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Proteasomal activity in brain differs between species, and brain regions and changes with age

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

B Y Zeng, A D Medhurst, M Jackson, S Rose, P Jenner

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)760 - 766
Number of pages7
JournalMechanisms of Ageing and Development
Issue number6-7
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2005

King's Authors


Age-related increase in protein oxidation in brain coupled to an impairment of proteasomal activity may underline neuronal loss but differences in susceptibility between species and brain regions remain unexplained. We now investigate differences in proteasomal activity, measured as chymotrypsin-, trypsin- and peptidylglutamyl-like hydrolysing activities between brain regions in rats, mice and common marmosets. In aged rats and mice, proteasomal activity was decreased in the cortex, striatum, cerebellum, globus pallidus and substantia nigra overall when compared to young animals. However, in the aged brain only chymotrypsin-like activity was decreased in the cortex and the globus pallidus while only trypsin-like activity was reduced in the cerebellum. In contrast, in the striatum, both chymotrypsin-like and trypsin-like activities were reduced and in the substantia nigra, all the three catalytic activities of proteasome were significantly impaired. Chymotrypsin-like and trypsin-like activities were significantly higher in all the brain regions of marmosets compared to those of mice and rats. Peptidylglutamyl-like activity was only significantly higher in the cerebellum and striatum of marmoset compared to rodents. The data suggest that there is higher proteasome activity in common marmoset brain compared to rat and mouse and that the basal ganglia are more prone to an age-related decrease in proteasomal activity. This may explain the involvement of altered ubiquitin-proteasome system activity in Parkinson's disease and the relationship to ageing. © 2005 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved

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