Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Possible role of autoantibodies in Alzheimer’s

Date:
May 22, 2012
Source:
University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey (UMDNJ)
Summary:
Research demonstrates how dying or damaged brain cells give rise to autoantibodies in blood that can be reliable biomarkers for early AD diagnosis. Key mechanism mirrors process common to autoimmune disorders.

New research by scientists at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey-School of Osteopathic Medicine (UMDNJ-SOM) demonstrates how dying or damaged brain cells release debris into the bloodstream and give rise to specific autoantibodies that appear to be reliable biomarkers for early diagnosis of Alzheimer's and other neurodegenerative diseases. The researchers also identify a key mechanism in the development of Alzheimer's that mirrors a process that is common in such autoimmune disorders as rheumatoid arthritis.

Related Articles


The study appears online in the Journal of Autoimmunity.

"Our earlier research showed that human blood contains perhaps thousands of autoantibodies for clearing cellular debris, and that some of these autoantibodies can potentially be used to accurately diagnose neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer's and Parkinson's," said Robert Nagele, PhD, a professor of medicine at the New Jersey Institute for Successful Aging at UMDNJ-SOM and the study's corresponding author. "Here, we found that the release of damaged proteins from dying neurons triggers the production of specific brain-reactive autoantibodies that are directed against this protein debris, a response similar to that seen in some autoimmune disorders."

The researchers focused on the role of enzymes, called PADs, in citrullination, a process that converts one type of amino acid into another (amino acids are the building blocks of proteins). After examining postmortem human brain tissue from individuals with Alzheimer's disease and healthy controls, the researchers found that neurons located in the area of the brain first affected by Alzheimer's disease accumulate both citrullinated proteins and a PAD enzyme. In addition, they demonstrated that a specific type of protein, PTCD2, which has been shown to be a potent biomarker for Alzheimer's, was present in citrullinated form in the neuron cells of the Alzheimer's disease brain samples.

Their results suggest that when neuron cells die, they release their contents into the fluid that surrounds the brain. The cellular remains then enter the bloodstream and their presence generates the production of specific autoantibodies that target this neuronal debris. This same protein citrullination process has been linked to the development of autoantibodies in rheumatoid arthritis, one of the most common forms of autoimmune disease.

"Our previous studies provided evidence that some of these autoantibodies may be able to return to the brain through breaches in the blood-brain barrier," said lead author Nimish Acharya of the UMDNJ-Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences and the New Jersey Institute for Successful Aging. "Once there, they selectively bind to the surfaces of neurons, disrupting the function of the brain cells and accelerating the accumulation of beta amyloid deposits. This chronic cycle of protein-debris-generating autoantibodies that can then seep through the blood-brain barrier helps explain the long-term, progressive degeneration that results from Alzheimer's disease."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey (UMDNJ). Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Nimish K. Acharya, Eric P. Nagele, Min Han, Nicholas J. Coretti, Cassandra DeMarshall, Mary C. Kosciuk, Paul A. Boulos, Robert G. Nagele. Neuronal PAD4 expression and protein citrullination: Possible role in production of autoantibodies associated with neurodegenerative disease. Journal of Autoimmunity, 2012; 38 (4): 369 DOI: 10.1016/j.jaut.2012.03.004

Cite This Page:

University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey (UMDNJ). "Possible role of autoantibodies in Alzheimer’s." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 22 May 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/05/120522161338.htm>.
University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey (UMDNJ). (2012, May 22). Possible role of autoantibodies in Alzheimer’s. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 25, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/05/120522161338.htm
University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey (UMDNJ). "Possible role of autoantibodies in Alzheimer’s." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/05/120522161338.htm (accessed October 25, 2014).

Share This



More Mind & Brain News

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Academic Scandal Shocks UNC

Academic Scandal Shocks UNC

AP (Oct. 23, 2014) A scandal involving bogus classes and inflated grades at the University of North Carolina was bigger than previously reported, a new investigation found. (Oct. 23) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Working Mother Getaway: Beaches Turks & Caicos

Working Mother Getaway: Beaches Turks & Caicos

Working Mother (Oct. 22, 2014) Feast your eyes on this gorgeous family-friendly resort. Video provided by Working Mother
Powered by NewsLook.com
What Your Favorite Color Says About You

What Your Favorite Color Says About You

Buzz60 (Oct. 22, 2014) We all have one color we love to wear, and believe it or not, your color preference may reveal some of your character traits. In celebration of National Color Day, Krystin Goodwin (@kyrstingoodwin) highlights what your favorite colors may say about you. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
First-Of-Its-Kind Treatment Gives Man Ability To Walk Again

First-Of-Its-Kind Treatment Gives Man Ability To Walk Again

Newsy (Oct. 21, 2014) A medical team has for the first time given a man the ability to walk again after transplanting cells from his brain onto his severed spinal cord. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins