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Neurochem Int. 2008 Sep;53(3-4):79-88. doi: 10.1016/j.neuint.2008.06.003. Epub 2008 Jun 12.

The novel calpain inhibitor A-705253 potently inhibits oligomeric beta-amyloid-induced dynamin 1 and tau cleavage in hippocampal neurons.

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Department of Cell and Molecular Biology, Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern University, Chicago, IL 60611, USA.


We have previously shown that beta-amyloid (Abeta) oligomers induced dynamin 1 and tau cleavage in cultured hippocampal neurons. As a result of this cleavage, dynamin 1 levels decreased and a toxic tau fragment was generated. Abeta-induced cleavage of these proteins was calpain-mediated and impacted both synaptic vesicle recycling and the integrity of neuronal processes [Kelly, B.L., Vassar, R., Ferreira, A., 2005. Beta-amyloid-induced dynamin 1 depletion in hippocampal neurons. A potential mechanism for early cognitive decline in Alzheimer disease. J. Biol. Chem. 280, 31746-31753; Park, S.Y., Ferreira, A., 2005. The generation of a 17kDa neurotoxic fragment: an alternative mechanism by which tau mediates beta-amyloid-induced neurodegeneration. J. Neurosci. 25, 5365-5375; Kelly, B.L., Ferreira, A., 2006. Beta-amyloid-induced dynamin 1 degradation is mediated by N-methyl-d-aspartate receptors in hippocampal neurons. J. Biol. Chem. 281, 28079-28089, Kelly, B.L., Ferreira, A., 2007. Beta-amyloid disrupted synaptic vesicle endocytosis in cultured hippocampal neurons. Neuroscience 147, 60-70]. Building on previous reports, these results identified calpain as a potential target for therapeutic intervention in Alzheimer's disease. In the present study, we tested the ability of A-705253, a novel water-soluble calpain inhibitor with oral availability and enhanced metabolic stability, to prevent Abeta-induced dynamin 1 and tau cleavage in cultured hippocampal neurons. Quantitative Western blot analysis indicated that the incubation of these cells with A-705253 prior to the addition of oligomeric Abeta reduced both dynamin 1 and tau cleavage in a dose-dependent manner. In addition, our results showed that this calpain inhibitor significantly ameliorated the cleavage of these proteins when added simultaneously with oligomeric Abeta. Furthermore, our data indicated that the use of this calpain inhibitor could have some beneficial effects even when added after the cleavage of these proteins have been triggered by Abeta. Collectively, these results suggest that, indeed, specific calpain inhibitors could play an important role in the treatment of Alzheimer's disease.

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