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Type: Journal article
Title: Alpha-synuclein aggregates activate calcium pump SERCA leading to calcium dysregulation
Author: Betzer, C.
Lassen, L.
Olsen, A.
Kofoed, R.
Reimer, L.
Gregersen, E.
Zheng, J.
Calì, T.
Gai, W.
Chen, T.
Moeller, A.
Brini, M.
Fu, Y.
Halliday, G.
Brudek, T.
Aznar, S.
Pakkenberg, B.
Andersen, J.
Jensen, P.
Citation: EMBO Reports, 2018; 19(5):e44617-1-e44617-21
Publisher: Wiley
Issue Date: 2018
ISSN: 1469-221X
Statement of
Cristine Betzer, Louise Berkhoudt Lassen, Anders Olsen, Rikke Hahn Kofoed, Lasse Reimer ... Tong Chen ... et al.
Abstract: Aggregation of α-synuclein is a hallmark of Parkinson's disease and dementia with Lewy bodies. We here investigate the relationship between cytosolic Ca2+ and α-synuclein aggregation. Analyses of cell lines and primary culture models of α-synuclein cytopathology reveal an early phase with reduced cytosolic Ca2+ levels followed by a later Ca2+ increase. Aggregated but not monomeric α-synuclein binds to and activates SERCA in vitro, and proximity ligation assays confirm this interaction in cells. The SERCA inhibitor cyclopiazonic acid (CPA) normalises both the initial reduction and the later increase in cytosolic Ca2+ CPA protects the cells against α-synuclein-aggregate stress and improves viability in cell models and in Caenorhabditis elegans in vivo Proximity ligation assays also reveal an increased interaction between α-synuclein aggregates and SERCA in human brains affected by dementia with Lewy bodies. We conclude that α-synuclein aggregates bind SERCA and stimulate its activity. Reducing SERCA activity is neuroprotective, indicating that SERCA and down-stream processes may be therapeutic targets for treating α-synucleinopathies.
Keywords: SERCA
endoplasmic reticulum
Rights: © 2018 The Authors. This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution- NonCommercial-NoDerivs 4.0 License, which permits use and distribution in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, the use is noncommercial and no modifications or adaptations are made. ª
DOI: 10.15252/embr.201744617
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Chemistry and Physics publications

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