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Le rôle des bêta-sécrétases dans la formation de fibres amyloïdes au cours de la mélanogenèse

Abstract : In the epidermis, melanocytes synthetize a pigment called melanin, in lysosome-related-organelles called melanosomes, in order to protect the skin against the ionizing radiations of the sun. Melanogenesis is a sequential process initiated by the formation of amyloid fibrils whose principal component is the protein PMEL. Those fibrils sequester the melanin pigment and allow the removal of toxic intermediates formed during its synthesis. Melanogenesis and the pigmented phenotype are affected when the process of fibrils formation is altered. Fibrils come from the processing of PMEL in endosome precursors of melanosomes but the proteases implicated in this process are not well characterized. In order to better understand the mechanisms implicated in the formation of the PMEL amyloid fibrils, I studied the role of two proteases: the Beta-secretases BACE1 and BACE2. Using a combination of biochemical, immunocytochemical methods and photonic and electronic imaging, I have shown that the loss of Bace2 expression in vivo (BACE2 KO mice) or its depletion (siRNA), in a melanocyte cell line, inhibit the amyloidogenic processing of PMEL and affect both the formation of the PMEL fibrils in melanosomes and pigmentation. I could reproduce in vitro the specific cleavage of PMEL by using a recombinant form of BACE2. In parallel, I have also studied the role of BACE1 in melanogenesis. My results indicate that BACE1, even though it is not implicated in PMEL processing, could regulate the maturation of early melanosomes in vivo and in cellulo, by modulating the contacts between melanosomes and endoplasmic reticulum (ER). In melanocytes, BACE1 is present in the ER and interacts with proteins implicated in ER-endosomes contacts. Those contacts would be crucial for the transfer of molecules that are necessary for melanosome maturation. All together those results demonstrate the role of both Beta-secretases in melanogenesis, and reveal key processes involved in melanosome biogenesis. Moreover, because PMEL fibrils are the most completed model of physiological amyloidogenesis in mammals, theses studies could help in the future the understanding of the formation of pathological amyloid fibrils; in particular in the Alzheimer’s disease where the amyloidogenesis of APP is very similar to the one of PMEL.
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Leïla Rochin. Le rôle des bêta-sécrétases dans la formation de fibres amyloïdes au cours de la mélanogenèse. Biologie moléculaire. Université René Descartes - Paris V, 2014. Français. ⟨NNT : 2014PA05T028⟩. ⟨tel-01208143⟩