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Neuroscience. 2006;139(4):1343-54. Epub 2006 Apr 3.

Activated double-stranded RNA-dependent protein kinase and neuronal death in models of Alzheimer's disease.

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  • 1Research Group on Brain Aging (EA 3808), University of Poitiers, France. guylene.page@univ-poitiers.fr

Abstract

Neuronal death is a pathological hallmark of Alzheimer's disease. We have shown previously that phosphorylated double-stranded RNA-dependent protein kinase is present in degenerating hippocampal neurons and in senile plaques of Alzheimer's disease brains and that genetically down-regulating double-stranded RNA-dependent protein kinase activity protects against in vitro beta-amyloid peptide neurotoxicity. In this report, we showed that two double-stranded RNA-dependent protein kinase blockers attenuate, in human neuroblastoma cells, beta-amyloid peptide toxicity evaluated by caspase 3 assessment. In addition, we have used the newly engineered APP(SL)/presenilin 1 knock-in transgenic mice, which display a severe neuronal loss in hippocampal regions, to analyze the activation of double-stranded RNA-dependent protein kinase. Western blots revealed the increased levels of activated double-stranded RNA-dependent protein kinase and the inhibition of eukaryotic initiation factor 2 alpha activity in the brains of these double transgenic mice. Phosphorylated RNA-dependent protein kinase-like endoplasmic reticulum-resident kinase was also increased in the brains of these mice. The levels of activated double-stranded RNA-dependent protein kinase were also increased in the brains of patients with Alzheimer's disease. At 3, 6 and 12 months, hippocampal neurons display double stranded RNA-dependent protein kinase labelings in both the nucleus and the cytoplasm. Confocal microscopy showed that almost constantly activated double-stranded RNA-dependent protein kinase co-localized with DNA strand breaks in apoptotic nuclei of CA1 hippocampal neurons. Taken together these results demonstrate that double-stranded RNA-dependent protein kinase is associated with neurodegeneration in APP(SL)/presenilin 1 knock-in mice and could represent a new therapeutic target for neuroprotection.

PMID:
16581193
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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