Alpha-synuclein (aSyn) misfolding and aggregation are pathological features common to several neurodegenerative diseases, including Parkinson's disease (PD). Mounting evidence suggests that aSyn can be secreted and transferred from cell to cell, participating in the propagation and spreading of pathological events. Rab11, a small GTPase, is an important regulator in both endocytic and secretory pathways. Here, we show that Rab11 is involved in regulating aSyn secretion. Rab11 knockdown or overexpression of either Rab11a wild-type (Rab11a WT) or Rab11a GDP-bound mutant (Rab11a S25N) increased secretion of aSyn. Furthermore, we demonstrate that Rab11 interacts with aSyn and is present in intracellular inclusions together with aSyn. Moreover, Rab11 reduces aSyn aggregation and toxicity. Our results suggest that Rab11 is involved in modulating the processes of aSyn secretion and aggregation, both of which are important mechanisms in the progression of aSyn pathology in PD and other synucleinopathies.
Phosphorylation of ?-synuclein (aSyn) on serine 129 is one of the major post-translation modifications found in Lewy bodies, the typical pathological hallmark of Parkinsons disease. Here, we found that both PLK2 and PLK3 phosphorylate aSyn on serine 129 in yeast. However, only PLK2 increased aSyn cytotoxicity and the percentage of cells presenting cytoplasmic foci. Consistently, in mammalian cells, PLK2 induced aSyn phosphorylation on serine 129 and induced an increase in the size of the inclusions. Our study supports a role for PLK2 in the generation of aSyn inclusions by a mechanism that does not depend directly on serine 129 phosphorylation.
Prion diseases are fatal neurodegenerative disorders involving the abnormal folding of a native cellular protein, named PrP(C), to a malconformed aggregation-prone state, enriched in beta sheet secondary structure, denoted PrP(Sc). Recently, autophagy has garnered considerable attention as a cellular process with the potential to counteract neurodegenerative diseases of protein aggregation such as Alzheimers disease, Huntingtons disease, and Parkinsons disease. Stimulation of autophagy by chemical compounds has also been shown to reduce PrP(Sc) in infected neuronal cells and prolong survival times in mouse models. Consistent with previous reports, we demonstrate that autophagic flux is increased in chronically infected cells. However, in contrast to recent findings we show that autophagy does not cause a reduction in scrapie burden. We report that in infected neuronal cells different compounds known to stimulate autophagy are ineffective in increasing autophagic flux and in reducing PrP(Sc). We further demonstrate that tamoxifen and its metabolite 4-hydroxytamoxifen lead to prion degradation in an autophagy-independent manner by diverting the trafficking of both PrP and cholesterol to lysosomes. Our data indicate that tamoxifen, a well-characterized, widely available pharmaceutical, may have applications in the therapy of prion diseases.
Protein conformational disorders are associated with the appearance, persistence, accumulation, and misprocessing of aberrant proteins in the cell. The etiology of renal tubular dysgenesis (RTD) is linked to mutations in the angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE). Here, we report the identification of a novel ACE mutation (Q1069R) in an RTD patient. ACE Q1069R is found sequestered in the endoplasmic reticulum and is also subject to increased proteasomal degradation, preventing its transport to the cell surface and extracellular fluids. Modulation of cellular proteostasis by temperature shift causes an extension in the processing time and trafficking of ACE Q1069R resulting in partial rescue of the protein processing defect and an increase in plasma membrane levels. In addition, we found that temperature shifting causes the ACE Q1069R protein to be secreted in an active state, suggesting that the mutation does not affect the enzymes catalytic properties.
Prion diseases are fatal, neurodegenerative disorders in humans and animals and are characterized by the accumulation of an abnormally folded isoform of the cellular prion protein (PrP(C)), denoted PrP(Sc), which represents the major component of infectious scrapie prions. Characterization of the mechanism of conversion of PrP(C) into PrP(Sc) and identification of the intracellular site where it occurs are among the most important questions in prion biology. Despite numerous efforts, both of these questions remain unsolved. We have quantitatively analyzed the distribution of PrP(C) and PrP(Sc) and measured PrP(Sc) levels in different infected neuronal cell lines in which protein trafficking has been selectively impaired. Our data exclude roles for both early and late endosomes and identify the endosomal recycling compartment as the likely site of prion conversion. These findings represent a fundamental step towards understanding the cellular mechanism of prion conversion and will allow the development of new therapeutic approaches for prion diseases.
In variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, prions (PrP(Sc)) enter the body with contaminated foodstuffs and can spread from the intestinal entry site to the central nervous system (CNS) by intercellular transfer from the lymphoid system to the peripheral nervous system (PNS). Although several means and different cell types have been proposed to have a role, the mechanism of cell-to-cell spreading remains elusive. Tunnelling nanotubes (TNTs) have been identified between cells, both in vitro and in vivo, and may represent a conserved means of cell-to-cell communication. Here we show that TNTs allow transfer of exogenous and endogenous PrP(Sc) between infected and naive neuronal CAD cells. Significantly, transfer of endogenous PrP(Sc) aggregates was detected exclusively when cells chronically infected with the 139A mouse prion strain were connected to mouse CAD cells by means of TNTs, identifying TNTs as an efficient route for PrP(Sc) spreading in neuronal cells. In addition, we detected the transfer of labelled PrP(Sc) from bone marrow-derived dendritic cells to primary neurons connected through TNTs. Because dendritic cells can interact with peripheral neurons in lymphoid organs, TNT-mediated intercellular transfer would allow neurons to transport prions retrogradely to the CNS. We therefore propose that TNTs are involved in the spreading of PrP(Sc) within neurons in the CNS and from the peripheral site of entry to the PNS by neuroimmune interactions with dendritic cells.
Related JoVE Video
Journal of Visualized Experiments
What is Visualize?
JoVE Visualize is a tool created to match the last 5 years of PubMed publications to methods in JoVE's video library.
How does it work?
We use abstracts found on PubMed and match them to JoVE videos to create a list of 10 to 30 related methods videos.
Video X seems to be unrelated to Abstract Y...
In developing our video relationships, we compare around 5 million PubMed articles to our library of over 4,500 methods videos. In some cases the language used in the PubMed abstracts makes matching that content to a JoVE video difficult. In other cases, there happens not to be any content in our video library that is relevant to the topic of a given abstract. In these cases, our algorithms are trying their best to display videos with relevant content, which can sometimes result in matched videos with only a slight relation.