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Tau oligomers

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Book Series: Frontiers Research Topics ISSN: 16648714 ISBN: 9782889192618 Year: Pages: 113 DOI: 10.3389/978-2-88919-261-8 Language: English
Publisher: Frontiers Media SA
Subject: Psychiatry --- Neurology --- Medicine (General) --- Science (General)
Added to DOAB on : 2015-12-03 13:02:24
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Abstract

Neurofibrillary tangles (NFTs) composed of intracellular aggregates of tau protein are a key neuropathological feature of Alzheimer's Disease (AD) and other neurodegenerative diseases, collectively termed tauopathies. The abundance of NFTs has been reported to correlate positively with the severity of cognitive impairment in AD. However, accumulating evidences derived from studies of experimental models have identified that NFTs themselves may not be neurotoxic. Now, many of tau researchers are seeking a "toxic" form of tau protein. Moreover, it was suggested that a "toxic" tau was capable to seed aggregation of native tau protein and to propagate in a prion-like manner. However, the exact neurotoxic tau species remain unclear. Because mature tangles seem to be non-toxic component, "tau oligomers" as the candidate of “toxic” tau have been investigated for more than one decade. In this topic, we will discuss our consensus of “tau oligomers” because the term of “tau oligomers” [e.g. dimer (disulfide bond-dependent or independent), multimer (more than dimer), granular (definition by EM or AFM) and maybe small filamentous aggregates] has been used by each researchers definition. From a biochemical point of view, tau protein has several unique characteristics such as natively unfolded conformation, thermo-stability, acid-stability, and capability of post-translational modifications. Although tau protein research has been continued for a long time, we are still missing the mechanisms of NFT formation. It is unclear how the conversion is occurred from natively unfolded protein to abnormally mis-folded protein. It remains unknown how tau protein can be formed filaments [e.g. paired helical filament (PHF), straight filament and twisted filament] in cells albeit in vitro studies confirmed tau self-assembly by several inducing factors. Researchers are still debating whether tau oligomerization is primary event rather than tau phosphorylation in the tau pathogenesis. Inhibition of either tau phosphorylation or aggregation has been investigated for the prevention of tauopathies, however, it will make an irrelevant result if we don’t know an exact target of neurotoxicity. It is a time to have a consensus of definition, terminology and methodology for the identification of "tau oligomers".

CaMKII in Cardiac Health and Disease

Authors: --- --- ---
Book Series: Frontiers Research Topics ISSN: 16648714 ISBN: 9782889192991 Year: Pages: 165 DOI: 10.3389/978-2-88919-299-1 Language: English
Publisher: Frontiers Media SA
Subject: Neurology --- Medicine (General) --- Therapeutics --- Science (General)
Added to DOAB on : 2015-12-10 11:59:07
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The calcium-calmodulin dependent protein kinases (CaMKs) are a broadly expressed family of calcium-sensitive intracellular kinases, which are responsible for transducing cytosolic calcium signals into phosphorylation-based regulation of proteins and physiological functions. As the multifunctional member of the family, CaMKII has become the most prominent for its roles in the central nervous system and heart, where it controls a diverse range of calcium-dependent processes; from learning and memory at the neuronal synapse, to cellular growth and death in the myocardium. In the heart, CaMKII directly regulates many of the most important ion channels and calcium handling proteins, and controls the expression of an ever-increasing number of transcripts and their downstream products. Functionally, these actions are thought to orchestrate many of the electrophysiologic and contractile adaptations to common cardiac stressors, such as rapid pacing, chronic adrenergic stimulation, and oxidative challenge. In the context of disease, CaMKII has been shown to contribute to a remarkably wide variety of cardiac pathologies, of which heart failure (HF) is the most conspicuous. Hyperactivity of CaMKII is an established contributor to pathological cardiac remodeling, and is widely thought to directly promote arrhythmia and contractile dysfunction during HF. Moreover, several non-failing arrhythmia-susceptible phenotypes, which result from specific genetic channelopathies, functionally mimic constitutive channel phosphorylation by CaMKII. Because CaMKII contributes to both the acute and chronic manifestations of major cardiac diseases, but may be only minimally required for homeostasis in the absence of chronic stress, it has come to be one of the most promising therapeutic drug targets in cardiac biology. Thus, development of more specific and deliverable small molecule antagonists remains a key priority for the field. Here we provide a selection of articles to summarize the state of our knowledge regarding CaMKII in cardiac health and disease, with a particular view to highlighting recent developments in CaMKII activation, and new targets in CaMKII-mediated control of myocyte physiology.

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