Domain a’ of protein disulfide isomerase plays key role in inhibiting α-synuclein fibril formation
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- Cheng, H., Wang, L. & Wang, Cc. Cell Stress and Chaperones (2010) 15: 415. doi:10.1007/s12192-009-0157-2
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α-Synuclein (αSyn) is the main component of Lewy bodies formed in midbrain dopaminergic neurons which is a pathological characteristic of Parkinson's disease. It has been recently showed to induce endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress and impair ER functions. However, the mechanism of how ER responds to αSyn toxicity is poorly understood. In the present study, we found that protein disulfide isomerase (PDI), a stress protein abundant in ER, effectively inhibits αSyn fibril formation in vitro. In PDI molecule with a structure of abb’xa’c, domain a’ was found to be essential and sufficient for PDI to inhibit αSyn fibril formation. PDI was further found to be more avid for binding with intermediate species formed during αSyn fibril formation, and the binding was more intensive in the later lag phase. Our results provide new insight into the role of PDI in protecting ER from the deleterious effects of misfolded protein accumulation in many neurodegenerative diseases.