Jianshe Wei

Tokyo Metropolitan Institute, Edo, Tōkyō, Japan

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Publications (13)54.8 Total impact

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    09/2011; , ISBN: 978-953-307-690-4
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    ABSTRACT: The discovery of α-synuclein (αS) mutations has made a major contribution to the understanding of the pathogenesis of α-synucleinopathies such as Parkinson's disease and dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB). In contrast, less attention has been paid to β-synuclein (βS) mutations. In this paper, we show that transgenic (tg) mice expressing DLB-linked P123H βS develop progressive neurodegeneration, as characterized by axonal swelling, astrogliosis and behavioural abnormalities, with memory disorder being more prominent than motor deficits. Furthermore, cross-breeding of P123H βS tg mice with αS tg mice, but not with αS knockout mice, greatly enhanced neurodegeneration phenotypes. These results suggest that P123H βS is pathogenic and cooperates with pathogenic αS to stimulate neurodegeneration in mouse brain, indicating a causative role of P123H βS in familial DLB. Given the neuritic pathology of βS in sporadic α-synucleinopathies, it appears that alteration of βS can contribute to the pathogenesis of a broad range of α-synucleinopathies.
    Nature Communications 11/2010; 1:110. · 10.02 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Gangliosides are abundantly expressed in the nervous system, and deregulated expression or activity of gangliosides is associated with the progression of various disorders, including lysosomal storage diseases, Guillain-Barre syndrome and Alzheimer disease. By contrast, previous studies show that GM1 ganglioside may act in a protective manner in the drug (e.g., MPTP and 6-OHDA)-induced Parkinsonian models, although the precise mechanisms have not been well addressed. In our recent publication, dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB)-linked neuroblastoma cells were treated with D-Threo-1-phenyl-2-decanoylamino-3-morpholino-1-propanol (PDMP), an inhibitor of glycosyl ceramide synthetase. These PDMP-treated cells develop lysosomal diseases characterized by reduced lysosomal activity, enhanced lysosomal permeability and cytotoxicity. Furthermore, PDMP-mediated inhibition of autophagy-lysosomal pathway result in both accumulation of alpha-synuclein and mutant beta-synuclein. Finally, these phenotypes are reversed by ganglioside treatment. Taken together, our results suggest that endogenous gangliosides may play a protective role against the lysosomal pathology of synucleinopathies.
    Autophagy 09/2009; 5(6):860-1. · 12.04 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Gangliosides may be involved in the pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease and related disorders, although the precise mechanisms governing this involvement remain unknown. In this study, we determined whether changes in endogenous ganglioside levels affect lysosomal pathology in a cellular model of synucleinopathy. For this purpose, dementia with Lewy body-linked P123H beta-synuclein (beta-syn) neuroblastoma cells transfected with alpha-synuclein were used as a model system because these cells were characterized as having extensive formation of lysosomal inclusions bodies. Treatment of these cells with D-threo-1-phenyl-2-decanoylamino-3-morpholino-1-propanol (PDMP), an inhibitor of glycosyl ceramide synthase, resulted in various features of lysosomal pathology, including compromised lysosomal activity, enhanced lysosomal membrane permeabilization, and increased cytotoxicity. Consistent with these findings, expression levels of lysosomal membrane proteins, ATP13A2 and LAMP-2, were significantly decreased, and electron microscopy demonstrated alterations in the lysosomal membrane structures. Furthermore, the accumulation of both P123H beta-syn and alpha-synuclein proteins was significant in PDMP-treated cells because of the suppressive effect of PDMP on the autophagy pathway. Finally, the detrimental effects of PDMP on lysosomal pathology were significantly ameliorated by the addition of gangliosides to the cultured cells. These data suggest that endogenous gangliosides may play protective roles against the lysosomal pathology of synucleinopathies.
    American Journal Of Pathology 05/2009; 174(5):1891-909. · 4.52 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Recently, autophagy has been associated with the TLR signaling pathway to eliminate intracellular pathogens in the innate immune system. However, it is unknown if other pathways regulate autophagy during the immunologic response. Given the critical role of the purinergic P2X7 receptor (P2X7R) pathway during various immunologic functions (i.e., caspase activation and IL-1beta secretion), the principal objective here was to determine whether the P2X7R pathway may regulate autophagy in immune cells. We observed in both MG6 mouse microglial cells and primary microglia that activation of P2X7R by ATP increases the expression of microtubule-associated protein 1 light chain 3 (LC3)-II, the autophagosomal membrane-associated form of LC3, in an extracellular Ca(2+)-dependent manner. Consistent with this, immunohistochemistry showed extensive formation of LC3-immunopositive dots, and electron microscopy demonstrated accumulation of autophagosomes and autophagolysosomes in ATP-treated cells. Importantly, the up-regulation of LC3-II by P2X7R activation was not affected by autophagy inhibitors, such as 3-methyladenine and PI3K inhibitors. Furthermore, while lysosomal functions were impaired by ATP treatment, autophagolysosomal components were released into the extracellular space. Similarly, a phagocytosis assay using Escherichia coli BioParticles showed that phagosome maturation was impaired in ATP-treated cells and a robust release of LC3-immunopositive phagolysosomes was induced along with a radial extension of microtubule bundles. Taken together, the data suggest a novel mechanism whereby the P2X7R signaling pathway may negatively regulate autophagic flux through the impairment of lysosomal functions, leading to stimulation of a release of autophagolysosomes/phagolysosomes into the extracellular space.
    The Journal of Immunology 03/2009; 182(4):2051-62. · 5.52 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Two missense mutations (P123H and V70M) of beta-synuclein (beta-syn), the homologue of alpha-syn, have been recently identified in dementia with Lewy bodies. However, the mechanism through which these mutations influence the pathogenesis of dementia with Lewy bodies is unclear. To investigate the role of the beta-syn mutations in neurodegeneration, each mutant was stably transfected into B103 neuroblastoma cells. Cells overexpressing mutated beta-syn had eosinophilic cytoplasmic inclusion bodies immunopositive for mutant beta-syn, and electron microscopy revealed that these cells were abundant in various cytoplasmic membranous inclusions resembling the histopathology of lysosomal storage disease. Consistent with these findings, the inclusion bodies were immunopositive for lysosomal markers, including cathepsin B, LAMP-2, GM2 ganglioside, and ATP13A2, which has recently been linked to PARK9. Notably, formation of these lysosomal inclusions was greatly stimulated by co-expression of alpha-syn, was dependent on the phosphorylation of alpha-syn at Ser-129, and was more efficient with the A53T familial mutant of alpha-syn compared with wild type. Furthermore, the inclusion formation in cells overexpressing mutant beta-syn and transfected with alpha-syn was significantly suppressed by treatment with autophagy-lysosomal inhibitors, which were associated with impaired clearance of syn proteins and enhanced apoptosis, indicating that formation of lysosomal inclusions might be protective. Collectively, the results demonstrated unambiguously that overexpression of beta-syn mutants (P123H and V70M) in neuroblastoma cells results in an enhanced lysosomal pathology. We suggest that these missense mutations of beta-syn might play a causative role in stimulating neurodegeneration.
    Journal of Biological Chemistry 10/2007; 282(39):28904-14. · 4.65 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: DJ-1 is a multifunctional protein whose loss of function by gene mutations may play a causative role for familial Parkinson's disease (PD). A recent study has shown that the expression of this molecule is upregulated in both brains and cerebrospinal fluids (CSF) in various neurological disorders, including sporadic PD, Alzheimer's disease (AD) and stroke, raising a possibility that DJ-1 could be a potential biomarker for these diseases. In this context, the main objective of the present study was to determine if DJ-1 was increased in the plasma of PD patients. For this purpose, blood plasma samples collected from sporadic PD patients, dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB) and healthy age-matched controls were analyzed by immunoblotting and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. The results showed that the plasma DJ-1 levels in PD (n=104) were higher than those in control (n=80) (p<0.05). Moreover, the plasma DJ-1 levels in the advanced stage of PD (n=52, Yahr III-IV) were higher than those in the early stage of PD (n=52, Yahr I-II) (p<0.05), demonstrating that the plasma DJ-1 was correlated with the disease severity in PD. Plasma DJ-1 levels were also significantly higher in DLB (n=30) compared with both controls and early stage of PD (p<0.01). Taken together, these results suggest that the plasma DJ-1 could be a useful biomarker for the evaluation of the disease severity in PD and possibly in other Lewy body diseases.
    Neuroscience Letters 09/2007; 425(1):18-22. · 2.03 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The present study investigated expression of alpha-synuclein (alpha-syn), a presynaptic protein involved in the pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease, in erythroid cells. Using various immunological procedures, immunoreactivity of alpha-syn was unambiguously demonstrated in erythroid lineage in murine bone marrows and peripheral erythrocytes. Expression of alpha-syn mRNA was also confirmed by in situ hybridization. Furthermore, flow cytometry analysis revealed that approximately 80% of erythroid cells in murine bone marrows expressed alpha-syn, while more than 90% of peripheral erythrocytes expressed alpha-syn. Nonetheless, alpha-syn null mice exhibited apparently no phenotypic changes in erythroid cells as was the case in their brains, suggesting that there might be underlying some redundant mechanisms. Together with previous reports showing the expression of alpha-syn in lymphocytes and platelets, the present finding supports a contention that alpha-syn might play some important functions in hematopoietic system.
    Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications 07/2007; 358(1):104-10. · 2.41 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Because a limited study previously showed that alpha-synuclein (alpha-syn), the major pathogenic protein for Parkinson disease, was expressed in differentiating brain tumors as well as various peripheral cancers, the main objective of the present study was to determine whether alpha-syn might be involved in the regulation of tumor differentiation. For this purpose, alpha-syn and its non-amyloidogenic homologue beta-syn were stably transfected to human osteosarcoma MG63 cell line. Compared with beta-syn-overexpressing and vector-transfected cells, alpha-syn-overexpressing cells exhibited distinct features of differentiated osteoblastic phenotype, as shown by up-regulation of alkaline phosphatase and osteocalcin as well as inductive matrix mineralization. Further studies revealed that proteasome activity was significantly decreased in alpha-syn-overexpressing cells compared with other cell types, consistent with the fact that proteasome inhibitors stimulate differentiation of various osteoblastic cells. In alpha-syn-overexpressing cells, protein kinase C (PKC) activity was significantly decreased, and reactivation of PKC by phorbol ester significantly restored the proteasome activity and abrogated cellular differentiation. Moreover, activity of lysosome was up-regulated in alpha-syn-overexpressing cells, and treatment of these cells with autophagy-lysosomal inhibitors resulted in a decrease of proteasome activity associated with up-regulation of alpha-syn expression, leading to enhance cellular differentiation. Taken together, these results suggest that the stimulatory effect of alpha-syn on tumor differentiation may be attributed to down-regulation of proteasome, which is further modulated by alterations of various factors, such as protein kinase C signaling pathway and a autophagy-lysosomal degradation system. Thus, the mechanism of alpha-syn regulation of tumor differentiation and neuropathological effects of alpha-syn may considerably overlap with each other.
    Journal of Biological Chemistry 03/2007; 282(8):5736-48. · 4.65 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Because a limited study previously showed that α-synuclein (α-syn), the major pathogenic protein for Parkinson disease, was expressed in differentiating brain tumors as well as various peripheral cancers, the main objective of the present study was to determine whether α-syn might be involved in the regulation of tumor differentiation. For this purpose, α-syn and its non-amyloidogenic homologue β-syn were stably transfected to human osteosarcoma MG63 cell line. Compared with β-syn-overexpressing and vector-transfected cells, α-syn-overexpressing cells exhibited distinct features of differentiated osteoblastic phenotype, as shown by up-regulation of alkaline phosphatase and osteocalcin as well as inductive matrix mineralization. Further studies revealed that proteasome activity was significantly decreased in α-syn-overexpressing cells compared with other cell types, consistent with the fact that proteasome inhibitors stimulate differentiation of various osteoblastic cells. In α-syn-overexpressing cells, protein kinase C (PKC) activity was significantly decreased, and reactivation of PKC by phorbol ester significantly restored the proteasome activity and abrogated cellular differentiation. Moreover, activity of lysosome was up-regulated in α-syn-overexpressing cells, and treatment of these cells with autophagy-lysosomal inhibitors resulted in a decrease of proteasome activity associated with up-regulation of α-syn expression, leading to enhance cellular differentiation. Taken together, these results suggest that the stimulatory effect of α-syn on tumor differentiation may be attributed to down-regulation of proteasome, which is further modulated by alterations of various factors, such as protein kinase C signaling pathway and a autophagy-lysosomal degradation system. Thus, the mechanism of α-syn regulation of tumor differentiation and neuropathological effects of α-syn may considerably overlap with each other.
    Journal of Biological Chemistry 02/2007; 282(8):5736-5748. · 4.65 Impact Factor
  • Neuroscience Research - NEUROSCI RES. 01/2007; 58.
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    ABSTRACT: Previous studies have shown that beta-synuclein (beta-syn), the homologue of alpha-syn, inhibited alpha-syn aggregation and stabilized Akt cell survival signaling molecule, suggesting that beta-syn was protective against alpha-syn-related neurodegenerative disorders, such as Parkinson's disease and diffuse Lewy body disease. However, emerging evidence argues that the situation may be not so simple. Two missense mutations of beta-syn were identified in familial and sporadic diffuse Lewy body disease, and wild type beta-syn was induced to form fibril structures in vitro, while, alpha-syn was shown to be protective against neurodegeneration caused by deletion of cysteine-string protein-alpha, the presynaptic cochaperone to Hsc70 in mice. Collectively, alpha- and beta-syn are both, but in varying degrees, featured with two opposite properties, namely normal chaperone and anti-chaperone. By reviewing recent progress in syn biology with a particular focus on beta-syn, this manuscript refers to the intriguing possibility that the dual syn proteins might have acquired a driving force for synaptic evolution. Hypothetically, the anti-chaperone syn may provoke stress-induced diverse responses, whereas, the chaperone syn may provide buffering for them, allowing accumulation of nonlethal phenotypic variations in synapses. Consequently, dual syn proteins may cope with forthcoming stresses in the brain by stimulating adaptive evolution. In this context, failure to regulate this process due to various causes, such as gene mutations and environmental risk factors, may result in imperfect adaptability against stresses, leading to neurodegenerative disorders.
    Neuropathology 11/2006; 26(5):383-92. · 1.91 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: DJ-1 is an antioxidant protein whose loss of function by gene mutations has been linked to familial Parkinson’s disease (PD). The main objective of the present study was to determine if this molecule was also involved in the pathogenesis of sporadic PD. For this purpose, quantitative immunoblot assays were performed to evaluate DJ-1 in cerebrospinal fluids (CSF) collected from sporadic PD patients (n=40) and non-PD controls (n=38). The results showed that the CSF DJ-1 levels in PD were significantly higher than those in non-PD controls. Especially, upregulation of CSF DJ-1 in the early stage of PD (Yahr I–II) were distinct compared to those in the advanced stage of PD (Yahr III–IV) and non-PD controls (p
    Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications 01/2006; 345(3):967-972. · 2.41 Impact Factor