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Nanoscale organization of Nicastrin, the substrate receptor of the γ-secretase complex, as independent molecular domains

Kedia, S and Mandal, K and Netrakanti, PR and Jose, M and Sisodia, SS and Nair, D (2021) Nanoscale organization of Nicastrin, the substrate receptor of the γ-secretase complex, as independent molecular domains. In: Molecular Brain, 14 (1).

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1186/s13041-021-00855-x


Alterations in the canonical processing of Amyloid Precursor Protein generate proteoforms that contribute to the onset of Alzheimer�s Disease. Modified composition of γ-secretase or mutations in its subunits has been directly linked to altered generation of Amyloid beta. Despite biochemical evidence about the role of γ-secretase in the generation of APP, the molecular origin of how spatial heterogeneity in the generation of proteoforms arises is not well understood. Here, we evaluated the localization of Nicastrin, a γ-secretase subunit, at nanometer sized functional zones of the synapse. With the help of super resolution microscopy, we confirm that Nicastrin is organized into nanodomains of high molecular density within an excitatory synapse. A similar nanoorganization was also observed for APP and the catalytic subunit of γ-secretase, Presenilin 1, that were discretely associated with Nicastrin nanodomains. Though Nicastrin is a functional subunit of γ-secretase, the Nicastrin and Presenilin1 nanodomains were either colocalized or localized independent of each other. The Nicastrin and Presenilin domains highlight a potential independent regulation of these molecules different from their canonical secretase function. The collisions between secretases and substrate molecules decide the probability and rate of product formation for transmembrane proteolysis. Our observations of secretase nanodomains indicate a spatial difference in the confinement of substrate and secretases, affecting the local probability of product formation by increasing their molecular availability, resulting in differential generation of proteoforms even within single synapses. © 2021, The Author(s).

Item Type: Journal Article
Publication: Molecular Brain
Publisher: BioMed Central Ltd
Additional Information: The copyright for this article belongs to Authors
Department/Centre: Division of Biological Sciences > Centre for Neuroscience
Date Deposited: 28 Nov 2021 07:41
Last Modified: 28 Nov 2021 07:41
URI: http://eprints.iisc.ac.in/id/eprint/70409

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