Niclosamide Prevents the Formation of Large Ubiquitin-Containing Aggregates Caused by Proteasome Inhibition
alpha-Synuclein (alpha-syn) and ubiquitin (Ub) are major protein components deposited in Lewy bodies (LBs) and Lewy neurites, which are pathologic hallmarks of idiopathic Parkinson disease (PD). Almost 90% of alpha-syn in LBs is phosphorylated at serine 129 (Ser(129)). However, the role of Ser(129)-phosphorylated alpha-syn in the biogenesis of LBs remains unclear. Here, we show that compared with coexpression of wild type (WT)alpha-syn and Ub, coexpression of phospho-mimic mutant alpha-syn (S129D) and Ub in neuro2a cells results in an increase of Ub-conjugates and the formation of ubiquitinated inclusions. Furthermore, S129D alpha-syn fails to increase the Ub-conjugates and form ubiquitinated inclusions in the presence of a K63R mutant Ub. In addition, as compared with WT alpha-syn, S129D alpha-syn increased cytoplasmic and neuritic aggregates of itself in neuro2a cells treated with H(2)O(2) and serum deprivation. These results suggest that the contribution of Ser(129)-phosphorylated alpha-syn to the Lys(63)-linked Ub-conjugates and aggregation of itself may be involved in the biogenesis of LBs in Parkinson disease and other related synucleinopathies.