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Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2002 Feb 8;290(5):1408-10.

Gamma-secretase-like cleavages of Notch and beta APP are mutually exclusive in human cells.

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  • 1IPMC du CNRS, UMR6097, 660 route des Lucioles, Valbonne, 06560, France.


Presenilins 1 and 2 are two transmembrane proteins that seem necessary for controlling the proteolytic cleavages of two substrates, betaAPP and Notch, giving rise to Abeta (amyloid beta-peptide) and NICD (Notch Intracellular Domain), respectively. It is a matter for discussion whether presenilins act directly as the cleaving enzyme (referred to as gamma-secretase) or indirectly as a regulator of the substrates/enzymes trafficking to the permissive cell compartment where gamma-secretase cleavage could occur. Here we examined whether betaAPP and Notch undergo mutually exclusive proteolytic events in HEK293 cells or whether they behave as substrates able to compete for a single protease. We show that the overexpression of mDeltaE-Notch-1 does not influence the endogenous recovery of secreted and intracellular Abeta nor those derived from betaAPP-overexpressing HEK293 cells. We establish, conversely, that increasing amounts of betaAPP do not modify the steady-state generation of NICD nor affect the kinetic of production. These data indicate that the proteolytic cleavages leading to the productions of Abeta and NICD are mutually exclusive events in HEK293 cells, and suggest that distinct proteolytic activities contribute to betaAPP and Notch processing.

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