Preparation of Tau Oligomers After the Protein Extraction from Bacteria and Brain Cortices

  • Elentina K. Argyrousi
  • Agnieszka Staniszewski
  • Russell E. Nicholls
  • Ottavio Arancio
Part of the Methods in Molecular Biology book series (MIMB, volume 1779)


Oligomerization of soluble tau protein is attracting the attention of an increasingly larger number of scientists involved in research on Alzheimer’s disease and other tauopathies. A variety of methods have been developed for the purification of proteins from biological tissues and bacterial cells. Various types of high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) and affinity tags represent the most common techniques for isolating proteins. Here, we describe a procedure for extracting recombinant tau protein from bacterial cells, utilizing a 6×His affinity tag, or endogenous tau from brain cortices using acid extraction followed by fast protein liquid chromatography (FPLC). Additionally, we introduce a method for oligomerization based on reduction and oxidation of cysteine residues. Our preparation assures high yield of tau protein, while preserving its physiological function.

Key words

Recombinant tau Tau extraction Tau oligomerization Affinity tag purification Fast protein liquid chromatography Alzheimer’s disease Tauopathy 



We wish to thank Mauro Fà for his contribution during the development of the methodology. The work has been supported by NIH grants NS049442 and AG049402 (O.A.).


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Elentina K. Argyrousi
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  • Agnieszka Staniszewski
    • 1
    • 2
  • Russell E. Nicholls
    • 1
    • 2
  • Ottavio Arancio
    • 1
    • 2
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of Pathology and Cell BiologyColumbia UniversityNew YorkUSA
  2. 2.The Taub Institute for Research on Alzheimer’s Disease and the Aging BrainColumbia UniversityNew YorkUSA
  3. 3.Department of Psychiatry and Neuropsychology, School for Mental Health and Neuroscience (MHeNS)Maastricht UniversityMaastrichtThe Netherlands
  4. 4.Department of MedicineColumbia UniversityNew YorkUSA

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