Gail V. W. Johnson

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In 2008 we published the first set of guidelines for standardizing research in autophagy. Since then, research on this topic has continued to accelerate, and many new scientists have entered the field. Our knowledge base and relevant new technologies have also been expanding. Accordingly, it is important to update these guidelines for monitoring autophagy(More)
Glycogen synthase kinase-3 (GSK3) is now recognized as a key component of a surprisingly large number of cellular processes and diseases. Several mechanisms play a part in controlling the actions of GSK3, including phosphorylation, protein complex formation, and subcellular distribution. These are used to control and direct the far-reaching influences of(More)
Huntington's disease (HD) is initiated by an abnormally expanded polyglutamine stretch in the huntingtin protein, conferring a novel property on the protein that leads to the loss of striatal neurons. Defects in mitochondrial function have been implicated in the pathogenesis of HD. Here, we have examined the hypothesis that the mutant huntingtin protein may(More)
Histone deacetylase 6 (HDAC6), a unique cytoplasmic deacetylase, likely plays a role in neurodegeneration by coordinating cell responses to abnormal protein aggregation. Here, we provide in vitro and in vivo evidence that HDAC6 interacts with tau, a microtubule-associated protein that forms neurofibrillary tangles in Alzheimer's disease. This interaction is(More)
Tau is a group of neuronal microtubule-associated proteins that are formed by alternative mRNA splicing and accumulate in neurofibrillary tangles in Alzheimer's disease (AD) brain. Tau plays a key role in regulating microtubule dynamics, axonal transport and neurite outgrowth, and all these functions of tau are modulated by site-specific phosphorylation.(More)
Glycogen synthase kinase 3 (GSK3) is a widely expressed Ser/Thr protein kinase that phosphorylates numerous substrates. This large number of substrates requires precise and specific regulation of GSK3 activity, which is achieved by a combination of phosphorylation, localization, and interactions with GSK3-binding proteins. Members of the Wnt canonical(More)
The modulation of tau phosphorylation in response to insulin was examined in human neuroblastoma SH-SY5Y cells. Insulin treatment resulted in a transient increase in tau phosphorylation followed by a decrease in tau phosphorylation that correlated directly with a sequential activation and deactivation of glycogen synthase kinase-3beta (GSK-3beta). The(More)
Peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-gamma (PPARgamma) is a member of the PPAR family of transcription factors. Synthetic PPARgamma agonists are used as oral anti-hyperglycemic drugs for the treatment of non-insulin-dependent diabetes. However, emerging evidence indicates that PPARgamma activators can also prevent or attenuate neurodegeneration. Given(More)
Nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 (Nrf2) is a pivotal transcription factor in the defence against oxidative stress. Here we provide evidence that activation of the Nrf2 pathway reduces the levels of phosphorylated tau by induction of an autophagy adaptor protein NDP52 (also known as CALCOCO2) in neurons. The expression of NDP52, which we show has(More)
Transglutaminase 2 (TG2) is the most widely distributed member of the transglutaminase family with almost all cell types in the body expressing TG2 to varying extents. In addition to being widely expressed, TG2 is an extremely versatile protein exhibiting transamidating, protein disulphide isomerase and guanine and adenine nucleotide binding and hydrolyzing(More)