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Keywords:

  • adapter protein;
  • amyloid precursor protein;
  • Fe65;
  • FRET, gamma cleavage;
  • intracellular domain

Abstract

Amyloid-β, the peptide that deposits as senile plaques in Alzheimer's disease, is derived from the amyloid precursor protein (APP) by a gamma secretase-mediated intramembranous cleavage. In addition to amyloid-β, this cleavage produces a carboxyl-terminal intracellular fragment which has an unknown function. The carboxyl-terminal domain of APP interacts in the cytoplasm with an adapter protein, Fe65. We demonstrate by laser scanning confocal microscopy that a gamma secretase generated APP carboxyl-terminal domain, tagged with green fluorescent protein (GFP), translocates to the nucleus in a manner dependent upon stabilization by the adapter protein Fe65; APP which has been mutated to block interactions with Fe65 cannot be detected in the nucleus. The APP-CT domain continues to interact with Fe65 in the nucleus, as determined by both colocalization and fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET). Visualization of the APP-CT-Fe65 complex in the nucleus may serve as a readout for processes that modify gamma secretase release of APP-CT.