Navigation Links
ORNL, UTGSM study compares structures of Huntington's disease protein
Date:7/16/2014

OAK RIDGE, Tenn., July 16, 2014 -- Neutron scattering research at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory has revealed clear structural differences in the normal and pathological forms of a protein involved in Huntington's disease.

Huntington's disease, an incurable neurodegenerative disorder, starts as a genetic mutation that leads to an overabundance of "huntingtin" protein fragments, which form clumps in the brain.

Valerie Berthelier of the University of Tennessee Graduate School of Medicine, who co-led the study published in Biophysical Journal with ORNL's Chris Stanley, said the goal was to establish a baseline understanding of huntingtin's structure in order to eventually determine the true structural basis of Huntington's disease.

"This is a very first step -- the hope is that we do this basic research to shed light on the structures of the protein," Berthelier said. "If we can start identifying any of these structures as toxic or potentially toxic, and then think about how drugs could interact with them, then we might be getting to the point of rationally designing therapeutics that would target those specific structures."

The researchers conducted a side-by-side study of model protein systems in solution using a time-resolved small-angle neutron scattering technique at ORNL's High Flux Isotope Reactor. The use of neutrons, a non-damaging but highly penetrating particle, allowed the team to study the biological materials over time without degrading the samples' structural integrity.

"We compared the normal and disease versions of the protein to see how they change over time," Stanley said. "You can see there's a discrepancy all the way from the early stages to the end-state fibrils."

The study's results showed key differences in the ways mutant and normal huntingtin proteins take shape. The disease protein, for instance, initially forms aggregates of one to two peptides, whereas the normal version makes bigger aggregates, gathering seven or eight peptides together.

These data on the very early stages of protein aggregate formation support a growing focus of the research in the amyloid field. Amyloid disorders, such as Parkinson's, Alzheimer's and Huntington's, all involve protein aggregation phenomena leading to a disease.

"There is no strong correlation between neuronal cell loss and the amount of protein aggregates found in the brain," Stanley said. "You could have a case with a lot of aggregates but minimal symptoms -- and you can find the converse. Researchers think there must be something happening at the earliest stage that's giving rise to toxicity."

Stanley says the team hopes to continue its research to obtain higher-resolution structural data and refine their understanding of the huntingtin protein.

"We'd like to use this small-angle neutron scattering technique in combination with others to get a better idea for how these early structures are forming and also ask the question -- are they toxic or not?" Stanley said.


'/>"/>

Contact: Morgan McCorkle
mccorkleml@ornl.gov
86-557-407-308
DOE/Oak Ridge National Laboratory
Source:Eurekalert  

Related medicine news :

1. Worm study provides hope for deadly disease of the brain
2. Surgery Soon After Stroke Can Be Risky: Study
3. Stroke Rates Declining Among Seniors, Study Shows
4. Study Warns of Kidney Damage Risk with Popular Mesothelioma Drug, Reports Surviving Mesothelioma
5. Genes May Raise Risk of Cerebral Palsy, Study Finds
6. Transparency lacking in clinical trials, BU study finds
7. Study: Body Dysmorphic Disorder patients have higher risk of personal and appearance-based rejection sensitivity
8. Home Blood Pressure Monitoring Likely Saves Money, Study Finds
9. Kids From Dairy Farms Have Lower Allergy Risk, Study Finds
10. BUSM study: Obesity may be impacted by stress
11. Graphic Cigarette-Label Warnings Work, Study Finds
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
ORNL, UTGSM study compares structures of Huntington's disease protein
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... Coveros, a leader ... been awarded a contract by the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). ... the enterprise use of Agile methodologies in a consistent and high value manner ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... October 12, 2017 , ... ... advisory services for healthcare compliance program management, will showcase a range of technology ... Association for Assisted Living (NCAL) Convention and Expo to be held October 14–18, ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... The company has ... today’s consumer and regulatory authorities worldwide. From Children’s to Adults 50+, every formula ... the highest standard. , These products are also: Gluten Free, Non-GMO, Vegan, ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... , ... October 12, 2017 , ... ... a leader in post-acute health care, have expanded their existing home health joint ... Health. , AccentCare has been operating a joint venture home health company with ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... PA (PRWEB) , ... October 12, 2017 , ... ... is the recipient of a 2017 Folio Magazine Eddie Digital Award for ‘Best B-to-B ... York City on October 11, 2017. , The annual award competition recognizes editorial and ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:10/10/2017)... , Oct. 10, 2017   West Pharmaceutical Services, ... solutions for injectable drug administration, today shared the results ... Adapter for improving the intradermal administration of polio vaccines. ... Vaccination Summit in May 2017 by Dr. Ondrej ... Department, World Health Organization (WHO), and recently published in ...
(Date:10/4/2017)... , Oct. 4, 2017  South Korean-based healthcare product ... training aide "cprCUBE" on Kickstarter. The device will educate ... cardiac arrests with better efficiency compared to the dated ... real-time feedback on efficacy of the compression for a ... has a goal to raise $5,000. ...
(Date:10/2/2017)... Mich. , Oct. 2, 2017 Diplomat ... 8th Day Software and Consulting, LLC , and ... 8th Day Software, based in Tennessee ... LLC. 8th Day expands EnvoyHealth,s service offerings for health ... development. "In an ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: