Clearance of intracellular tau protein from neuronal cells via VAMP8-induced secretion.

The Journal of Biological Chemistry
Julie PilliodNicole Leclerc


In Alzheimer's disease (AD), tau, a microtubule-associated protein (MAP), becomes hyperphosphorylated, aggregates, and accumulates in the somato-dendritic compartment of neurons. In parallel to its intracellular accumulation in AD, tau is also released in the extracellular space, as revealed by its increased presence in cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). Consistent with this, recent studies, including ours, have reported that neurons secrete tau, and several therapeutic strategies aim to prevent the intracellular tau accumulation. Previously, we reported that late endosomes were implicated in tau secretion. Here, we explore the possibility of preventing intracellular tau accumulation by increasing tau secretion. Using neuronal models, we investigated whether overexpression of the vesicle-associated membrane protein 8 (VAMP8), an R-SNARE found on late endosomes, could increase tau secretion. The overexpression of VAMP8 significantly increased tau secretion, decreasing its intracellular levels in the neuroblastoma (N2a) cell line. Increased tau secretion by VAMP8 was also observed in murine hippocampal slices. The intracellular reduction of tau by VAMP8 overexpression correlated to a decrease of acetylated tubulin induced by tau overexpr...Continue Reading

Related Concepts

Alzheimer's Disease
Plasma Membrane
Cerebrospinal Fluid
Extracellular Space
Hippocampus (Brain)
Microscopy, Fluorescence
Microtubule-Associated Proteins

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