Preparation of α-Synuclein Amyloid Assemblies for Toxicity Experiments

  • Serene W. Chen
  • Nunilo Cremades
Part of the Methods in Molecular Biology book series (MIMB, volume 1779)


Amyloid assemblies of certain proteins, including the Parkinson disease-related protein α-synuclein, are commonly associated with the development and spreading of neurodegenerative diseases, although the nature of the most toxic forms and the mechanisms by which they trigger neurodegeneration remain largely unknown. This is at least in part due to the inherent challenges involved in the preparation of stable and structurally homogeneous samples of amyloid assemblies that could be used in toxicity experiments. Here, we describe the preparation of two different types of stable α-synuclein amyloid assemblies, namely a kinetically trapped oligomeric species and a propagating-competent fibrillar polymorph. The degree of heterogeneity in the samples has been defined and carefully minimized, thus allowing for meaningful structure-toxicity relationships in different α-synuclein amyloid assemblies to be established.

Key words

Amyloid assemblies Protein aggregation Fibril Oligomer α-Synuclein Toxicity Neurodegenerative disorders 



This work was supported by the Agency for Science, Technology and Research, Singapore (S.W.C.) and the Spanish Ministry of Economy, Industry and Competitiveness (BFU-2015-64119-P and RYC-2012-12068, N.C.).


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of ChemistryUniversity of CambridgeCambridge CB2 1EWUnited Kingdom
  2. 2.Institute for Biocomputation and Physics of Complex Systems (BIFI)-Joint Unit BIFI-IQFR (CSIC)University of ZaragozaZaragoza 50018Spain

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