In JoVE (1)
Other Publications (14)
- The Journal of Biological Chemistry
- Molecular Pharmacology
- Neuroscience Letters
- Molecular Biology of the Cell
- Journal of Alzheimer's Disease : JAD
- Journal of Biosciences
- ACS Chemical Neuroscience
- Molecular Neurobiology
- PloS One
- The Biochemical Journal
- European Journal of Medicinal Chemistry
- Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
- Scientific Reports
- International Journal of Molecular Sciences
Articles by Bo-Jeng Wang in JoVE
Quantitative Measurement of γ-Secretase-mediated Amyloid Precursor Protein and Notch Cleavage in Cell-based Luciferase Reporter Assay Platforms Bo-Jeng Wang*1, Pei-Yi Wu*1, Yun-Wen Chen*1, Yu-Tzu Chang1, Noopur Bhore1, Po-Fan Wu1, Yung-Feng Liao1 1Laboratory of Molecular Neurobiology, Institute of Cellular and Organismic Biology, Academia Sinica We have successfully generated two substrate-specific γ-secretase assays. Both cell-based assays presented here are designed to quantify γ-secretase enzymatic activities via the output of firefly luciferase reporters.
Other articles by Bo-Jeng Wang on PubMed
Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha, Interleukin-1beta, and Interferon-gamma Stimulate Gamma-secretase-mediated Cleavage of Amyloid Precursor Protein Through a JNK-dependent MAPK Pathway The Journal of Biological Chemistry. | Pubmed ID: 15347683 The deposition of the amyloid beta (Abeta) peptide in neuritic plaques plays a critical role in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Abeta is generated through the proteolysis of amyloid precursor protein (APP) by the sequential actions of beta- and gamma-secretases. Although recent evidence has unveiled much about the biochemical identity and characteristics of gamma-secretase, the mechanism regulating endogenous gamma-secretase activity remains elusive. To identify possible extracellular signals and associated signaling cascades that could regulate APP proteolysis by gamma-secretase activity, we have developed a cell-based reporter gene assay by stably cotransfecting HEK293 cells with the Gal4-driven luciferase reporter gene and the Gal4/VP16-tagged C-terminal fragment of APP (C99-GV), the immediate substrate of gamma-secretase. The cleavage of C99-GV by gamma-secretase releases the transcription factor that activates luciferase expression, providing a quantitative measurement of gamma-secretase activity. Using this reporter assay, we have demonstrated that interferon-gamma, interleukin-1beta, and tumor necrosis factor-alpha can specifically stimulate gamma-secretase activity, concomitant with increased production of Abeta and the intracellular domain of APP (AICD). The gamma-secretase-dependent cleavage of Notch is also enhanced upon the stimulation of these cytokines. The cytokine-enhanced gamma-secretase activity can be suppressed by a potent inhibitor of c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK). Furthermore, cells transfected with dominant-positive MEKK1, one of the most potent activators of the JNK cascade, exhibit increased gamma-secretase activity, suggesting that the JNK-dependent mitogen-activated protein kinase pathway could mediate the cytokine-elicited regulation of gamma-secretase. Our studies provide direct evidence that cytokine-elicited signaling cascades control Abeta production by modulating gamma-secretase activity.
Unnatural Amino Acid-substituted (hydroxyethyl)urea Peptidomimetics Inhibit Gamma-secretase and Promote the Neuronal Differentiation of Neuroblastoma Cells Molecular Pharmacology. | Pubmed ID: 17105873 Gamma-secretase, exhibiting characteristics of aspartyl protease, mediates the intramembranous proteolysis of beta-amyloid precursor protein (APP) and Notch, and it is considered to be a prime pharmacological target in the development of therapeutics for Alzheimer's disease (AD). To identify compounds that block gamma-secretase-mediated proteolysis, we used a highly sensitive cell-based reporter gene assay for gamma-secretase in which Gal4/VP16-tagged C99-APP was expressed as the immediate substrate of gamma-secretase, and Gal4/VP16-tagged APP intracellular domain released by the gamma-secretase cleavage then activated the expression of the Gal4-driven luciferase reporter gene. Using this reporter assay, we demonstrated that the newly synthesized (hydroxyethyl)urea peptidomimetics, which contain unnatural amino acid moieties at positions P1' and/or P3', can effectively inhibit gamma-secretase activity and significantly reduce Abeta production. The gamma-secretase-dependent S3 cleavage of Notch was also consistently blocked by these (hydroxyethyl)ureas as evidenced by the decreased generation of the Notch intracellular domain, a prerequisite for the activation of Notch signaling. The inhibition of Notch signaling by active Jia compounds efficiently promotes the neuronal differentiation of neuroblastoma cells, intervening in tumorigenesis and the malignancy of neuroblastomas. Our results suggest that (hydroxyethyl)urea peptidomimetics containing unnatural amino acid substitutions could represent a novel class of gamma-secretase inhibitors with enhanced stability, providing the basis for the further development of effective therapeutics for AD and neuroblastomas.
Sodium Selenite Inhibits Gamma-secretase Activity Through Activation of ERK Neuroscience Letters. | Pubmed ID: 18547722 Previous studies have demonstrated that the ERK MAPK acts as a negative regulator of gamma-secretase. Here, we demonstrate that the activation of ERK MAPK pathway by sodium selenite can inhibit endogenous gamma-secretase activity. Consistently, the gamma-secretase-mediated production of amyloid-beta (Abeta) was dramatically attenuated by sodium selenite in a temporal manner. To substantiate the functional role of ERK MAPK in the regulation of gamma-secretase, we demonstrate that cells transfected with the wild-type MEK1 and a constitutively active mutant of MEK1 also displayed a significant attenuation of gamma-secretase activity. The active purified ERK1/2 can significantly reduce the gamma-secretase-mediated processing of C99, possibly through inducing alterations in the phosphorylation of both nicastrin and presenilin-1. Together, our data suggest that the selenite-elicited ERK activation could effectively reduce Abeta production, supporting that selenium compounds could represent a novel class of nutrient supplements to slow down the progression of Alzheimer's disease.
Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha-elicited Stimulation of Gamma-secretase is Mediated by C-Jun N-terminal Kinase-dependent Phosphorylation of Presenilin and Nicastrin Molecular Biology of the Cell. | Pubmed ID: 18667537 Gamma-secretase is a multiprotein complex composed of presenilin (PS), nicastrin (NCT), Aph-1, and Pen-2, and it catalyzes the final proteolytic step in the processing of amyloid precursor protein to generate amyloid-beta. Our previous results showed that tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-alpha) can potently stimulate gamma-secretase activity through a c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK)-dependent pathway. Here, we demonstrate that TNF-alpha triggers JNK-dependent serine/threonine phosphorylation of PS1 and NCT to stimulate gamma-secretase activity. Blocking of JNK activity with a potent JNK inhibitor (SP600125) reduces TNF-alpha-triggered phosphorylation of PS1 and NCT. Consistent with this, we show that activated JNKs can be copurified with gamma-secretase complexes and that active recombinant JNK2 can promote the phosphorylation of PS1 and NCT in vitro. Using site-directed mutagenesis and a synthetic peptide, we clearly show that the Ser(319)Thr(320) motif in PS1 is an important JNK phosphorylation site that is critical for the TNF-alpha-elicited regulation of gamma-secretase. This JNK phosphorylation of PS1 at Ser(319)Thr(320) enhances the stability of the PS1 C-terminal fragment that is necessary for gamma-secretase activity. Together, our findings strongly suggest that JNK is a critical intracellular mediator of TNF-alpha-elicited regulation of gamma-secretase and governs the pivotal step in the assembly of functional gamma-secretase.
Caveolin-1 Regulates γ-secretase-mediated AβPP Processing by Modulating Spatial Distribution of γ-secretase in Membrane Journal of Alzheimer's Disease : JAD. | Pubmed ID: 20847442 Amyloidogenic processing of amyloid-β precursor protein (AβPP) is associated with cholesterol- and sphingolipid-rich lipid rafts. Caveolin-1, a raft-residing protein, has been implicated in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease. To determine the role of caveolin-1 in governing γ-secretase-mediated AβPP proteolysis, cellular γ-secretase activity was assessed in response to alteration in caveolin-1 expression. We demonstrated that suppression of caveolin-1 expression by RNA interference resulted in a significant increase in γ-secretase-mediated proteolysis of AβPP, generation of amyloid-β, and cleavage of Notch. Overexpression of caveolin-1 attenuated γ-secretase-mediated proteolysis of AβPP and Notch, substantiating the negative regulation of γ-secretase by caveolin-1. Furthermore, we found that cells deficient in caveolin-1 exhibited significantly increased co-localization of γ-secretase with clathrin-coated non-caveolar endocytic vesicles, demonstrating that the partitioning of γ-secretase between caveolar and non-caveolar membranes can be modulated by caveolin-1. Our data also showed that JNK activation is essential for caveolin-1-mediated regulation of γ-secretase. Together, our results strongly suggest that caveolin-1 is an important regulator of γ-secretase activity.
Autophagy: a Double-edged Sword in Alzheimer's Disease Journal of Biosciences. | Pubmed ID: 22357213 Autophagy is a major protein degradation pathway that is essential for stress-induced and constitutive protein turnover. Accumulated evidence has demonstrated that amyloid-beta (A beta) protein can be generated in autophagic vacuoles, promoting its extracellular deposition in neuritic plaques as the pathological hallmark of Alzheimer's disease (AD). The molecular machinery for A beta generation, including APP, APP-C99 and beta-/gamma-secretases, are all enriched in autophagic vacuoles. The induction of autophagy can be vividly observed in the brain at early stages of sporadic AD and in an AD transgenic mouse model. Accumulated evidence has also demonstrated a neuroprotective role of autophagy in mediating the degradation of aggregated proteins that are causative of various neurodegenerative diseases. Autophagy is thus widely regarded as an intracellular hub for the removal of the detrimental A beta peptides and Tau aggregates. Nonetheless, compelling data also reveal an unfavorable function of autophagy in facilitating the production of intracellular A beta. The two faces of autophagy on the homeostasis of A beta place it in a very unique and intriguing position in AD pathogenesis. This article briefly summarizes seminal discoveries that are shedding new light on the critical and unique roles of autophagy in AD and potential therapeutic approaches against autophagy-elicited AD.
Retinoic Acid-elicited RARα/RXRα Signaling Attenuates Aβ Production by Directly Inhibiting γ-secretase-mediated Cleavage of Amyloid Precursor Protein ACS Chemical Neuroscience. | Pubmed ID: 23530929 Retinoic acid (RA)-elicited signaling has been shown to play critical roles in development, organogenesis, and the immune response. RA regulates expression of Alzheimer's disease (AD)-related genes and attenuates amyloid pathology in a transgenic mouse model. In this study, we investigated whether RA can suppress the production of amyloid-β (Aβ) through direct inhibition of γ-secretase activity. We report that RA treatment of cells results in significant inhibition of γ-secretase-mediated processing of the amyloid precursor protein C-terminal fragment APP-C99, compared with DMSO-treated controls. RA-elicited signaling was found to significantly increase accumulation of APP-C99 and decrease production of secreted Aβ40. In addition, RA-induced inhibition of γ-secretase activity was found to be mediated through significant activation of extracellular signal-regulated kinases (ERK1/2). Treatment of cells with the specific ERK inhibitor PD98059 completely abolished RA-mediated inhibition of γ-secretase. Consistent with these findings, RA was observed to inhibit secretase-mediated proteolysis of full-length APP. Finally, we have established that RA inhibits γ-secretase through nuclear retinoic acid receptor-α (RARα) and retinoid X receptor-α (RXRα). Our findings provide a new mechanistic explanation for the neuroprotective role of RA in AD pathology and add to the previous data showing the importance of RA signaling as a target for AD therapy.
Presenilin-1 Regulates the Expression of P62 to Govern P62-dependent Tau Degradation Molecular Neurobiology. | Pubmed ID: 23794287 Mutations in presenilin-1 (PS1) are tightly associated with early-onset familial Alzheimer's disease (FAD), which is characterized by extracellular amyloid plaques and the accumulation of intracellular Tau. In addition to being the catalytic subunit of γ-secretase, PS1 has been shown to regulate diverse cellular functions independent of its proteolytic activity. We found that cells deficient in PS1 exhibit reduced levels of p62 protein, a cargo-receptor shuttling Tau for degradation. The downregulation of PS1 led to a significant decrease in both the protein and mRNA transcript of p62, concomitant with attenuated p62 promoter activity. This PS1-dependent regulation of p62 expression was mediated through an Akt/AP-1 pathway independent of the proteolytic activity of PS1/γ-secretase. This p62-mediated Tau degradation was significantly impaired in PS1-deficient cells, which can be rescued by ectopic expression of either p62 or wild-type PS1 but not mutant PS1 containing FAD-linked mutations. Our study suggests a novel function for PS1 in modulating p62 expression to control the proteostasis of Tau.
Aryl Hydrocarbon Receptor Downregulates MYCN Expression and Promotes Cell Differentiation of Neuroblastoma PloS One. | Pubmed ID: 24586395 Neuroblastoma (NB) is the most common malignant disease of infancy. MYCN amplification is a prognostic factor for NB and is a sign of highly malignant disease and poor patient prognosis. In this study, we aimed to investigate novel MYCN-related genes and assess how they affect NB cell behavior. The different gene expression found in 10 MYCN amplification NB tumors and 10 tumors with normal MYCN copy number were analyzed using tissue oligonucleotide microarrays. Ingenuity Pathway Analysis was subsequently performed to identify the potential genes involved in MYCN regulation pathways. Aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AHR), a receptor for dioxin-like compounds, was found to be inversely correlated with MYCN expression in NB tissues. This correlation was confirmed in a further 14 human NB samples. Moreover, AHR expression in NB tumors was found to correlate highly with histological grade of differentiation. In vitro studies revealed that AHR overexpression in NB cells induced spontaneous cell differentiation. In addition, it was found that ectopic expression of AHR suppressed MYCN promoter activity resulting in downregulation of MYCN expression. The suppression effect of AHR on the transcription of MYCN was compensated for by E2F1 overexpression, indicating that E2F1 is involved in the AHR-regulating MYCN pathway. Furthermore, AHR shRNA promotes the expression of E2F1 and MYCN in NB cells. These findings suggest that AHR is one of the upstream regulators of MYCN. Through the modulation of E2F1, AHR regulates MYCN gene expression, which may in turn affect NB differentiation.
Calreticulin Activates β1 Integrin Via Fucosylation by Fucosyltransferase 1 in J82 Human Bladder Cancer Cells The Biochemical Journal. | Pubmed ID: 24593306 Fucosylation regulates various pathological events in cells. We reported that different levels of CRT (calreticulin) affect the cell adhesion and metastasis of bladder cancer. However, the precise mechanism of tumour metastasis regulated by CRT remains unclear. Using a DNA array, we identified FUT1 (fucosyltransferase 1) as a gene regulated by CRT expression levels. CRT regulated cell adhesion through α1,2-linked fucosylation of β1 integrin and this modification was catalysed by FUT1. To clarify the roles for FUT1 in bladder cancer, we transfected the human FUT1 gene into CRT-RNAi stable cell lines. FUT1 overexpression in CRT-RNAi cells resulted in increased levels of β1 integrin fucosylation and rescued cell adhesion to type-I collagen. Treatment with UEA-1 (Ulex europaeus agglutinin-1), a lectin that recognizes FUT1-modified glycosylation structures, did not affect cell adhesion. In contrast, a FUT1-specific fucosidase diminished the activation of β1 integrin. These results indicated that α1,2-fucosylation of β1 integrin was not involved in integrin-collagen interaction, but promoted β1 integrin activation. Moreover, we demonstrated that CRT regulated FUT1 mRNA degradation at the 3'-UTR. In conclusion, the results of the present study suggest that CRT stabilized FUT1 mRNA, thereby leading to an increase in fucosylation of β1 integrin. Furthermore, increased fucosylation levels activate β1 integrin, rather than directly modifying the integrin-binding sites.
Discovery of Small Molecular (D)-leucinamides As Potent, Notch-sparing γ-secretase Modulators European Journal of Medicinal Chemistry. | Pubmed ID: 24732790 Structural optimization of the prior lead 3 led to the small molecular (D)-leucinamides with potent modulating activity and Notch-sparing selectivity on the proteolytic processing of amyloid-β precursor proteins. The N-(R)-epoxypropyl analog 10c exhibited potent γ-secretase modulation compared to DAPT and showed substantial substrate selection for APP cleavage over Notch cleavage, while N-(2-fluoro)benzyl analog 10e showed the most potent γ-secretase inhibition with dull selectivity. The exceptional suppression of ERK-mediated activation suggested that these potent γ-secretase modulators may adapt an alternative pathway to prominently induce the differential inhibition of C99 cleavage by γ-secretase.
ErbB2 Regulates Autophagic Flux to Modulate the Proteostasis of APP-CTFs in Alzheimer's Disease Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. | Pubmed ID: 28351972 Proteolytic processing of amyloid precursor protein (APP) C-terminal fragments (CTFs) by γ-secretase underlies the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease (AD). An RNA interference screen using APP-CTF [99-residue CTF (C99)]- and Notch-specific γ-secretase interaction assays identified a unique ErbB2-centered signaling network that was predicted to preferentially govern the proteostasis of APP-C99. Consistently, significantly elevated levels of ErbB2 were confirmed in the hippocampus of human AD brains. We then found that ErbB2 effectively suppressed autophagic flux by physically dissociating Beclin-1 from the Vps34-Vps15 complex independent of its kinase activity. Down-regulation of ErbB2 by CL-387,785 decreased the levels of C99 and secreted amyloid-β in cellular, zebrafish, and mouse models of AD, through the activation of autophagy. Oral administration of an ErbB2-targeted CL-387,785 for 3 wk significantly improves the cognitive functions of APP/presenilin-1 (PS1) transgenic mice. This work unveils a noncanonical function of ErbB2 in modulating autophagy and establishes ErbB2 as a therapeutic target for AD.
VEGF Expression Correlates with Neuronal Differentiation and Predicts a Favorable Prognosis in Patients with Neuroblastoma Scientific Reports. | Pubmed ID: 28894229 Neuroblastoma (NB) is a childhood cancer with a low survival rate and great metastatic potential. Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), an angiogenesis factor, has been found to be involved in CRT-related neuronal differentiation of NB cells. In this study, we further confirmed the role VEGF in NB through mouse xenograft model and clinical analysis from NB patients. In xenograft experiments, CRT overexpression effectively inhibited the tumor growth. In addition, the mRNA and protein levels of VEGF and differentiation marker GAP-43 were upregulated by induced CRT expression. However, no significant correlation between the expression level of VEGF and microvessel density was observed in human NB tumors, suggesting a novel mechanism of VEGF participating in NB tumorigenesis through an angiogenesis-independent pathway. In NB patients' samples, mRNA expression levels of CRT and VEGF were positively correlated. Furthermore, positive VEGF expression by immunostaining of NB tumors was found to correlate well with histological grade of differentiation and predicted a favorable prognosis. In conclusion, our findings suggest that VEGF is a favorable prognostic factor of NB and might affect NB tumor behavior through CRT-driven neuronal differentiation rather than angiogenesis that might shed light on a novel therapeutic strategy to improve the outcome of NB.
Critical Roles of Dual-Specificity Phosphatases in Neuronal Proteostasis and Neurological Diseases International Journal of Molecular Sciences. | Pubmed ID: 28902166 Protein homeostasis or proteostasis is a fundamental cellular property that encompasses the dynamic balancing of processes in the proteostasis network (PN). Such processes include protein synthesis, folding, and degradation in both non-stressed and stressful conditions. The role of the PN in neurodegenerative disease is well-documented, where it is known to respond to changes in protein folding states or toxic gain-of-function protein aggregation. Dual-specificity phosphatases have recently emerged as important participants in maintaining balance within the PN, acting through modulation of cellular signaling pathways that are involved in neurodegeneration. In this review, we will summarize recent findings describing the roles of dual-specificity phosphatases in neurodegeneration and offer perspectives on future therapeutic directions.