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Keywords:

  • β-amyloid;
  • autophagy;
  • parkin;
  • Tau phosphorylation;
  • tyrosine kinase

Tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs) are effective therapies for leukaemia. Alzheimer is a neurodegenerative disease characterized by accumulation of β-amyloid (plaques) and hyper-phosphorylated Tau (tangles). Here we show that AD animals have high levels of insoluble parkin and decreased parkin-Beclin-1 interaction, while peripheral administration of TKIs, including Nilotinib and Bosutinib, increases soluble parkin leading to amyloid clearance and cognitive improvement. Blocking Beclin-1 expression with shRNA or parkin deletion prevents tyrosine kinase (TK) inhibition-induced amyloid clearance, suggesting that functional parkin-Beclin-1 interaction mediates amyloid degradation. Isolation of autophagic vacuoles (AVs) in AD mouse brain shows accumulation of parkin and amyloid, consistent with previous results in AD brains, while Bosutinib and Nilotinib increase parkin-Beclin-1 interaction and result in protein deposition in the lysosome. These data suggest that decreased parkin solubility impedes parkin-Beclin-1 interaction and amyloid clearance. We identified two FDA-approved anti-cancer drugs as potential treatment for AD.