The Alzheimer's amyloid β-peptide (Aβ) binds a specific DNA Aβ-interacting domain (AβID) in the APP, BACE1, and APOE promoters in a sequence-specific manner: characterizing a new regulatory motif.
Deposition of extracellular plaques, primarily consisting of amyloid β peptide (Aβ), in the brain is the confirmatory diagnostic of Alzheimer's disease (AD); however, the physiological and pathological role of Aβ is not fully understood. Herein, we demonstrate novel Aβ activity as a putative transcription factor upon AD-associated genes. We used oligomers from 5'-flanking regions of the apolipoprotein E (APOE), Aβ-precursor protein (APP) and β-amyloid site cleaving enzyme-1 (BACE1) genes for electrophoretic mobility shift assay (EMSA) with different fragments of the Aβ peptide. Our results suggest that Aβ bound to an Aβ-interacting domain (AβID) with a consensus of "KGGRKTGGGG". This peptide-DNA interaction was sequence specific, and mutation of the first "G" of the decamer's terminal "GGGG" eliminated peptide-DNA interaction. Furthermore, the cytotoxic Aβ25-35 fragment had greatest DNA affinity. Such specificity of binding suggests that the AβID is worth of further investigation as a site wherein the Aβ peptide may act as a transcription factor. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.