[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: PTI-125 is a novel compound demonstrating a promising new approach to treating Alzheimer's disease (AD), characterized by neurodegeneration and amyloid plaque and neurofibrillary pathologies. We show that the toxic signaling of amyloid-β(42) (Aβ(42)) by the α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α7nAChR), which results in tau phosphorylation and formation of neurofibrillary tangles, requires the recruitment of the scaffolding protein filamin A (FLNA). By binding FLNA with high affinity, PTI-125 prevents Aβ(42)'s toxic cascade, decreasing phospho-tau and Aβ aggregates and reducing the dysfunction of α7nAChRs, NMDARs, and insulin receptors. PTI-125 prevents Aβ(42) signaling by drastically reducing its affinity for α7nAChRs and can even dissociate existing Aβ(42)-α7nAChR complexes. Additionally, PTI-125 prevents Aβ-induced inflammatory cytokine release by blocking FLNA recruitment to toll-like receptor 4, illustrating an anti-inflammatory effect. PTI-125's broad spectrum of beneficial effects is demonstrated here in an intracerebroventricular Aβ(42) infusion mouse model of AD and in human postmortem AD brain tissue.
Journal of Neuroscience 07/2012; 32(29):9773-84. · 6.91 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: While a potential causal factor in Alzheimer's disease (AD), brain insulin resistance has not been demonstrated directly in that disorder. We provide such a demonstration here by showing that the hippocampal formation (HF) and, to a lesser degree, the cerebellar cortex in AD cases without diabetes exhibit markedly reduced responses to insulin signaling in the IR→IRS-1→PI3K signaling pathway with greatly reduced responses to IGF-1 in the IGF-1R→IRS-2→PI3K signaling pathway. Reduced insulin responses were maximal at the level of IRS-1 and were consistently associated with basal elevations in IRS-1 phosphorylated at serine 616 (IRS-1 pS⁶¹⁶) and IRS-1 pS⁶³⁶/⁶³⁹. In the HF, these candidate biomarkers of brain insulin resistance increased commonly and progressively from normal cases to mild cognitively impaired cases to AD cases regardless of diabetes or APOE ε4 status. Levels of IRS-1 pS⁶¹⁶ and IRS-1 pS⁶³⁶/⁶³⁹ and their activated kinases correlated positively with those of oligomeric Aβ plaques and were negatively associated with episodic and working memory, even after adjusting for Aβ plaques, neurofibrillary tangles, and APOE ε4. Brain insulin resistance thus appears to be an early and common feature of AD, a phenomenon accompanied by IGF-1 resistance and closely associated with IRS-1 dysfunction potentially triggered by Aβ oligomers and yet promoting cognitive decline independent of classic AD pathology.
The Journal of clinical investigation 03/2012; 122(4):1316-38. · 15.39 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) induces neuronal long-term potentiation or depression. Although brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and its cognate tyrosine receptor kinase B (TrkB) contribute to the effects of rTMS, their precise role and underlying mechanism remain poorly understood. Here we show that daily 5 Hz rTMS for 5 d improves BDNF-TrkB signaling in rats by increasing the affinity of BDNF for TrkB, which results in higher tyrosine-phosphorylated TrkB, increased recruitment of PLC-γ1 and shc/N-shc to TrkB, and heightened downstream ERK2 and PI-3K activities in prefrontal cortex and in lymphocytes. The elevated BDNF-TrkB signaling is accompanied by an increased association between the activated TrkB and NMDA receptor (NMDAR). In normal human subjects, 5 d rTMS to motor cortex decreased resting motor threshold, which correlates with heightened BDNF-TrkB signaling and intensified TrkB-NMDAR association in lymphocytes. These findings suggest that rTMS to cortex facilitates BDNF-TrkB-NMDAR functioning in both cortex and lymphocytes.
Journal of Neuroscience 07/2011; 31(30):11044-54. · 6.91 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Alzheimer's disease (AD) is characterized by synaptic dysfunction and cardinal neuropathological features including amyloid plaques and neurofibrillary tangles. Soluble amyloid-beta (Abeta) can suppress synaptic activities by interacting with alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (alpha7nAChRs). Here, we show that alpha7nAChR and NMDA glutamatergic receptor (NMDAR) activities are severely compromised in synaptosomes prepared from AD and Abeta(1-42) (Abeta42)-exposed control frontal cortex slices from postmortem tissue. Whereas Abeta(12-28) prevents Abeta42 from binding to alpha7nAChRs, 2-[2-(4-bromophenyl)-2-oxoethyl]-1-methyl pyridinium (S 24795), a novel alpha7nAChR partial agonist, facilitates release of Abeta42 from Abeta42-alpha7nAChR and -Abeta42 complexes. S 24795 interacts with alpha7nAChR and Abeta(15-20) region of the Abeta42 to enable partial recovery of the alpha7nAChR and NMDAR channel function. These findings suggest that the Abeta-alpha7nAChR interaction may be an upstream pathogenic event in AD and demonstrate that some recovery of neuronal channel activities may be achieved in AD brains by removing Abeta from alpha7nAChRs.
Journal of Neuroscience 10/2009; 29(35):10961-73. · 6.91 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Prenatal cocaine exposure produces sustained neurobehavioral and brain synaptic changes closely resembling those of animals with defective AMPA receptors (AMPARs). We hypothesized that prenatal cocaine exposure attenuates AMPAR signaling by interfering with AMPAR synaptic targeting. AMPAR function is governed by receptor cycling on and off the synaptic membrane through its interaction with glutamate receptor-interacting protein (GRIP), a PDZ domain protein that is regulated by reversible phosphorylation. Our results show that prenatal cocaine exposure markedly reduces AMPAR synaptic targeting and attenuates AMPAR-mediated synaptic long-term depression in the frontal cortex of 21-d-old rats. This cocaine effect is the result of reduced GRIP-AMPAR interaction caused by persistent phosphorylation of GRIP by protein kinase C (PKC) and Src tyrosine kinase. These data support the restoration of AMPAR activation via suppressing excessive PKC-mediated GRIP phosphorylation as a novel therapeutic approach to treat the neurobehavioral consequences of prenatal cocaine.
Journal of Neuroscience 06/2009; 29(19):6308-19. · 6.91 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Expression levels of BDNF and trkB, primary components of an important neurotrophin signaling pathway, have been reported
to be abnormal in neurodegenerative dementias. Here, we used a novel postmortem brain tissue stimulation paradigm to examine
BDNF-induced trkB signaling in participants of the Religious Orders Study, a large longitudinal clinicopathological study
of aging and cognition. Thawed slices of anterior cingulate cortex were incubated in BDNF and changes in phosphorylated trkB
and downstream signaling molecules ERK2 and Akt were measured, as well as the association of NMDA receptors with trkB. We
found that stimulation with BDNF induced much greater activity of the BDNF-trkB signaling pathway in brain tissues of people
with cognitive decline and AD, as evidenced by significantly more phosphorylation of trkB (pY-trkB), ERK2 (pY/pT-ERK2), Akt
(pS-Akt), and greater BDNF-induced coupling of trKB with NMDAR2A/B. These findings were independent of PHFtau neurofibrillary
tangle and amyloid-b plaque densities and other potentially confounding variables. Regression analyses with clinical features
further characterized significant relationships between measures of BDNF-trkB activation and domains of cognition and emotional
functioning. Increased BDNF-trkB signaling with cognitive decline could reflect a primary derangement of pathway functioning
or a compensatory neuroplastic response to counteract neural injury associated with neurodegenerative processes.
KeywordsBDNF–TrkB–ERK2–Akt–NMDAR2–Anterior cingulate–Aging–Cognitive decline–Alzheimer’s disease