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Scales T.M.E.,Kings College London | Derkinderen P.,Kings College London | Derkinderen P.,Nantes University Hospital Center | Leung K.-Y.,Kings College London | And 15 more authors.
Molecular Neurodegeneration | Year: 2011

Background: Tau protein is the principal component of the neurofibrillary tangles found in Alzheimer's disease, where it is hyperphosphorylated on serine and threonine residues, and recently phosphotyrosine has been demonstrated. The Src-family kinase Fyn has been linked circumstantially to the pathology of Alzheimer's disease, and shown to phosphorylate Tyr18. Recently another Src-family kinase, Lck, has been identified as a genetic risk factor for this disease. Results: In this study we show that Lck is a tau kinase. In vitro, comparison of Lck and Fyn showed that while both kinases phosphorylated Tyr18 preferentially, Lck phosphorylated other tyrosines somewhat better than Fyn. In co-transfected COS-7 cells, mutating any one of the five tyrosines in tau to phenylalanine reduced the apparent level of tau tyrosine phosphorylation to 25-40% of that given by wild-type tau. Consistent with this, tau mutants with only one remaining tyrosine gave poor phosphorylation; however, Tyr18 was phosphorylated better than the others. Conclusions: Fyn and Lck have subtle differences in their properties as tau kinases, and the phosphorylation of tau is one mechanism by which the genetic risk associated with Lck might be expressed pathogenically. © 2011 Scales et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. Source

Malik B.,Kings College London | Fernandes C.,Kings College London | Killick R.,Kings College London | Wroe R.,Kings College London | And 6 more authors.
Neurochemistry International | Year: 2012

Amyloid-β peptide (Aβ) is the principal component of plaques in the brains of patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD), and the most toxic form of Aβ may be as soluble oligomers. We report here the results of a microarray study of gene expression profiles in primary mouse cortical neurons in response to oligomeric Aβ1-42. A major and unexpected finding was the down-regulation of genes involved in the biosynthesis of cholesterol and other steroids and lipids (such as Fdft1, Fdps, Idi1, Ldr, Mvd, Mvk, Nsdhl, Sc4mol), the expression of which was verified by quantitative real-time RT-PCR (qPCR). The ATP-binding cassette gene Abca1, which has a major role in cholesterol transport in brain and other tissues and has been genetically linked to AD, was notably up-regulated. The possible involvement of cholesterol and other lipids in Aβ synthesis and action in Alzheimer's disease has been studied and debated extensively but remains unresolved. These new data suggest that Aβ may influence steroid and lipid metabolism in neurons via multiple gene-expression changes. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved. Source

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