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Comparative analysis of the intracellular responses to disease-related aggregation-prone proteins

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Andre Melnik, Valentina Cappelletti, Federico Vaggi, Ilaria Piazza, Marco Tognetti, Carmen Schwarz, Gea Cereghetti, Mennat Allah Ahmed, Martin Soste, Kent Matlack, Natalie de Souza, Attila Csikasz-Nagy, Paola Picotti

Original languageEnglish
Article number103862
JournalJournal Of Proteomics
Published15 Aug 2020

King's Authors


Aggregation-prone proteins (APPs) have been implicated in numerous human diseases but the underlying mechanisms are incompletely understood. Here we comparatively analysed cellular responses to different APPs. Our study is based on a systematic proteomic and phosphoproteomic analysis of a set of yeast proteotoxicity models expressing different human disease-related APPs, which accumulate intracellular APP inclusions and exhibit impaired growth. Clustering and functional enrichment analyses of quantitative proteome-level data reveal that the cellular response to APP expression, including the chaperone response, is specific to the APP, and largely differs from the response to a more generalized proteotoxic insult such as heat shock. We further observe an intriguing association between the subcellular location of inclusions and the location of the cellular response, and provide a rich dataset for future mechanistic studies. Our data suggest that care should be taken when designing research models to study intracellular aggregation, since the cellular response depends markedly on the specific APP and the location of inclusions. Further, therapeutic approaches aimed at boosting protein quality control in protein aggregation diseases should be tailored to the subcellular location affected by inclusion formation. Significance: We have examined the global cellular response, in terms of protein abundance and phosphorylation changes, to the expression of five human neurodegeneration-associated, aggregation-prone proteins (APPs) in a set of isogenic yeast models. Our results show that the cellular response to each APP is unique to that protein, is different from the response to thermal stress, and is associated with processes at the subcellular location of APP inclusion formation. These results further our understanding of how cells, in a model organism, respond to expression of APPs implicated in neurodegenerative diseases like Parkinson's, Alzheimer's, and ALS. They have implications for mechanisms of toxicity as well as of protective responses in the cell. The specificity of the response to each APP means that research models of these diseases should be tailored to the APP in question. The subcellular localization of the response suggest that therapeutic interventions should also be targeted within the cell.

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