ABSTRACT: Alzheimer's disease (AD) is characterized by depositions of beta-amyloid (A beta) aggregates as amyloid in the brain. To facilitate diagnosis of AD by radioligand imaging, several highly specific small-molecule amyloid ligands have been developed. Because amyloid ligands display excellent pharmacokinetics properties and brain bioavailability, and because we have previously shown that some amyloid ligands bind the highly neurotoxic A beta oligomers (A beta O) with high affinities, they may also be valuable candidates for anti-A beta therapies. Here we identified two fluorene compounds from libraries of amyloid ligands, initially based on their ability to block cell death secondary to intracellular A beta O. We found that the lead fluorenes were able to reduce the amyloid burden including the levels of A beta O in cultured neurons and in 5xFAD mice. To explain these in vitro and in vivo effects, we found that the lead fluorenes bind and destabilize A beta O as shown by electron paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy studies, and block the harmful A beta O-synapse interaction. These fluorenes and future derivatives, therefore, have a potential use in AD therapy and research.
Neurobiology of aging 12/2008; 31(10):1690-9. · 5.94 Impact Factor