Navigation Links
UIC chemists characterize Alzheimer's neurotoxin structure
Date:12/3/2007

Amyloid plaques, the hallmark of Alzheimer's disease, are clumps of fiber-like misfolded proteins which many experts think cause this devastating neurodegenerative disease.

While effective treatment remains an elusive goal, new research by University of Illinois at Chicago chemists suggests a possible new approach.

Yoshitaka Ishii, associate professor of chemistry, and his students managed to capture and characterize a crucial intermediate step in the formation of amyloid plaque fibers, or fibrils, showing tiny spheres averaging 20 nanometers in diameter assembling into sheet-like structures comparable to that seen in formation of fibrils.

Fibrils made of small proteins called amyloid-beta are toxic to nerve cells, but intermediate spheres, including those identified by Ishii's group, are more than 10 times as poisonous. That has made the spherical intermediates a new suspect for causing Alzheimer's disease.

"The problem with studying the structure of this intermediate form is that it's so unstable," said Ishii. His team's approach, he said, was to 'freeze-trap' the fleeting intermediate form, then use solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance to determine its structure and electron microscopes to study its morphology, or shape.

Ishii and his coworkers confirmed that the intermediate spherical stage of amyloid is more toxic than the final-form fibrils. Their findings are the first to pinpoint sheet formation at the toxic intermediate stage in the misfolding of the Alzheimer's amyloid protein and support the notion that the process of forming the layered sheet structure might be what triggers toxicity and kills nerve cells.

"Our method characterized the detailed molecular structure of this unstable, intermediate species," Ishii said. "To the best of our knowledge, this is the first characterization of detailed molecular structures for toxic amyloid intermediates. We found that the structure was very similar to the final (fibril) form, which wasn't expected at all."

Ishii said a complete determination of the intermediate structure remains to be done, but he is confident his lab will be able to do that. Once completed, the findings may provide pharmaceutical manufacturers with the information they need to create drugs that will prevent interaction between the toxic molecules and nerve cells.

Ishii said the method can also be applied to structural studies of proteins associate with other neurodegenerative diseases, including Parkinson's, and prion diseases, such as Creutzfeldt-Jakob.

"We're also interested in applying our technique in the nanoscience field to examine the formation process of peptide-based nano-assemblies," he said.


'/>"/>

Contact: Paul Francuch
francuch@uic.edu
312-996-3457
University of Illinois at Chicago
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Computers help chemists fight emerging infections
2. HIDA Calls for Scrutiny of Group Purchasing Organization Distributor Fee Structure
3. Innocoll Agrees the Sale of its CollaRx(R) GENTAMICIN SURGICAL IMPLANT and European Sales and Marketing Infrastructure to EUSA Pharma
4. Purdue Pharma Selects Systech to Provide Sustainable Infrastructure for Serialization
5. Smart insulin nanostructures pass feasibility test, UT study reports
6. CRC Health Group Announces Acquisition of Durhams Structure House, Weight Loss Facility
7. Fallon Community Health Plan Selects CaseNET to Enhance Care Services Infrastructure
8. Centre De Sante et de Services Sociaux Haut-Richelieu-Rouville in Quebec Selects Alcatel-Lucent and SSP Telecom to Upgrade its Communications Infrastructure
9. Novel semiconductor structure bends light wrong way -- the right direction for many applications
10. Palmer College of Chiropractic Selects Colubris Networks to Provide Wireless Infrastructure at Three U.S. Campuses
11. Pharmos Restructures Operations in Israel
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... Leading pediatric oncology experts at Children’s National ... 49th Congress of the International Society of Paediatric Oncology (SIOP) Oct. 12-15. ... for Cancer and Blood Disorders at Children’s National, and Stephen P. Hunger, M.D., ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... Women-owned ... Michigan’s 2017 Best and Brightest in Wellness® by Best and Brightest. OnSite Wellness ... on Friday, Oct. 20 from 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Henry ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... October 12, 2017 , ... ... of $3,296 in property taxes a year. In some states—like New York, New ... , By contrast, many overseas retirement havens have extremely low property-tax rates, which ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... D.C. (PRWEB) , ... October 12, 2017 , ... ... Cal Dining at the University of California Berkeley, and other leading institutions in ... the buying power of institutions to change the way animals are raised for ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... ... has expanded its executive staff with the addition of industry sales leader, Thomas ... Slott will develop the national distribution and sales network, direct the efforts of ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:10/11/2017)... Oct. 11, 2017  True Health, a leader ... its effort during National Breast Cancer Awareness month ... risks. Research ... calculated that more than 10 million American women ... in BRCA1 or BRCA2 and have not had testing. ...
(Date:10/10/2017)... -- NDS received FDA 510(k) clearance in May 2017 for its highly ... designed for endoscopy environments. An innovative secondary monitor solution, ZeroWire ... support the improvement of patient outcomes, procedural efficiency, and the lowering ... ... ...
(Date:10/7/2017)... IRVING, Texas , Oct. 6, 2017   ... industry with more than $100 billion in purchasing power, ... industry news and information. The Newsroom is ... chain and industry trends, infographics, expert bios, news releases, ... Besides having access to a wealth of resources at ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: