Title

TrkB neurotrophic activities are blocked by α-synuclein, triggering dopaminergic cell death in Parkinson’s disease

Document Type

Article

Abstract

BDNF/TrkB neurotrophic signaling is essential for dopaminergic neuronal survival, and the activities are reduced in the substantial nigra (SN) of Parkinson’s disease (PD). However, whether α-Syn (alpha-synuclein) aggregation, a hallmark in the remaining SN neurons in PD, accounts for the neurotrophic inhibition remains elusive. Here we show that α-Syn selectively interacts with TrkB receptors and inhibits BDNF/TrkB signaling, leading to dopaminergic neuronal death. α-Syn binds to the kinase domain on TrkB, which is negatively regulated by BDNF or Fyn tyrosine kinase. Interestingly, α-Syn represses TrkB lipid raft distribution, decreases its internalization, and reduces its axonal trafficking. Moreover, α-Syn also reduces TrkB protein levels via up-regulation of TrkB ubiquitination. Remarkably, dopamine’s metabolite 3,4-Dihydroxyphenylacetaldehyde (DOPAL) stimulates the interaction between α-Syn and TrkB. Accordingly, MAO-B inhibitor rasagiline disrupts α-Syn/TrkB complex and rescues TrkB neurotrophic signaling, preventing α-Syn–induced dopaminergic neuronal death and restoring motor functions. Hence, our findings demonstrate a noble pathological role of α-Syn in antagonizing neurotrophic signaling, providing a molecular mechanism that accounts for its neurotoxicity in PD.

Keywords

Dopamine, Lewy bodies, Neurodegenerative diseases, Substantia nigra

Publication Date

10-3-2017

Publication Title

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America

ISSN

00278424

E-ISSN

10916490

Volume

114

Issue

40

First Page

10773

Last Page

10778

PubMed ID

28923922

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

10.1073/pnas.1713969114

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