Activation of glycogen synthase kinase-3 inhibits long-term potentiation with synapse-associated impairments.
ABSTRACT Activation of glycogen synthase kinase-3 (GSK-3) can cause memory deficits as seen in Alzheimer's disease, the most common age-associated dementia, but the mechanism is not understood. Here, we found that activation of GSK-3 by wortmannin or transient overexpression of wild-type GSK-3beta could suppress the induction of long-term potentiation (LTP) in rat hippocampus, whereas simultaneous inhibition of GSK-3 by lithium or SB216763 or transient expression of a dominant-negative GSK-3beta mutant (dnGSK-3beta) preserved the LTP. After high-frequency stimulation (HFS), the presynaptic release of glutamate and the expression/clustering of synapsin I, a synaptic vesicle protein playing an important role in neurotransmitter release, decreased markedly after upregulation of GSK-3. In vitro studies further demonstrated that GSK-3 inhibited the expression of SynI independent of HFS. In postsynaptic level, the expression of PSD93 and NR2A/B proteins decreased significantly when GSK-3 was activated. The LTP-associated synapse impairments including less presynaptic active zone, thinner postsynaptic density, and broader synaptic cleft were also prominent in the hippocampal slices after HFS with activation of GSK-3. These synaptic impairments were attenuated when GSK-3 was simultaneously inhibited by LiCl or SB216763 or transient expression of dnGSK-3. We conclude that upregulation of GSK-3 impairs the synaptic plasticity both functionally and structurally, which may underlie the GSK-3-involved memory deficits.
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ABSTRACT: Phosphorylated tau was found to be regulated after cerebral ischemia and linked to high risk for the development of post-stroke dementia. Our previous study showed that ginsenoside Rd (Rd), one of the main active ingredients in Panax ginseng, decreased tau phosphorylation in Alzheimer model. As an extending study, here we investigated whether Rd could reduce tau phosphorylation and sequential cognition impairment after ischemic stroke. Sprague-Dawley rats were subjected to focal cerebral ischemia. The tau phosphorylation of rat brains were analyzed following ischemia by Western blot and animal cognitive functions were examined by Morris water maze and Novel object recognition task. Ischemic insults increased the levels of phosphorylated tau protein at Ser199/202 and PHF-1 sites and caused animal memory deficits. Rd treatment attenuated ischemia-induced enhancement of tau phosphorylation and ameliorated behavior impairment. Furthermore, we revealed that Rd inhibited the activity of Glycogen synthase kinase-3β (GSK-3β), the most important kinase involving tau phosphorylation, but enhanced the activity of protein kinase B (PKB/AKT), a key kinase suppressing GSK-3β activity. Moreover, we found that LY294002, an antagonist for phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K)/AKT signaling pathway, abolished the inhibitory effect of Rd on GSK-3β activity and tau phosphorylation. Taken together, our findings provide the first evidence that Rd may reduce cerebral ischemia-induced tau phosphorylation via the PI3K/AKT/GSK-3β pathway.Neurochemical Research 05/2014; · 2.13 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The accumulation of hyperphosphorylated tau is a common feature of several dementias. Tau is one of the brain microtubule-associated proteins. Here we discuss tau's functions in microtubule assembly and stabilization and with regard to its interactions with other proteins. We describe and analyze important post-translational modifications: hyperphosphorylation, ubiquitination, glycation, glycosylation, nitration, polyamination, proteolysis, acetylation, and methylation. We discuss how these post-translational modifications can alter tau's biological function. We analyze the role of mitochondrial health in neurodegeneration. We propose that microtubules could be a therapeutic target and review different approaches. Finally, we consider whether tau accumulation or its conformational change is related to tau-induced neurodegeneration, and propose a mechanism of neurodegeneration.Neuroscience Bulletin 04/2014; 30(2):346-58. · 1.37 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Since abnormal post-translational modifications or gene mutations of tau have been detected in over twenty neurodegenerative disorders, tau has attracted widespread interest as a target protein. Among its various post-translational modifications, phosphorylation is the most extensively studied. It is recognized that tau hyperphosphorylation is the root cause of neurodegeneration in Alzheimer disease (AD); however, it is not clear how it causes neurodegeneration. Based on the findings that tau hyperphosphorylation leads to the escape of neurons from acute apoptosis and simultaneously impairs the function of neurons, we have proposed that the nature of AD neurodegeneration is the consequence of aborted apoptosis induced by tau phosphorylation. Therefore, proper manipulation of tau hyperphosphorylation could be promising for arresting AD neurodegeneration. In this review, the neuroprotective and neurodegenerative effects of tau hyperphosphorylation and our thoughts regarding their relationship are presented.Neuroscience Bulletin 03/2014; · 1.37 Impact Factor