[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Unlabelled:
In AD, an imbalance between Aβ production and removal drives elevated brain Aβ levels and eventual amyloid plaque deposition. APP undergoes nonamyloidogenic processing via α-cleavage at the plasma membrane, amyloidogenic β- and γ-cleavage within endosomes to generate Aβ, or lysosomal degradation in neurons. Considering multiple reports implicating impaired lysosome function as a driver of increased amyloidogenic processing of APP, we explored the efficacy of targeting transcription factor EB (TFEB), a master regulator of lysosomal pathways, to reduce Aβ levels. CMV promoter-driven TFEB, transduced via stereotactic hippocampal injections of adeno-associated virus particles in APP/PS1 mice, localized primarily to neuronal nuclei and upregulated lysosome biogenesis. This resulted in reduction of APP protein, the α and β C-terminal APP fragments (CTFs), and in the steady-state Aβ levels in the brain interstitial fluid. In aged mice, total Aβ levels and amyloid plaque load were selectively reduced in the TFEB-transduced hippocampi. TFEB transfection in N2a cells stably expressing APP695, stimulated lysosome biogenesis, reduced steady-state levels of APP and α- and β-CTFs, and attenuated Aβ generation by accelerating flux through the endosome-lysosome pathway. Cycloheximide chase assays revealed a shortening of APP half-life with exogenous TFEB expression, which was prevented by concomitant inhibition of lysosomal acidification. These data indicate that TFEB enhances flux through lysosomal degradative pathways to induce APP degradation and reduce Aβ generation. Activation of TFEB in neurons is an effective strategy to attenuate Aβ generation and attenuate amyloid plaque deposition in AD.
A key driver for AD pathogenesis is the net balance between production and clearance of Aβ, the major component of amyloid plaques. Here we demonstrate that lysosomal degradation of holo-APP influences Aβ production by limiting the availability of APP for amyloidogenic processing. Using viral gene transfer of transcription factor EB (TFEB), a master regulator of lysosome biogenesis in neurons of APP/PS1 mice, steady-state levels of APP were reduced, resulting in decreased interstitial fluid Aβ levels and attenuated amyloid deposits. These effects were caused by accelerated lysosomal degradation of endocytosed APP, reflected by reduced APP half-life and steady-state levels in TFEB-expressing cells, with resultant decrease in Aβ production and release. Additional studies are needed to explore the therapeutic potential of this approach.
The Journal of Neuroscience : The Official Journal of the Society for Neuroscience 09/2015; 35(35):12137-51. DOI:10.1523/JNEUROSCI.0705-15.2015 · 6.34 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: 412 Objectives Alzheimer's disease (AD) diagnosis at prodromal stages continues to be a challenging undertaking, and an unmet goal. Development of sophisticated neuroimaging techniques could have a profound impact on improving early diagnosis, monitoring disease progression, and assessing therapeutic response. While several PET tracers are under development, Avid45, GE-067 and AZD4694 have been recently approved by FDA for Aβ imaging. These agents show high levels of nonspecific white matter retention, low biological half lives and are unable to detect diffuse Aβ plaques, a preclinical manifestation of the disease. To supplement an existing armamentarium of FDA approved agents, we have discovered a small organic molecule that shows characteristics of translatable imaging agents to enable molecular imaging of AD. Methods The multiphoton imaging, binding assays with fibrils and AD homogenates, biodistribution, PET imaging in mice, immunohistochemistry in mice and humans have been performed using literature procedures. Results The novel heterocyclic agent shows a concentration dependent and saturable binding with AD homogenates (Kd=1.70±0.05nM). The F-18 counterpart demonstrates high first pass extraction into brains (8.86 % ID/g; 2
Society of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular imaging; 06/2015
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Cerebral amyloid angiopathy (CAA) is characterized by deposition of amyloid β peptide (Aβ) within walls of cerebral arteries and is an important cause of intracerebral hemorrhage, ischemic stroke, and cognitive dysfunction in elderly patients with and without Alzheimer's Disease (AD). NADPH oxidase-derived oxidative stress plays a key role in soluble Aβ-induced vessel dysfunction, but the mechanisms by which insoluble Aβ in the form of CAA causes cerebrovascular (CV) dysfunction are not clear. Here, we demonstrate evidence that reactive oxygen species (ROS) and, in particular, NADPH oxidase-derived ROS are a key mediator of CAA-induced CV deficits. First, the NADPH oxidase inhibitor, apocynin, and the nonspecific ROS scavenger, tempol, are shown to reduce oxidative stress and improve CV reactivity in aged Tg2576 mice. Second, the observed improvement in CV function is attributed both to a reduction in CAA formation and a decrease in CAA-induced vasomotor impairment. Third, anti-ROS therapy attenuates CAA-related microhemorrhage. A potential mechanism by which ROS contribute to CAA pathogenesis is also identified because apocynin substantially reduces expression levels of ApoE-a factor known to promote CAA formation. In total, these data indicate that ROS are a key contributor to CAA formation, CAA-induced vessel dysfunction, and CAA-related microhemorrhage. Thus, ROS and, in particular, NADPH oxidase-derived ROS are a promising therapeutic target for patients with CAA and AD.
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 02/2015; 112(8). DOI:10.1073/pnas.1414930112 · 9.67 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background
Brain lipoprotein metabolism is dependent on lipoprotein particles that resemble plasma high‐density lipoproteins but that contain apolipoprotein (apo) E rather than apoA‐I as their primary protein component. Astrocytes and microglia secrete apoE but not apoA‐I; however, apoA‐I is detectable in both cerebrospinal fluid and brain tissue lysates. The route by which plasma apoA‐I enters the central nervous system is unknown.
Methods and Results
Steady‐state levels of murine apoA‐I in cerebrospinal fluid and interstitial fluid are 0.664 and 0.120 μg/mL, respectively, whereas brain tissue apoA‐I is ≈10% to 15% of its levels in liver. Recombinant, fluorescently tagged human apoA‐I injected intravenously into mice localizes to the choroid plexus within 30 minutes and accumulates in a saturable, dose‐dependent manner in the brain. Recombinant, fluorescently tagged human apoA‐I accumulates in the brain for 2 hours, after which it is eliminated with a half‐life of 10.3 hours. In vitro, human apoA‐I is specifically bound, internalized, and transported across confluent monolayers of primary human choroid plexus epithelial cells and brain microvascular endothelial cells.
Following intravenous injection, recombinant human apoA‐I rapidly localizes predominantly to the choroid plexus. Because apoA‐I mRNA is undetectable in murine brain, our results suggest that plasma apoA‐I, which is secreted from the liver and intestine, gains access to the central nervous system primarily by crossing the blood–cerebrospinal fluid barrier via specific cellular mediated transport, although transport across the blood–brain barrier may also contribute to a lesser extent.
Journal of the American Heart Association 10/2014; 3(6). DOI:10.1161/JAHA.114.001156 · 4.31 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In sporadic Alzheimer's disease (AD), impaired Aβ removal contributes to elevated extracellular Aβ levels that drive amyloid plaque pathogenesis. Extracellular proteolysis, export across the blood-brain barrier, and cellular uptake facilitate physiologic Aβ clearance. Astrocytes can take up and degrade Aβ, but it remains unclear whether this function is insufficient in AD or can be enhanced to accelerate Aβ removal. Additionally, age-related dysfunction of lysosomes, the major degradative organelles wherein Aβ localizes after uptake, has been implicated in amyloid plaque pathogenesis. We tested the hypothesis that enhancing lysosomal function in astrocytes with transcription factor EB (TFEB), a master regulator of lysosome biogenesis, would promote Aβ uptake and catabolism and attenuate plaque pathogenesis. Exogenous TFEB localized to the nucleus with transcriptional induction of lysosomal biogenesis and function in vitro. This resulted in significantly accelerated uptake of exogenously applied Aβ42, with increased localization to and degradation within lysosomes in C17.2 cells and primary astrocytes, indicating that TFEB is sufficient to coordinately enhance uptake, trafficking, and degradation of Aβ. Stereotactic injection of adeno-associated viral particles carrying TFEB driven by a glial fibrillary acidic protein promoter was used to achieve astrocyte-specific expression in the hippocampus of APP/PS1 transgenic mice. Exogenous TFEB localized to astrocyte nuclei and enhanced lysosome function, resulting in reduced Aβ levels and shortened half-life in the brain interstitial fluid and reduced amyloid plaque load in the hippocampus compared with control virus-injected mice. Therefore, activation of TFEB in astrocytes is an effective strategy to restore adequate Aβ removal and counter amyloid plaque pathogenesis in AD.
The Journal of Neuroscience : The Official Journal of the Society for Neuroscience 07/2014; 34(29):9607-20. DOI:10.1523/JNEUROSCI.3788-13.2014 · 6.34 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Emerging
paradigms mandate discovery of imaging agents for diagnosing
Alzheimer’s disease (AD) prior to appearance of clinical symptoms.
To accomplish this objective, a novel heterocyclic molecule (4) was synthesized and validated as Aβ targeted probe.
The agent shows labeling of numerous diffuse Aβ plaques in confirmed
AD human brain tissues and traverses the blood–brain barrier
to enable labeling of parenchymal Aβ plaques in live mice (APP±/PS1±) brains.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: An unresolved debate in Alzheimer's disease (AD) is whether amyloid plaques are pathogenic, causing overt physical disruption of neural circuits, or protective, sequestering soluble forms of amyloid-β (Aβ) that initiate synaptic damage and cognitive decline. Few animal models of AD have been capable of isolating the relative contribution made by soluble and insoluble forms of Aβ to the behavioral symptoms and biochemical consequences of the disease. Here we use a controllable transgenic mouse model expressing a mutant form of amyloid precursor protein (APP) to distinguish the impact of soluble Aβ from that of deposited amyloid on cognitive function and synaptic structure. Rapid inhibition of transgenic APP modulated the production of Aβ without affecting pre-existing amyloid deposits and restored cognitive performance to the level of healthy controls in Morris water maze, radial arm water maze, and fear conditioning. Selective reduction of Aβ with a γ-secretase inhibitor provided similar improvement, suggesting that transgene suppression restored cognition, at least in part by lowering Aβ. Cognitive improvement coincided with reduced levels of synaptotoxic Aβ oligomers, greater synaptic density surrounding amyloid plaques, and increased expression of presynaptic and postsynaptic markers. Together these findings indicate that transient Aβ species underlie much of the cognitive and synaptic deficits observed in this model and demonstrate that significant functional and structural recovery can be attained without removing deposited amyloid.
The Journal of Neuroscience : The Official Journal of the Society for Neuroscience 06/2014; 34(23):7871-7885. DOI:10.1523/JNEUROSCI.0572-14.2014 · 6.34 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Serotonin signaling suppresses generation of amyloid-β (Aβ) in vitro and in animal models of Alzheimer's disease (AD). We show that in an aged transgenic AD mouse model (APP/PS1 plaque-bearing mice), the antidepressant citalopram, a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor, decreased Aβ in brain interstitial fluid in a dose-dependent manner. Growth of individual amyloid plaques was assessed in plaque-bearing mice that were chronically administered citalopram. Citalopram arrested the growth of preexisting plaques and reduced the appearance of new plaques by 78%. In healthy human volunteers, citalopram's effects on Aβ production and Aβ concentrations in cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) were measured prospectively using stable isotope labeling kinetics, with CSF sampling during acute dosing of citalopram. Aβ production in CSF was slowed by 37% in the citalopram group compared to placebo. This change was associated with a 38% decrease in total CSF Aβ concentrations in the drug-treated group. The ability to safely decrease Aβ concentrations is potentially important as a preventive strategy for AD. This study demonstrates key target engagement for future AD prevention trials.
Science translational medicine 05/2014; 6(236):236re4. DOI:10.1126/scitranslmed.3008169 · 15.84 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Alzheimer's disease (AD) is associated with an elevated risk for seizures that may be fundamentally connected to cognitive dysfunction. Supporting this link, many mouse models for AD exhibit abnormal electroencephalogram (EEG) activity in addition to the expected neuropathology and cognitive deficits. Here, we used a controllable transgenic system to investigate how network changes develop and are maintained in a model characterized by amyloid β (Aβ) overproduction and progressive amyloid pathology. EEG recordings in tet-off mice overexpressing amyloid precursor protein (APP) from birth display frequent sharp wave discharges (SWDs). Unexpectedly, we found that withholding APP overexpression until adulthood substantially delayed the appearance of epileptiform activity. Together, these findings suggest that juvenile APP overexpression altered cortical development to favor synchronized firing. Regardless of the age at which EEG abnormalities appeared, the phenotype was dependent on continued APP overexpression and abated over several weeks once transgene expression was suppressed. Abnormal EEG discharges were independent of plaque load and could be extinguished without altering deposited amyloid. Selective reduction of Aβ with a γ-secretase inhibitor has no effect on the frequency of SWDs, indicating that another APP fragment or the full-length protein was likely responsible for maintaining EEG abnormalities. Moreover, transgene suppression normalized the ratio of excitatory to inhibitory innervation in the cortex, whereas secretase inhibition did not. Our results suggest that APP overexpression, and not Aβ overproduction, is responsible for EEG abnormalities in our transgenic mice and can be rescued independently of pathology.
The Journal of Neuroscience : The Official Journal of the Society for Neuroscience 03/2014; 34(11):3826-40. DOI:10.1523/JNEUROSCI.5171-13.2014 · 6.34 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Tau is primarily a cytoplasmic protein that stabilizes microtubules. However, it is also found in the extracellular space of the brain at appreciable concentrations. Although its presence there may be relevant to the intercellular spread of tau pathology, the cellular mechanisms regulating tau release into the extracellular space are not well understood. To test this in the context of neuronal networks in vivo, we used in vivo microdialysis. Increasing neuronal activity rapidly increased the steady-state levels of extracellular tau in vivo. Importantly, presynaptic glutamate release is sufficient to drive tau release. Although tau release occurred within hours in response to neuronal activity, the elimination rate of tau from the extracellular compartment and the brain is slow (half-life of ∼11 d). The in vivo results provide one mechanism underlying neuronal tau release and may link trans-synaptic spread of tau pathology with synaptic activity itself.
Journal of Experimental Medicine 02/2014; 211(3). DOI:10.1084/jem.20131685 · 12.52 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Alzheimer's disease (AD) is the most prevalent form of dementia in the elderly population. Accumulation, aggregation, and deposition of amyloid-β (Aβ) peptides generated through proteolytic cleavage of amyloid precursor protein (APP) are likely initiating events in the pathogenesis of AD. While Aβ production is accelerated in familial AD, increasing evidence indicates that impaired clearance of Aβ is responsible for late-onset AD. Because Aβ is mainly generated in neurons, these cells are predicted to have the highest risk of encountering Aβ among all cell types in the brain. However, it is still unclear whether they are also involved in Aβ clearance. Here we show that receptor-mediated endocytosis in neurons by the low-density lipoprotein receptor-related protein 1 (LRP1) plays a critical role in brain Aβ clearance. LRP1 is known to be an endocytic receptor for multiple ligands including Aβ. Conditional knock-out of Lrp1 in mouse forebrain neurons leads to increased brain Aβ levels and exacerbated amyloid plaque deposition selectively in the cortex of amyloid model APP/PS1 mice without affecting Aβ production. In vivo microdialysis studies demonstrated that Aβ clearance in brain interstitial fluid is impaired in neuronal Lrp1 knock-out mice. Because the neuronal LRP1-deletion did not affect the mRNA levels of major Aβ degrading enzymes, neprilysin and insulin-degrading enzyme, the disturbed Aβ clearance is likely due to the suppression of LRP1-mediated neuronal Aβ uptake and degradation. Together, our results demonstrate that LRP1 plays an important role in receptor-mediated clearance of Aβ and indicate that neurons not only produce but also clear Aβ.
The Journal of Neuroscience : The Official Journal of the Society for Neuroscience 12/2013; 33(49):19276-83. DOI:10.1523/JNEUROSCI.3487-13.2013 · 6.34 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The formation and accumulation of toxic amyloid-β peptides (Aβ) in the brain may drive the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease. Accordingly, disease-modifying therapies for Alzheimer's disease and related disorders could result from treatments regulating Aβ homeostasis. Examples are the inhibition of production, misfolding, and accumulation of Aβ or the enhancement of its clearance. Here we show that oral treatment with ACI-91 (Pirenzepine) dose-dependently reduced brain Aβ burden in AβPPPS1, hAβPPSL, and AβPP/PS1 transgenic mice. A possible mechanism of action of ACI-91 may occur through selective inhibition of muscarinic acetylcholine receptors (AChR) on endothelial cells of brain microvessels and enhanced Aβ peptide clearance across the blood-brain barrier. One month treatment with ACI-91 increased the clearance of intrathecally-injected Aβ in plaque-bearing mice. ACI-91 also accelerated the clearance of brain-injected Aβ in blood and peripheral tissues by favoring its urinal excretion. A single oral dose of ACI-91 reduced the half-life of interstitial Aβ peptide in pre-plaque mhAβPP/PS1d mice. By extending our studies to an in vitro model, we showed that muscarinic AChR inhibition by ACI-91 and Darifenacin augmented the capacity of differentiated endothelial monolayers for active transport of Aβ peptide. Finally, ACI-91 was found to consistently affect, in vitro and in vivo, the expression of endothelial cell genes involved in Aβ transport across the BBB. Thus increased Aβ clearance through the BBB may contribute to reduced Aβ burden and associated phenotypes. Inhibition of muscarinic AChR restricted to the periphery may present a therapeutic advantage as it avoids adverse central cholinergic effects.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Tau, a microtubule-associated protein, is implicated in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's Disease (AD) in regard to both neurofibrillary tangle formation and neuronal network hyperexcitability. The genetic ablation of tau substantially reduces hyperexcitability in AD mouse lines, induced seizure models, and genetic in vivo models of epilepsy. These data demonstrate that tau is an important regulator of network excitability. However, developmental compensation in the genetic tau knock-out line may account for the protective effect against seizures. To test the efficacy of a tau reducing therapy for disorders with a detrimental hyperexcitability profile in adult animals, we identified antisense oligonucleotides that selectively decrease endogenous tau expression throughout the entire mouse CNS-brain and spinal cord tissue, interstitial fluid, and CSF-while having no effect on baseline motor or cognitive behavior. In two chemically induced seizure models, mice with reduced tau protein had less severe seizures than control mice. Total tau protein levels and seizure severity were highly correlated, such that those mice with the most severe seizures also had the highest levels of tau. Our results demonstrate that endogenous tau is integral for regulating neuronal hyperexcitability in adult animals and suggest that an antisense oligonucleotide reduction of tau could benefit those with epilepsy and perhaps other disorders associated with tau-mediated neuronal hyperexcitability.
The Journal of Neuroscience : The Official Journal of the Society for Neuroscience 07/2013; 33(31):12887-97. DOI:10.1523/JNEUROSCI.2107-13.2013 · 6.34 Impact Factor