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Alzheimer's research & therapy

Sorting nexin-4 regulates β-amyloid production by modulating β-site-activating cleavage enzyme-1.


PMID 28109317

Abstract

Amyloid precursor protein (APP) is cleaved by β-site amyloid precursor protein-cleaving enzyme 1 (BACE1) to produce β-amyloid (Aβ), a critical pathogenic peptide in Alzheimer's disease (AD). Aβ generation can be affected by the intracellular trafficking of APP or its related secretases, which is thus important to understanding its pathological alterations. Although sorting nexin (SNX) family proteins regulate this trafficking, the relevance and role of sorting nexin-4 (SNX4) regarding AD has not been studied yet. In this study, human brain tissue and APP/PS1 mouse brain tissue were used to check the disease relevance of SNX4. To investigate the role of SNX4 in AD pathogenesis, several experiments were done, such as coimmunoprecipitation, Western blotting, immunohistochemistry, and gradient fractionation. We found that SNX4 protein levels changed in the brains of patients with AD and of AD model mice. Overexpression of SNX4 significantly increased the levels of BACE1 and Aβ. Downregulation of SNX4 had the opposite effect. SNX4 interacts with BACE1 and prevents BACE1 trafficking to the lysosomal degradation system, resulting in an increased half-life of BACE1 and increased production of Aβ. We show that SNX4 regulates BACE1 trafficking. Our findings suggest novel therapeutic implications of modulating SNX4 to regulate BACE1-mediated β-processing of APP and subsequent Aβ generation.

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