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Alternative Cleavage of Alzheimer-Associated Presenilins During Apoptosis by a Caspase-3 Family Protease

Science  18 Jul 1997:
Vol. 277, Issue 5324, pp. 373-376
DOI: 10.1126/science.277.5324.373

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Abstract

Most cases of early-onset familial Alzheimer's disease (FAD) are caused by mutations in the genes encoding the presenilin 1 (PS1) and PS2 proteins, both of which undergo regulated endoproteolytic processing. During apoptosis, PS1 and PS2 were shown to be cleaved at sites distal to their normal cleavage sites by a caspase-3 family protease. In cells expressing PS2 containing the asparagine-141 FAD mutant, the ratio of alternative to normal PS2 cleavage fragments was increased relative to wild-type PS2-expressing cells, suggesting a potential role for apoptosis-associated cleavage of presenilins in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease.

  • * To whom correspondence should be addressed. E-mail: tanzi{at}helix.mgh.harvard.edu

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