Multiple discrete soluble aggregates influence polyglutamine toxicity in a Huntington's disease model system
Huntington’s disease (HD) results from expansions of polyglutamine stretches (polyQ) in the huntingtin protein (Htt) that promote protein aggregation, neurodegeneration, and death. Since the diversity and sizes of the soluble Htt-polyQ aggregates that have been linked to cytotoxicity are unknown, we investigated soluble Htt-polyQ aggregates using analytical ultracentrifugation. Soon after induction in a yeast HD model system, non-toxic Htt-25Q and cytotoxic Htt-103Q both formed soluble aggregates 29S to 200S in size. Because current models indicate that Htt-25Q does not form soluble aggregates, reevaluation of previous studies may be necessary. Only Htt-103Q aggregation behavior changed, however, with time. At 6 hr mid-sized aggregates (33S to 84S) and large aggregates (greater than 100S) became present while at 24 hr primarily only mid-sized aggregates (20S to 80S) existed. Multiple factors that decreased cytotoxicity of Htt-103Q (changing the length of or sequences adjacent to the polyQ, altering ploidy or chaperone dosage, or deleting anti-aging factors) altered the Htt-103Q aggregation pattern in which the suite of mid-sized aggregates at 6 hr were most correlative with cytotoxicity. Hence, the amelioration of HD and other neurodegenerative diseases may require increased attention to and discrimination of the dynamic alterations in soluble aggregation processes.
Molecular, Cellular and Biomedical Sciences
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)
Xi W, Wang X, Laue TM, Denis CL (2016) “Multiple discrete soluble aggregates influence polyglutamine toxicity in a Huntington's disease model system.” Sci Rep. 6:34916.