Isoform-specific modulation by apolipoprotein E of the activities of secreted β-amyloid precursor protein

Steven W. Barger, Mark P. Mattson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

44 Scopus citations


The genes for both the β-amyloid precursor protein and apolipoprotein E (ApoE) have been linked to Alzheimer's disease. This connection suggests the possibility that these proteins interact physically or functionally. To explore this idea, we focused on the neuroprotective activity of secreted amyloid precursor protein (sAPP) and related signal transduction events. After coincubation with ApoE, sAPP exhibited an enhanced [Ca2+]-lowering activity and enhanced protection against excitotoxicity in rat primary hippocampal neurons. In contrast, the stimulation of phosphoinositide production by sAPP was inhibited by ApoE. Kinetic analyses and coimmunoprecipitation experiments indicated that these actions result from formation of a heteromeric complex between ApoE and sAPP. Furthermore, the ApoE4 isoform, which seems to accelerate the onset of Alzheimer's disease, was less potent than ApoE3 in modifying each activity of sAPP. These data suggest that sAPP-dependent neuroprotective mechanisms would be compromised in individuals expressing ApoE4, a scenario that may contribute to the development of Alzheimer's disease.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)60-67
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Neurochemistry
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 1997
Externally publishedYes


  • β-Amyloid precursor protein
  • Alzheimer's disease
  • Apolipoprotein E
  • Calcium
  • Neuroprotection

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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