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[The American Journal of Pathology] Tau Antibody–Targeting Pathological Species Block Neuronal Uptak


The clinical progression of Alzheimer disease (AD) is associated with the accumulation of tau neurofibrillary tangles, which may spread throughout the cortex by interneuronal tau transfer. If so, targeting extracellular tau species may slow the spreading of tau pathology and possibly cognitive decline. To identify suitable target epitopes, we tested the effects of a panel of tau antibodies on neuronal uptake and aggregation in vitro. Immunodepletion was performed on brain extract from tau-transgenic mice and postmortem AD brain and added to a sensitive fluorescence resonance energy transfer–based tau uptake assay to assess blocking efficacy. The antibodies reduced tau uptake in an epitope-dependent manner: N-terminal (Tau13) and middomain (6C5 and HT7) antibodies successfully prevented uptake of tau species, whereas the distal C-terminal–specific antibody (Tau46) had little effect. Phosphorylation-dependent (40E8 and p396) and C-terminal half (4E4) tau antibodies also reduced tau uptake despite removing less total tau by immunodepletion, suggesting specific interactions with species involved in uptake. Among the seven antibodies evaluated, 6C5 most efficiently blocked uptake and subsequent aggregation. More important, 6C5 also blocked neuron-to-neuron spreading of tau in a unique three-chamber microfluidic device. Furthermore, 6C5 slowed down the progression of tau aggregation even after uptake had begun. Our results imply that not all antibodies/epitopes are equally robust in terms of blocking tau uptake of human AD-derived tau species.

Chloe K. Nobuhara, Sarah L. DeVos, Caitlin Commins, Susanne Wegmann, Benjamin D. Moore, Allyson D. Roe, Isabel Costantino, Matthew P. Frosch, Rose Pitstick, George A. Carlson, Christoph Hock, Roger M. Nitsch, Fabio Montrasio, Jan Grimm, Anne E. Cheung, Anthone W. Dunah, Marion Wittmann, Thierry Bussiere, Paul H. Weinreb, Bradley T. Hyman'Correspondence information about the author Bradley T. HymanEmail the author Bradley T. Hyman, Shuko Takeda'Correspondence information about the author Shuko TakedaEmail the author Shuko Takeda DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ajpath.2017.01.022 hideArticle Info Publication History Published online: April 10, 2017 Accepted: January 31, 2017

Link: http://ajp.amjpathol.org/article/S0002-9440(17)30157-8/abstract

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