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) and baicalein. {yields} Amyloid formation of {alpha}-synuclein tandem repeat ({alpha}-TR). -- Abstract: The aggregation of {alpha}-synuclein is clearly related to the pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease. Therefore, detailed understanding of the mechanism of fibril formation is highly valuable for the development of clinical treatment and also of the diagnostic tools. Here, we have investigated the interaction of {alpha}-synuclein with ionic liquids by using several biochemical techniques including Thioflavin T assays and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). Our data shows a rapid formation of {alpha}-synuclein amyloid fibrils was stimulated by 1-butyl-3-methylimidazolium bis(trifluoromethylsulfonyl)imide [BIMbF{sub 3}Im], and these fibrils could be disaggregated by polyphenols such as epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) and baicalein. Furthermore, the effect of [BIMbF{sub 3}Im] on the {alpha}-synuclein tandem repeat ({alpha}-TR) in the aggregation process was studied.

  11. Structural alterations in rat liver proteins due to streptozotocin-induced diabetes and the recovery effect of selenium: Fourier transform infrared microspectroscopy and neural network study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bozkurt, Ozlem; Haman Bayari, Sevgi; Severcan, Mete; Krafft, Christoph; Popp, Jürgen; Severcan, Feride

    2012-07-01

    The relation between protein structural alterations and tissue dysfunction is a major concern as protein fibrillation and/or aggregation due to structural alterations has been reported in many disease states. In the current study, Fourier transform infrared microspectroscopic imaging has been used to investigate diabetes-induced changes on protein secondary structure and macromolecular content in streptozotocin-induced diabetic rat liver. Protein secondary structural alterations were predicted using neural network approach utilizing the amide I region. Moreover, the role of selenium in the recovery of diabetes-induced alterations on macromolecular content and protein secondary structure was also studied. The results revealed that diabetes induced a decrease in lipid to protein and glycogen to protein ratios in diabetic livers. Significant alterations in protein secondary structure were observed with a decrease in α-helical and an increase in β-sheet content. Both doses of selenium restored diabetes-induced changes in lipid to protein and glycogen to protein ratios. However, low-dose selenium supplementation was not sufficient to recover the effects of diabetes on protein secondary structure, while a higher dose of selenium fully restored diabetes-induced alterations in protein structure.

  12. Structural variation of alpha-synuclein with temperature by a coarse-grained approach with knowledge-based interactions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter Mirau

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Despite enormous efforts, our understanding the structure and dynamics of α-synuclein (ASN, a disordered protein (that plays a key role in neurodegenerative disease is far from complete. In order to better understand sequence-structure-property relationships in α-SYNUCLEIN we have developed a coarse-grained model using knowledge-based residue-residue interactions and used it to study the structure of free ASN as a function of temperature (T with a large-scale Monte Carlo simulation. Snapshots of the simulation and contour contact maps show changes in structure formation due to self-assembly as a function of temperature. Variations in the residue mobility profiles reveal clear distinction among three segments along the protein sequence. The N-terminal (1-60 and C-terminal (96-140 regions contain the least mobile residues, which are separated by the higher mobility non-amyloid component (NAC (61-95. Our analysis of the intra-protein contact profile shows a higher frequency of residue aggregation (clumping in the N-terminal region relative to that in the C-terminal region, with little or no aggregation in the NAC region. The radius of gyration (Rg of ASN decays monotonically with decreasing the temperature, consistent with the finding of Allison et al. (JACS, 2009. Our analysis of the structure function provides an insight into the mass (N distribution of ASN, and the dimensionality (D of the structure as a function of temperature. We find that the globular structure with D ≈ 3 at low T, a random coil, D ≈ 2 at high T and in between (2 ≤ D ≤ 3 at the intermediate temperatures. The magnitudes of D are in agreement with experimental estimates (J. Biological Chem 2002.

  13. Unveiling the role of the pesticides paraquat and rotenone on α-synuclein fibrillation in vitro.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maturana, Maurício Guilherme Valente; Pinheiro, Anderson Sá; de Souza, Theo Luiz Ferraz; Follmer, Cristian

    2015-01-01

    Epidemiological data have suggested that exposure to environmental toxins might be associated with the etiology of Parkinson's disease (PD). In this context, certain agrochemicals are able to induce Parkinsonism in different animal models via the inhibition of mitochondrial complex I, which leads to an increase in both oxidative stress and the death of nigrostriatal neurons. Additionally, in vitro experiments have indicated that pesticides are capable of accelerating the fibrillation of the presynaptic protein α-synuclein (aS) by binding directly to the protein. However, the molecular details of these interactions are poorly understood. In the present work we demonstrate that paraquat and rotenone, two agrochemicals that lead to a Parkinsonian phenotype in vivo, bind to aS via solvent effects rather than through specific interactions. In fact, these compounds produced no significant effects on aS fibrillation under physiological concentrations of NaCl. NMR data suggest that paraquat interacts with the C-terminal domain of the disordered aS monomer. This interaction was markedly reduced in the presence of NaCl, presumably due to the disruption of electrostatic interactions between the protein and paraquat. Interestingly, the effects produced by short-term incubation of paraquat with aS on the protein conformation resembled those produced by incubating the protein with NaCl alone. Taken together, our data indicate that the effects of these agrochemicals on PD cannot be explained via direct interactions with aS, reinforcing the idea that the role of these compounds in PD is limited to the inhibition of mitochondrial complex I and/or the up-regulation of aS. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. Coordination of copper to the membrane-bound form of α-synuclein.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dudzik, Christopher G; Walter, Eric D; Abrams, Benjamin S; Jurica, Melissa S; Millhauser, Glenn L

    2013-01-08

    Aggregation of the 140-amino acid protein α-synuclein (α-syn) is linked to the development of Parkinson's disease (PD). α-Syn is a copper binding protein with potential function as a regulator of metal-dependent redox activity. Epidemiological studies suggest that human exposure to excess copper increases the incidence of PD. α-Syn exists in both solution and membrane-bound forms. Previous work evaluated the Cu(2+) uptake for α-syn in solution and identified Met1-Asp2 and His50 as primary contributors to the coordination shell, with a dissociation constant of approximately 0.1 nM. When bound to the membrane bilayer, α-syn takes on a predominantly helical conformation, which spatially separates His50 from the N-terminus of the protein and is therefore incompatible with the copper coordination geometry of the solution state. Here we use circular dichroism and electron paramagnetic resonance (continuous wave and pulsed) to evaluate the coordination of copper to the membrane-bound form of α-syn. In this molecular environment, Cu(2+) binds exclusively to the N-terminus of the protein (Met1-Asp2) with no participation from His50. Copper does not alter the membrane-bound α-syn conformation or enhance the release of the protein from the bilayer. The Cu(2+) affinity is similar to that identified for solution α-syn, suggesting that copper coordination is retained in the membrane. Consideration of these results demonstrates that copper exerts its greatest conformational effect on the solution form of α-syn.

  15. Mutations in the novel membrane protein spinster interfere with programmed cell death and cause neural degeneration in Drosophila melanogaster.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakano, Y; Fujitani, K; Kurihara, J; Ragan, J; Usui-Aoki, K; Shimoda, L; Lukacsovich, T; Suzuki, K; Sezaki, M; Sano, Y; Ueda, R; Awano, W; Kaneda, M; Umeda, M; Yamamoto, D

    2001-06-01

    Mutations in the spin gene are characterized by an extraordinarily strong rejection behavior of female flies in response to male courtship. They are also accompanied by decreases in the viability, adult life span, and oviposition rate of the flies. In spin mutants, some oocytes and adult neural cells undergo degeneration, which is preceded by reductions in programmed cell death of nurse cells in ovaries and of neurons in the pupal nervous system, respectively. The central nervous system (CNS) of spin mutant flies accumulates autofluorescent lipopigments with characteristics similar to those of lipofuscin. The spin locus generates at least five different transcripts, with only two of these being able to rescue the spin behavioral phenotype; each encodes a protein with multiple membrane-spanning domains that are expressed in both the surface glial cells in the CNS and the follicle cells in the ovaries. Orthologs of the spin gene have also been identified in a number of species from nematodes to humans. Analysis of the spin mutant will give us new insights into neurodegenerative diseases and aging.

  16. Effects of Dietary Protein and Fiber at Breakfast on Appetite, ad Libitum Energy Intake at Lunch, and Neural Responses to Visual Food Stimuli in Overweight Adults

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Drew Sayer

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Increasing either protein or fiber at mealtimes has relatively modest effects on ingestive behavior. Whether protein and fiber have additive or interactive effects on ingestive behavior is not known. Fifteen overweight adults (5 female, 10 male; BMI: 27.1 ± 0.2 kg/m2; aged 26 ± 1 year consumed four breakfast meals in a randomized crossover manner (normal protein (12 g + normal fiber (2 g, normal protein (12 g + high fiber (8 g, high protein (25 g + normal fiber (2 g, high protein (25 g + high fiber (8 g. The amount of protein and fiber consumed at breakfast did not influence postprandial appetite or ad libitum energy intake at lunch. In the fasting-state, visual food stimuli elicited significant responses in the bilateral insula and amygdala and left orbitofrontal cortex. Contrary to our hypotheses, postprandial right insula responses were lower after consuming normal protein vs. high protein breakfasts. Postprandial responses in other a priori brain regions were not significantly influenced by protein or fiber intake at breakfast. In conclusion, these data do not support increasing dietary protein and fiber at breakfast as effective strategies for modulating neural reward processing and acute ingestive behavior in overweight adults.

  17. Walking deficits and centrophobism in an α-synuclein fly model of Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, A Y; Wilburn, P; Hao, X; Tully, T

    2014-11-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is a movement neurodegenerative disorder, characterized by bradykinesia, rigidity and tremor, constituting difficulties in walking and abnormal gait. Previous research shows that Drosophila expressing human α-synuclein A30P (A30P) develop deficits in geotaxis climbing; however, geotaxis climbing is a different movement modality from walking. Whether A30P flies would exhibit abnormal walking in a horizontal plane, a measure more relevant to PD, is not known. In this study, we characterized A30P fly walking using a high-speed camera and an automatic behavior tracking system. We found that old but not young A30P flies exhibited walking abnormalities, specifically decreased total moving distance, distance per movement, velocity, angular velocity and others, compared with old control flies. Those features match the definition of bradykinesia. Multivariate analysis further suggested a synergistic effect of aging and A30P, resulting in a distinct pattern of walking deficits, as seen in aged A30P flies. Psychiatric problems are common in PD patients with anxiety affecting 40-69% of patients. Central avoidance is one assessment of anxiety in various animal models. We found old but not young A30P flies exhibited increased centrophobism, suggesting possible elevated anxiety. Here, we report the first quantitative measures of walking qualities in a PD fly model and propose an alternative behavior paradigm for evaluating motor functions apart from climbing assay. © 2014 The Authors. Genes, Brain and Behavior published by International Behavioural and Neural Genetics Society and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  18. Effect of Ser-129 phosphorylation on interaction of α-synuclein with synaptic and cellular membranes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Visanji, Naomi P; Wislet-Gendebien, Sabine; Oschipok, Loren W; Zhang, Gang; Aubert, Isabelle; Fraser, Paul E; Tandon, Anurag

    2011-10-14

    In the healthy brain, less than 5% of α-synuclein (α-syn) is phosphorylated at serine 129 (Ser(P)-129). However, within Parkinson disease (PD) Lewy bodies, 89% of α-syn is Ser(P)-129. The effects of Ser(P)-129 modification on α-syn distribution and solubility are poorly understood. As α-syn normally exists in both membrane-bound and cytosolic compartments, we examined the binding and dissociation of Ser(P)-129 α-syn and analyzed the effects of manipulating Ser(P)-129 levels on α-syn membrane interactions using synaptosomal membranes and neural precursor cells from α-syn-deficient mice or transgenic mice expressing human α-syn. We first evaluated the recovery of the Ser(P)-129 epitope following either α-syn membrane binding or dissociation. We demonstrate a rapid turnover of Ser(P)-129 during both binding to and dissociation from synaptic membranes. Although the membrane binding of WT α-syn was insensitive to modulation of Ser(P)-129 levels by multiple strategies (the use of phosphomimic S129D and nonphosphorylated S129A α-syn mutants; by enzymatic dephosphorylation of Ser(P)-129 or proteasome inhibitor-induced elevation in Ser(P)-129; or by inhibition or stable overexpression of PLK2), PD mutant Ser(P)-129 α-syn showed a preferential membrane association compared with WT Ser(P)-129 α-syn. Collectively, these data suggest that phosphorylation at Ser-129 is dynamic and that the subcellular distribution of α-syn bearing PD-linked mutations, A30P or A53T, is influenced by the phosphorylation state of Ser-129.

  19. Effect of Ser-129 Phosphorylation on Interaction of α-Synuclein with Synaptic and Cellular Membranes*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Visanji, Naomi P.; Wislet-Gendebien, Sabine; Oschipok, Loren W.; Zhang, Gang; Aubert, Isabelle; Fraser, Paul E.; Tandon, Anurag

    2011-01-01

    In the healthy brain, less than 5% of α-synuclein (α-syn) is phosphorylated at serine 129 (Ser(P)-129). However, within Parkinson disease (PD) Lewy bodies, 89% of α-syn is Ser(P)-129. The effects of Ser(P)-129 modification on α-syn distribution and solubility are poorly understood. As α-syn normally exists in both membrane-bound and cytosolic compartments, we examined the binding and dissociation of Ser(P)-129 α-syn and analyzed the effects of manipulating Ser(P)-129 levels on α-syn membrane interactions using synaptosomal membranes and neural precursor cells from α-syn-deficient mice or transgenic mice expressing human α-syn. We first evaluated the recovery of the Ser(P)-129 epitope following either α-syn membrane binding or dissociation. We demonstrate a rapid turnover of Ser(P)-129 during both binding to and dissociation from synaptic membranes. Although the membrane binding of WT α-syn was insensitive to modulation of Ser(P)-129 levels by multiple strategies (the use of phosphomimic S129D and nonphosphorylated S129A α-syn mutants; by enzymatic dephosphorylation of Ser(P)-129 or proteasome inhibitor-induced elevation in Ser(P)-129; or by inhibition or stable overexpression of PLK2), PD mutant Ser(P)-129 α-syn showed a preferential membrane association compared with WT Ser(P)-129 α-syn. Collectively, these data suggest that phosphorylation at Ser-129 is dynamic and that the subcellular distribution of α-syn bearing PD-linked mutations, A30P or A53T, is influenced by the phosphorylation state of Ser-129. PMID:21849493

  20. Generation and characterization of novel conformation-specific monoclonal antibodies for α-synuclein pathology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vaikath, Nishant N; Majbour, Nour K; Paleologou, Katerina E; Ardah, Mustafa T; van Dam, Esther; van de Berg, Wilma D J; Forrest, Shelley L; Parkkinen, Laura; Gai, Wei-Ping; Hattori, Nobutaka; Takanashi, Masashi; Lee, Seung-Jae; Mann, David M A; Imai, Yuzuru; Halliday, Glenda M; Li, Jia-Yi; El-Agnaf, Omar M A

    2015-07-01

    α-Synuclein (α-syn), a small protein that has the intrinsic propensity to aggregate, is implicated in several neurodegenerative diseases including Parkinson's disease (PD), dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB), and multiple system atrophy (MSA), which are collectively known as synucleinopathies. Genetic, pathological, biochemical, and animal modeling studies provided compelling evidence that α-syn aggregation plays a key role in the pathogenesis of PD and related synucleinopathies. It is therefore of utmost importance to develop reliable tools that can detect the aggregated forms of α-syn. We describe here the generation and characterization of six novel conformation-specific monoclonal antibodies that recognize specifically α-syn aggregates but not the soluble, monomeric form of the protein. The antibodies described herein did not recognize monomers or fibrils generated from other amyloidogenic proteins including β-syn, γ-syn, β-amyloid, tau protein, islet amyloid polypeptide and ABri. Interestingly, the antibodies did not react to overlapping linear peptides spanning the entire sequence of α-syn, confirming further that they only detect α-syn aggregates. In immunohistochemical studies, the new conformation-specific monoclonal antibodies showed underappreciated small micro-aggregates and very thin neurites in PD and DLB cases that were not observed with generic pan antibodies that recognize linear epitope. Furthermore, employing one of our conformation-specific antibodies in a sandwich based ELISA, we observed an increase in levels of α-syn oligomers in brain lysates from DLB compared to Alzheimer's disease and control samples. Therefore, the conformation-specific antibodies portrayed herein represent useful tools for research, biomarkers development, diagnosis and even immunotherapy for PD and related pathologies. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. CADPS2 gene expression is oppositely regulated by LRRK2 and alpha-synuclein.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Obergasteiger, Julia; Überbacher, Christa; Pramstaller, Peter P; Hicks, Andrew A; Corti, Corrado; Volta, Mattia

    2017-08-26

    The Ca(2+)-dependent activator protein for secretion 2 (CADPS2) is a member of the CAPS/CADPS protein family that plays crucial roles in synaptic vesicle dynamics. Genomic variability in the CADPS2 gene has been associated to autism spectrum disorders and Alzheimer's disease, both characterized by altered neurotransmission. Biological evidence also linked CADPS2 to Parkinson's disease (PD), as a disease-causing mutation in leucine-rich repeat kinase 2 (LRRK2) was reported to increase CADPS2 gene and protein expression. Furthermore, restoration of CADPS2 physiologic levels was able to provide neuroprotection in patient-derived neurons, consistent with the synaptic dysfunction postulated to underlie PD. However, little is known about the influence of PD-related proteins on transcriptional regulation of critical synaptic genes such as CADPS2. Here we aimed at investigating the transcriptional effects of LRRK2 and alpha-synuclein (aSyn) on CADPS2 gene expression, using a combination of in silico analyses and cell biology techniques. First, we identified a predicted promoter in the human CADPS2 genomic sequence, which we then utilized in a luciferase-based gene reporter assay. This approach enabled us to disclose a differential effect of high levels of LRRK2 and aSyn on CADPS2 promoter activity. Specifically, CADPS2 transcriptional activity was enhanced by high cellular levels of LRRK2 and reduced by overexpression of aSyn. Consistently, CADPS2 mRNA levels were diminished in aSyn overexpressing cells. Our results indicate that LRRK2 and aSyn participate in the dysregulation of CADPS2 by altering transcription and support the hypothesis that synaptic dysfunctions, through different mechanisms, might contribute to the neuronal defects of diseases such as PD. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. Copper Coordination to the Membrane Bound Form of α-Synuclein

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dudzik, Christopher G.; Walter, Eric D.; Abrams, Benjamin S.; Jurica, Melissa S.; Millhauser, Glenn L.

    2013-01-01

    Aggregation of the 140 amino acid protein α-synuclein (α-syn) is linked to the development of Parkinson’s disease (PD). α-Syn is a copper binding protein with potential function as a regulator of metal dependent redox activity. Epidemiological studies suggest that human exposure to excess copper increases the incidence of PD. α-Syn exists in both solution and membrane bound forms. Previous work evaluated the Cu2+ uptake for α-syn in solution and identified Met1 Asp2 and His50 as primary contributors to the coordination shell, with a dissociation constant of approximately 0.1 nM. When bound to the membrane bilayer, α-syn takes on a predominantly helical conformation, which spatially separates His50 from the protein N-terminus and is therefore incompatible with the copper coordination geometry of the solution state. Here we use circular dichroism and electron paramagnetic resonance (continuous wave and pulsed) to evaluate copper coordination to the membrane bound form of α-syn. In this molecular environment, Cu2+ binds exclusively to the protein N-terminus (Met1-Asp2) with no participation from His50. Copper does not alter the membrane bound α-syn conformation, or enhance the protein’s release from the bilayer. The Cu2+ affinity is similar to that identified for solution α-syn suggesting that copper coordination is retained in the membrane. Consideration of these results demonstrates that copper exerts its greatest conformational affect on the solution form of α-syn. PMID:23252394

  3. Proteomic profiling of phosphoproteins and glycoproteins responsive to wild-type alpha-synuclein accumulation and aggregation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kulathingal, Jayanarayan; Ko, Li-wen; Cusack, Bernadette; Yen, Shu-Hui

    2009-01-01

    A tetracycline inducible transfectant cell line (3D5) capable of producing soluble and sarkosyl-insoluble assemblies of wild-type human alpha-synuclein (α-Syn) upon differentiation with retinoic acid was used to study the impact of α-Syn accumulation on protein phosphorylation and glycosylation. Soluble proteins from 3D5 cells, with or without the induced α-Syn expression were analyzed by two-dimensional gel electrophoresis and staining of gels with dyes that bind to proteins (Sypro ruby), phosphoproteins (Pro-Q diamond) and glycoproteins (Pro-Q emerald). Phosphoproteins were further confirmed by binding to immobilized metal ion affinity column. α-Syn accumulation caused differential phosphorylation and glycosylation of 16 and 12, proteins, respectively, whose identity was revealed by mass spectrometry. These proteins, including HSP90, have diverse biological functions including protein folding, signal transduction, protein degradation and cytoskeletal regulation. Importantly, cells accumulating α-Syn assemblies with different abilities to bind thioflavin S displayed different changes in phosphorylation and glycosylation. Consistent with the cell-based studies, we demonstrated a reduced level of phosphorylated HSP90 α/β in the substantia nigra of subjects with Parkinson’s disease as compared to normal controls. Together, the results indicate that α-Syn accumulation causes complex cellular responses, which if persist may compromise cell viability. PMID:19027885

  4. Essential Oils May Lead α-Synuclein towards Toxic Fibrils Formation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dina Morshedi

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available α-Synuclein (α-Syn fibrillation links with Parkinson’s disease (PD and several related syndromes. It is believed that exposure to the factors which promote fibrillation may induce and progress such neurodegenerative diseases (NDs. Herein, the effects of some wildly used essential oils including Myrtus communis (M. communis on α-Syn fibrillation were examined. M. communis particularly increased α-Syn fibrillation in a concentration dependent manner. Given that applications of M. communis are very extensive in Asian societies, especially Zoroastrians, this study was extended towards its role on α-Syn fibrillation/cytotoxicity. By using a unilamellar vesicle, it was shown that the aggregated species with tendency to perturb membrane were increased in the presence of M. communis. In this regard, the cytotoxicity of α-Syn on SH-SH5Y cells was also increased significantly. Inappropriately, the effects of fibrillation inhibitors, baicalein and cuminaldehyde, were modulated in the presence of M. communis. However, major components of M. communis did not induce fibrillation and also the effect of M. communis was limited on other fibrinogenic proteins. Assuming that essential oils have the ability to pass through the blood brain barrier (BBB along with the popular attention on aromatherapy for the incurable ND, these findings suggest an implementation of fibrillation tests for essential oils.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peng Wang

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available 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.

  6. Mitochondrial Dysfunction: The Road to Alpha-Synuclein Oligomerization in PD

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. R. Esteves

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available While the etiology of Parkinson's disease remains largely elusive, there is accumulating evidence suggesting that mitochondrial dysfunction occurs prior to the onset of symptoms in Parkinson's disease. Mitochondria are remarkably primed to play a vital role in neuronal cell survival since they are key regulators of energy metabolism (as ATP producers, of intracellular calcium homeostasis, of NAD+/NADH ratio, and of endogenous reactive oxygen species production and programmed cell death. In this paper, we focus on mitochondrial dysfunction-mediated alpha-synuclein aggregation. We highlight some of the findings that provide proof of evidence for a mitochondrial metabolism control in Parkinson's disease, namely, mitochondrial regulation of microtubule-dependent cellular traffic and autophagic lysosomal pathway. The knowledge that microtubule alterations may lead to autophagic deficiency and may compromise the cellular degradation mechanisms that culminate in the progressive accumulation of aberrant protein aggregates shields new insights to the way we address Parkinson's disease. In line with this knowledge, an innovative window for new therapeutic strategies aimed to restore microtubule network may be unlocked.

  7. Gastrointestinal Biopsies for the Diagnosis of Alpha-Synuclein Pathology in Parkinson’s Disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Graciela Cersosimo

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The diagnosis of Parkinson’s disease (PD relies on clinical features whereas pathological confirmation is only possible with autopsy examination. The neuropathological hallmarks of PD are neuronal loss and the presence of inclusions termed Lewy bodies/neurites in affected regions. A major component of these inclusions is phosphorylated alpha-synuclein (α-SYN protein. There is evidence that α-SYN pathology is widely distributed outside the central nervous system in patients with PD. The gastrointestinal tract is importantly affected by α-SYN containing inclusions and typically there is a rostrocaudal gradient for the distribution of the pathology. The highest amounts of Lewy bodies/neurites are found at the submandibular gland together with the lower esophagus and the lowest amounts are found in the rectum. Autopsy findings prompted research aimed at achieving in vivo pathological diagnosis of PD by demonstrating the presence of α-SYN pathology in biopsy material of these peripheral accessible tissues. So far, biopsy studies of the gut have demonstrated the presence of α-SYN pathology in the salivary glands, stomach, duodenum, colon, and rectum. Further research is necessary in order to determine which are the most sensitive targets for in vivo α-SYN pathology detection and the safest techniques for these approaches in patients with PD.

  8. AMPK over-activation leads to accumulation of α-synuclein oligomers and decrease of neurites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiang, Peizhou; Gan, Ming; Ebrahim, Abdul Shukkur; Castanedes-Casey, Monica; Dickson, Dennis W.; Yen, Shu-Hui C.

    2012-01-01

    Neuronal inclusions of α-synuclein (α-syn), termed Lewy bodies, are a hallmark of Parkinson disease (PD). Increased α-syn levels can occur in brains of aging human and neurotoxin treated mice. Since previous studies have shown increased brain lactate levels in aging brains, in PD affected subjects when compared to age-matched controls, and in mice treated with MPTP, we tested the effects of lactate exposure on α-syn in a cell based-study. We demonstrated that (i) lactate treatment led to α-syn accumulation and oligomerization in a time- and concentration-dependent manner, (ii) such alterations were mediated via adenosine-monophosphate activated protein kinase (AMPK) and associated with increasing cytoplasmic phosphorylated AMPK levels, (iii) AMPK activation facilitated α-syn accumulation and phosphorylation, (iv) lactate treatment or overexpression of active form of AMPK decreased α-syn turnover and neurite outgrowth and (v) Lewy body-bearing neurons displayed abnormal cytoplasmic distribution of phosphorylated AMPK, which normally is located in nuclei. Together, our results suggest that chronic neuronal accumulation of α-syn induced by lactate-triggered AMPK activation in aging brains may be a novel mechanism underlying α-synucleionpathies in PD and related disorders. PMID:23200460

  9. Defined α-synuclein prion-like molecular assemblies spreading in cell culture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aulić, Suzana; Le, Tran Thanh Nhat; Moda, Fabio; Abounit, Saïda; Corvaglia, Stefania; Casalis, Loredana; Gustincich, Stefano; Zurzolo, Chiara; Tagliavini, Fabrizio; Legname, Giuseppe

    2014-06-04

    α-Synuclein (α-syn) plays a central role in the pathogenesis of synucleinopathies, a group of neurodegenerative disorders that includes Parkinson disease, dementia with Lewy bodies and multiple system atrophy. Several findings from cell culture and mouse experiments suggest intercellular α-syn transfer. Through a methodology used to obtain synthetic mammalian prions, we tested whether recombinant human α-syn amyloids can promote prion-like accumulation in neuronal cell lines in vitro. A single exposure to amyloid fibrils of human α-syn was sufficient to induce aggregation of endogenous α-syn in human neuroblastoma SH-SY5Y cells. Remarkably, endogenous wild-type α-syn was sufficient for the formation of these aggregates, and overexpression of the protein was not required. Our results provide compelling evidence that endogenous α-syn can accumulate in cell culture after a single exposure to exogenous α-syn short amyloid fibrils. Importantly, using α-syn short amyloid fibrils as seed, endogenous α-syn aggregates and accumulates over several passages in cell culture, providing an excellent tool for potential therapeutic screening of pathogenic α-syn aggregates.

  10. Copper(II) and the pathological H50Q α-synuclein mutant: Environment meets genetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Villar-Piqué, Anna; Rossetti, Giulia; Ventura, Salvador; Carloni, Paolo; Fernández, Claudio O; Outeiro, Tiago Fleming

    2017-01-01

    Copper is one of the metals described to bind the Parkinson disease-related protein α-synuclein (aSyn), and to promote its aggregation. Although histidine at position 50 in the aSyn sequence is one of the most studied copper-anchoring sites, its precise role in copper binding and aSyn aggregation is still unclear. Previous studies suggested that this residue does not significantly affect copper-mediated aSyn aggregation. However, our findings showed that the aggregation of the pathological H50Q aSyn mutant is enhanced by copper hints otherwise. Despite the inexistence of a model for aSyn H50Q-copper complexation, we discuss possible mechanisms by which this metal contributes to the misfolding and self-assembly of this particular aSyn mutant. Considering the genetic association of the H50Q mutation with familial forms of Parkinson disease, and the fact that copper homeostasis is deregulated in this disorder, understanding the interplay between both factors will shed light into the molecular and cellular mechanisms triggering the development and spreading of the aSyn pathology.

  11. Copper(II) and the pathological H50Q α-synuclein mutant: Environment meets genetics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Villar-Piqué, Anna; Rossetti, Giulia; Ventura, Salvador; Carloni, Paolo; Fernández, Claudio O.; Outeiro, Tiago Fleming

    2017-01-01

    ABSTRACT Copper is one of the metals described to bind the Parkinson disease-related protein α-synuclein (aSyn), and to promote its aggregation. Although histidine at position 50 in the aSyn sequence is one of the most studied copper-anchoring sites, its precise role in copper binding and aSyn aggregation is still unclear. Previous studies suggested that this residue does not significantly affect copper-mediated aSyn aggregation. However, our findings showed that the aggregation of the pathological H50Q aSyn mutant is enhanced by copper hints otherwise. Despite the inexistence of a model for aSyn H50Q-copper complexation, we discuss possible mechanisms by which this metal contributes to the misfolding and self-assembly of this particular aSyn mutant. Considering the genetic association of the H50Q mutation with familial forms of Parkinson disease, and the fact that copper homeostasis is deregulated in this disorder, understanding the interplay between both factors will shed light into the molecular and cellular mechanisms triggering the development and spreading of the aSyn pathology. PMID:28289488

  12. Sustained Systemic Glucocerebrosidase Inhibition Induces Brain α-Synuclein Aggregation, Microglia and Complement C1q Activation in Mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rocha, Emily M; Smith, Gaynor A; Park, Eric; Cao, Hongmei; Graham, Anne-Renee; Brown, Eilish; McLean, Jesse R; Hayes, Melissa A; Beagan, Jonathan; Izen, Sarah C; Perez-Torres, Eduardo; Hallett, Penelope J; Isacson, Ole

    2015-08-20

    Loss-of-function mutations in GBA1, which cause the autosomal recessive lysosomal storage disease, Gaucher disease (GD), are also a key genetic risk factor for the α-synucleinopathies, including Parkinson's disease (PD) and dementia with Lewy bodies. GBA1 encodes for the lysosomal hydrolase glucocerebrosidase and reductions in this enzyme result in the accumulation of the glycolipid substrates glucosylceramide and glucosylsphingosine. Deficits in autophagy and lysosomal degradation pathways likely contribute to the pathological accumulation of α-synuclein in PD. In this report we used conduritol-β-epoxide (CBE), a potent selective irreversible competitive inhibitor of glucocerebrosidase, to model reduced glucocerebrosidase activity in vivo, and tested whether sustained glucocerebrosidase inhibition in mice could induce neuropathological abnormalities including α-synucleinopathy, and neurodegeneration. Our data demonstrate that daily systemic CBE treatment over 28 days caused accumulation of insoluble α-synuclein aggregates in the substantia nigra, and altered levels of proteins involved in the autophagy lysosomal system. These neuropathological changes were paralleled by widespread neuroinflammation, upregulation of complement C1q, abnormalities in synaptic, axonal transport and cytoskeletal proteins, and neurodegeneration. A reduction in brain GCase activity has been linked to sporadic PD and normal aging, and may contribute to the susceptibility of vulnerable neurons to degeneration. This report demonstrates that systemic reduction of GCase activity using chemical inhibition, leads to neuropathological changes in the brain reminiscent of α-synucleinopathy. These data reveal a link between reduced glucocerebrosidase and the development of α-synucleinopathy and pathophysiological abnormalities in mice, and support the development of GCase therapeutics to reduce α-synucleinopathy in PD and related disorders.

  13. Classification of protein fold classes by knot theory and prediction of folds by neural networks: A combined theoretical and experimental approach

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ramnarayan, K.; Bohr, Henrik; Jalkanen, Karl J.

    2008-01-01

    classifications, we utilize standard neural network methods for predicting protein fold classes from amino acid sequences. We also make an analysis of the redundancy of the structural classifications in relation to function and ligand binding. Finally we advocate the use of combining the measurement of the VA......We present different means of classifying protein structure. One is made rigorous by mathematical knot invariants that coincide reasonably well with ordinary graphical fold classification and another classification is by packing analysis. Furthermore when constructing our mathematical fold......, VCD, Raman, ROA, EA and ECD spectra with the primary sequence as a way to improve both the accuracy and reliability of fold class prediction schemes....

  14. GSM-900MHz at low dose temperature-dependently downregulates α-synuclein in cultured cerebral cells independently of chaperone-mediated-autophagy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Terro, Faraj; Magnaudeix, Amandine; Crochetet, Marion; Martin, Ludovic; Bourthoumieu, Sylvie; Wilson, Cornelia-M; Yardin, Catherine; Leveque, Philippe

    2012-02-26

    The expanding use of GSM devices has resulted in public concern. Chaperone-mediated autophagy (CMA) is a way for protein degradation in the lysosomes and increases under stress conditions as a cell defense response. α-synuclein, a CMA substrate, is a component of Parkinson disease. Since GSM might constitute a stress signal, we raised the possibility that GSM could alter the CMA process. Here, we analyzed the effects of chronic exposure to a low GSM-900MHz dose on apoptosis and CMA. Cultured cerebral cortical cells were sham-exposed or exposed to GSM-900MHz at specific absorption rate (SAR): 0.25W/kg for 24 h using a wire-patch cell. Apoptosis was analyzed by DAPI stain of the nuclei and western blot of cleaved caspase-3. The expression of proteins involved in CMA (HSC70, HSP40, HSP90 and LAMP-2A) and α-synuclein were analyzed by western blot. CMA was also quantified in situ by analyzing the cell localization of active lysosomes. 24 h exposure to GSM-900MHz resulted in ∼0.5°C temperature rise. It did not induce apoptosis but increased HSC70 by 26% and slightly decreased HSP90 (GSM-generated temperature rise. The GSM-induced changes in HSC70, HSP90 and α-synuclein are most likely linked to temperature rise. We did not observe any immediate effect on cell viability. However, the delayed and long term consequences (protective or deleterious) of these changes on cell fate should be examined. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. A New Glucocerebrosidase Chaperone Reduces α-Synuclein and Glycolipid Levels in iPSC-Derived Dopaminergic Neurons from Patients with Gaucher Disease and Parkinsonism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aflaki, Elma; Borger, Daniel K; Moaven, Nima; Stubblefield, Barbara K; Rogers, Steven A; Patnaik, Samarjit; Schoenen, Frank J; Westbroek, Wendy; Zheng, Wei; Sullivan, Patricia; Fujiwara, Hideji; Sidhu, Rohini; Khaliq, Zayd M; Lopez, Grisel J; Goldstein, David S; Ory, Daniel S; Marugan, Juan; Sidransky, Ellen

    2016-07-13

    Among the known genetic risk factors for Parkinson disease, mutations in GBA1, the gene responsible for the lysosomal disorder Gaucher disease, are the most common. This genetic link has directed attention to the role of the lysosome in the pathogenesis of parkinsonism. To study how glucocerebrosidase impacts parkinsonism and to evaluate new therapeutics, we generated induced human pluripotent stem cells from four patients with Type 1 (non-neuronopathic) Gaucher disease, two with and two without parkinsonism, and one patient with Type 2 (acute neuronopathic) Gaucher disease, and differentiated them into macrophages and dopaminergic neurons. These cells exhibited decreased glucocerebrosidase activity and stored the glycolipid substrates glucosylceramide and glucosylsphingosine, demonstrating their similarity to patients with Gaucher disease. Dopaminergic neurons from patients with Type 2 and Type 1 Gaucher disease with parkinsonism had reduced dopamine storage and dopamine transporter reuptake. Levels of α-synuclein, a protein present as aggregates in Parkinson disease and related synucleinopathies, were selectively elevated in neurons from the patients with parkinsonism or Type 2 Gaucher disease. The cells were then treated with NCGC607, a small-molecule noninhibitory chaperone of glucocerebrosidase identified by high-throughput screening and medicinal chemistry structure optimization. This compound successfully chaperoned the mutant enzyme, restored glucocerebrosidase activity and protein levels, and reduced glycolipid storage in both iPSC-derived macrophages and dopaminergic neurons, indicating its potential for treating neuronopathic Gaucher disease. In addition, NCGC607 reduced α-synuclein levels in dopaminergic neurons from the patients with parkinsonism, suggesting that noninhibitory small-molecule chaperones of glucocerebrosidase may prove useful for the treatment of Parkinson disease. Because GBA1 mutations are the most common genetic risk factor for

  16. Onjisaponin B Derived from Radix Polygalae Enhances Autophagy and Accelerates the Degradation of Mutant α-Synuclein and Huntingtin in PC-12 Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    An-Guo Wu

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available Emerging evidence indicates important protective roles being played by autophagy in neurodegenerative disorders through clearance of aggregate-prone or mutant proteins. In the current study, we aimed to identify autophagy inducers from Chinese medicinal herbs as a potential neuroprotective agent that enhances the clearance of mutant huntingtin and α-synuclein in PC-12 cells. Through intensive screening using the green fluorescent protein-light chain 3 (GFP-LC3 autophagy detection platform, we found that the ethanol extracts of Radix Polygalae (Yuan Zhi were capable of inducing autophagy. Further investigation showed that among three single components derived from Radix Polygalae—i.e., polygalacic acid, senegenin and onjisaponin B—onjisaponin B was able to induce autophagy and accelerate both the removal of mutant huntingtin and A53T α-synuclein, which are highly associated with Huntington disease and Parkinson disease, respectively. Our study further demonstrated that onjisaponin B induces autophagy via the AMPK-mTOR signaling pathway. Therefore, findings in the current study provide detailed insights into the protective mechanism of a novel autophagy inducer, which is valuable for further investigation as a new candidate agent for modulating neurodegenerative disorders through the reduction of toxicity and clearance of mutant proteins in the cellular level.

  17. DJ-1 deficiency impairs autophagy and reduces alpha-synuclein phagocytosis by microglia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nash, Yuval; Schmukler, Eran; Trudler, Dorit; Pinkas-Kramarski, Ronit; Frenkel, Dan

    2017-12-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder, of which 1% of the hereditary cases are linked to mutations in DJ-1, an oxidative stress sensor. The pathological hallmark of PD is intercellular inclusions termed Lewy Bodies, composed mainly of α-Synuclein (α-Syn) protein. Recent findings have shown that α-Syn can be transmitted from cell to cell, suggesting an important role of microglia, as the main scavenger cells of the brain, in clearing α-Syn. We previously reported that the knock down (KD) of DJ-1 in microglia increased cells' neurotoxicity to dopaminergic neurons. Here, we discovered that α-Syn significantly induced elevated secretion of the proinflammatory cytokines IL-6 and IL-1β and a significant dose-dependent elevation in the production of nitric oxide in DJ-1 KD microglia, compared to control microglia. We further investigated the ability of DJ-1 KD microglia to uptake and degrade soluble α-Syn, and discovered that DJ-1 KD reduces cell-surface lipid raft expression in microglia and impairs their ability to uptake soluble α-Syn. Autophagy is an important mechanism for degradation of intracellular proteins and organelles. We discovered that DJ-1 KD microglia exhibit an impaired autophagy-dependent degradation of p62 and LC3 proteins, and that manipulation of autophagy had less effect on α-Syn uptake and clearance in DJ-1 KD microglia, compared to control microglia. Further studies of the link between DJ-1, α-Syn uptake and autophagy may provide useful insights into the role of microglia in the etiology of the PD. © 2017 International Society for Neurochemistry.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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. © 2014 The Protein Society.

  19. Nitrated alpha-synuclein immunity accelerates degeneration of nigral dopaminergic neurons.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eric J Benner

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available The neuropathology of Parkinson's disease (PD includes loss of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra, nitrated alpha-synuclein (N-alpha-Syn enriched intraneuronal inclusions or Lewy bodies and neuroinflammation. While the contribution of innate microglial inflammatory activities to disease are known, evidence for how adaptive immune mechanisms may affect the course of PD remains obscure. We reasoned that PD-associated oxidative protein modifications create novel antigenic epitopes capable of peripheral adaptive T cell responses that could affect nigrostriatal degeneration.Nitrotyrosine (NT-modified alpha-Syn was detected readily in cervical lymph nodes (CLN from 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP intoxicated mice. Antigen-presenting cells within the CLN showed increased surface expression of major histocompatibility complex class II, initiating the molecular machinery necessary for efficient antigen presentation. MPTP-treated mice produced antibodies to native and nitrated alpha-Syn. Mice immunized with the NT-modified C-terminal tail fragment of alpha-Syn, but not native protein, generated robust T cell proliferative and pro-inflammatory secretory responses specific only for the modified antigen. T cells generated against the nitrated epitope do not respond to the unmodified protein. Mice deficient in T and B lymphocytes were resistant to MPTP-induced neurodegeneration. Transfer of T cells from mice immunized with N-alpha-Syn led to a robust neuroinflammatory response with accelerated dopaminergic cell loss.These data show that NT modifications within alpha-Syn, can bypass or break immunological tolerance and activate peripheral leukocytes in draining lymphoid tissue. A novel mechanism for disease is made in that NT modifications in alpha-Syn induce adaptive immune responses that exacerbate PD pathobiology. These results have implications for both the pathogenesis and treatment of this disabling neurodegenerative disease.

  20. Treatment with Trehalose Prevents Behavioral and Neurochemical Deficits Produced in an AAV α-Synuclein Rat Model of Parkinson's Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, Qing; Koprich, James B; Wang, Ying; Yu, Wen-bo; Xiao, Bao-guo; Brotchie, Jonathan M; Wang, Jian

    2016-05-01

    The accumulation of misfolded α-synuclein in dopamine (DA) neurons is believed to be of major importance in the pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease (PD). Animal models of PD, based on viral-vector-mediated over-expression of α-synuclein, have been developed and show evidence of dopaminergic toxicity, providing us a good tool to investigate potential therapies to interfere with α-synuclein-mediated pathology. An efficient disease-modifying therapeutic molecule should be able to interfere with the neurotoxicity of α-synuclein aggregation. Our study highlighted the ability of an autophagy enhancer, trehalose (at concentrations of 5 and 2% in drinking water), to protect against A53T α-synuclein-mediated DA degeneration in an adeno-associated virus serotype 1/2 (AAV1/2)-based rat model of PD. Behavioral tests and neurochemical analysis demonstrated a significant attenuation in α-synuclein-mediated deficits in motor asymmetry and DA neurodegeneration including impaired DA neuronal survival and DA turnover, as well as α-synuclein accumulation and aggregation in the nigrostriatal system by commencing 5 and 2% trehalose at the same time as delivery of AAV. Trehalose (0.5%) was ineffective on the above behavioral and neurochemical deficits. Further investigation showed that trehalose enhanced autophagy in the striatum by increasing formation of LC3-II. This study supports the concept of using trehalose as a novel therapeutic strategy that might prevent/reverse α-synuclein aggregation for the treatment of PD.

  1. Artificial neural networks analysis of surface-enhanced laser desorption/ionization mass spectra of serum protein pattern distinguishes colorectal cancer from healthy population.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Yi-ding; Zheng, Shu; Yu, Jie-kai; Hu, Xun

    2004-12-15

    The low specificity and sensitivity of the carcinoembryonic antigen test makes it not an ideal biomarker for the detection of colorectal cancer. We developed and evaluated a proteomic approach for the simultaneous detection and analysis of multiple proteins for distinguishing individuals with colorectal cancer from healthy individuals. We subjected serum samples (including 55 colorectal cancer patients and 92 age- and sex-matched healthy individuals) from 147 individuals, for analysis by surface-enhanced laser desorption/ionization (SELDI) mass spectrometry. Peaks were detected with Ciphergen SELDI software version 3.0. Using a multilayer artificial neural network with a back propagation algorithm, we developed a classifier for separating the colorectal cancer groups from the healthy groups. The artificial neural network classifier separated the colorectal cancer from the healthy samples, with a sensitivity of 91% and specificity of 93%. Four top-scored peaks, at m/z of 5,911, 8,930, 8,817, and 4,476, were finally selected as the potential "fingerprints" for detection of colorectal cancer. The combination of SELDI-TOF mass spectrometry with the artificial neural networks in the analysis of serum protein yields significantly higher sensitivity and specificity values for the detection and diagnosis of colorectal cancer.

  2. Three Tctn proteins are functionally conserved in the regulation of neural tube patterning and Gli3 processing but not ciliogenesis and Hedgehog signaling in the mouse.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Chengbing; Li, Jia; Meng, Qing; Wang, Baolin

    2017-10-01

    Tctn1, Tctn2, and Tctn3 are membrane proteins that localize at the transition zone of primary cilia. Tctn1 and Tctn2 mutations have been reported in both humans and mice, but Tctn3 mutations have been reported only in humans. It is also not clear whether the three Tctn proteins are functionally conserved with respect to ciliogenesis and Hedgehog (Hh) signaling. In the present study, we report that loss of Tctn3 gene function in mice results in a decrease in ciliogenesis and Hh signaling. Consistent with this, Tctn3 mutant mice exhibit holoprosencephaly and randomized heart looping and lack the floor plate in the neural tube, the phenotypes similar to those of Tctn1 and Tctn2 mutants. We also show that overexpression of Tctn3, but not Tctn1 or Tctn2, can rescue ciliogenesis in Tctn3 mutant cells. Similarly, replacement of Tctn3 with Tctn1 or Tctn2 in the Tctn3 gene locus results in reduced ciliogenesis and Hh signaling, holoprosencephaly, and randomized heart looping. Surprisingly, however, the neural tube patterning and the proteolytic processing of Gli3 (a transcription regulator for Hh signaling) into a repressor, both of which are usually impaired in ciliary gene mutants, are normal. These results suggest that Tctn1, Tctn2, and Tctn3 are functionally divergent with respect to their role in ciliogenesis and Hh signaling but conserved in neural tube patterning and Gli3 processing. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Changes in CD200 and intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (ICAM-1) levels in brains of Lewy body disorder cases are associated with amounts of Alzheimer's pathology not α-synuclein pathology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walker, Douglas G; Lue, Lih-Fen; Tang, Tiffany M; Adler, Charles H; Caviness, John N; Sabbagh, Marwan N; Serrano, Geidy E; Sue, Lucia I; Beach, Thomas G

    2017-06-01

    Enhanced inflammation has been associated with Alzheimer's disease (AD) and diseases with Lewy body (LB) pathology, such as Parkinson's disease (PD) and dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB). One issue is whether amyloid and tangle pathology, features of AD, or α-synuclein LB pathology have similar or different effects on brain inflammation. An aim of this study was to examine if certain features of inflammation changed in brains with increasing LB pathology. To assess this, we measured levels of the anti-inflammatory protein CD200 and the pro-inflammatory protein intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (ICAM-1) in cingulate and temporal cortex from a total of 143 cases classified according to the Unified Staging System for LB disorders. Changes in CD200 and ICAM-1 levels did not correlate with LB pathology, but with AD pathology. CD200 negatively correlated with density of neurofibrillary tangles, phosphorylated tau, and amyloid plaque density. ICAM-1 positively correlated with these AD pathology measures. Double immunohistochemistry for phosphorylated α-synuclein and markers for microglia showed limited association of microglia with LB pathology, but microglia strongly associated with amyloid plaques or phosphorylated tau. These results suggest that there are different features of inflammatory pathology in diseases associated with abnormal α-synuclein compared with AD. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. The reaction of alpha-synuclein with tyrosinase: possible implications for Parkinson disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tessari, Isabella; Bisaglia, Marco; Valle, Francesco; Samorì, Bruno; Bergantino, Elisabetta; Mammi, Stefano; Bubacco, Luigi

    2008-06-13

    Oxidative stress appears to be directly involved in the pathogenesis of Parkinson disease. Several different pathways have been identified for the production of oxidative stress conditions in nigral dopaminergic neurons, including a pathological accumulation of cytosolic dopamine with the subsequent production of toxic reactive oxygen species or the formation of highly reactive quinone species. On these premises, tyrosinase, a key copper enzyme known for its role in the synthesis of melanin in skin and hair, has been proposed to take part in the oxidative chemistry related to Parkinson disease. A study is herein presented of the in vitro reactivity of tyrosinase with alpha-synuclein, aimed at defining the molecular basis of their synergistic toxic effect. The results presented here indicate that, in conformity with the stringent specificity of tyrosinase, the exposed tyrosine side-chains are the reactive centers of alpha-synuclein. The reactivity of alpha-synuclein depends on whether it is free or membrane bound, and the chemical modifications on the tyrosinase-treated alpha-synuclein strongly influence its aggregation properties. On the basis of our results, we propose a cytotoxic model which includes a possible new toxic role for alpha-synuclein exacerbated by its direct chemical modification by tyrosinase.

  5. The Identification of Alpha-Synuclein as the First Parkinson Disease Gene.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nussbaum, Robert L

    2017-01-01

    In this Commentary, I describe the events that led from an NINDS-sponsored Workshop on Parkinson Disease Research in 1995, where I was asked to speak about the genetics of Parkinson disease, to the identification a mere two years later of a mutation in alpha-synuclein as the cause of autosomal dominant Parkinson disease in the Contursi kindred. I review the steps we took to first map and then find the mutation in the alpha-synuclein locus and describe the obstacles and the role of serendipity in facilitating the work. Although alpha-synuclein mutations are a rare cause of hereditary PD, the importance of this finding goes far beyond the rare families with hereditary disease because it pinpointed alpha-synuclein as a key contributor to the far more common sporadic form of Parkinson disease. This work confirms William Harvey's observation from 350 years ago that studying rarer forms of a disease is an excellent way to understand the more common forms of that disease. The identification of synuclein's role in hereditary Parkinson disease has opened new avenues of research into the pathogenesis and potential treatments of the common form of Parkinson disease that affects many millions of Americans and tens of millions of human beings worldwide.

  6. NetTurnP – Neural Network Prediction of Beta-turns by Use of Evolutionary Information and Predicted Protein Sequence Features

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Petersen, Bent; Lundegaard, Claus; Petersen, Thomas Nordahl

    2010-01-01

    is the highest reported performance on a two-class prediction of β-turn and not-β-turn. Furthermore NetTurnP shows improved performance on some of the specific β-turn types. In the present work, neural network methods have been trained to predict β-turn or not and individual β-turn types from the primary amino......β-turns are the most common type of non-repetitive structures, and constitute on average 25% of the amino acids in proteins. The formation of β-turns plays an important role in protein folding, protein stability and molecular recognition processes. In this work we present the neural network method...... NetTurnP, for prediction of two-class β-turns and prediction of the individual β-turn types, by use of evolutionary information and predicted protein sequence features. It has been evaluated against a commonly used dataset BT426, and achieves a Matthews correlation coefficient of 0.50, which...

  7. AICAR induces astroglial differentiation of neural stem cells via activating the JAK/STAT3 pathway independently of AMP-activated protein kinase.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zang, Yi; Yu, Li-Fang; Pang, Tao; Fang, Lei-Ping; Feng, Xu; Wen, Tie-Qiao; Nan, Fa-Jun; Feng, Lin-Yin; Li, Jia

    2008-03-07

    Neural stem cell differentiation and the determination of lineage decision between neuronal and glial fates have important implications in the study of developmental, pathological, and regenerative processes. Although small molecule chemicals with the ability to control neural stem cell fate are considered extremely useful tools in this field, few were reported. AICAR is an adenosine analog and extensively used to activate AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK), a metabolic "fuel gauge" of the biological system. In the present study, we found an unrecognized astrogliogenic activity of AICAR on not only immortalized neural stem cell line C17.2 (C17.2-NSC), but also primary neural stem cells (NSCs) derived from post-natal (P0) rat hippocampus (P0-NSC) and embryonic day 14 (E14) rat embryonic cortex (E14-NSC). However, another AMPK activator, Metformin, did not alter either the C17.2-NSC or E14-NSC undifferentiated state although both Metformin and AICAR can activate the AMPK pathway in NSC. Furthermore, overexpression of dominant-negative mutants of AMPK in C17.2-NSC was unable to block the gliogenic effects of AICAR. We also found AICAR could activate the Janus kinase (JAK) STAT3 pathway in both C17.2-NSC and E14-NSC but Metformin fails. JAK inhibitor I abolished the gliogenic effects of AICAR. Taken together, these results suggest that the astroglial differentiation effect of AICAR on neural stem cells was acting independently of AMPK and that the JAK-STAT3 pathway is essential for the gliogenic effect of AICAR.

  8. Bioinorganic chemistry of Parkinson's disease: structural determinants for the copper-mediated amyloid formation of alpha-synuclein.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Binolfi, Andrés; Rodriguez, Esaú E; Valensin, Daniela; D'Amelio, Nicola; Ippoliti, Emiliano; Obal, Gonzalo; Duran, Rosario; Magistrato, Alessandra; Pritsch, Otto; Zweckstetter, Markus; Valensin, Gianni; Carloni, Paolo; Quintanar, Liliana; Griesinger, Christian; Fernández, Claudio O

    2010-11-15

    The aggregation of alpha-synuclein (AS) is a critical step in the etiology of Parkinson's disease (PD). A central, unresolved question in the pathophysiology of PD relates to the role of AS-metal interactions in amyloid fibril formation and neurodegeneration. Our previous works established a hierarchy in alpha-synuclein-metal ion interactions, where Cu(II) binds specifically to the protein and triggers its aggregation under conditions that might be relevant for the development of PD. Two independent, non-interacting copper-binding sites were identified at the N-terminal region of AS, with significant difference in their affinities for the metal ion. In this work we have solved unknown details related to the structural binding specificity and aggregation enhancement mediated by Cu(II). The high-resolution structural characterization of the highest affinity N-terminus AS-Cu(II) complex is reported here. Through the measurement of AS aggregation kinetics we proved conclusively that the copper-enhanced AS amyloid formation is a direct consequence of the formation of the AS-Cu(II) complex at the highest affinity binding site. The kinetic behavior was not influenced by the His residue at position 50, arguing against an active role for this residue in the structural and biological events involved in the mechanism of copper-mediated AS aggregation. These new findings are central to elucidate the mechanism through which the metal ion participates in the fibrillization of AS and represent relevant progress in the understanding of the bioinorganic chemistry of PD.

  9. Differential inhibition of α-synuclein oligomeric and fibrillar assembly in parkinson's disease model by cinnamon extract.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shaltiel-Karyo, Ronit; Davidi, Dan; Frenkel-Pinter, Moran; Ovadia, Michael; Segal, Daniel; Gazit, Ehud

    2012-10-01

    The oligomeriztion of α-synuclein (α-syn) into ordered assemblies is associated with the symptoms of Parkinson's Disease (PD). Yet, it is still debatable whether oligomers are formed as part of a multistep process towards amyloid fibril formation or alternatively as "off-pathway" aggregates. 100μM α-syn was incubated with decreasing amounts of cinnamon extract precipitation (CEppt). The fibril formation was measured using spectroscopy and microscopy analyses and oligomers were detected using western blot analysis. The secondary structure of the protein was analyzed using CD. Drosophila brains were studied using immunostaining and confocal microscopy. Here we probed the inhibition pattern of oligomeric and fibrillar forms of α-syn, using a natural substance, CEppt which was previously shown to effectively inhibit aggregation of β-amyloid polypeptide. We demonstrated that CEppt has a differential inhibitory effect on the formation of soluble and insoluble aggregates of α-synuclein in vitro. This inhibition pattern revokes the possibility of redirection to "off-pathway" oligomers. When administering to Drosophila fly model expressing mutant A53T α-syn in the nervous system, a significant curative effect on the behavioral symptoms of the flies and on α-syn aggregation in their brain was observed. We conclude that CEppt affects the process of aggregation of α-syn without changing its secondary structure and suggest that increasing amounts of CEppt slow this process by stabilizing the soluble oligomeric phase. When administered to Drosophila fly model, CEppt appears to have a curative effect on the defective flies. Our results indicate that CEppt can be a potential therapeutic agent for PD. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  10. Robust Central Nervous System Pathology in Transgenic Mice following Peripheral Injection of α-Synuclein Fibrils.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ayers, Jacob I; Brooks, Mieu M; Rutherford, Nicola J; Howard, Jasie K; Sorrentino, Zachary A; Riffe, Cara J; Giasson, Benoit I

    2017-01-15

    Misfolded α-synuclein (αS) is hypothesized to spread throughout the central nervous system (CNS) by neuronal connectivity leading to widespread pathology. Increasing evidence indicates that it also has the potential to invade the CNS via peripheral nerves in a prion-like manner. On the basis of the effectiveness following peripheral routes of prion administration, we extend our previous studies of CNS neuroinvasion in M83 αS transgenic mice following hind limb muscle (intramuscular [i.m.]) injection of αS fibrils by comparing various peripheral sites of inoculations with different αS protein preparations. Following intravenous injection in the tail veins of homozygous M83 transgenic (M83(+/+)) mice, robust αS pathology was observed in the CNS without the development of motor impairments within the time frame examined. Intraperitoneal (i.p.) injections of αS fibrils in hemizygous M83 transgenic (M83(+/-)) mice resulted in CNS αS pathology associated with paralysis. Interestingly, injection with soluble, nonaggregated αS resulted in paralysis and pathology in only a subset of mice, whereas soluble Δ71-82 αS, human βS, and keyhole limpet hemocyanin (KLH) control proteins induced no symptoms or pathology. Intraperitoneal injection of αS fibrils also induced CNS αS pathology in another αS transgenic mouse line (M20), albeit less robustly in these mice. In comparison, i.m. injection of αS fibrils was more efficient in inducing CNS αS pathology in M83 mice than i.p. or tail vein injections. Furthermore, i.m. injection of soluble, nonaggregated αS in M83(+/-) mice also induced paralysis and CNS αS pathology, although less efficiently. These results further demonstrate the prion-like characteristics of αS and reveal its efficiency to invade the CNS via multiple routes of peripheral administration. The misfolding and accumulation of α-synuclein (αS) inclusions are found in a number of neurodegenerative disorders and is a hallmark feature of Parkinson

  11. Cathepsin D expression level affects alpha-synuclein processing, aggregation, and toxicity in vivo

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cullen Valerie

    2009-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Elevated SNCA gene expression and intracellular accumulation of the encoded α-synuclein (aSyn protein are associated with the development of Parkinson disease (PD. To date, few enzymes have been examined for their ability to degrade aSyn. Here, we explore the effects of CTSD gene expression, which encodes the lysosomal protease cathepsin D (CathD, on aSyn processing. Results Over-expression of human CTSD cDNA in dopaminergic MES23.5 cell cultures induced the marked proteolysis of exogenously expressed aSyn proteins in a dose-dependent manner. Unexpectedly, brain extractions, Western blotting and ELISA quantification revealed evidence for reduced levels of soluble endogenous aSyn in ctsd knock-out mice. However, these CathD-deficient mice also contained elevated levels of insoluble, oligomeric aSyn species, as detected by formic acid extraction. In accordance, immunohistochemical studies of ctsd-mutant brain from mice, sheep and humans revealed selective synucleinopathy-like changes that varied slightly among the three species. These changes included intracellular aSyn accumulation and formation of ubiquitin-positive inclusions. Furthermore, using an established Drosophila model of human synucleinopathy, we observed markedly enhanced retinal toxicity in ctsd-null flies. Conclusion We conclude from these complementary investigations that: one, CathD can effectively degrade excess aSyn in dopaminergic cells; two, ctsd gene mutations result in a lysosomal storage disorder that includes microscopic and biochemical evidence of aSyn misprocessing; and three, CathD deficiency facilitates aSyn toxicity. We therefore postulate that CathD promotes 'synucleinase' activity, and that enhancing its function may lower aSyn concentrations in vivo.

  12. Triggering of inflammasome by aggregated α-synuclein, an inflammatory response in synucleinopathies.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gaia Codolo

    Full Text Available Parkinson's disease (PD is one of the most common neurodegenerative diseases. It is characterized by the loss of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra pars compacta of the brain. Another feature is represented by the formation in these cells of inclusions called Lewy bodies (LB, principally constituted by fibrillar α-synuclein (αSyn. This protein is considered a key element in the aetiology of a group of neurodegenerative disorders termed synucleinopathies, which include PD, but the cellular and molecular mechanisms involved are not completely clear. It is established that the inflammatory process plays a crucial role in the pathogenesis and/or progression of PD; moreover, it is known that aggregated αSyn, released by neurons, activates microglia cells to produce pro-inflammatory mediators, such as IL-1β. IL-1β is one of the strongest pro-inflammatory cytokines; it is produced as an inactive mediator, and its maturation and activation requires inflammasome activation. In particular, the NLRP3 inflammasome is activated by a wide variety of stimuli, among which are crystallized and particulate material. In this work, we investigated the possibility that IL-1β production, induced by fibrillar αSyn, is involved the inflammasome activation. We demonstrated the competence of monomeric and fibrillar αSyn to induce synthesis of IL-1β, through TLR2 interaction; we found that the secretion of the mature cytokine was a peculiarity of the fibrillated protein. Moreover, we observed that the secretion of IL-1β involves NLRP3 inflammasome activation. The latter relies on the phagocytosis of fibrillar αSyn, followed by increased ROS production and cathepsin B release into the cytosol. Taken together, our data support the notion that fibrillar αSyn, likely released by neuronal degeneration, acts as an endogenous trigger inducing a strong inflammatory response in PD.

  13. The orphan G-protein-coupled receptor-encoding gene V28 is closely related to genes for chemokine receptors and is expressed in lymphoid and neural tissues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raport, C J; Schweickart, V L; Eddy, R L; Shows, T B; Gray, P W

    1995-10-03

    A polymerase chain reaction (PCR) strategy with degenerate primers was used to identify novel G-protein-coupled receptor-encoding genes from human genomic DNA. One of the isolated clones, termed V28, showed high sequence similarity to the genes encoding human chemokine receptors for monocyte chemoattractant protein 1 (MCP-1) and macrophage inflammatory protein 1 alpha (MIP-1 alpha)/RANTES, and to the rat orphan receptor-encoding gene RBS11. When RNA was analyzed by Northern blot, V28 was found to be most highly expressed in neural and lymphoid tissues. Myeloid cell lines, particularly THP.1 cells, showed especially high expression of V28. We have mapped V28 to human chromosome 3p21-3pter, near the MIP-1 alpha/RANTES receptor-encoding gene.

  14. Polychlorinated biphenyls alter expression of alpha-synuclein, synaptophysin and parkin in the rat brain

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Malkiewicz, Katarzyna; Mohammed, Roma; Folkesson, Ronnie

    2006-01-01

    did not cause changes in the expression and processing of APP but at a dose 100 microg/g/day repeated for 6 days caused a decrease in the expression of alpha-synuclein in the cerebellum, cortex, hippocampus and hypothalamus of the animals sacrificed 2 days after treatment. The decrease in alpha......-synuclein was accompanied by a transient increase in parkin and synaptophysin levels. Interestingly, in the hypothalamus the levels of alpha-synuclein remained decreased after 21 days post treatment perhaps due to regional differences in the PCBs elimination or perhaps a more specific interaction with the dopaminergic...... cells that are present in the hypothalamus that needs to be investigated further....

  15. Impaired baroreflex function in mice overexpressing alpha-synuclein

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sheila eFleming

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Cardiovascular autonomic dysfunction, such as orthostatic hypotension consequent to baroreflex failure and cardiac sympathetic denervation, is frequently observed in the synucleinopathy Parkinson’s disease (PD. In the present study, the baroreceptor reflex was assessed in mice overexpressing human wildtype alpha-synuclein (Thy1-aSyn, a genetic mouse model of synucleinopathy. The beat-to-beat change in heart rate, computed from R-R interval, in relation to blood pressure was measured in anesthetized and conscious mice equipped with arterial blood pressure telemetry transducers during transient bouts of hypertension and hypotension. Compared to wildtype, tachycardia following nitroprusside-induced hypotension was significantly reduced in Thy1-aSyn mice. Thy1-aSyn mice also showed an abnormal cardiovascular response (i.e., diminished tachycardia to muscarinic blockade with atropine. We conclude that Thy1-aSyn mice have impaired basal and dynamic range of sympathetic and parasympathetic-mediated changes in heart rate and will be a useful model for long-term study of cardiovascular autonomic dysfunction associated with PD.

  16. The many faces of alpha-synuclein mutations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kasten, Meike; Klein, Christine

    2013-06-01

    Since the first description of alpha-synuclein (SNCA) mutations in 1997, this gene has probably become the most intensely investigated one associated with monogenic Parkinson disease (PD). Prompted by the finding of a novel SNCA mutation, H50Q, we systematically explored the 145 published SNCA mutation carriers for a possible mutation (type)-specific clinical expression, which appears to be rather unique to SNCA mutations compared with other PD genes. The A53T mutation is associated with an approximately 10-year earlier age at onset than the other 3 known missense mutations, including the new H50Q mutation. Similarly, SNCA triplication carriers have an approximately 10-year earlier onset and a more rapid disease course than duplication carriers, who, overall closely resemble patients with idiopathic PD. Furthermore, higher order SNCA multiplications are associated with additional neurologic features, such as myoclonus. For the nonmotor features, their mere frequency appears less striking than their severity, with an early age of onset of depression or dementia, suicidal ideation, and multimodal hallucinations. We conclude that, (1) although SNCA mutations are a rare cause of PD, it remains worth testing for new mutations in this gene; (2) a differential view of SNCA mutations and variants may allow important pathophysiologic inferences even beyond monogenic PD and is warranted in the context of clinical counseling. Copyright © 2013 Movement Disorder Society.

  17. How do Proteins Misfold and Aggregate?

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    samrat

    Parkinson's disease. Intrinsically disordered α -Synuclein. Brain. Huntington. Disease α -Helical. Huntingtin polyglutamine. Brain. Alzheimer's disease. Intrinsically disordered. Amyloid-β. Amyloidogenic proteins and amyloid-based clinical disorders (selected):. Adapted from: A.L. Fink et al. Bichim. Biophys. Acta 2004, 1698 ...

  18. Early synaptic dysfunction induced by alpha-synuclein in a rat model of Parkinson's disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Phan, Jenny-Ann; Stokholm, Kathrine; Zareba-Paslawska, Justyna

    2017-01-01

    Evidence suggests that synapses are affected first in Parkinson’s disease (PD). Here, we tested the claim that pathological accumulation of α-synuclein, and subsequent synaptic disruption, occur in absence of dopaminergic neuron loss in PD. We determined early synaptic changes in rats that overex......Evidence suggests that synapses are affected first in Parkinson’s disease (PD). Here, we tested the claim that pathological accumulation of α-synuclein, and subsequent synaptic disruption, occur in absence of dopaminergic neuron loss in PD. We determined early synaptic changes in rats...

  19. Altered α-synuclein, parkin, and synphilin isoform levels in multiple system atrophy brains

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Brudek, Tomasz; Winge, Kristian; Rasmussen, Nadja Bredo

    2016-01-01

    Together with Parkinson's disease (PD) and dementia with Lewy bodies, multiple system atrophy (MSA) is a member of a diverse group of neurodegenerative disorders termed α-synucleinopathies. Previously, it has been shown that α-synuclein, parkin, and synphilin-1 display disease......-specific transcription patterns in frontal cortex in PD, dementia with Lewy bodies, and MSA, and thus may mediate the development of α-synucleinopathies. In this study, the differential expression of α-synuclein isoforms on transcriptional and translational levels was ascertained in MSA patients in comparison with PD...

  20. A Novel Bibenzyl Compound (20C) Protects Mice from 1-Methyl-4-Phenyl-1,2,3,6-Tetrahydropyridine/Probenecid Toxicity by Regulating theα-Synuclein-Related Inflammatory Response.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Qiu-Shuang; Heng, Yang; Chen, Ying; Luo, Piao; Wen, Lu; Zhang, Zhao; Yuan, Yu-He; Chen, Nai-Hong

    2017-11-01

    The novel bibenzyl compound 2-[4-hydroxy-3-(4- hydroxyphenyl) benzyl]-4-(4- hydroxyphenyl) phenol (20C) plays a neuroprotective role in vitro, but its effects in vivo have not yet been elucidated. In this study, we estimated the efficacy of 20C in vivo using a 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine/probenecid (MPTP/p) mouse model from behavior, dopamine, and neuron and then the possible mechanisms for these effects were further investigated. The experimental results showed that 20C improved behavioral deficits, attenuated dopamine depletion, reduced dopaminergic neuron loss, protected the blood-brain barrier (BBB) structure, ameliorated α -synuclein dysfunction, suppressed glial activation, and regulated both nuclear factor- κ B (NF- κ B) signaling and the NOD-like receptor protein (NLRP) 3 inflammasome pathway. Our results indicated that 20C may prevent neurodegeneration in the MPTP/p mouse model by targeting α -synuclein and regulating α -synuclein-related inflammatory responses, including BBB damage, glial activation, NF- κ B signaling, and the NLRP3 inflammasome pathway. Copyright © 2017 by The American Society for Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics.

  1. 3K3A-activated protein C stimulates postischemic neuronal repair by human neural stem cells in mice

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wang, Yaoming; Zhao, Zhen; Rege, Sanket V

    2016-01-01

    profile in humans, 3K3A-APC has advanced to clinical trials as a neuroprotectant in ischemic stroke. Recently, 3K3A-APC has been shown to stimulate neuronal production by human neural stem and progenitor cells (NSCs) in vitro via a PAR1-PAR3-sphingosine-1-phosphate-receptor 1-Akt pathway, which suggests...

  2. Reactivity of copper-α-synuclein peptide complexes relevant to Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dell'Acqua, Simone; Pirota, Valentina; Anzani, Cecilia; Rocco, Michela M; Nicolis, Stefania; Valensin, Daniela; Monzani, Enrico; Casella, Luigi

    2015-07-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is a neurodegenerative disorder characterized by the presence of abnormal α-synuclein (αSyn) deposits in the brain. Alterations in metal homeostasis and metal-induced oxidative stress may play a crucial role in the aggregation of αSyn and, consequently, in the pathogenesis of PD. We have therefore investigated the capability of copper-αSyn6 and copper-αSyn15 peptide complexes, with the 1-6 and 1-15 terminal fragments of the protein, to promote redox reactions that can be harmful to other cellular components. The pseudo-tyrosinase activity of copper-αSyn complexes against catecholic (di-tert-butylcatechol (DTBCH2), 4-methylcatechol (4-MC)) and phenolic (phenol) substrates is lower compared to that of free copper(II). In particular, the rates (kcat) of DTBCH2 catalytic oxidation are 0.030 s(-1) and 0.009 s(-1) for the reaction promoted by free copper(II) and [Cu(2+)-αSyn15], respectively. On the other hand, HPLC/ESI-MS analysis of solutions of αSyn15 incubated with copper(II) and 4-MC showed that αSyn is competitively oxidized with remarkable formation of sulfoxide at Met1 and Met5 residues. Moreover, the sulfoxidation of methionine residues, which is related to the aggregation of αSyn, also occurs on peptides not directly bound to copper, indicating that external αSyn can also be oxidized by copper. Therefore, this study strengthens the hypothesis that copper plays an important role in oxidative damage of αSyn which is proposed to be strongly related to the etiology of PD.

  3. High-speed atomic force microscopy reveals structural dynamics of α -synuclein monomers and dimers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Yuliang; Hashemi, Mohtadin; Lv, Zhengjian; Williams, Benfeard; Popov, Konstantin I.; Dokholyan, Nikolay V.; Lyubchenko, Yuri L.

    2018-03-01

    α-Synuclein (α-syn) is the major component of the intraneuronal inclusions called Lewy bodies, which are the pathological hallmark of Parkinson's disease. α-Syn is capable of self-assembly into many different species, such as soluble oligomers and fibrils. Even though attempts to resolve the structures of the protein have been made, detailed understanding about the structures and their relationship with the different aggregation steps is lacking, which is of interest to provide insights into the pathogenic mechanism of Parkinson's disease. Here we report the structural flexibility of α-syn monomers and dimers in an aqueous solution environment as probed by single-molecule time-lapse high-speed AFM. In addition, we present the molecular basis for the structural transitions using discrete molecular dynamics (DMD) simulations. α-Syn monomers assume a globular conformation, which is capable of forming tail-like protrusions over dozens of seconds. Importantly, a globular monomer can adopt fully extended conformations. Dimers, on the other hand, are less dynamic and show a dumbbell conformation that experiences morphological changes over time. DMD simulations revealed that the α-syn monomer consists of several tightly packed small helices. The tail-like protrusions are also helical with a small β-sheet, acting as a "hinge". Monomers within dimers have a large interfacial interaction area and are stabilized by interactions in the non-amyloid central (NAC) regions. Furthermore, the dimer NAC-region of each α-syn monomer forms a β-rich segment. Moreover, NAC-regions are located in the hydrophobic core of the dimer.

  4. A microRNA embedded AAV α-synuclein gene silencing vector for dopaminergic neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, Ye; Khodr, Christina E; Sapru, Mohan K; Pedapati, Jyothi; Bohn, Martha C

    2011-04-22

    Alpha-synuclein (SNCA), an abundantly expressed presynaptic protein, is implicated in Parkinson's disease (PD). Since over-expression of human SNCA (hSNCA) leads to death of dopaminergic (DA) neurons in human, rodent and fly brain, hSNCA gene silencing may reduce levels of toxic forms of SNCA and ameliorate degeneration of DA neurons in PD. To begin to develop a gene therapy for PD based on hSNCA gene silencing, two AAV gene silencing vectors were designed, and tested for efficiency and specificity of silencing, as well as toxicity in vitro. The same hSNCA silencing sequence (shRNA) was used in both vectors, but in one vector, the shRNA was embedded in a microRNA backbone and driven by a pol II promoter, and in the other the shRNA was not embedded in a microRNA and was driven by a pol III promoter. Both vectors silenced hSNCA to the same extent in 293T cells transfected with hSNCA. In DA PC12 cells, neither vector decreased expression of rat SNCA, tyrosine hydroxylase (TH), dopamine transporter (DAT) or the vesicular monoamine transporter (VMAT). However, the mir30 embedded vector was significantly less toxic to both PC12 and SH-SY5Y cells. Our in vitro data suggest that this miRNA-embedded silencing vector may be ideal for chronic in vivo SNCA gene silencing in DA neurons. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. α-Synuclein overexpression impairs mitochondrial function by associating with adenylate translocator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Yuangang; Duan, Chunli; Lü, Li; Gao, Hua; Zhao, Chunli; Yu, Shun; Uéda, Kenji; Chan, Piu; Yang, Hui

    2011-05-01

    α-Synuclein (α-syn), a protein involved in the pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease (PD), is known to accumulate in mitochondria, disrupt mitochondrial function. However, the molecular mechanisms that link these pathological responses have not been investigated. In rats overexpressing α-syn in the substantia nigra (SN) through adeno-associated virus (AAV) transduction, about 50% of tyrosine hydroxylase positive neurons were lost after 24 weeks. Overexpression of α-syn was also associated with morphological deformation of mitochondria and depolarization of the mitochondrial membrane potential (ΔΨm). Both co-immunoprecipitation and confocal microscopy demonstrated that mitochondrial α-syn associated with adenylate translocator (ANT), a component of the mitochondrial permeability transition pore (mPTP). The depolarization of ΔΨm was partially reversed in vitro by bongkrekic acid (BKA), an inhibitor of ANT, suggesting that the molecular association between α-syn and ANT facilitated ΔΨm depolarization. Concomitant with α-syn accumulation in mitochondria, abnormal mitochondrial morphology, ΔΨm depolarization, and loss of TH-positive neurons, there was a decrease in apoptosis-inducing factor (AIF) within the mitochondrial matrix, suggesting possible translocation to the cytosol. Our findings suggest that overexpression of α-syn may cause mitochondrial defects in dopaminergic neurons of the substantia nigra through an association with adenylate translocator and activation of mitochondria-dependent cell death pathways. Disruption of normal mitochondrial function may contribute to the loss of dopaminergic neurons in Parkinson's disease. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Antibodies against the C-terminus of α-synuclein modulate its fibrillation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sahin, Cagla; Lorenzen, Nikolai; Lemminger, Lasse; Christiansen, Gunna; Møller, Ian Max; Vesterager, Louise Buur; Pedersen, Lars Østergaard; Fog, Karina; Kallunki, Pekka; Otzen, Daniel E

    2017-01-01

    The 140-residue natively disordered protein α-synuclein (aSN) is a central component in the development of a family of neurodegenerative diseases termed synucleinopathies. This is attributed to its ability to form cytotoxic aggregates such as oligomers and amyloid fibrils. Consequently there have been intense efforts to avoid aggregation or reroute the aggregation pathway using pharmaceutical agents such as small molecules, chaperones and antibodies. aSN's lack of persistent structure in the monomeric state, as well as the multitude of different oligomeric and even different fibrillar states, makes it difficult to raise antibodies that would be efficacious in neutralizing all conformations of aSN. However, the C-terminal 20-40 residues of aSN are a promising epitope for antibody development. It is primarily disordered in both monomeric and aggregated forms, and an anti-C-terminal antibody will therefore be able to bind all forms. Furthermore, it might not interfere with the folding of aSN into membranes, which could be important for its physiological role. Here we report a screen of a series of monoclonal antibodies, which all target the C-terminal of aSN. According to dot blot analyses, different antibodies bound different forms of aSN with different preferences and showed reduced binding to monomeric compared to aggregated (oligomeric and fibrillary) aSN. Consequently they have different effects on aSN's ability to fibrillate and permeabilize membranes. Generally, the antibodies with strongest binding to aggregated aSN in dot blot, also inhibited fibrillation and membrane permeabilization the most, and promoted formation of amorphous aggregates surrounded by small and thin fibers. This suggests that the development of antibodies that targets the C-terminus, exposed in the aggregated forms of aSN, may be beneficial for improved immunotherapy against PD. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  7. Dynamical Behavior of Human α-Synuclein Studied by Quasielastic Neutron Scattering.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Satoru Fujiwara

    Full Text Available α-synuclein (αSyn is a protein consisting of 140 amino acid residues and is abundant in the presynaptic nerve terminals in the brain. Although its precise function is unknown, the filamentous aggregates (amyloid fibrils of αSyn have been shown to be involved in the pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease, which is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder. To understand the pathogenesis mechanism of this disease, the mechanism of the amyloid fibril formation of αSyn must be elucidated. Purified αSyn from bacterial expression is monomeric but intrinsically disordered in solution and forms amyloid fibrils under various conditions. As a first step toward elucidating the mechanism of the fibril formation of αSyn, we investigated dynamical behavior of the purified αSyn in the monomeric state and the fibril state using quasielastic neutron scattering (QENS. We prepared the solution sample of 9.5 mg/ml purified αSyn, and that of 46 mg/ml αSyn in the fibril state, both at pD 7.4 in D2O. The QENS experiments on these samples were performed using the near-backscattering spectrometer, BL02 (DNA, at the Materials and Life Science Facility at the Japan Accelerator Research Complex, Japan. Analysis of the QENS spectra obtained shows that diffusive global motions are observed in the monomeric state but largely suppressed in the fibril state. However, the amplitude of the side chain motion is shown to be larger in the fibril state than in the monomeric state. This implies that significant solvent space exists within the fibrils, which is attributed to the αSyn molecules within the fibrils having a distribution of conformations. The larger amplitude of the side chain motion in the fibril state than in the monomeric state implies that the fibril state is entropically favorable.

  8. Cysteine cathepsins are essential in lysosomal degradation of α-synuclein.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McGlinchey, Ryan P; Lee, Jennifer C

    2015-07-28

    A cellular feature of Parkinson's disease is cytosolic accumulation and amyloid formation of α-synuclein (α-syn), implicating a misregulation or impairment of protein degradation pathways involving the proteasome and lysosome. Within lysosomes, cathepsin D (CtsD), an aspartyl protease, is suggested to be the main protease for α-syn clearance; however, the protease alone only generates amyloidogenic C terminal-truncated species (e.g., 1-94, 5-94), implying that other proteases and/or environmental factors are needed to facilitate degradation and to avoid α-syn aggregation in vivo. Using liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry, to our knowledge, we report the first peptide cleavage map of the lysosomal degradation process of α-syn. Studies of purified mouse brain and liver lysosomal extracts and individual human cathepsins demonstrate a direct involvement of cysteine cathepsin B (CtsB) and L (CtsL). Both CtsB and CtsL cleave α-syn within its amyloid region and circumvent fibril formation. For CtsD, only in the presence of anionic phospholipids can this protease cleave throughout the α-syn sequence, suggesting that phospholipids are crucial for its activity. Taken together, an interplay exists between α-syn conformation and cathepsin activity with CtsL as the most efficient under the conditions examined. Notably, we discovered that CtsL efficiently degrades α-syn amyloid fibrils, which by definition are resistant to broad spectrum proteases. This work implicates CtsB and CtsL as essential in α-syn lysosomal degradation, establishing groundwork to explore mechanisms to enhance their cellular activity and levels as a potential strategy for clearance of α-syn.

  9. Redox activity of α-synuclein-Cu is silenced by Zn₇-metallothionein-3.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meloni, Gabriele; Vašák, Milan

    2011-06-01

    The aggregation of α-synuclein (α-Syn), the major component of intracellular Lewy body inclusions in dopaminergic neurons of the substantia nigra, plays a critical role in the etiology of Parkinson disease (PD). Long-term effects of redox-active transition metals (Cu, Fe) and oxidative chemical imbalance underlie the disease progression and neuronal death. In this work, we provide evidence that a brain metalloprotein, Zn₇-metallothionein-3 (Zn₇MT-3), possesses a dynamic role in controlling aberrant protein-copper interactions in PD. We examined the properties of the α-Syn-Cu(II) complex with regard to molecular oxygen, the biological reducing agent ascorbate, and the neurotransmitter dopamine. The results revealed that under aerobic conditions α-Syn-Cu(II) possesses catalytic oxidase activity. The observed metal-centered redox chemistry significantly promotes the production of hydroxyl radicals and α-Syn oxidation and oligomerization, processes considered critical for cellular toxicity. Moreover, we show that Zn₇MT-3, through Cu(II) removal from the α-Syn-Cu(II) complex, efficiently prevents its deleterious redox activity. We demonstrate that the Cu(II) reduction by thiolate ligands of Zn₇MT-3 and the formation of Cu(I)₄Zn₄MT-3, in which an unusual oxygen-stable Cu(I)₄-thiolate cluster is present, comprise the underlying molecular mechanism by which α-Syn and dopamine oxidation, α-Syn oligomerization, and ROS production are abolished. These studies provide new insights into the bioinorganic chemistry of PD. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. High-Pressure-Driven Reversible Dissociation of α-Synuclein Fibrils Reveals Structural Hierarchy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piccirilli, Federica; Plotegher, Nicoletta; Ortore, Maria Grazia; Tessari, Isabella; Brucale, Marco; Spinozzi, Francesco; Beltramini, Mariano; Mariani, Paolo; Militello, Valeria; Lupi, Stefano; Perucchi, Andrea; Bubacco, Luigi

    2017-10-17

    The analysis of the α-synuclein (aS) aggregation process, which is involved in Parkinson's disease etiopathogenesis, and of the structural feature of the resulting amyloid fibrils may shed light on the relationship between the structure of aS aggregates and their toxicity. This may be considered a paradigm of the ground work needed to tackle the molecular basis of all the protein-aggregation-related diseases. With this aim, we used chemical and physical dissociation methods to explore the structural organization of wild-type aS fibrils. High pressure (in the kbar range) and alkaline pH were used to disassemble fibrils to collect information on the hierarchic pathway by which distinct β-sheets sequentially unfold using the unique possibility offered by high-pressure Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy. The results point toward the formation of kinetic traps in the energy landscape of aS fibril disassembly and the presence of transient partially folded species during the process. Since we found that the dissociation of wild-type aS fibrils by high pressure is reversible upon pressure release, the disassembled molecules likely retain structural information that favors fibril reformation. To deconstruct the role of the different regions of aS sequence in this process, we measured the high-pressure dissociation of amyloids formed by covalent chimeric dimers of aS (syn-syn) and by the aS deletion mutant that lacks the C-terminus, i.e., aS (1-99). The results allowed us to single out the role of dimerization and that of the C-terminus in the complete maturation of fibrillar aS. Copyright © 2017 Biophysical Society. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. α-Synuclein Aggregated with Tau and β-Amyloid in Human Platelets from Healthy Subjects: Correlation with Physical Exercise

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simona Daniele

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available The loss of protein homeostasis that has been associated with aging leads to altered levels and conformational instability of proteins, which tend to form toxic aggregates. In particular, brain aging presents characteristic patterns of misfolded oligomers, primarily constituted of β-amyloid (Aβ, tau, and α-synuclein (α-syn, which can accumulate in neuronal membranes or extracellular compartments. Such aging-related proteins can also reach peripheral compartments, thus suggesting the possibility to monitor their accumulation in more accessible fluids. In this respect, we have demonstrated that α-syn forms detectable hetero-aggregates with Aβ or tau in red blood cells (RBCs of healthy subjects. In particular, α-syn levels and its heteromeric interactions are modulated by plasma antioxidant capability (AOC, which increases in turn with physical activity. In order to understand if a specific distribution of misfolded proteins can occur in other blood cells, a cohort of human subjects was enrolled to establish a correlation among AOC, the level of physical exercise and the concentrations of aging-related proteins in platelets. The healthy subjects were divided depending on their level of physical exercise (i.e., athletes and sedentary subjects and their age (young and older subjects. Herein, aging-related proteins (i.e., α-syn, tau and Aβ were confirmed to be present in human platelets. Among such proteins, platelet tau concentration was demonstrated to decrease in athletes, while α-syn and Aβ did not correlate with physical exercise. For the first time, α-syn was shown to directly interact with Aβ and tau in platelets, forming detectable hetero-complexes. Interestingly, α-syn interaction with tau was inversely related to plasma AOC and to the level of physical activity. These results suggested that α-syn heterocomplexes, particularly with tau, could represent novel indicators to monitor aging-related proteins in platelets.

  12. ER Stress and Autophagic Perturbations Lead to Elevated Extracellular α-Synuclein in GBA-N370S Parkinson's iPSC-Derived Dopamine Neurons

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hugo J.R. Fernandes

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Heterozygous mutations in the glucocerebrosidase gene (GBA represent the strongest common genetic risk factor for Parkinson's disease (PD, the second most common neurodegenerative disorder. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying this association are still poorly understood. Here, we have analyzed ten independent induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC lines from three controls and three unrelated PD patients heterozygous for the GBA-N370S mutation, and identified relevant disease mechanisms. After differentiation into dopaminergic neurons, we observed misprocessing of mutant glucocerebrosidase protein in the ER, associated with activation of ER stress and abnormal cellular lipid profiles. Furthermore, we observed autophagic perturbations and an enlargement of the lysosomal compartment specifically in dopamine neurons. Finally, we found increased extracellular α-synuclein in patient-derived neuronal culture medium, which was not associated with exosomes. Overall, ER stress, autophagic/lysosomal perturbations, and elevated extracellular α-synuclein likely represent critical early cellular phenotypes of PD, which might offer multiple therapeutic targets.

  13. Morphological analysis of mitochondria for evaluating the toxicity of α-synuclein in transgenic mice and isolated preparations by atomic force microscopy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gao, Ge; Wang, Zhipeng; Lu, Lingling; Duan, Chunli; Wang, Xiaomin; Yang, Hui

    2017-11-20

    A key molecular event in the pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease is mitochondrial damage caused by α-synuclein (α-syn). Mitochondria mediates both necrosis and apoptosis, which are associated with morphological changes. However, the mechanism by which α-syn alters mitochondrial morphology remains unclear. To address this issue, we investigated mitochondrial permeability transition pore (mPTP) opening and changes in cardiolipin (CL) levels in mitochondria isolated from the brain of Thy1α-syn mice. Cytoplasmic cytochrome C and cleaved caspase-3 protein levels were upregulated in the brain of transgenic mice. Morphological analysis by atomic force microscopy (AFM) suggested a correlation between mitochondrial morphology and function in these animals. Incubation of isolated mitochondria with recombinant human α-synuclein N terminus (α-syn/N) decreased mitochondrial CL content. An AFM analysis showed that α-syn/N induced mitochondrial swelling and the formation of pore-like structures, which was associated with decreased mitochondrial transmembrane potential and complex I activity. The observed mitochondrial dysfunction was abrogated by treatment with the mPTP inhibitor cyclosporin A, although there was no recovery of CL content. These results provide insight into the mechanism by which α-syn/N directly undermines mitochondrial structure and function via modulation of mPTP opening and CL levels, and suggests that morphological analysis of isolated mitochondria by AFM is a useful approach for evaluating mitochondrial injury. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  14. Suppression of dynamin GTPase decreases α-synuclein uptake by neuronal and oligodendroglial cells: a potent therapeutic target for synucleinopathy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Konno Masatoshi

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The intracellular deposition of misfolded proteins is a common neuropathological hallmark of most neurodegenerative disorders. Increasing evidence suggests that these pathogenic proteins may spread to neighboring cells and induce the propagation of neurodegeneration. Results In this study, we have demonstrated that α-synuclein (αSYN, a major constituent of intracellular inclusions in synucleinopathies, was taken up by neuronal and oligodendroglial cells in both a time- and concentration-dependent manner. Once incorporated, the extracellular αSYN was immediately assembled into high-molecular-weight oligomers and subsequently formed cytoplasmic inclusion bodies. Furthermore, αSYN uptake by neurons and cells of the oligodendroglial lineage was markedly decreased by the genetic suppression and pharmacological inhibition of the dynamin GTPases, suggesting the involvement of the endocytic pathway in this process. Conclusions Our findings shed light on the mode of αSYN uptake by neuronal and oligodendroglial cells and identify therapeutic strategies aimed at reducing the propagation of protein misfolding.

  15. Ectopic expression of the immune adaptor protein CD3zeta in neural stem/progenitor cells disrupts cell-fate specification.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Angibaud, Julie; Baudouin, Stéphane J; Louveau, Antoine; Nerrière-Daguin, Véronique; Bonnamain, Virginie; Csaba, Zsolt; Dournaud, Pascal; Naveilhan, Philippe; Noraz, Nelly; Pellier-Monnin, Véronique; Boudin, Hélène

    2012-02-01

    Immune signaling and neuroinflammatory mediators have recently emerged as influential variables that regulate neural precursor/stem cell (NPC) behavior and function. In this study, we investigated whether the signaling adaptor protein CD3ζ, a transmembrane protein involved in T cell differentiation and function and recently shown to regulate neuronal development in the central nervous system (CNS), may have a role in NPC differentiation. We analyzed the expression profile of CD3ζ in embryonic rat brain during neurogenic periods and in neurosphere-derived neural cells, and we investigated the action of CD3ζ on cell differentiation. We found that CD3ζ expression coincided with neuronal commitment, but its forced expression in NPCs prevented the production of neurons and oligodendrocytes, but not astroglial cells. This blockade of neuronal differentiation was operated through an ITAM-independent mechanism, but required the Asp36 of the CD3ζ transmembrane domain involved in membrane receptor interaction. Together, our findings show that ectopic CD3ζ expression in NPCs impaired their normal cell-fate specification and suggest that variations of CD3ζ expression in the developing CNS might result in neurodevelopmental anomalies.

  16. Artificial neural network for prediction of antigenic activity for a major conformational epitope in the hepatitis C virus NS3 protein.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lara, James; Wohlhueter, Robert M; Dimitrova, Zoya; Khudyakov, Yury E

    2008-09-01

    Insufficient knowledge of general principles for accurate quantitative inference of biological properties from sequences is a major obstacle in the rationale design of proteins with predetermined activities. Due to this deficiency, protein engineering frequently relies on the use of computational approaches focused on the identification of quantitative structure-activity relationship (SAR) for each specific task. In the current article, a computational model was developed to define SAR for a major conformational antigenic epitope of the hepatitis C virus (HCV) non-structural protein 3 (NS3) in order to facilitate a rationale design of HCV antigens with improved diagnostically relevant properties. We present an artificial neural network (ANN) model that connects changes in the antigenic properties and structure of HCV NS3 recombinant proteins representing all 6 HCV genotypes. The ANN performed quantitative predictions of the enzyme immunoassay (EIA) Signal/Cutoff (S/Co) profiles from sequence information alone with 89.8% accuracy. Amino acid positions and physicochemical factors strongly associated with the HCV NS3 antigenic properties were identified. The positions most significantly contributing to the model were mapped on the NS3 3D structure. The location of these positions validates the major associations found by the ANN model between antigenicity and structure of the HCV NS3 proteins. Matlab code is available at the following URL address: http://bio-ai.myeweb.net/box_widget.html

  17. The gamma chain subunit of Fc receptors is required for alpha-synuclein-induced pro-inflammatory signaling in microglia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cao Shuwen

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The protein alpha-synuclein (α-SYN, which is found in the Lewy bodies of dopamine-producing (DA neurons in the substantia nigra (SN, has an important role in the pathogenesis of Parkinson’s disease (PD. Previous studies have shown that neuroinflammation plays a key role in PD pathogenesis. In an AAV-synuclein mouse model of PD, we have found that over-abundance of α-SYN triggers the expression of NF-κB p65, and leads to microglial activation and DA neurodegeneration. We also have observed that Fcγ receptors (FcγR, proteins present on the surface of microglia that bind immunoglobulin G (IgG and other ligands, are key modulators of α-SYN-induced neurodegeneration. Methods In order to study the role of FcγRs in the interactions of α-SYN and microglia, we treated the primary microglial cultures from wild-type (WT and FcγR−/− mice with aggregated human α-SYN in vitro. Results Using immunocytochemistry, we found that α-SYN was taken up by both WT and FcγR−/− microglia, however, their patterns of internalization were different, with aggregation in autophagosomes in WT cells and more diffuse localization in FcγR−/− microglia. In WT microglia, α-SYN induced the nuclear accumulation of NF-κB p65 protein and downstream chemokine expression while in FcγR−/− mouse microglia, α-SYN failed to trigger the enhancement of nuclear NF-κB p65, and the pro-inflammatory signaling was reduced. Conclusions Our results suggest that α-SYN can interact directly with microglia and can be internalized and trafficked to autophagosomes. FcγRs mediate this interaction, and in the absence of the gamma chain, there is altered intracellular trafficking and attenuation of pro-inflammatory NF-κB signaling. Therefore, blocking either FcγR signaling or downstream NF-κB activation may be viable therapeutic strategies in PD.

  18. Rasagiline ameliorates olfactory deficits in an alpha-synuclein mouse model of Parkinson's disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Géraldine H Petit

    Full Text Available Impaired olfaction is an early pre-motor symptom of Parkinson's disease. The neuropathology underlying olfactory dysfunction in Parkinson's disease is unknown, however α-synuclein accumulation/aggregation and altered neurogenesis might play a role. We characterized olfactory deficits in a transgenic mouse model of Parkinson's disease expressing human wild-type α-synuclein under the control of the mouse α-synuclein promoter. Preliminary clinical observations suggest that rasagiline, a monoamine oxidase-B inhibitor, improves olfaction in Parkinson's disease. We therefore examined whether rasagiline ameliorates olfactory deficits in this Parkinson's disease model and investigated the role of olfactory bulb neurogenesis. α-Synuclein mice were progressively impaired in their ability to detect odors, to discriminate between odors, and exhibited alterations in short-term olfactory memory. Rasagiline treatment rescued odor detection and odor discrimination abilities. However, rasagiline did not affect short-term olfactory memory. Finally, olfactory changes were not coupled to alterations in olfactory bulb neurogenesis. We conclude that rasagiline reverses select olfactory deficits in a transgenic mouse model of Parkinson's disease. The findings correlate with preliminary clinical observations suggesting that rasagiline ameliorates olfactory deficits in Parkinson's disease.

  19. Familial parkinsonism with synuclein pathology - Clinical and PET studies of A30P mutation carriers

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kruger, R; Kuhn, W; Leenders, KL; Sprengelmeyer, R; Muller, T; Woitalla, D; Portman, AT; Maguire, RP; Veenma, L; Schroder, U; Schols, L; Epplen, JT; Riess, O; Przuntek, H

    2001-01-01

    Background: The authors identified the second known mutation in the alpha -synuclein (SNCA) gene, an alanine-to-proline exchange in amino acid position 30 (A30P), that cosegregates with the disease in one German family with autosomal dominantly inherited parkinsonism (ADP). The authors studied

  20. Decreasing α-synuclein aggregation by methanolic extract of Centella asiatica in zebrafish Parkinson's model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Husnul Khotimah

    2015-11-01

    Conclusions: C. asiatica has a potential to be developed as an anti-Parkinson's disease treatment due to its capability for minimized the sign of Parkinson's such as α-synuclein aggregation and expression, increasing motility and dopamine as well.

  1. Direct Visualization of Model Membrane Remodeling by α-Synuclein Fibrillization

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Chaudhary, Himanshu; Subramaniam, Vinod; Claessens, Mireille M.A.E.

    2017-01-01

    The interaction of α-synuclein (αS) with membranes is thought to be critical in the etiology of Parkinson's disease. Besides oligomeric αS aggregates that possibly form membrane pores, the aggregation of αS into amyloid fibrils has been reported to disrupt membranes. The mechanism by which

  2. Membrane interactions and fibrillization of alpha-synuclein play an essential role in membrane disruption

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Chaudhary, Himanshu; Stefanovic, A.; Subramaniam, Vinod; Claessens, Mireille Maria Anna Elisabeth

    2014-01-01

    We studied α-synuclein (αS) aggregation in giant vesicles, and observed dramatic membrane disintegration, as well as lipid incorporation into micrometer-sized suprafibrillar aggregates. In the presence of dye-filled vesicles, dye leakage and fibrillization happen concurrently. However, growing

  3. Membrane interactions and fibrillization of alpha-synuclein play an essential role in membrane disruption

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Chaudhary, Himanshu; Stefanovic, Anja N D; Subramaniam, V; Claessens, Mireille M A E

    2014-01-01

    We studied alpha-synuclein (alphaS) aggregation in giant vesicles, and observed dramatic membrane disintegration, as well as lipid incorporation into micrometer-sized suprafibrillar aggregates. In the presence of dye-filled vesicles, dye leakage and fibrillization happen concurrently. However,

  4. Membrane interactions and fibrillization of α-synuclein play an essential role in membrane disruption

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Chaudhary, Himanshu; Stefanovic, Anja N D; Subramaniam, Vinod; Claessens, Mireille M A E

    2014-01-01

    We studied α-synuclein (αS) aggregation in giant vesicles, and observed dramatic membrane disintegration, as well as lipid incorporation into micrometer-sized suprafibrillar aggregates. In the presence of dye-filled vesicles, dye leakage and fibrillization happen concurrently. However, growing

  5. Spinal cord stimulation improves forelimb use in an alpha-synuclein animal model of Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brys, Ivani; Bobela, Wojciech; Schneider, Bernard L; Aebischer, Patrick; Fuentes, Romulo

    2017-01-01

    Neuromodulation by spinal cord stimulation has been proposed as a symptomatic treatment for Parkinson's disease. We tested the chronic effects of spinal cord stimulation in a progressive model of Parkinson's based on overexpression of alpha-synuclein in the substantia nigra. Adult Sprague Dawley rats received unilateral injections of adeno-associated virus serotype 6 (AAV6) in the substantia nigra to express alpha-synuclein. Locomotion and forepaw use of the rats were evaluated during the next 10 weeks. Starting on week 6, a group of AAV6-injected rats received spinal cord stimulation once a week. At the end of the experiment, tyrosine hydroxylase and alpha-synuclein immunostaining were performed. Rats with unilateral alpha-synuclein expression showed a significant decrease in the use of the contralateral forepaw, which was mildly but significantly reverted by spinal cord stimulation applied once a week from the 6th to the 10th week after the AAV6 injection. Long-term spinal cord stimulation proved to be effective to suppress or delay motor symptoms in a sustained and progressive model of Parkinson's and might become an alternative, less invasive neuromodulation option to treat this disease.

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pedersen, Martin Nors; Foderà, Vito; Horvath, Istvan

    2015-01-01

    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...

  7. Amyloids of alpha-synuclein affect the structure and dynamics of supported lipid bilayers

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Iyer, A.; Petersen, N.O.; Claessens, M.M.B.; Subramaniam, V.

    2014-01-01

    Interactions of monomeric alpha-synuclein (alphaS) with lipid membranes have been suggested to play an important role in initiating aggregation of alphaS. We have systematically analyzed the distribution and self-assembly of monomeric alphaS on supported lipid bilayers. We observe that at

  8. Dermal phospho-alpha-synuclein deposits confirm REM sleep behaviour disorder as prodromal Parkinson's disease

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Doppler, Kathrin; Jentschke, Hanna-Maria; Schulmeyer, Lena; Vadasz, David; Janzen, Annette; Luster, Markus; Höffken, Helmut; Mayer, Geert; Brumberg, Joachim; Booij, Jan; Musacchio, Thomas; Klebe, Stephan; Sittig-Wiegand, Elisabeth; Volkmann, Jens; Sommer, Claudia; Oertel, Wolfgang H.

    2017-01-01

    Phosphorylated alpha-synuclein (p-alpha-syn) deposits, one of the neuropathological hallmarks of Parkinson's disease (PD), have recently been detected in dermal nerve fibres in PD patients with good specificity and sensitivity. Here, we studied whether p-alpha-syn may serve as a biomarker in

  9. First Appraisal of Brain Pathology Owing to A30P Mutant Alpha-Synuclein

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Seidel, Kay; Schoels, Ludger; Nuber, Silke; Petrasch-Parwez, Elisabeth; Gierga, Kristin; Wszolek, Zbigniew; Dickson, Dennis; Gai, Wei P.; Bornemann, Antje; Riess, Olaf; Rami, Abdelhaq; den Dunnen, Wilfried F. A.; Deller, Thomas; Rueb, Udo; Krueger, Rejko

    Familial Parkinson disease (PD) due to the A30P mutation in the SNCA gene encoding alpha-synuclein is clinically associated with PD symptoms. In this first pathoanatomical study of the brain of an A30P mutation carrier, we observed neuronal loss in the substantia nigra, locus coeruleus, and dorsal

  10. The utility of α-synuclein as biofluid marker in neurodegenerative diseases

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Simonsen, Anja Hviid; Kuiperij, Bea; El-Agnaf, Omar Mukhtar Ali

    2016-01-01

    The discovery of α-synuclein (α-syn) as a major component of Lewy bodies, neuropathological hallmark of Parkinson's disease (PD), dementia with Lewy bodies and of glial inclusions in multiple system atrophy initiated the investigation of α-syn as a biomarker in cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). Due to t...

  11. 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

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    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

    2013-01-01

    ...‐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...

  12. Dopamine and α-synuclein dysfunction in Smad3 null mice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Casarejos M José

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Parkinson's disease (PD is characterized by dopaminergic neurodegeneration in the substantia nigra (SN. Transforming growth factor-β1 (TGF-β1 levels increase in patients with PD, although the effects of this increment remain unclear. We have examined the mesostriatal system in adult mice deficient in Smad3, a molecule involved in the intracellular TGF-β1 signalling cascade. Results Striatal monoamine oxidase (MAO-mediated dopamine (DA catabolism to 3,4-dihydroxyphenylacetic acid (DOPAC is strongly increased, promoting oxidative stress that is reflected by an increase in glutathione levels. Fewer astrocytes are detected in the ventral midbrain (VM and striatal matrix, suggesting decreased trophic support to dopaminergic neurons. The SN of these mice has dopaminergic neuronal degeneration in its rostral portion, and the pro-survival Erk1/2 signalling is diminished in nigra dopaminergic neurons, not associated with alterations to p-JNK or p-p38. Furthermore, inclusions of α-synuclein are evident in selected brain areas, both in the perikaryon (SN and paralemniscal nucleus or neurites (motor and cingulate cortices, striatum and spinal cord. Interestingly, these α-synuclein deposits are detected with ubiquitin and PS129-α-synuclein in a core/halo cellular distribution, which resemble those observed in human Lewy bodies (LB. Conclusions Smad3 deficiency promotes strong catabolism of DA in the striatum (ST, decrease trophic and astrocytic support to dopaminergic neurons and may induce α-synuclein aggregation, which may be related to early parkinsonism. These data underline a role for Smad3 in α-synuclein and DA homeostasis, and suggest that modulatory molecules of this signalling pathway should be evaluated as possible neuroprotective agents.

  13. Glucosylsphingosine Promotes α-Synuclein Pathology in Mutant GBA-Associated Parkinson's Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taguchi, Yumiko V; Liu, Jun; Ruan, Jiapeng; Pacheco, Joshua; Zhang, Xiaokui; Abbasi, Justin; Keutzer, Joan; Mistry, Pramod K; Chandra, Sreeganga S

    2017-10-04

    Glucocerebrosidase 1 (GBA) mutations responsible for Gaucher disease (GD) are the most common genetic risk factor for Parkinson's disease (PD). Although the genetic link between GD and PD is well established, the underlying molecular mechanism(s) are not well understood. We propose that glucosylsphingosine, a sphingolipid accumulating in GD, mediates PD pathology in GBA-associated PD. We show that, whereas GD-related sphingolipids (glucosylceramide, glucosylsphingosine, sphingosine, sphingosine-1-phosphate) promote α-synuclein aggregation in vitro, glucosylsphingosine triggers the formation of oligomeric α-synuclein species capable of templating in human cells and neurons. Using newly generated GD/PD mouse lines of either sex [Gba mutant (N370S, L444P, KO) crossed to α-synuclein transgenics], we show that Gba mutations predispose to PD through a loss-of-function mechanism. We further demonstrate that glucosylsphingosine specifically accumulates in young GD/PD mouse brain. With age, brains exhibit glucosylceramide accumulations colocalized with α-synuclein pathology. These findings indicate that glucosylsphingosine promotes pathological aggregation of α-synuclein, increasing PD risk in GD patients and carriers.SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Parkinson's disease (PD) is a prevalent neurodegenerative disorder in the aging population. Glucocerebrosidase 1 mutations, which cause Gaucher disease, are the most common genetic risk factor for PD, underscoring the importance of delineating the mechanisms underlying mutant GBA-associated PD. We show that lipids accumulating in Gaucher disease, especially glucosylsphingosine, play a key role in PD pathology in the brain. These data indicate that ASAH1 (acid ceramidase 1) and GBA2 (glucocerebrosidase 2) enzymes that mediate glucosylsphingosine production and metabolism are attractive therapeutic targets for treating mutant GBA-associated PD. Copyright © 2017 the authors 0270-6474/17/379617-15$15.00/0.

  14. Structural characterization of copper(II) binding to alpha-synuclein: Insights into the bioinorganic chemistry of Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rasia, Rodolfo M; Bertoncini, Carlos W; Marsh, Derek; Hoyer, Wolfgang; Cherny, Dmitry; Zweckstetter, Markus; Griesinger, Christian; Jovin, Thomas M; Fernández, Claudio O

    2005-03-22

    The aggregation of alpha-synuclein (AS) is characteristic of Parkinson's disease and other neurodegenerative synucleinopathies. We demonstrate here that Cu(II) ions are effective in accelerating AS aggregation at physiologically relevant concentrations without altering the resultant fibrillar structures. By using numerous spectroscopic techniques (absorption, CD, EPR, and NMR), we have located the primary binding for Cu(II) to a specific site in the N terminus, involving His-50 as the anchoring residue and other nitrogen/oxygen donor atoms in a square planar or distorted tetragonal geometry. The carboxylate-rich C terminus, originally thought to drive copper binding, is able to coordinate a second Cu(II) equivalent, albeit with a 300-fold reduced affinity. The NMR analysis of AS-Cu(II) complexes reveals the existence of conformational restrictions in the native state of the protein. The metallobiology of Cu(II) in Parkinson's disease is discussed by a comparative analysis with other Cu(II)-binding proteins involved in neurodegenerative disorders.

  15. Mechanisms of Alpha-Synuclein Action on Neurotransmission: Cell-Autonomous and Non-Cell Autonomous Role

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marco Emanuele

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Mutations and duplication/triplication of the alpha-synuclein (αSyn-coding gene have been found to cause familial Parkinson’s disease (PD, while genetic polymorphisms in the region controlling the expression level and stability of αSyn have been identified as risk factors for idiopathic PD, pointing to the importance of wild-type (wt αSyn dosage in the disease. Evidence that αSyn is present in the cerebrospinal fluid and interstitial brain tissue and that healthy neuronal grafts transplanted into PD patients often degenerate suggests that extracellularly-released αSyn plays a role in triggering the neurodegenerative process. αSyn’s role in neurotransmission has been shown in various cell culture models in which the protein was upregulated or deleted and in knock out and transgenic animal, with different results on αSyn’s effect on synaptic vesicle pool size and mobilization, αSyn being proposed as a negative or positive regulator of neurotransmitter release. In this review, we discuss the effect of αSyn on pre- and post-synaptic compartments in terms of synaptic vesicle trafficking, calcium entry and channel activity, and we focus on the process of exocytosis and internalization of αSyn and on the spreading of αSyn-driven effects due to the presence of the protein in the extracellular milieu.

  16. First‐in‐human assessment of PRX002, an anti–α‐synuclein monoclonal antibody, in healthy volunteers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schenk, Dale B.; Koller, Martin; Ness, Daniel K.; Griffith, Sue G.; Grundman, Michael; Zago, Wagner; Soto, Jay; Atiee, George; Ostrowitzki, Susanne

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Background: α‐Synuclein is a major component of pathologic inclusions that characterize Parkinson's disease. PRX002 is an antibody that targets α‐synuclein, and its murine parent antibody 9E4 has been shown in preclinical studies to reduce α‐synuclein pathology and to protect against cognitive and motor deteriorations and progressive neurodegeneration in human α‐synuclein transgenic mice. Methods: This first‐in‐human, randomized, double‐blind, placebo‐controlled, phase 1 study assessed the impact of PRX002 administered to 40 healthy participants in 5 ascending‐dose cohorts (n = 8/cohort) in which participants were randomly assigned to receive a single intravenous infusion of study drug (0.3, 1, 3, 10, or 30 mg/kg; n = 6/cohort) or placebo (n = 2/cohort). Results: PRX002 demonstrated favorable safety, tolerability, and pharmacokinetic profiles at all doses tested, with no immunogenicity. No serious adverse events, discontinuations as a result of adverse events, or dose‐limiting toxicities were reported. Serum PRX002 exposure was dose proportional; the average terminal half‐life across all doses was 18.2 days. A significant dose‐dependent reduction in free serum α‐synuclein (unbound to PRX002) was apparent within 1 hour after PRX002 administration, whereas total α‐synuclein (free plus bound) increased dose‐dependently, presumably because of the expected change in kinetics following antibody binding. Conclusions: This study demonstrates that serum α‐synuclein can be safely modulated in a dose‐dependent manner after single intravenous infusions of an anti–α‐synuclein antibody. These findings support continued development of PRX002, including further characterization of its safety, tolerability, pharmacokinetics, and pharmacodynamic effects in the central nervous system in patients with Parkinson's disease. © 2016 The Authors. Movement Disorders published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of

  17. Embryonic neural inducing factor churchill is not a DNA-binding zinc finger protein: solution structure reveals a solvent-exposed beta-sheet and zinc binuclear cluster.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Brian M; Buck-Koehntop, Bethany A; Martinez-Yamout, Maria A; Dyson, H Jane; Wright, Peter E

    2007-08-31

    Churchill is a zinc-containing protein that is involved in neural induction during embryogenesis. At the time of its discovery, it was thought on the basis of sequence alignment to contain two zinc fingers of the C4 type. Further, binding of an N-terminal GST-Churchill fusion protein to a particular DNA sequence was demonstrated by immunoprecipitation selection assay, suggesting that Churchill may function as a transcriptional regulator by sequence-specific DNA binding. We show by NMR solution structure determination that, far from containing canonical C4 zinc fingers, the protein contains three bound zinc ions in novel coordination sites, including an unusual binuclear zinc cluster. The secondary structure of Churchill is also unusual, consisting of a highly solvent-exposed single-layer beta-sheet. Hydrogen-deuterium exchange and backbone relaxation measurements reveal that Churchill is unusually dynamic on a number of time scales, with the exception of regions surrounding the zinc coordinating sites, which serve to stabilize the otherwise unstructured N terminus and the single-layer beta-sheet. No binding of Churchill to the previously identified DNA sequence could be detected, and extensive searches using DNA sequence selection techniques could find no other DNA sequence that was bound by Churchill. Since the N-terminal amino acids of Churchill form part of the zinc-binding motif, the addition of a fusion protein at the N terminus causes loss of zinc and unfolding of Churchill. This observation most likely explains the published DNA-binding results, which would arise due to non-specific interaction of the unfolded protein in the immunoprecipitation selection assay. Since Churchill does not appear to bind DNA, we suggest that it may function in embryogenesis as a protein-interaction factor.

  18. Phosphorylation does not prompt, nor prevent, the formation of alpha-synuclein toxic species in a rat model of Parkinson's disease

    OpenAIRE

    Azeredo da Silveira, S.; Schneider, B. L.; Cifuentes-Diaz, C.; Sage, D.; Abbas-Terki, T.; Iwatsubo, T.; Unser, M.; Aebischer, P.; da Silveira, S.A.

    2009-01-01

    Phosphorylation is involved in numerous neurodegenerative diseases. In particular, alpha-synuclein is extensively phosphorylated in aggregates in patients suffering from synucleinopathies. However, the share of this modification in the events that lead to the conversion of alpha-synuclein to aggregated toxic species needed to be clarified. The rat model that we developed through rAAV2/6-mediated expression of alpha-synuclein demonstrates a correlation between neurodegeneration and formation o...

  19. Inhibition of Prolyl Oligopeptidase Restores Spontaneous Motor Behavior in the α-Synuclein Virus Vector-Based Parkinson's Disease Mouse Model by Decreasing α-Synuclein Oligomeric Species in Mouse Brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Svarcbahs, Reinis; Julku, Ulrika H; Myöhänen, Timo T

    2016-12-07

    Decreased clearance of α-synuclein (aSyn) and aSyn protein misfolding and aggregation are seen as major factors in the pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease (PD) and other synucleinopathies that leads to disruption in neuronal function and eventually to cell death. Prolyl oligopeptidase (PREP) can accelerate the aSyn aggregation process, while inhibition of PREP by a small molecule inhibitor decreases aSyn oligomer formation and enhances its clearance via autophagy in different aSyn overexpressing cell types and in transgenic PD animal models. In this study, we investigated the impact of chronic PREP inhibition by a small molecule inhibitor, 4-phenylbutanoyl-l-prolyl-2(S)-cyanopyrrolidine (KYP-2047), on aSyn oligomerization, clearance, and underlying spontaneous motor behavior in a virus vector-based aSyn overexpression mouse model 4 weeks after aSyn microinjections and after the onset of symptomatic forepaw bias. Following 4 weeks of PREP inhibition, we saw an improved spontaneous forelimb use in mice that correlated with a decreased immunoreactivity against oligomer-specific forms of aSyn. Additionally, KYP-2047 had a trend to enhance dopaminergic systems activity. Our results suggest that PREP inhibition exhibits a beneficial effect on the aSyn clearance and aggregation in a virus mediated aSyn overexpression PD mouse model and that PREP inhibitors could be a novel therapeutic strategy for synucleinopathies. Alpha-synuclein (aSyn) has been implicated in Parkinson's disease, with aSyn aggregates believed to exert toxic effects on neurons, while prolyl oligopeptidase (PREP) has been shown to interact with aSyn both in cells and cell free conditions, thus enhancing its aggregation. We demonstrate the possibility to abolish motor imbalance caused by aSyn viral vector injection with chronic 4 week PREP inhibition by a potent small-molecule PREP inhibitor, 4-phenylbutanoyl-l-prolyl-2(S)-cyanopyrrolidine (KYP-2047). Treatment was initiated postsymptomatically, 4 weeks

  20. Mutant α-Synuclein Overexpression Induces Stressless Pacemaking in Vagal Motoneurons at Risk in Parkinson's Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lasser-Katz, Efrat; Simchovitz, Alon; Chiu, Wei-Hua; Oertel, Wolfgang H; Sharon, Ronit; Soreq, Hermona; Roeper, Jochen; Goldberg, Joshua A

    2017-01-04

    α-Synuclein overexpression (ASOX) drives the formation of toxic aggregates in neurons vulnerable in Parkinson's disease (PD), including dopaminergic neurons of the substantia nigra (SN) and cholinergic neurons of the dorsal motor nucleus of the vagus (DMV). Just as these populations differ in when they exhibit α-synucleinopathies during PD pathogenesis, they could also differ in their physiological responses to ASOX. An ASOX-mediated hyperactivity of SN dopamine neurons, which was caused by oxidative dysfunction of Kv4.3 potassium channels, was recently identified in transgenic (A53T-SNCA) mice overexpressing mutated human α-synuclein. Noting that DMV neurons display extensive α-synucleinopathies earlier than SN dopamine neurons while exhibiting milder cell loss in PD, we aimed to define the electrophysiological properties of DMV neurons in A53T-SNCA mice. We found that DMV neurons maintain normal firing rates in response to ASOX. Moreover, Kv4.3 channels in DMV neurons exhibit no oxidative dysfunction in the A53T-SNCA mice, which could only be recapitulated in wild-type mice by glutathione dialysis. Two-photon imaging of redox-sensitive GFP corroborated the finding that mitochondrial oxidative stress was diminished in DMV neurons in the A53T-SNCA mice. This reduction in oxidative stress resulted from a transcriptional downregulation of voltage-activated (Cav) calcium channels in DMV neurons, which led to a reduction in activity-dependent calcium influx via Cav channels. Thus, ASOX induces a homeostatic remodeling with improved redox signaling in DMV neurons, which could explain the differential vulnerability of SN dopamine and DMV neurons in PD and could promote neuroprotective strategies that emulate endogenous homeostatic responses to ASOX (e.g., stressless pacemaking) in DMV neurons. Overexpression of mutant α-synuclein causes Parkinson's disease, presumably by driving neurodegeneration in vulnerable neuronal target populations. However, the extent of α-synuclein

  1. Analysis of Drug Design for a Selection of G Protein-Coupled Neuro-Receptors Using Neural Network Techniques

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Agerskov, Claus; Mortensen, Rasmus M.; Bohr, Henrik G.

    2015-01-01

    mu-opioid, serotonin 2B (5-HT2B) and metabotropic glutamate D5. They are selected due to the availability of pharmacological drug-molecule binding data for these receptors. Feedback and deep belief artificial neural network architectures (NNs) were chosen to perform the task of aiding drug...... networks, trained with greedy learning algorithms, showed superior performance in prediction over the simple feedback NNs. The best networks obtained scores of more than 90 % accuracy in predicting the degree of binding drug molecules to the mentioned receptors and with a maximal Matthew's coefficient of 0...... computational tools, able to aid in drug-design in a fast and cheap fashion, compared to conventional pharmacological techniques....

  2. Changes in Properties of Serine 129 Phosphorylated α-Synuclein with Progression of Lewy Type Histopathology in Human Brains

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walker, Douglas G.; Lue, Lih-Fen; Adler, Charles H.; Shill, Holly A.; Caviness, John N.; Sabbagh, Marwan N.; Akiyama, Haruhiko; Serrano, Geidy E.; Sue, Lucia I.; Beach, Thomas G.

    2012-01-01

    Modifications of α-synuclein resulting in changes in its conformation are considered to be key pathological events for Lewy body diseases (LBD), which include Parkinson’s disease (PD) and dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB). We have previously described a histopathological Unified Staging System for LBD that classifies the spread of α-synuclein phosphorylated at serine 129 (pS129-α-synuclein) from olfactory bulb to brainstem or limbic regions, and finally neocortex. Lewy bodies and Lewy neurites are highly enriched in pS129-α-synuclein. Increased formation of pS129-α-synuclein changes its solubility properties enhancing its tendency to aggregate and disrupt normal function. As in vitro and animal studies have shown that inhibiting formation of pS129-α-synuclein can prevent toxic consequences, this has become one of the therapeutic targets for LBD. However, detailed biochemical descriptions of the changes in pS129-α-synuclein properties in diseased human brains are needed to further our understanding of how these might contribute to molecular pathogenesis. In this study, we used 130 separate brain samples from cingulate cortex (limbic cortex) and 131 from temporal cortex (neocortex) that had been staged according to our Unified Staging System to examine progressive changes in properties of pS129-α-synuclein with the formation of progressively more severe histological Lewy-type pathology. The brain samples from these staged cases had been separated into cytosol-enriched, membrane-enriched (detergent soluble) and insoluble (ureas/SDS soluble) fractions. We also characterized the nature and appearance of higher molecular weight forms of pS129-α-synuclein. The major species was the 16 kD monomeric form; this accumulated with increasing stage with a large increase in Stage IV samples. By comparing two brain regions, we showed higher accumulation of insoluble pS129-α-synuclein in cingulate cortex, where histological deposits occur first, than in temporal cortex in

  3. Changes in properties of serine 129 phosphorylated α-synuclein with progression of Lewy-type histopathology in human brains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walker, Douglas G; Lue, Lih-Fen; Adler, Charles H; Shill, Holly A; Caviness, John N; Sabbagh, Marwan N; Akiyama, Haruhiko; Serrano, Geidy E; Sue, Lucia I; Beach, Thomas G

    2013-02-01

    Modifications of α-synuclein resulting in changes in its conformation are considered to be key pathological events for Lewy body diseases (LBD), which include Parkinson's disease (PD) and dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB). We have previously described a histopathological Unified Staging System for LBD that classifies the spread of α-synuclein phosphorylated at serine 129 (pS129-α-synuclein) from olfactory bulb to brainstem or limbic regions, and finally neocortex. Lewy bodies and Lewy neurites are highly enriched in pS129-α-synuclein. Increased formation of pS129-α-synuclein changes its solubility properties enhancing its tendency to aggregate and disrupt normal function. As in vitro and animal studies have shown that inhibiting formation of pS129-α-synuclein can prevent toxic consequences, this has become one of the therapeutic targets for LBD. However, detailed biochemical descriptions of the changes in pS129-α-synuclein properties in diseased human brains are needed to further our understanding of how these might contribute to molecular pathogenesis. In this study, we used 130 separate brain samples from cingulate cortex (limbic cortex) and 131 from temporal cortex (neocortex) that had been staged according to our Unified Staging System to examine progressive changes in properties of pS129-α-synuclein with the formation of progressively more severe histological Lewy-type pathology. The brain samples from these staged cases had been separated into cytosol-enriched, membrane-enriched (detergent soluble) and insoluble (ureas/SDS soluble) fractions. We also characterized the nature and appearance of higher molecular weight forms of pS129-α-synuclein. The major species was the 16 kD monomeric form; this accumulated with increasing stage with a large increase in Stage IV samples. By comparing two brain regions, we showed higher accumulation of insoluble pS129-α-synuclein in cingulate cortex, where histological deposits occur first, than in temporal cortex in

  4. NetTurnP--neural network prediction of beta-turns by use of evolutionary information and predicted protein sequence features.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bent Petersen

    Full Text Available UNLABELLED: β-turns are the most common type of non-repetitive structures, and constitute on average 25% of the amino acids in proteins. The formation of β-turns plays an important role in protein folding, protein stability and molecular recognition processes. In this work we present the neural network method NetTurnP, for prediction of two-class β-turns and prediction of the individual β-turn types, by use of evolutionary information and predicted protein sequence features. It has been evaluated against a commonly used dataset BT426, and achieves a Matthews correlation coefficient of 0.50, which is the highest reported performance on a two-class prediction of β-turn and not-β-turn. Furthermore NetTurnP shows improved performance on some of the specific β-turn types. In the present work, neural network methods have been trained to predict β-turn or not and individual β-turn types from the primary amino acid sequence. The individual β-turn types I, I', II, II', VIII, VIa1, VIa2, VIba and IV have been predicted based on classifications by PROMOTIF, and the two-class prediction of β-turn or not is a superset comprised of all β-turn types. The performance is evaluated using a golden set of non-homologous sequences known as BT426. Our two-class prediction method achieves a performance of: MCC=0.50, Qtotal=82.1%, sensitivity=75.6%, PPV=68.8% and AUC=0.864. We have compared our performance to eleven other prediction methods that obtain Matthews correlation coefficients in the range of 0.17-0.47. For the type specific β-turn predictions, only type I and II can be predicted with reasonable Matthews correlation coefficients, where we obtain performance values of 0.36 and 0.31, respectively. CONCLUSION: The NetTurnP method has been implemented as a webserver, which is freely available at http://www.cbs.dtu.dk/services/NetTurnP/. NetTurnP is the only available webserver that allows submission of multiple sequences.

  5. Aggregation process of Aβ1-40 with non-Aβ amyloid component of α-synuclein

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eugene, Cindie; Mousseau, Normand

    2015-09-01

    Many neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases, are characterized by the presence of amyloid fibers. Recently, attention has turned from the fibers to the early stages of oligomerization where toxicity could be highest. Here, we focus on the interactions between non-Aβ amyloid component of a-synuclein (NAC) and Aβ1-40, two proteins found in amyloid fibrils associated with Alzheimer's disease. We combine the coarse-grained OPEP potential with a Hamiltonian and temperature replica exchange molecular dynamics simulation (HT-REMD) to identify mechanisms leading to the formation of secondary structures promoting fibrillation. We observe that the propensity to form beta-sheet remains the same for Aβ1-40 whereas is decreases significantly for NAC. In particular, the 25-35 region of Aβ1-40 is a significant area of secondary structure stabilization with NAC. The ionic interactions between salt-bridge D23 and K28 in Aβ1-40 and K20 and E23 in NAC of the heterogeneous dimer are consistent with the salt-bridges found in NAC and Aβ1-40 homogenous dimers and allow us to see that these interactions don't necessarily dominate the interchain stabilizations. Our numerical simulation also show the formation of interaction between the early oligomer of NAC and Aβ1-40.

  6. Novel Benzothiazole Derivatives as Fluorescent Probes for Detection of β-Amyloid and α-Synuclein Aggregates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Watanabe, Hiroyuki; Ono, Masahiro; Ariyoshi, Taisuke; Katayanagi, Rikako; Saji, Hideo

    2017-08-16

    Deposits of β-amyloid (Aβ) and α-synuclein (α-syn) are the hallmark of Alzheimer's disease (AD) and Parkinson's disease (PD), respectively. The detection of these protein aggregates with fluorescent probes is particularly of interest for preclinical studies using fluorescence microscopy on human brain tissue. In this study, we newly designed and synthesized three push-pull benzothiazole (PP-BTA) derivatives as fluorescent probes for detection of Aβ and α-syn aggregates. Fluorescence intensity of all PP-BTA derivatives significantly increased upon binding to Aβ(1-42) and α-syn aggregates in solution. In in vitro saturation binding assays, PP-BTA derivatives demonstrated affinity for both Aβ(1-42) (Kd = 40-148 nM) and α-syn (Kd = 48-353 nM) aggregates. In particular, PP-BTA-4 clearly stained senile plaques composed of Aβ aggregates in the AD brain section. Moreover, it also labeled Lewy bodies composed of α-syn aggregates in the PD brain section. These results suggest that PP-BTA-4 may serve as a promising fluorescent probe for the detection of Aβ and α-syn aggregates.

  7. An alpha-synuclein MRM assay with diagnostic potential for Parkinson's disease and monitoring disease progression

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yang, Li [Department of Pathology, University of Washington, Seattle WA USA; Stewart, Tessandra [Department of Pathology, University of Washington, Seattle WA USA; Shi, Min [Department of Pathology, University of Washington, Seattle WA USA; Pottiez, Gwenael [Department of Pathology, University of Washington, Seattle WA USA; Dator, Romel [Department of Pathology, University of Washington, Seattle WA USA; Wu, Rui [Department of Pathology, University of Washington, Seattle WA USA; Department of Pathology, No. 3 Hospital of Beijing University, Beijing China; Aro, Patrick [Department of Pathology, University of Washington, Seattle WA USA; Schuster, Robert J. [Department of Pathology, University of Washington, Seattle WA USA; Ginghina, Carmen [Department of Pathology, University of Washington, Seattle WA USA; Pan, Catherine [Department of Pathology, University of Washington, Seattle WA USA; Gao, Yuqian [Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland WA USA; Qian, Weijun [Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland WA USA; Zabetian, Cyrus P. [Parkinson' s Disease Research and Geriatric Research, Education and Clinical Center, Veterans Affairs Puget Sound Health Care System, Seattle WA USA; Department of Neurology, University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle WA USA; Hu, Shu-Ching [Department of Neurology, University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle WA USA; Quinn, Joseph F. [Department of Neurology, Oregon Health and Science University, Portland OR USA; Zhang, Jing [Department of Pathology, University of Washington, Seattle WA USA; Department of Pathology, Peking University Health Science Centre and Third Hospital, Beijing 100083 China

    2017-04-19

    Aim: The alpha-synuclein (α-syn) level in human cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), as measured by immunoassays, is promising as a Parkinson’s disease (PD) biomarker. However, the levels of total α-syn are inconsistent among studies with large cohorts and different measurement platforms. Total α-syn level also does not correlate with disease severity or progression. Here, we developed a highly sensitive Multiple Reaction Monitoring (MRM) method to measure absolute CSF α-syn peptide concentrations without prior enrichment or fractionation, aiming to discover new candidate biomarkers. Results: Six peptides covering 73% of protein sequence were reliably identified, and two were consistently quantified in cross-sectional and longitudinal cohorts. Absolute concentration of α-syn in human CSF was determined to be 2.1ng/mL. A unique α-syn peptide, TVEGAGSIAAATGFVK (81-96), displayed excellent correlation with previous immunoassay results in two independent PD cohorts (p < 0.001), correlated with disease severity, and its changes significantly tracked the disease progression longitudinally. Conclusions: An MRM assay to quantify human CSF α-syn was developed and optimized. Sixty clinical samples from cross-sectional and longitudinal PD cohorts were analyzed with this approach. Although further larger-scale validation is needed, the results suggest that α-syn peptide could serve as a promising biomarker in PD diagnosis and progression.

  8. Carbosilane dendrimers inhibit α-synuclein fibrillation and prevent cells from rotenone-induced damage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Milowska, Katarzyna; Szwed, Aleksandra; Mutrynowska, Marta; Gomez-Ramirez, Rafael; de la Mata, Francisco Javier; Gabryelak, Teresa; Bryszewska, Maria

    2015-04-30

    This study investigates the role of carbosilane dendrimers in fibrillation of α-synuclein and prevention of the mouse hippocampal cell (mHippoE-18) from rotenone-induced damage. Examining the interaction between carbosilane dendrimers and α-synuclein, we found that the dendrimers inhibit fibril formation. We also investigated cell viability, the production of reactive oxygen species (ROS), and mitochondrial membrane potential. mHippoE-18 cells were preincubated with carbosilane dendrimers before rotenone was added. All the dendrimers possess potential protection activity. Preincubation with dendrimers contributed to: increased viability, higher mitochondrial membrane potential, and reduced ROS level in cells. The probable mechanism of cell protection lies in the ability of dendrimers to capture rotenone by encapsulating or binding to its surface groups. The fact that dendrimers have prevention potential is important in the search for new pharmacological strategies against neurodegenerative disorders. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. Effects of baseline CSF α-synuclein on regional brain atrophy rates in healthy elders, mild cognitive impairment and Alzheimer's disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Niklas Mattsson

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF α-synuclein is reduced in synucleinopathies, including dementia with Lewy bodies, and some studies have found increased CSF α-synuclein in Alzheimer's disease (AD. No study has explored effects of CSF α-synuclein on brain atrophy. Here we tested if baseline CSF α-synuclein affects brain atrophy rates and if these effects vary across brain regions, and across the cognitive spectrum from healthy elders (NL, to patients with mild cognitive impairment (MCI and AD. METHODS: Baseline CSF α-synuclein measurements and longitudinal structural brain magnetic resonance imaging was performed in 74 NL, 118 MCI patients and 55 AD patients. Effects of baseline CSF α-synuclein on regional atrophy rates were tested in 1 four pre-hoc defined regions possibly associated with Lewy body and/or AD pathology (amygdala, caudate, hippocampus, brainstem, and 2 all available regions of interest. Differences across diagnoses were tested by assessing the interaction of CSF α-synuclein and diagnosis (testing NL versus MCI, and NL versus AD. RESULTS: The effects of CSF α-synuclein on longitudinal atrophy rates were not significant after correction for multiple comparisons. There were tendencies for effects in AD in caudate (higher atrophy rates in subjects with higher CSF α-synuclein, P=0.046 and brainstem (higher atrophy rates in subjects with lower CSF α-synuclein, P=0.063. CSF α-synuclein had significantly different effects on atrophy rates in NL and AD in brainstem (P=0.037 and caudate (P=0.006. DISCUSSION: With the possible exception of caudate and brainstem, the overall weak effects of CSF α-synuclein on atrophy rates in NL, MCI and AD argues against CSF α-synuclein as a biomarker related to longitudinal brain atrophy in these diagnostic groups. Any effects of CSF α-synuclein may be attenuated by possible simultaneous occurrence of AD-related neuronal injury and concomitant Lewy body pathology, which may elevate and

  10. α-Synuclein expression in the mouse cerebellum is restricted to VGluT1 excitatory terminals and is enriched in unipolar brush cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Sun Kyong; Sillitoe, Roy V; Silva, Coralie; Martina, Marco; Sekerkova, Gabriella

    2015-10-01

    α-Synuclein has a crucial role in synaptic vesicle release and synaptic membrane recycling. Although its general expression pattern has been described in the cerebellum, the precise cerebellar structures where α-synuclein is localized are poorly understood. To address this question, we used α-synuclein immunohistochemistry in adult mice cerebellar sections. We found that α-synuclein labels glutamatergic but not glycinergic and GABAergic synaptic terminals in the molecular and granule cell layers. α-Synuclein was preferentially expressed in parallel and mossy fiber synaptic terminals that also express vesicular glutamate transporter 1 (VGluT1), while it was not detected in VGluT2-positive climbing fibers. α-Synuclein was particularly enriched in lobules IX and X, a region known to contain a high density of unipolar brush cells (UBCs). To elucidate whether the α-synuclein-positive mossy fibers belong to UBCs, we double-labeled cerebellar sections with antibodies to α-synuclein and UBC-type-specific markers (calretinin for type I and metabotropic glutamate receptor 1α (mGluR1α) for type II UBCs) and took advantage of organotypic cerebellar cultures (in which all mossy fibers are UBC axons) and moonwalker mice (in which almost all UBCs are ablated) and found that both type I and type II UBCs express α-synuclein. In moonwalker mutant cerebella, the α-synuclein/VGluT1 immunolabeling showed a dramatic decrease in the vestibulocerebellum that correlated with the absence of UBC. α-Synuclein appears to be an excellent marker for intrinsic mossy fibers of the VGluT1 subset in conjunction with UBCs of both subtypes.

  11. Anti-human α-synuclein N-terminal peptide antibody protects against dopaminergic cell death and ameliorates behavioral deficits in an AAV-α-synuclein rat model of Parkinson's disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Md Shahaduzzaman

    Full Text Available The protein α-synuclein (α-Syn has a central role in the pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease (PD and immunotherapeutic approaches targeting this molecule have shown promising results. In this study, novel antibodies were generated against specific peptides from full length human α-Syn and evaluated for effectiveness in ameliorating α-Syn-induced cell death and behavioral deficits in an AAV-α-Syn expressing rat model of PD. Fisher 344 rats were injected with rAAV vector into the right substantia nigra (SN, while control rats received an AAV vector expressing green fluorescent protein (GFP. Beginning one week after injection of the AAV-α-Syn vectors, rats were treated intraperitoneally with either control IgG or antibodies against the N-terminal (AB1, or central region (AB2 of α-Syn. An unbiased stereological estimation of TH+, NeuN+, and OX6 (MHC-II immunostaining revealed that the α-Syn peptide antibodies (AB1 and AB2 significantly inhibited α-Syn-induced dopaminergic cell (DA and NeuN+ cell loss (one-way ANOVA (F (3, 30 = 5.8, p = 0.002 and (F (3, 29 = 7.92, p = 0.002 respectively, as well as decreasing the number of activated microglia in the ipsilateral SN (one-way ANOVA F = 14.09; p = 0.0003. Antibody treated animals also had lower levels of α-Syn in the ipsilateral SN (one-way ANOVA F (7, 37 = 9.786; p = 0.0001 and demonstrated a partial intermediate improvement of the behavioral deficits. Our data suggest that, in particular, an α-Syn peptide antibody against the N-terminal region of the protein can protect against DA neuron loss and, to some extent behavioral deficits. As such, these results may be a potential therapeutic strategy for halting the progression of PD.

  12. Anti-Human α-Synuclein N-Terminal Peptide Antibody Protects against Dopaminergic Cell Death and Ameliorates Behavioral Deficits in an AAV-α-Synuclein Rat Model of Parkinson’s Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shahaduzzaman, Md; Nash, Kevin; Hudson, Charles; Sharif, Masroor; Grimmig, Bethany; Lin, Xiaoyang; Bai, Ge; Liu, Hui; Ugen, Kenneth E.; Cao, Chuanhai; Bickford, Paula C.

    2015-01-01

    The protein α-synuclein (α-Syn) has a central role in the pathogenesis of Parkinson’s disease (PD) and immunotherapeutic approaches targeting this molecule have shown promising results. In this study, novel antibodies were generated against specific peptides from full length human α-Syn and evaluated for effectiveness in ameliorating α-Syn-induced cell death and behavioral deficits in an AAV-α-Syn expressing rat model of PD. Fisher 344 rats were injected with rAAV vector into the right substantia nigra (SN), while control rats received an AAV vector expressing green fluorescent protein (GFP). Beginning one week after injection of the AAV-α-Syn vectors, rats were treated intraperitoneally with either control IgG or antibodies against the N-terminal (AB1), or central region (AB2) of α-Syn. An unbiased stereological estimation of TH+, NeuN+, and OX6 (MHC-II) immunostaining revealed that the α-Syn peptide antibodies (AB1 and AB2) significantly inhibited α-Syn-induced dopaminergic cell (DA) and NeuN+ cell loss (one-way ANOVA (F (3, 30) = 5.8, p = 0.002 and (F (3, 29) = 7.92, p = 0.002 respectively), as well as decreasing the number of activated microglia in the ipsilateral SN (one-way ANOVA F = 14.09; p = 0.0003). Antibody treated animals also had lower levels of α-Syn in the ipsilateral SN (one-way ANOVA F (7, 37) = 9.786; p = 0.0001) and demonstrated a partial intermediate improvement of the behavioral deficits. Our data suggest that, in particular, an α-Syn peptide antibody against the N-terminal region of the protein can protect against DA neuron loss and, to some extent behavioral deficits. As such, these results may be a potential therapeutic strategy for halting the progression of PD. PMID:25658425

  13. The temporal expression pattern of alpha-synuclein modulates olfactory neurogenesis in transgenic mice.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sebastian R Schreglmann

    Full Text Available Adult neurogenesis mirrors the brain´s endogenous capacity to generate new neurons throughout life. In the subventricular zone/ olfactory bulb system adult neurogenesis is linked to physiological olfactory function and has been shown to be impaired in murine models of neuronal alpha-Synuclein overexpression. We analyzed the degree and temporo-spatial dynamics of adult olfactory bulb neurogenesis in transgenic mice expressing human wild-type alpha-Synuclein (WTS under the murine Thy1 (mThy1 promoter, a model known to have a particularly high tg expression associated with impaired olfaction.Survival of newly generated neurons (NeuN-positive in the olfactory bulb was unchanged in mThy1 transgenic animals. Due to decreased dopaminergic differentiation a reduction in new dopaminergic neurons within the olfactory bulb glomerular layer was present. This is in contrast to our previously published data on transgenic animals that express WTS under the control of the human platelet-derived growth factor β (PDGF promoter, that display a widespread decrease in survival of newly generated neurons in regions of adult neurogenesis, resulting in a much more pronounced neurogenesis deficit. Temporal and quantitative expression analysis using immunofluorescence co-localization analysis and Western blots revealed that in comparison to PDGF transgenic animals, in mThy1 transgenic animals WTS is expressed from later stages of neuronal maturation only but at significantly higher levels both in the olfactory bulb and cortex.The dissociation between higher absolute expression levels of alpha-Synuclein but less severe impact on adult olfactory neurogenesis in mThy1 transgenic mice highlights the importance of temporal expression characteristics of alpha-Synuclein on the maturation of newborn neurons.

  14. α-Synuclein pathology in the cranial and spinal nerves in Lewy body disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakamura, Keiko; Mori, Fumiaki; Tanji, Kunikazu; Miki, Yasuo; Toyoshima, Yasuko; Kakita, Akiyoshi; Takahashi, Hitoshi; Yamada, Masahito; Wakabayashi, Koichi

    2016-06-01

    Accumulation of phosphorylated α-synuclein in neurons and glial cells is a histological hallmark of Lewy body disease (LBD) and multiple system atrophy (MSA). Recently, filamentous aggregations of phosphorylated α-synuclein have been reported in the cytoplasm of Schwann cells, but not in axons, in the peripheral nervous system in MSA, mainly in the cranial and spinal nerve roots. Here we conducted an immunohistochemical investigation of the cranial and spinal nerves and dorsal root ganglia of patients with LBD. Lewy axons were found in the oculomotor, trigeminal and glossopharyngeal-vagus nerves, but not in the hypoglossal nerve. The glossopharyngeal-vagus nerves were most frequently affected, with involvement in all of 20 subjects. In the spinal nerve roots, Lewy axons were found in all of the cases examined. Lewy axons in the anterior nerves were more frequent and numerous in the thoracic and sacral segments than in the cervical and lumbar segments. On the other hand, axonal lesions in the posterior spinal nerve roots appeared to increase along a cervical-to-sacral gradient. Although Schwann cell cytoplasmic inclusions were found in the spinal nerves, they were only minimal. In the dorsal root ganglia, axonal lesions were seldom evident. These findings indicate that α-synuclein pathology in the peripheral nerves is axonal-predominant in LBD, whereas it is restricted to glial cells in MSA. © 2015 Japanese Society of Neuropathology.

  15. Lipid peroxidation is essential for α-synuclein-induced cell death.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Angelova, Plamena R; Horrocks, Mathew H; Klenerman, David; Gandhi, Sonia; Abramov, Andrey Y; Shchepinov, Mikhail S

    2015-05-01

    Parkinson's disease is the second most common neurodegenerative disease and its pathogenesis is closely associated with oxidative stress. Deposition of aggregated α-synuclein (α-Syn) occurs in familial and sporadic forms of Parkinson's disease. Here, we studied the effect of oligomeric α-Syn on one of the major markers of oxidative stress, lipid peroxidation, in primary co-cultures of neurons and astrocytes. We found that oligomeric but not monomeric α-Syn significantly increases the rate of production of reactive oxygen species, subsequently inducing lipid peroxidation in both neurons and astrocytes. Pre-incubation of cells with isotope-reinforced polyunsaturated fatty acids (D-PUFAs) completely prevented the effect of oligomeric α-Syn on lipid peroxidation. Inhibition of lipid peroxidation with D-PUFAs further protected cells from cell death induced by oligomeric α-Syn. Thus, lipid peroxidation induced by misfolding of α-Syn may play an important role in the cellular mechanism of neuronal cell loss in Parkinson's disease. We have found that aggregated α-synuclein-induced production of reactive oxygen species (ROS) that subsequently stimulates lipid peroxidation and cell death in neurons and astrocytes. Specific inhibition of lipid peroxidation by incubation with reinforced polyunsaturated fatty acids (D-PUFAs) completely prevented the effect of α-synuclein on lipid peroxidation and cell death. © 2015 The Authors. Journal of Neurochemistry published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of The International Society for Neurochemistry.

  16. High-level activation of cyclic AMP signaling attenuates bone morphogenetic protein 2-induced sympathoadrenal lineage development and promotes melanogenesis in neural crest cultures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ji, Ming; Andrisani, Ourania M

    2005-06-01

    The intensity of cyclic AMP (cAMP) signaling is a differential instructive signal in neural crest (NC) cell specification. By an unknown mechanism, sympathoadrenal lineage specification is suppressed by high-level activation of cAMP signaling. In NC cultures, high-level activation of cAMP signaling mediates protein kinase A (PKA)-dependent Rap1-B-Raf-ERK1/2 activation, leading to cytoplasmic accumulation of phospho-Smad1, thus terminating bone morphogenetic protein 2 (BMP2)-induced sympathoadrenal cell development. Concurrently, cAMP signaling induces transcription of the melanocyte-determining transcription factor Mitf and melanogenesis. dnACREB and E1A inhibit Mitf expression and melanogenesis, supporting the notion that CREB activation is necessary for melanogenesis. However, constitutively active CREB(DIEDML) without PKA activation is insufficient for Mitf expression and melanogenesis, indicating PKA regulates additional aspects of Mitf transcription. Thus, high-level activation of cAMP signaling plays a dual role in NC cell differentiation: attenuation of BMP2-induced sympathoadrenal cell development and induction of melanogenesis. We conclude the intensity of activation of signal transduction cascades determines cell lineage segregation mechanisms.

  17. Phasor fluorescence lifetime microscopy of free and protein-bound NADH reveals neural stem cell differentiation potential.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chiara Stringari

    Full Text Available In the stem cell field there is a lack of non invasive and fast methods to identify stem cell's metabolic state, differentiation state and cell-lineage commitment. Here we describe a label-free method that uses NADH as an intrinsic biomarker and the Phasor approach to Fluorescence Lifetime microscopy to measure the metabolic fingerprint of cells. We show that different metabolic states are related to different cell differentiation stages and to stem cell bias to neuronal and glial fate, prior the expression of lineage markers. Our data demonstrate that the NADH FLIM signature distinguishes non-invasively neurons from undifferentiated neural progenitor and stem cells (NPSCs at two different developmental stages (E12 and E16. NPSCs follow a metabolic trajectory from a glycolytic phenotype to an oxidative phosphorylation phenotype through different stages of differentiation. NSPCs are characterized by high free/bound NADH ratio, while differentiated neurons are characterized by low free/bound NADH ratio. We demonstrate that the metabolic signature of NPSCs correlates with their differentiation potential, showing that neuronal progenitors and glial progenitors have a different free/bound NADH ratio. Reducing conditions in NPSCs correlates with their neurogenic potential, while oxidative conditions correlate with glial potential. For the first time we show that FLIM NADH metabolic fingerprint provides a novel, and quantitative measure of stem cell potential and a label-free and non-invasive means to identify neuron- or glial- biased progenitors.

  18. Extracellular Protein Interactions Mediated by the Neural Cell Adhesion Molecule, NCAM: Heterophilic Interactions Between NCAM and Cell Adhesion Molecules, Extracellular Matrix Proteins, and Viruses

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Janne; Kulahin, Nikolaj; Walmod, Peter

    2008-01-01

    interactions, thereby modulating a range of biological processes. This review summarizes interactions between NCAM and other CAMs and ECM proteins. Additionally, the role of NCAM as a receptor for rabies virus, and its implications in rabies infections is briefly described. Interactions between NCAM and its...

  19. Alpha-synuclein lesions in normal aging, Parkinson disease, and Alzheimer disease: evidence from the Baltimore Longitudinal Study of Aging (BLSA).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mikolaenko, Irina; Pletnikova, Olga; Kawas, Claudia H; O'Brien, Richard; Resnick, Susan M; Crain, Barbara; Troncoso, Juan C

    2005-02-01

    Alpha-synuclein (alpha-synuclein) lesions are characteristic of idiopathic Parkinson disease (PD) and other alpha-synucleinopathies. To study the frequency of alpha-synuclein lesions in normal aging and how frequently they coexist with lesions of Alzheimer disease (AD), we examined the autopsy brains from normal and demented subjects in the Baltimore Longitudinal Study of Aging (BLSA) (n = 117). We found that the overall frequency of alpha-synuclein lesions was 25%, with 100% in 7 cases of PD, 31.5% in 56 cases with AD lesions, and 8.3% among 36 older control brains. Among brains with AD lesions, the frequency of alpha-synuclein pathology was higher in those with higher scores for neuritic plaques, but not in those with higher scores for neurofibrillary tangles. Our observations indicate that alpha-synuclein lesions are uncommon in aged control subjects. Finally, the coexistence of Abeta amyloid and alpha-synuclein pathology in AD brains suggests that the pathogenic mechanism/s leading to the accumulation of Abeta and alpha-synuclein may be similar.

  20. What are artificial neural networks?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Krogh, Anders

    2008-01-01

    Artificial neural networks have been applied to problems ranging from speech recognition to prediction of protein secondary structure, classification of cancers and gene prediction. How do they work and what might they be good for? Udgivelsesdato: 2008-Feb......Artificial neural networks have been applied to problems ranging from speech recognition to prediction of protein secondary structure, classification of cancers and gene prediction. How do they work and what might they be good for? Udgivelsesdato: 2008-Feb...

  1. Bcl-2 homologue Debcl enhances α-synuclein-induced phenotypes in Drosophila

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P. Githure M’Angale

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Background Parkinson disease (PD is a debilitating movement disorder that afflicts 1–2% of the population over 50 years of age. The common hallmark for both sporadic and familial forms of PD is mitochondrial dysfunction. Mammals have at least twenty proapoptotic and antiapoptotic Bcl-2 family members, in contrast, only two Bcl-2 family genes have been identified in Drosophila melanogaster, the proapoptotic mitochondrial localized Debcl and the antiapoptotic Buffy. The expression of the human transgene α-synuclein, a gene that is strongly associated with inherited forms of PD, in dopaminergic neurons (DA of Drosophila, results in loss of neurons and locomotor dysfunction to model PD in flies. The altered expression of Debcl in the DA neurons and neuron-rich eye and along with the expression of α-synuclein offers an opportunity to highlight the role of Debcl in mitochondrial-dependent neuronal degeneration and death. Results The directed overexpression of Debcl using the Ddc-Gal4 transgene in the DA of Drosophila resulted in flies with severely decreased survival and a premature age-dependent loss in climbing ability. The inhibition of Debcl resulted in enhanced survival and improved climbing ability whereas the overexpression of Debcl in the α-synuclein-induced Drosophila model of PD resulted in more severe phenotypes. In addition, the co-expression of Debcl along with Buffy partially counteracts the Debcl-induced phenotypes, to improve the lifespan and the associated loss of locomotor ability observed. In complementary experiments, the overexpression of Debcl along with the expression of α-synuclein in the eye, enhanced the eye ablation that results from the overexpression of Debcl. The co-expression of Buffy along with Debcl overexpression results in the rescue of the moderate developmental eye defects. The co-expression of Buffy along with inhibition of Debcl partially restores the eye to a roughened eye phenotype. Discussion The

  2. Bcl-2 homologue Debcl enhances α-synuclein-induced phenotypes in Drosophila.

    Science.gov (United States)

    M'Angale, P Githure; Staveley, Brian E

    2016-01-01

    Parkinson disease (PD) is a debilitating movement disorder that afflicts 1-2% of the population over 50 years of age. The common hallmark for both sporadic and familial forms of PD is mitochondrial dysfunction. Mammals have at least twenty proapoptotic and antiapoptotic Bcl-2 family members, in contrast, only two Bcl-2 family genes have been identified in Drosophila melanogaster, the proapoptotic mitochondrial localized Debcl and the antiapoptotic Buffy. The expression of the human transgene α-synuclein, a gene that is strongly associated with inherited forms of PD, in dopaminergic neurons (DA) of Drosophila, results in loss of neurons and locomotor dysfunction to model PD in flies. The altered expression of Debcl in the DA neurons and neuron-rich eye and along with the expression of α-synuclein offers an opportunity to highlight the role of Debcl in mitochondrial-dependent neuronal degeneration and death. The directed overexpression of Debcl using the Ddc-Gal4 transgene in the DA of Drosophila resulted in flies with severely decreased survival and a premature age-dependent loss in climbing ability. The inhibition of Debcl resulted in enhanced survival and improved climbing ability whereas the overexpression of Debcl in the α-synuclein-induced Drosophila model of PD resulted in more severe phenotypes. In addition, the co-expression of Debcl along with Buffy partially counteracts the Debcl-induced phenotypes, to improve the lifespan and the associated loss of locomotor ability observed. In complementary experiments, the overexpression of Debcl along with the expression of α-synuclein in the eye, enhanced the eye ablation that results from the overexpression of Debcl. The co-expression of Buffy along with Debcl overexpression results in the rescue of the moderate developmental eye defects. The co-expression of Buffy along with inhibition of Debcl partially restores the eye to a roughened eye phenotype. The overexpression of Debcl in DA neurons produces flies with

  3. Effect of metals on herbicides-alpha-synuclein association: a possible factor in neurodegenerative disease studied by capillary electrophoresis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    André, Claire; Truong, Tong T; Robert, Jean Francois; Guillaume, Yves C

    2005-09-01

    The aggregation of alpha-synuclein in the dopaminergic neurons of the substantia nigra is a critical step in the Parkinson's disease (PD). The etiology of the disease is unknown but recent epidemiological and experimental studies have renewed interest in the hypothesis that environmental factors, especially herbicides and metals, have a role on the pathogenesis of PD. For the first time, the association constants of alpha-synuclein with five herbicides have been calculated using a capillary electrophoresis (CE) method. In addition, the effect of a number of metals on this binding has been investigated. It appears that the herbicides preferentially bind to a partially folded intermediate conformation of alpha-synuclein induced by manganese, aluminium, cadmium, copper and zinc. Then, metal increases the synuclein-herbicide association. However, this study shows contrasting actions with the antibiotic rifampicin and magnesium addition leading to a decrease of the alpha-synuclein-herbicide interaction even if other metals are present in the bulk solvent. Considering epidemiological studies, all these results suggest an underlying molecular basis for PD and related body diseases.

  4. Reduced expression of peroxisome-proliferator activated receptor gamma coactivator-1α enhances α-synuclein oligomerization and down regulates AKT/GSK3β signaling pathway in human neuronal cells that inducibly express α-synuclein

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ebrahim, Abdul Shukkur; Ko, Li-wen; Yen, Shu-Hui

    2010-01-01

    Intracellular accumulation of filamentous α-synuclein (α-Syn) aggregates to form Lewy bodies is a pathologic hallmark of Parkinson’s disease. To determine whether mitochondrial impairment plays a role in accumulation of α-Syn oligomer, we used 3D5 cell culture model of human neuronal type whereby conditional overexpression of wild-type α-Syn via the tetracycline off (TetOff) induction mechanism results in formation of inclusions that exhibit many characteristics of Lewy bodies. In the present study, we compromised mitochondrial function in 3D5 cells by using shRNA to knockdown peroxisome-proliferator activated receptor gamma coactivator-1α (PGC-1α), a key regulator of mitochondrial biogenesis and cellular energy metabolism and found that PGC-1α suppression at both protein and mRNA levels results in α-Syn accumulation (i.e. monomeric and oligomeric species in the TetOff-induced cells and monomeric only in the non-induced). These changes were accompanied with reduced mitochondrial potential as well as decreased levels of AKT, GSK3β (total and Ser9-phosphorylated) and p53 that are important for cell survival. The extent to which these proteins decreased following PGC-1α knockdown, in contrast to what was demonstrable with the viability assay, is greater in the induced than the non-induced. Together these findings indicate that such knockdown increases the propensity to accumulate α-Syn oligomers, but the accumulation appears to have very little toxic impact to the neuronal cells. PMID:20178833

  5. ER Stress Induced by Tunicamycin Triggers α-Synuclein Oligomerization, Dopaminergic Neurons Death and Locomotor Impairment: a New Model of Parkinson's Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cóppola-Segovia, Valentín; Cavarsan, Clarissa; Maia, Flavia G; Ferraz, Anete C; Nakao, Lia S; Lima, Marcelo Ms; Zanata, Silvio M

    2017-10-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is a neurodegenerative disorder characterized by progressive death of dopaminergic neurons of the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNpc), leading to the major clinical abnormalities that characterize this disease. Although PD's etiology is unknown, α-synuclein aggregation plays a pivotal role in PD pathogenesis, which could be associated to some pathological processes such as oxidative stress, endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress, impaired protein degradation, and mitochondrial dysfunction. Increasing experimental evidence indicates that ER stress is involved in PD, however most of the described results employed cultured cell lines and genetically modified animal models. In this study, we developed a new ER stress rat model employing the well-known ER stressor tunicamycin (Tm). To evaluate if ER stress was able to induce PD features, we performed an intranigral injection of Tm (0.1 μg/cerebral hemisphere) and animals (male Wistar rats) were analyzed 7 days post injection. The classical 6-OHDA neurotoxin model (1 μg/cerebral hemisphere) was used as an established positive control for PD. We show that Tm injection induced locomotor impairment, dopaminergic neurons death, and activation of astroglia. In addition, we observed an extensive α-synuclein oligomerization in SNpc of Tm-injected animals when compared with DMSO-injected controls. Finally, both Tm and 6-OHDA treated animals presented increased levels of ER stress markers. Taken together, these findings show for the first time that the ER stressor Tm recapitulates some of the phenotypic characteristics observed in rodent models of PD, reinforcing the concept that ER stress could be an important contributor to the pathophysiology of PD. Therefore, we propose the intranigral Tm injection as a new ER stress-based model for the study of PD in vivo.

  6. Targeted Inhibition of Leucine-Rich Repeat and Immunoglobulin Domain-Containing Protein 1 in Transplanted Neural Stem Cells Promotes Neuronal Differentiation and Functional Recovery in Rats Subjected to Spinal Cord Injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Ningning; Cen, Jing-Sheng; Wang, Jingnan; Qin, Gangjian; Long, Lingli; Wang, Le; Wei, Fuxin; Xiang, Qingfeng; Deng, David Y B; Wan, Yong

    2016-03-01

    Leucine-rich repeat and immunoglobulin domain-containing protein (LINGO)-1 is expressed in neural stem cells, and its neutralization results in sustained neuronal immaturity. Thus, targeted inhibition of LINGO-1 via RNA interference may enhance transplanted neural stem cell survival and neuronal differentiation in vivo. Furthermore, LINGO-1 RNA interference in neural stem cells represents a potential therapeutic strategy for spinal cord injury. Department of Spine Surgery, First Affiliated Hospital of Sun Yat-sen University. Translational Medicine Center Research Laboratory, First Affiliated Hospital of Sun Yat-sen University. Female Sprague-Dawley rats. The animals were divided into three groups that underwent laminectomy and complete spinal cord transection accompanied by transplantation of control-RNA interference-treated or LINGO-1-RNA interference-treated neural stem cells at the injured site in vivo. In vitro, neural stem cells were divided into four groups for the following treatments: control, control RNA interference lentivirus, LINGO-1 RNA interference lentivirus and LINGO-1 complementary DNA lentivirusand the Key Projects of the Natural Science Foundation of Guangdong Province (No. S2013020012818). Neural stem cells in each treatment group were examined for cell survival and neuronal differentiation in vitro and in vivo via immunofluorescence and Western blot analysis. Axonal regeneration and tissue repair were assessed via retrograde tracing using Fluorogold, electron microscopy, hematoxylin-eosin staining and MRI. Rats were also examined for functional recovery based on the measurement of spinal cord-evoked potentials and the Basso-Beattie-Bresnahan score. LINGO-1-RNA interference-treated neural stem cell transplantation increased tissue repair and functional recovery of the injured spinal cord in rats. Similarly, LINGO-1 RNA interference increased neural stem cell survival and neuronal differentiation in vitro. The mechanism underlying the effect of

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-03-01

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

  8. Progressive neurodegenerative and behavioural changes induced by AAV-mediated overexpression of α-synuclein in midbrain dopamine neurons

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Decressac, M; Mattsson, Bente; Lundblad, M

    2012-01-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is characterised by the progressive loss of nigral dopamine neurons and the presence of synucleinopathy. Overexpression of α-synuclein in vivo using viral vectors has opened interesting possibilities to model PD-like pathology in rodents. However, the attempts made so far...... have failed to show a consistent behavioural phenotype and pronounced dopamine neurodegeneration. Using a more efficient adeno-associated viral (AAV) vector construct, which includes a WPRE enhancer element and uses the neuron-specific synapsin-1 promoter to drive the expression of human wild-type α......-synuclein-induced pathology hits the axons and terminals first and later progresses to involve also the cell bodies. The time-course of changes seen in the AAV-α-synuclein treated animals defines distinct stages of disease progression that matches the pre-symptomatic, early symptomatic, and advanced stages seen in PD...

  9. In vitro labeling of neural stem cells with poly-L-lysine coated super paramagnetic nanoparticles for green fluorescent protein transfection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Albukhaty, Salim; Naderi-Manesh, Hossein; Tiraihi, Taki

    2013-04-01

    The magnetic nanoparticle-based transfection method is a relatively new technique for delivery of functional genes to target tissues. We aimed to evaluate the transfection efficiency of rat neural stem cell (NSC) using poly-L-lysine hydrobromide (PLL)-coated super paramagnetic iron oxide nanoparticles (SPION). The SPION was prepared and coated with PLL as transfection agent and the transfection efficiency was evaluated in rat NSC using enhanced green fluorescent protein-N1 plasmid containing GFP as a reporter gene. NSC was incubated for 24 h in cell culture media containing 25 µg/ml SPION and in different concentrations of PLL (0.25, 0.50, 0.75, 1 and 2 µg/ml). Cell viability was determined before and after transfection for every concentration using Trypan blue assay. Characterization of prepared uncoated (SPION) and coated (SPION-PLL) complexes were evaluated by a transmission electron microscope and the zeta potential. PLL at 0.75 μg/ml showed optimal results with 25 μg/ml SPION concentration compared with other PLL concentrations (0.25, 0.50, 1 and 2 μg/ml). The 18% efficiency of the transfected cells showed green fluorescence. Transfection with SPION is an efficient, non-viral gene transfere method.

  10. Drosophila DJ-1 Decreases Neural Sensitivity to Stress by Negatively Regulating Daxx-Like Protein through dFOXO

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choi, Gahee; Suh, Yoon Seok; Han, Seung Yeop; Lee, Minjung; Park, Seung Hwan; Lee, Jang Ho; Lee, Soojin; Bang, Se Min; Jeong, Yuji; Chung, Won-Ju; Lee, Im-Soon; Jeong, Gilsang; Chung, Jongkyeong; Cho, Kyoung Sang

    2013-01-01

    DJ-1, a Parkinson's disease (PD)–associated gene, has been shown to protect against oxidative stress in Drosophila. However, the molecular mechanism underlying oxidative stress-induced phenotypes, including apoptosis, locomotive defects, and lethality, in DJ-1-deficient flies is not fully understood. Here we showed that Daxx-like protein (DLP), a Drosophila homologue of the mammalian Death domain-associated protein (Daxx), was upregulated under oxidative stress conditions in the loss-of-function mutants of Drosophila DJ-1β, a Drosophila homologue of DJ-1. DLP overexpression induced apoptosis via the c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK)/Drosophila forkhead box subgroup O (dFOXO) pathway, whereas loss of DLP increased resistance to oxidative stress and UV irradiation. Moreover, the oxidative stress-induced phenotypes of DJ-1β mutants were dramatically rescued by DLP deficiency, suggesting that enhanced expression of DLP contributes to the DJ-1β mutant phenotypes. Interestingly, we found that dFOXO was required for the increase in DLP expression in DJ-1β mutants and that dFOXO activity was increased in the heads of DJ-1β mutants. In addition, subcellular localization of DLP appeared to be influenced by DJ-1 expression so that cytosolic DLP was increased in DJ-1β mutants. Similarly, in mammalian cells, Daxx translocation from the nucleus to the cytosol was suppressed by overexpressed DJ-1β under oxidative stress conditions; and, furthermore, targeted expression of DJ-1β to mitochondria efficiently inhibited the Daxx translocation. Taken together, our findings demonstrate that DJ-1β protects flies against oxidative stress- and UV-induced apoptosis by regulating the subcellular localization and gene expression of DLP, thus implying that Daxx-induced apoptosis is involved in the pathogenesis of DJ-1-associated PD. PMID:23593018

  11. α-Synuclein deficiency and efferent nerve degeneration in the mouse cochlea: a possible cause of early-onset presbycusis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Park, S N; Back, S A; Choung, Y H; Kim, H L; Akil, O; Lustig, L R; Park, K H; Yeo, S W

    2011-11-01

    Efferent nerves under the outer hair cells (OHCs) play a role in the protection of these cells from loud stimuli. Previously, we showed that cochlear α-synuclein expression is localized to efferent auditory synapses at the base of the OHCs. To prove our hypothesis that α-synuclein deficiency and efferent auditory deficit might be a cause of hearing loss, we compared the morphology of efferent nerve endings and α-synuclein expression within the cochleae of two mouse models of presbycusis. Comparative animal study of presbycusis. The C57BL/6J(C57) mouse strain, a well-known model of early-onset hearing loss, and the CBA mouse strain, a model of relatively late-onset hearing loss, were examined. Auditory brainstem responses and distortion product otoacoustic emissions were recorded, and cochlear morphology with efferent nerve ending was compared. Western blotting was used to examine α-synuclein expression in the cochlea. Compared with CBA mice, C57 mice showed earlier onset high-frequency hearing loss and decreased function in OHCs, especially within high-frequency regions. C57 mice demonstrated more severe pathologic changes within the cochlea, particularly within the basal turn, than CBA mice of the same age. Weaker α-synuclein and synaptophysin expression in the efferent nerve endings and cochlear homogenates in C57 mice was observed. Our results support the hypothesis that efferent nerve degeneration, possibly due to differential α-synuclein expression, is a potential cause of early-onset presbycusis. Further studies at the cellular level are necessary to verify our results. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ireland Ltd and the Japan Neuroscience Society. All rights reserved.

  12. The Bcl-2 homologue Buffy rescues α-synuclein-induced Parkinson disease-like phenotypes in Drosophila.

    Science.gov (United States)

    M'Angale, P Githure; Staveley, Brian E

    2016-05-18

    In contrast to the complexity found in mammals, only two Bcl-2 family genes have been found in Drosophila melanogaster including the pro-cell survival, human Bok-related orthologue, Buffy. The directed expression of α-synuclein, the first gene identified to contribute to inherited forms of Parkinson disease (PD), in the dopaminergic neurons (DA) of flies has provided a robust and well-studied Drosophila model of PD complete with the loss of neurons and accompanying motor defects. To more fully understand the biological basis of Bcl-2 genes in PD, we altered the expression of Buffy in the dopamine producing neurons with and without the expression of α-synuclein, and in the developing neuron-rich eye. To alter the expression of Buffy in the dopaminergic neurons of Drosophila, the Ddc-Gal4 transgene was used. The directed expression of Buffy in the dopamine producing neurons resulted in flies with increased climbing ability and enhanced survival, while the inhibition of Buffy in the dopaminergic neurons reduced climbing ability over time prematurely, similar to the phenotype observed in the α-synuclein-induced Drosophila model of PD. Subsequently, the expression of Buffy was altered in the α-synuclein-induced Drosophila model of PD. Analysis revealed that Buffy acted to rescue the associated loss of locomotor ability observed in the α-synuclein-induced model of PD, while Buffy RNA interference resulted in an enhanced α-synuclein-induced loss of climbing ability. In complementary experiments the overexpression of Buffy in the developing eye suppressed the mild rough eye phenotype that results from Gal4 expression and from α-synuclein expression. When Buffy is inhibited the roughened eye phenotype is enhanced. The inhibition of Buffy in DA neurons produces a novel model of PD in Drosophila. The directed expression of Buffy in DA neurons provide protection and counteracts the α-synuclein-induced Parkinson disease-like phenotypes. Taken all together this

  13. A Swedish family with de novo alpha-synuclein A53T mutation: evidence for early cortical dysfunction

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Puschmann, Andreas; Ross, Owen A; Vilariño-Güell, Carles

    2009-01-01

    A de novo alpha-synuclein A53T (p.Ala53 Th; c.209G > A) mutation has been identified in a Swedish family with autosomal dominant Parkinson's disease (PD). Two affected individuals had early-onset (before 31 and 40 years), severe levodopa-responsive PD with prominent dysphasia, dysarthria, and cog......A de novo alpha-synuclein A53T (p.Ala53 Th; c.209G > A) mutation has been identified in a Swedish family with autosomal dominant Parkinson's disease (PD). Two affected individuals had early-onset (before 31 and 40 years), severe levodopa-responsive PD with prominent dysphasia, dysarthria...

  14. Response surface and neural network models for performance of broiler chicks fed diets varying in digestible protein and critical amino acids from 11 to 17 days of age.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahmadi, H; Golian, A

    2011-09-01

    Central composite design (CCD; 5 levels and 4 factors), response surface methodology (RSM), and artificial neural network-genetic algorithm (ANN-GA) were used to evaluate the response of broiler chicks [ADG and feed conversion ratio (FCR)] to dietary standardized ileal digestible protein (dP), lysine (dLys), total sulfur amino acids (dTSAA), and threonine (dThr). A total of 84 battery brooder units of 5 birds each were assigned to 28 diets of CCD containing 5 levels of dP (18-22%), dLys (1.06-1.30%), dTSAA (0.81-1.01%), and dThr (0.66-0.86%) from 11 to 17 d of age. The experimental results of CCD were fitted with the quadratic and artificial neural network models. A ridge analysis (for RSM models) and a genetic algorithm (for ANN-GA models) were used to compute the optimal response for ADG and FCR. For both ADG and FCR, the goodness of fit in terms of R(2) and MS error corresponding to ANN-GA and RSM models showed a substantially higher accuracy of prediction for ANN models (ADG model: R(2) = 0.99; FCR model: R(2) = 0.97) compared with RSM models (ADG model: R(2) = 0.70; FCR model: R(2) = 0.71). The ridge maximum analysis on ADG and minimum analysis on FCR models revealed that the maximum ADG may be obtained with 18.5, 1.10, 0.89, and 0.73% dP, dLys, dTSAA, and dThr, respectively, in diet, and minimum FCR may be obtained with 19.44, 1.18, 0.90, and 0.75% of dP, dLys, dTSAA, and dThr, respectively, in diet. The optimization results of ANN-GA models showed the maximum ADG may be achieved with 19.93, 1.06, 0.90, and 0.76% of dP, dLys, dTSAA, and dThr, respectively, in diet, and minimum FCR may be achieved with 18.63, 1.26, 0.84, and 0.69% of dP, dLys, dTSAA, and dThr, respectively, in diet. The results of this study revealed that the platform of CCD (for conducting growth trials with minimum treatments), RSM model, and ANN-GA (for experimental data modeling and optimization) may be used to describe the relationship between dietary nutrient concentrations and broiler

  15. A unique missense allele of BAF155, a core BAF chromatin remodeling complex protein, causes neural tube closure defects in mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harmacek, Laura; Watkins-Chow, Dawn E; Chen, Jianfu; Jones, Kenneth L; Pavan, William J; Salbaum, J Michael; Niswander, Lee

    2014-05-01

    Failure of embryonic neural tube closure results in the second most common class of birth defects known as neural tube defects (NTDs). While NTDs are likely the result of complex multigenic dysfunction, it is not known whether polymorphisms in epigenetic regulators may be risk factors for NTDs. Here we characterized Baf155(msp3) , a unique ENU-induced allele in mice. Homozygous Baf155(mps3) embryos exhibit highly penetrant exencephaly, allowing us to investigate the roles of an assembled, but malfunctional BAF chromatin remodeling complex in vivo at the time of neural tube closure. Evidence of defects in proliferation and apoptosis were found within the neural tube. RNA-Seq analysis revealed that surprisingly few genes showed altered expression in Baf155 mutant neural tissue, given the broad epigenetic role of the BAF complex, but included genes involved in neural development and cell survival. Moreover, gene expression changes between individual mutants were variable even though the NTD was consistently observed. This suggests that inconsistent gene regulation contributes to failed neural tube closure. These results shed light on the role of the BAF complex in the process of neural tube closure and highlight the importance of studying missense alleles to understand epigenetic regulation during critical phases of development. Copyright © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  16. Tauopathic changes in the striatum of A53T α-synuclein mutant mouse model of Parkinson's disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jonathan Wills

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Tauopathic pathways lead to degenerative changes in Alzheimer's disease and there is evidence that they are also involved in the neurodegenerative pathology of Parkinson's disease [PD]. We have examined tauopathic changes in striatum of the α-synuclein (α-Syn A53T mutant mouse. Elevated levels of α-Syn were observed in striatum of the adult A53T α-Syn mice. This was accompanied by increases in hyperphosphorylated Tau [p-Tau], phosphorylated at Ser202, Ser262 and Ser396/404, which are the same toxic sites also seen in Alzheimer's disease. There was an increase in active p-GSK-3β, hyperphosphorylated at Tyr216, a major and primary kinase known to phosphorylate Tau at multiple sites. The sites of hyperphosphorylation of Tau in the A53T mutant mice were similar to those seen in post-mortem striata from PD patients, attesting to their pathophysiological relevance. Increases in p-Tau were not due to alterations on protein phosphatases in either A53T mice or in human PD, suggesting lack of involvement of these proteins in tauopathy. Extraction of striata with Triton X-100 showed large increases in oligomeric forms of α-Syn suggesting that α-Syn had formed aggregates the mutant mice. In addition, increased levels of p-GSK-3β and pSer396/404 were also found associated with aggregated α-Syn. Differential solubilization to measure protein binding to cytoskeletal proteins demonstrated that p-Tau in the A53T mutant mouse were unbound to cytoskeletal proteins, consistent with dissociation of p-Tau from the microtubules upon hyperphosphorylation. Interestingly, α-Syn remained tightly bound to the cytoskeleton, while p-GSK-3β was seen in the cytoskeleton-free fractions. Immunohistochemical studies showed that α-Syn, pSer396/404 Tau and p-GSK-3β co-localized with one another and was aggregated and accumulated into large inclusion bodies, leading to cell death of Substantia nigral neurons. Together, these data demonstrate an elevated state of

  17. Structural features of α-synuclein amyloid fibrils revealed by Raman spectroscopy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flynn, Jessica D; McGlinchey, Ryan P; Walker, Robert L; Lee, Jennifer C

    2018-01-19

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is associated with the formation of α-synuclein amyloid fibrils. Elucidating the role of these β-sheet-rich fibrils in disease progression is crucial; however, collecting detailed structural information on amyloids is inherently difficult because of their insoluble, non-crystalline, and polymorphic nature. Here, we show that Raman spectroscopy is a facile technique for characterizing structural features of α-synuclein fibrils. Combining Raman spectroscopy with aggregation kinetics and transmission electron microscopy, we examined the effects of pH and ionic strength as well as four PD-related mutations (A30P, E46K, G51D, and A53T) on α-synuclein fibrils. Raman spectral differences were observed in the amide-I, amide-III, and fingerprint regions, indicating that secondary structure and tertiary contacts are influenced by pH and to a lesser extent by NaCl. Faster aggregation times appear to facilitate unique fibril structure as determined by the highly reproducible amide-I band widths, linking aggregation propensity and fibril polymorphism. Importantly, Raman spectroscopy revealed molecular-level perturbations of fibril conformation by the PD-related mutations that are not apparent through transmission electron microscopy or limited proteolysis. The amide-III band was found to be particularly sensitive, with G51D exhibiting the most distinctive features, followed by A53T and E46K. Relating to a cellular environment, our data would suggest that fibril polymorphs can be formed in different cellular compartments and potentially result in distinct phenotypes. Our work sets a foundation toward future cellular Raman studies of amyloids.

  18. A Spirulina-Enhanced Diet Provides Neuroprotection in an α-Synuclein Model of Parkinson's Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pabon, Mibel M.; Jernberg, Jennifer N.; Morganti, Josh; Contreras, Jessika; Hudson, Charles E.; Klein, Ronald L.; Bickford, Paula C.

    2012-01-01

    Inflammation in the brain plays a major role in neurodegenerative diseases. In particular, microglial cell activation is believed to be associated with the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative diseases, including Parkinson’s disease (PD). An increase in microglia activation has been shown in the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNpc) of PD models when there has been a decrease in tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) positive cells. This may be a sign of neurotoxicity due to prolonged activation of microglia in both early and late stages of disease progression. Natural products, such as spirulina, derived from blue green algae, are believed to help reverse this effect due to its anti-inflammatory/anti-oxidant properties. An adeno-associated virus vector (AAV9) for α-synuclein was injected in the substantia nigra of rats to model Parkinson's disease and to study the effects of spirulina on the inflammatory response. One month prior to surgeries, rats were fed either a diet enhanced with spirulina or a control diet. Immunohistochemistry was analyzed with unbiased stereological methods to quantify lesion size and microglial activation. As hypothesized, spirulina was neuroprotective in this α-synuclein model of PD as more TH+ and NeuN+ cells were observed; spirulina concomitantly decreased the numbers of activated microglial cells as determined by MHCII expression. This decrease in microglia activation may have been due, in part, to the effect of spirulina to increase expression of the fractalkine receptor (CX3CR1) on microglia. With this study we hypothesize that α-synuclein neurotoxicity is mediated, at least in part, via an interaction with microglia. We observed a decrease in activated microglia in the rats that received a spirulina- enhanced diet concomitant to neuroprotection. The increase in CX3CR1 in the groups that received spirulina, suggests a potential mechanism of action. PMID:23028885

  19. A spirulina-enhanced diet provides neuroprotection in an α-synuclein model of Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pabon, Mibel M; Jernberg, Jennifer N; Morganti, Josh; Contreras, Jessika; Hudson, Charles E; Klein, Ronald L; Bickford, Paula C

    2012-01-01

    Inflammation in the brain plays a major role in neurodegenerative diseases. In particular, microglial cell activation is believed to be associated with the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative diseases, including Parkinson's disease (PD). An increase in microglia activation has been shown in the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNpc) of PD models when there has been a decrease in tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) positive cells. This may be a sign of neurotoxicity due to prolonged activation of microglia in both early and late stages of disease progression. Natural products, such as spirulina, derived from blue green algae, are believed to help reverse this effect due to its anti-inflammatory/anti-oxidant properties. An adeno-associated virus vector (AAV9) for α-synuclein was injected in the substantia nigra of rats to model Parkinson's disease and to study the effects of spirulina on the inflammatory response. One month prior to surgeries, rats were fed either a diet enhanced with spirulina or a control diet. Immunohistochemistry was analyzed with unbiased stereological methods to quantify lesion size and microglial activation. As hypothesized, spirulina was neuroprotective in this α-synuclein model of PD as more TH+ and NeuN+ cells were observed; spirulina concomitantly decreased the numbers of activated microglial cells as determined by MHCII expression. This decrease in microglia activation may have been due, in part, to the effect of spirulina to increase expression of the fractalkine receptor (CX3CR1) on microglia. With this study we hypothesize that α-synuclein neurotoxicity is mediated, at least in part, via an interaction with microglia. We observed a decrease in activated microglia in the rats that received a spirulina- enhanced diet concomitant to neuroprotection. The increase in CX3CR1 in the groups that received spirulina, suggests a potential mechanism of action.

  20. A spirulina-enhanced diet provides neuroprotection in an α-synuclein model of Parkinson's disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mibel M Pabon

    Full Text Available Inflammation in the brain plays a major role in neurodegenerative diseases. In particular, microglial cell activation is believed to be associated with the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative diseases, including Parkinson's disease (PD. An increase in microglia activation has been shown in the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNpc of PD models when there has been a decrease in tyrosine hydroxylase (TH positive cells. This may be a sign of neurotoxicity due to prolonged activation of microglia in both early and late stages of disease progression. Natural products, such as spirulina, derived from blue green algae, are believed to help reverse this effect due to its anti-inflammatory/anti-oxidant properties. An adeno-associated virus vector (AAV9 for α-synuclein was injected in the substantia nigra of rats to model Parkinson's disease and to study the effects of spirulina on the inflammatory response. One month prior to surgeries, rats were fed either a diet enhanced with spirulina or a control diet. Immunohistochemistry was analyzed with unbiased stereological methods to quantify lesion size and microglial activation. As hypothesized, spirulina was neuroprotective in this α-synuclein model of PD as more TH+ and NeuN+ cells were observed; spirulina concomitantly decreased the numbers of activated microglial cells as determined by MHCII expression. This decrease in microglia activation may have been due, in part, to the effect of spirulina to increase expression of the fractalkine receptor (CX3CR1 on microglia. With this study we hypothesize that α-synuclein neurotoxicity is mediated, at least in part, via an interaction with microglia. We observed a decrease in activated microglia in the rats that received a spirulina- enhanced diet concomitant to neuroprotection. The increase in CX3CR1 in the groups that received spirulina, suggests a potential mechanism of action.

  1. Non-SMC condensin I complex proteins control chromosome segregation and survival of proliferating cells in the zebrafish neural retina

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Harris William A

    2009-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The condensation of chromosomes and correct sister chromatid segregation during cell division is an essential feature of all proliferative cells. Structural maintenance of chromosomes (SMC and non-SMC proteins form the condensin I complex and regulate chromosome condensation and segregation during mitosis. However, due to the lack of appropriate mutants, the function of the condensin I complex during vertebrate development has not been described. Results Here, we report the positional cloning and detailed characterization of retinal phenotypes of a zebrafish mutation at the cap-g locus. High resolution live imaging reveals that the progression of mitosis between prometa- to telophase is delayed and that sister chromatid segregation is impaired upon loss of CAP-G. CAP-G associates with chromosomes between prometa- and telophase of the cell cycle. Loss of the interaction partners CAP-H and CAP-D2 causes cytoplasmic mislocalization of CAP-G throughout mitosis. DNA content analysis reveals increased genomic imbalances upon loss of non-SMC condensin I subunits. Within the retina, loss of condensin I function causes increased rates of apoptosis among cells within the proliferative ciliary marginal zone (CMZ whereas postmitotic retinal cells are viable. Inhibition of p53-mediated apoptosis partially rescues cell numbers in cap-g mutant retinae and allows normal layering of retinal cell types without alleviating their aberrant nuclear sizes. Conclusion Our findings indicate that the condensin I complex is particularly important within rapidly amplifying progenitor cell populations to ensure faithful chromosome segregation. In contrast, differentiation of postmitotic retinal cells is not impaired upon polyploidization.

  2. Effects of Synthetic Neural Adhesion Molecule Mimetic Peptides and Related Proteins on the Cardiomyogenic Differentiation of Mouse Embryonic Stem Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ruodan Xu

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Background/Aims: Pluripotent stem cells differentiating into cardiomyocyte-like cells in an appropriate cellular environment have attracted significant attention, given the potential use of such cells for regenerative medicine. However, the precise mechanisms of lineage specification of pluripotent stem cells are still largely to be explored. Identifying the role of various small synthetic peptides involved in cardiomyogenesis may provide new insights into pathways promoting cardiomyogenesis. Methods: In the present study, using a transgenic murine embryonic stem (ES cell lineage expressing enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP under the control of α-myosin heavy chain (α-MHC promoter (pαMHC-EGFP, we investigated the cardiomyogenic effects of 7 synthetic peptides (Betrofin3, FGLs, FGLL, hNgf_C2, EnkaminE, Plannexin and C3 on cardiac differentiation. The expression of several cardiac-specific markers was determined by RT-PCR whereas the structural and functional properties of derived cardiomyocytes were examined by immunofluorescence and electrophysiology, respectively. Results: The results revealed that Betrofin3, an agonist of brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF peptide exerted the most striking pro-cardiomyogenic effect on ES cells. We found that BDNF receptor, TrkB expression was up-regulated during differentiation. Treatment of differentiating cells with Betrofin3 between days 3 and 5 enhanced the expression of cardiac-specific markers and improved cardiomyocyte differentiation and functionality as revealed by genes regulation, flow cytometry and patch clamp analysis. Thus Betrofin3 may exert its cardiomyogenic effects on ES cells via TrkB receptor. Conclusion: Taken together, the results suggest that Betrofin3 modulates BDNF signaling with positive cardiomyogenic effect in stage and dose-dependent manner providing an effective strategy to increase ES cell-based generation of cardiomyocytes and offer a novel therapeutic approach to

  3. Convergence of pathology in dementia with Lewy bodies and Alzheimer's disease: a role for the novel interaction of alpha-synuclein and presenilin 1 in disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winslow, Ashley R; Moussaud, Simon; Zhu, Liya; Post, Kathryn L; Post, Katherine L; Dickson, Dennis W; Berezovska, Oksana; McLean, Pamela J

    2014-07-01

    A growing number of PSEN1 mutations have been associated with dementia with Lewy bodies and familial Alzheimer's disease with concomitant α-synuclein pathology. The objective of this study was to determine if PSEN1 plays a direct role in the development of α-synuclein pathology in these diseases. Using mass spectrometry, immunoelectron microscopy and fluorescence lifetime image microscopy based on Forster resonance energy transfer (FLIM-FRET) we identified α-synuclein as a novel interactor of PSEN1 in wild-type mouse brain tissue. The interaction of α-synuclein with PSEN1 was detected in post-mortem brain tissue from cognitively normal cases and was significantly increased in tissue from cases with dementia with Lewy bodies and familial Alzheimer's disease associated with known PSEN1 mutations. We confirmed an increased interaction of PSEN1 and α-synuclein in cell lines expressing well characterized familial Alzheimer's disease PSEN1 mutations, L166P and delta exon 9, and demonstrated that PSEN1 mutations associate with increased membrane association and accumulation of α-synuclein. Our data provides evidence of a molecular interaction of PSEN1 and α-synuclein that may explain the clinical and pathophysiological overlap seen in synucleinopathies, including Parkinson's disease, dementia with Lewy bodies, and some forms of Alzheimer's disease. © The Author (2014). Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Guarantors of Brain. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  4. Convergence of pathology in dementia with Lewy bodies and Alzheimer’s disease: a role for the novel interaction of alpha-synuclein and presenilin 1 in disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winslow, Ashley R.; Moussaud, Simon; Zhu, Liya; Post, Katherine L.; Dickson, Dennis W.

    2014-01-01

    A growing number of PSEN1 mutations have been associated with dementia with Lewy bodies and familial Alzheimer’s disease with concomitant α-synuclein pathology. The objective of this study was to determine if PSEN1 plays a direct role in the development of α-synuclein pathology in these diseases. Using mass spectrometry, immunoelectron microscopy and fluorescence lifetime image microscopy based on Forster resonance energy transfer (FLIM-FRET) we identified α-synuclein as a novel interactor of PSEN1 in wild-type mouse brain tissue. The interaction of α-synuclein with PSEN1 was detected in post-mortem brain tissue from cognitively normal cases and was significantly increased in tissue from cases with dementia with Lewy bodies and familial Alzheimer’s disease associated with known PSEN1 mutations. We confirmed an increased interaction of PSEN1 and α-synuclein in cell lines expressing well characterized familial Alzheimer’s disease PSEN1 mutations, L166P and delta exon 9, and demonstrated that PSEN1 mutations associate with increased membrane association and accumulation of α-synuclein. Our data provides evidence of a molecular interaction of PSEN1 and α-synuclein that may explain the clinical and pathophysiological overlap seen in synucleinopathies, including Parkinson’s disease, dementia with Lewy bodies, and some forms of Alzheimer’s disease. PMID:24860142

  5. Molecular cloning, characterization and developmental expression of porcine β-synuclein

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Larsen, Knud; Frandsen, Pernille Munk; Madsen, Lone Bruhn

    2010-01-01

    pig cerebellum using RT-PCR. Expression analysis by quantitative RT-PCR demonstrated that SNCB transcripts were highly abundant in brain tissues. SNCB mRNA was also detected early in embryogenesis and significant increases in transcript levels were observed in several brain tissues during embryo...... development. Radiation hybrid mapping data indicate that the porcine SNCB maps to the q arm of chromosome 2 (2q21-22). The subcellular localization of recombinant porcine beta-synuclein was determined in three different cell types and shown to be cytoplasmic. Udgivelsesdato: March...

  6. Disease-associated prion protein in neural and lymphoid tissues of mink (Mustela vison) inoculated with transmissible mink encephalopathy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schneider, D A; Harrington, R D; Zhuang, D; Yan, H; Truscott, T C; Dassanayake, R P; O'Rourke, K I

    2012-11-01

    Transmissible spongiform encephalopathies (TSEs) are diagnosed by immunodetection of disease-associated prion protein (PrP(d)). The distribution of PrP(d) within the body varies with the time-course of infection and between species, during interspecies transmission, as well as with prion strain. Mink are susceptible to a form of TSE known as transmissible mink encephalopathy (TME), presumed to arise due to consumption of feed contaminated with a single prion strain of ruminant origin. After extended passage of TME isolates in hamsters, two strains emerge, HY and DY, each of which is associated with unique structural isoforms of PrP(TME) and of which only the HY strain is associated with accumulation of PrP(TME) in lymphoid tissues. Information on the structural nature and lymphoid accumulation of PrP(TME) in mink is limited. In this study, 13 mink were challenged by intracerebral inoculation using late passage TME inoculum, after which brain and lymphoid tissues were collected at preclinical and clinical time points. The distribution and molecular nature of PrP(TME) was investigated by techniques including blotting of paraffin wax-embedded tissue and epitope mapping by western blotting. PrP(TME) was detected readily in the brain and retropharyngeal lymph node during preclinical infection, with delayed progression of accumulation within other lymphoid tissues. For comparison, three mink were inoculated by the oral route and examined during clinical disease. Accumulation of PrP(TME) in these mink was greater and more widespread, including follicles of rectoanal mucosa-associated lymphoid tissue. Western blot analyses revealed that PrP(TME) accumulating in the brain of mink is structurally most similar to that accumulating in the brain of hamsters infected with the DY strain. Collectively, the results of extended passage in mink are consistent with the presence of only a single strain of TME, the DY strain, capable of inducing accumulation of PrP(TME) in the lymphoid

  7. Olfactory dysfunction and neurotransmitter disturbance in olfactory bulb of transgenic mice expressing human A53T mutant α-synuclein.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Sufang; Xiao, Qian; Le, Weidong

    2015-01-01

    Parkinson disease is a multi-system neurodegenerative disease characterized by both motor and non-motor symptoms. Hyposmia is one of the early non-motor symptoms occurring in more than 90% of Parkinson disease cases, which can precede motor symptoms even several years. Up to now, the relationship between hyposmia and Parkinson disease remains elusive. Lack of proper animal models of hyposmia restricts the investigation. In this study we assessed olfactory function in Prp-A53T-α-synuclein transgenic (αSynA53T) mice which had been reported to show age-dependent motor impairments and intracytoplasmic inclusions. We also examined cholinergic and dopaminergic systems in olfactory bulb of αSynA53T mice by immunofluorescent staining, enzyme linked immunosorbent assay and western blot. We found that compared to wild type littermates, αSynA53T mice at 6 months or older displayed a deficit of odor discrimination and odor detection. No significant changes were found in olfactory memory and odor habituation. Furthermore compared to wildtype littermates, in olfactory bulb of αSynA53T mice at 10 months old we detected a marked decrease of cholinergic neurons in mitral cell layer and a decrease of acetylcholinesterase activity, while dopaminergic neurons were found increased in glomerular layer, accompanied with an increase of tyrosine hydroxylase protein. Our studies indicate that αSynA53T mice have olfactory dysfunction before motor deficits occur, and the cholinergic and dopaminergic disturbance might be responsible for the Parkinson disease-related olfactory dysfunction.

  8. Differential copper binding to alpha-synuclein and its disease-associated mutants affect the aggregation and amyloid formation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ranjan, Priyatosh; Ghosh, Dhiman; Yarramala, Deepthi S; Das, Subhadeep; Maji, Samir K; Kumar, Ashutosh

    2017-02-01

    Copper is an essential trace element required for the proper functioning of various enzymes present in the central nervous system. An imbalance in the copper homeostasis results in the pathology of various neurodegenerative disorders including Parkinson's Disease. Hence, residue specific interaction of Cu2+ to α-Syn along with the familial mutants H50Q and G51D needs to be studied in detail. We investigated the residue specific mapping of Cu2+ binding sites and binding strength using solution-state NMR and ITC respectively. The aggregation kinetics, secondary structural changes, and morphology of the formed fibrils in the presence and absence of Cu2+ were studied using fluorescence, CD, and AFM respectively. Copper binding to α-Syn takes place at three different sites with a higher affinity for the region 48-53. While one of the sites got abolished in the case of H50Q, the mutant G51D showed a binding pattern similar to WT. The aggregation kinetics of these proteins in the presence of Cu2+ showed an enhanced rate of fibril formation with a pronounced effect for G51D. Cu2+ binding results in the destabilization of long-range tertiary interactions in α-Syn leading to the exposure of highly amyloidogenic NAC region which results in the increased rate of fibril formation. Although the residues 48-53 have a stronger affinity for Cu2+ in case of WT and G51D, the binding is not responsible for enhancing the rate of fibril formation in case of H50Q. These findings will help in the better understanding of Cu2+ catalyzed aggregation of synucleins. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. Phosphorylated alpha-synuclein at Ser-129 is targeted to the proteasome pathway in a ubiquitin-independent manner.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Machiya, Youhei; Hara, Susumu; Arawaka, Shigeki; Fukushima, Shingo; Sato, Hiroyasu; Sakamoto, Masahiro; Koyama, Shingo; Kato, Takeo

    2010-12-24

    α-Synuclein (a-Syn) is a major component of fibrillar aggregates in Lewy bodies (LBs), a characteristic hallmark of Parkinson disease. Almost 90% of a-Syn deposited in LBs is phosphorylated at Ser-129. However, the role of Ser-129-phosphorylated a-Syn in the biogenesis of LBs remains unclear. Here, we investigated the metabolism of Ser-129-phosphorylated a-Syn. In SH-SY5Y cells, inhibition of protein phosphatase 2A/1 by okadaic acid, and inhibition of the proteasome pathway by MG132 or lactacystin accumulated Ser-129-phosphorylated a-Syn. However, these inhibitions did not alter the amounts of total a-Syn within the observation time. Inhibition of the autophagy-lysosome pathway by 3-methyladenine or chloroquine accumulated Ser-129-phosphorylated a-Syn in parallel to total a-Syn during longer incubations. Experiments using cycloheximide showed that Ser-129-phosphorylated a-Syn diminished rapidly (t(½) = 54.9 ± 6.4 min), in contrast to the stably expressed total a-Syn. The short half-life of Ser-129-phosphorylated a-Syn was blocked by MG132 to a greater extent than okadaic acid. In rat primary cortical neurons, either MG132, lactacystin, or okadaic acid accumulated Ser-129-phosphorylated a-Syn. Additionally, we did not find that phosphorylated a-Syn was ubiquitinated in the presence of proteasome inhibitors. These data show that Ser-129-phosphorylated a-Syn is targeted to the proteasome pathway in a ubiquitin-independent manner, in addition to undergoing dephosphorylation. The proteasome pathway may play a role in the biogenesis of Ser-129-phosphorylated a-Syn-rich LBs.

  10. Phosphorylated α-Synuclein at Ser-129 Is Targeted to the Proteasome Pathway in a Ubiquitin-independent Manner*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Machiya, Youhei; Hara, Susumu; Arawaka, Shigeki; Fukushima, Shingo; Sato, Hiroyasu; Sakamoto, Masahiro; Koyama, Shingo; Kato, Takeo

    2010-01-01

    α-Synuclein (a-Syn) is a major component of fibrillar aggregates in Lewy bodies (LBs), a characteristic hallmark of Parkinson disease. Almost 90% of a-Syn deposited in LBs is phosphorylated at Ser-129. However, the role of Ser-129-phosphorylated a-Syn in the biogenesis of LBs remains unclear. Here, we investigated the metabolism of Ser-129-phosphorylated a-Syn. In SH-SY5Y cells, inhibition of protein phosphatase 2A/1 by okadaic acid, and inhibition of the proteasome pathway by MG132 or lactacystin accumulated Ser-129-phosphorylated a-Syn. However, these inhibitions did not alter the amounts of total a-Syn within the observation time. Inhibition of the autophagy-lysosome pathway by 3-methyladenine or chloroquine accumulated Ser-129-phosphorylated a-Syn in parallel to total a-Syn during longer incubations. Experiments using cycloheximide showed that Ser-129-phosphorylated a-Syn diminished rapidly (t½ = 54.9 ± 6.4 min), in contrast to the stably expressed total a-Syn. The short half-life of Ser-129-phosphorylated a-Syn was blocked by MG132 to a greater extent than okadaic acid. In rat primary cortical neurons, either MG132, lactacystin, or okadaic acid accumulated Ser-129-phosphorylated a-Syn. Additionally, we did not find that phosphorylated a-Syn was ubiquitinated in the presence of proteasome inhibitors. These data show that Ser-129-phosphorylated a-Syn is targeted to the proteasome pathway in a ubiquitin-independent manner, in addition to undergoing dephosphorylation. The proteasome pathway may play a role in the biogenesis of Ser-129-phosphorylated a-Syn-rich LBs. PMID:20959456

  11. Olfactory dysfunction and neurotransmitter disturbance in olfactory bulb of transgenic mice expressing human A53T mutant α-synuclein.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sufang Zhang

    Full Text Available Parkinson disease is a multi-system neurodegenerative disease characterized by both motor and non-motor symptoms. Hyposmia is one of the early non-motor symptoms occurring in more than 90% of Parkinson disease cases, which can precede motor symptoms even several years. Up to now, the relationship between hyposmia and Parkinson disease remains elusive. Lack of proper animal models of hyposmia restricts the investigation. In this study we assessed olfactory function in Prp-A53T-α-synuclein transgenic (αSynA53T mice which had been reported to show age-dependent motor impairments and intracytoplasmic inclusions. We also examined cholinergic and dopaminergic systems in olfactory bulb of αSynA53T mice by immunofluorescent staining, enzyme linked immunosorbent assay and western blot. We found that compared to wild type littermates, αSynA53T mice at 6 months or older displayed a deficit of odor discrimination and odor detection. No significant changes were found in olfactory memory and odor habituation. Furthermore compared to wildtype littermates, in olfactory bulb of αSynA53T mice at 10 months old we detected a marked decrease of cholinergic neurons in mitral cell layer and a decrease of acetylcholinesterase activity, while dopaminergic neurons were found increased in glomerular layer, accompanied with an increase of tyrosine hydroxylase protein. Our studies indicate that αSynA53T mice have olfactory dysfunction before motor deficits occur, and the cholinergic and dopaminergic disturbance might be responsible for the Parkinson disease-related olfactory dysfunction.

  12. Axon degeneration and PGC-1α-mediated protection in a zebrafish model of α-synuclein toxicity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kelley C. O’Donnell

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available α-synuclein (aSyn expression is implicated in neurodegenerative processes, including Parkinson’s disease (PD and dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB. In animal models of these diseases, axon pathology often precedes cell death, raising the question of whether aSyn has compartment-specific toxic effects that could require early and/or independent therapeutic intervention. The relevance of axonal pathology to degeneration can only be addressed through longitudinal, in vivo monitoring of different neuronal compartments. With current imaging methods, dopaminergic neurons do not readily lend themselves to such a task in any vertebrate system. We therefore expressed human wild-type aSyn in zebrafish peripheral sensory neurons, which project elaborate superficial axons that can be continuously imaged in vivo. Axonal outgrowth was normal in these neurons but, by 2 days post-fertilization (dpf, many aSyn-expressing axons became dystrophic, with focal varicosities or diffuse beading. Approximately 20% of aSyn-expressing cells died by 3 dpf. Time-lapse imaging revealed that focal axonal swelling, but not overt fragmentation, usually preceded cell death. Co-expressing aSyn with a mitochondrial reporter revealed deficits in mitochondrial transport and morphology even when axons appeared overtly normal. The axon-protective protein Wallerian degeneration slow (WldS delayed axon degeneration but not cell death caused by aSyn. By contrast, the transcriptional coactivator PGC-1α, which has roles in the regulation of mitochondrial biogenesis and reactive-oxygen-species detoxification, abrogated aSyn toxicity in both the axon and the cell body. The rapid onset of axonal pathology in this system, and the relatively moderate degree of cell death, provide a new model for the study of aSyn toxicity and protection. Moreover, the accessibility of peripheral sensory axons will allow effects of aSyn to be studied in different neuronal compartments and might have utility in

  13. Role of N-terminal methionine residues in the redox activity of copper bound to alpha-synuclein.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodríguez, Esaú E; Arcos-López, Trinidad; Trujano-Ortiz, Lidia G; Fernández, Claudio O; González, Felipe J; Vela, Alberto; Quintanar, Liliana

    2016-09-01

    Amyloid aggregation of α-synuclein (AS) is one of the hallmarks of Parkinson's disease. The interaction of copper ions with the N-terminal region of AS promotes its amyloid aggregation and metal-catalyzed oxidation has been proposed as a plausible mechanism. The AS(1-6) fragment represents the minimal sequence that models copper coordination to this intrinsically disordered protein. In this study, we evaluated the role of methionine residues Met1 and Met5 in Cu(II) coordination to the AS(1-6) fragment, and in the redox activity of the Cu-AS(1-6) complex. Spectroscopic and electronic structure calculations show that Met1 may play a role as an axial ligand in the Cu(II)-AS(1-6) complex, while Met5 does not participate in metal coordination. Cyclic voltammetry and reactivity studies demonstrate that Met residues play an important role in the reduction and reoxidation processes of this complex. However, Met1 plays a more important role than Met5, as substitution of Met1 by Ile decreases the reduction potential of the Cu-AS(1-6) complex by ~80 mV, causing a significant decrease in its rate of reduction. Reoxidation of the complex by oxygen results in oxidation of the Met residues to sulfoxide, being Met1 more susceptible to copper-catalyzed oxidation than Met5. The sulfoxide species can suffer elimination of methanesulfenic acid, rendering a peptide with no thioether moiety, which would impair the ability of AS to bind Cu(I) ions. Overall, our study underscores the important roles that Met1 plays in copper coordination and the reactivity of the Cu-AS complex.

  14. Region-specific deficits in dopamine, but not norepinephrine, signaling in a novel A30P α-synuclein BAC transgenic mouse.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, Tonya N; Potgieter, Dawid; Anwar, Sabina; Senior, Steven L; Janezic, Stephanie; Threlfell, Sarah; Ryan, Brent; Parkkinen, Laura; Deltheil, Thierry; Cioroch, Milena; Livieratos, Achilleas; Oliver, Peter L; Jennings, Katie A; Davies, Kay E; Ansorge, Olaf; Bannerman, David M; Cragg, Stephanie J; Wade-Martins, Richard

    2014-02-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is a neurodegenerative disorder classically characterized by the death of dopamine (DA) neurons in the substantia nigra pars compacta and by intracellular Lewy bodies composed largely of α-synuclein. Approximately 5-10% of PD patients have a familial form of Parkinsonism, including mutations in α-synuclein. To better understand the cell-type specific role of α-synuclein on DA neurotransmission, and the effects of the disease-associated A30P mutation, we generated and studied a novel transgenic model of PD. We expressed the A30P mutant form of human α-synuclein in a spatially-relevant manner from the 111kb SNCA genomic DNA locus on a bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) insert on a mouse null (Snca-/-) background. The BAC transgenic mice expressed α-synuclein in tyrosine hydroxylase-positive neurons and expression of either A30P α-synuclein or wildtype α-synuclein restored the sensitivity of DA neurons to MPTP in resistant Snca-/- animals. A30P α-synuclein mice showed no Lewy body-like aggregation, and did not lose catecholamine neurons in substantia nigra or locus coeruleus. However, using cyclic voltammetry at carbon-fiber microelectrodes we identified a deficit in evoked DA release in the caudate putamen, but not in the nucleus accumbens, of SNCA-A30P Snca-/- mice but no changes to release of another catecholamine, norepinephrine (NE), in the NE-rich ventral bed nucleus of stria terminalis. SNCA-A30P Snca-/- mice had no overt behavioral impairments but exhibited a mild increase in wheel-running. In summary, this refined PD mouse model shows that A30P α-synuclein preferentially perturbs the dopaminergic system in the dorsal striatum, reflecting the region-specific change seen in PD. © 2013.