Oxidation of the amyloid-beta peptide and consequences on the etiology of Alzheimer's disease

Abstract : Alzheimer's Disease (AD) is the most frequent for of dementia in the elderly. A hallmark of AD is the extracellular formation of senile plaques in the brain of AD subjects, composed of the Amyloid-ß peptide (Aß) under aggregated form with metal ions such as copper ions. Aß can form a complex with copper ions, able to catalyze reactive oxygen species (ROS) formation in the presence of a reducing agent such as ascorbate. These oxidative species can oxidize the surrounding molecules and the Aß peptide itself. Being close to the production site of ROS, Aß is the preferential target, especially for the hydroxyl radical HO*. The aim of this work was to study the ROS production by the Aß/Cu/ascorbate system, to characterize the oxidation undergone by Aß and to evaluate the consequences of Aß oxidation on ROS production, metal ions coordination and aggregation. Several spectroscopic techniques have been used, in particular mass spectrometry (MS), fluorescence spectroscopy, electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) and X-Ray absorption spectroscopy (XANES). The oxidation sites of Aß have been studied by mass spectrometry (MS and MS/MS). Thanks to the use of proteomic tools and high-resolution mass spectrometry (HRMS), the oxidized amino acid residues have been identified. Asp1, His 13 and His14 have been found to be the preferential targets for HO* on Aß. This result was expected as these residues are involved in copper coordination, from which the ROS are generated. The impact of Aß oxidation on Cu(II), Cu(I) and Zn(II) on metal ions coordination, on ROS production and on Aß aggregation has been studied. Results have shown that Aß oxidation induces a change of coordination of Zn(II) as well as Cu(II) and Cu(I), leading to an increase of ROS production. Moreover, Aß oxidation has also an impact on aggregation, as it does not favor fibrils formation. The Cu-Aß binding mode during ROS production has been deduced from the study of a series of mutated Aß peptides. The hypothesis, in which the amino acid residues bound to Cu during the ROS production are the oxidized one (Asp1, His 13 and His14) has been corroborated by the results of this study, the mutation of Asp1 or the two His having an impact on ROS production. Finally, the pro- and antioxidants effects of ascorbate have been investigated, showing that, on the Cu-Aß system, ascorbate only has antioxidant properties at high concentration for surrounding molecules, but does not exhibit any protecting effect on Aß itself.
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Clémence Cheignon. Oxidation of the amyloid-beta peptide and consequences on the etiology of Alzheimer's disease. Coordination chemistry. Université Paul Sabatier - Toulouse III, 2016. English. ⟨NNT : 2016TOU30347⟩. ⟨tel-01767747⟩

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