Brain-reactive autoantibodies prevalent in human sera increase intraneuronal amyloid-β(1-42) deposition.


Previous studies have reported immunoglobulin-positive neurons in Alzheimer's disease (AD) brains, an observation indicative of blood-brain barrier (BBB) breakdown. Recently, we demonstrated the nearly ubiquitous presence of brain-reactive autoantibodies in human sera. The significance of these observations to AD pathology is unknown. Here, we show that IgG-immunopositive neurons are abundant in brain regions exhibiting AD pathology, including intraneuronal amyloid-β(42) (Aβ(42)) and amyloid plaques, and confirm by western analysis that brain-reactive autoantibodies are nearly ubiquitous in human serum. To investigate a possible interrelationship between neuronal antibody binding and Aβ pathology, we tested the effects of human serum autoantibodies on the intraneuronal deposition of soluble Aβ(42) peptide in adult mouse neurons in vitro (organotypic brain slice cultures). Binding of human autoantibodies to mouse neurons dramatically increased the rate and extent of intraneuronal Aβ(42) accumulation in the mouse cerebral cortex and hippocampus. Additionally, individual sera exhibited variable potency related to their capacity to enhance intraneuronal Aβ(42) peptide accumulation and immunolabel neurons in AD brain sections. Replacement of human sera with antibodies targeting abundant neuronal surface proteins resulted in a comparable enhancement of Aβ(42) accumulation in mouse neurons. Overall, results suggest that brain-reactive autoantibodies are ubiquitous in the blood and that a defective BBB allows these antibodies to access the brain interstitium, bind to neuronal surfaces and enhance intraneuronal deposition of Aβ(42) in AD brains. Thus, in the context of BBB compromise, brain-reactive autoantibodies may be an important risk factor for the initiation and/or progression of AD as well as other neurodegenerative diseases.

DOI: 10.3233/JAD-2011-110098

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@article{Nagele2011BrainreactiveAP, title={Brain-reactive autoantibodies prevalent in human sera increase intraneuronal amyloid-β(1-42) deposition.}, author={Robert G . Nagele and Peter M Clifford and Gilbert Siu and Eli Levin and Nimish Kumar Acharya and Min Han and Mary C. Kosciuk and Venkat V. Venkataraman and Semah B Zavareh and Shabnam Zarrabi and Kristin J Kinsler and Nikhil Gautam Thaker and Eric P. Nagele and Jacqueline M Dash and Hoau Yan Wang and Andrew S. Levitas}, journal={Journal of Alzheimer's disease : JAD}, year={2011}, volume={25 4}, pages={605-22} }