Mutations in Amyloid-ß Precursor Protein (APP) and BRI2/ITM2b genes cause Familial Alzheimer and Danish Dementias (FAD/FDD), respectively. APP processing by BACE1, which is inhibited by BRI2, yields sAPPß and ß-CTF. ß-CTF is cleaved by gamma-secretase to produce Aß. A knock-in mouse model of FDD, called FDDKI, shows deficits in memory and synaptic plasticity, which can be attributed to sAPPß/ß-CTF but not Aß. We have investigated further the pathogenic function of ß-CTF focusing on Thr668 of ß-CTF because phosphorylation of Thr668 is increased in AD cases. We created a knock-in mouse bearing a Thr668Ala mutation (APPTA mice) that prevents phosphorylation at this site. This mutation prevents the development of memory and synaptic plasticity deficits in FDDKI mice. These data are consistent with a role for the carboxyl-terminal APP domain in the pathogenesis of dementia and suggest that averting the noxious role of Thr668 is a viable therapeutic strategy for human dementias.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)