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Presenilin-1, nicastrin, amyloid precursor protein, and gamma-secretase activity are co-localized in the lysosomal membrane.

Authors: Pasternak, SH  Bagshaw, RD  Guiral, M  Zhang, S  Ackerley, CA  Pak, BJ  Callahan, JW  Mahuran, DJ 
Citation: Pasternak SH, etal., J Biol Chem 2003 Jul 18;278(29):26687-94.
Pubmed: (View Article at PubMed) PMID:12736250
DOI: Full-text: DOI:10.1074/jbc.M212192200

Alzheimer's disease (AD) is caused by the cerebral deposition of beta-amyloid (Abeta), a 38-43-amino acid peptide derived by proteolytic cleavage of the amyloid precursor protein (APP). Initial studies indicated that final cleavage of APP by the gamma-secretase (a complex containing presenilin and nicastrin) to produce Abeta occurred in the endosomal/lysosomal system. However, other studies showing a predominant endoplasmic reticulum localization of the gamma-secretase proteins and a neutral pH optimum of in vitro gamma-secretase assays have challenged this conclusion. We have recently identified nicastrin as a major lysosomal membrane protein. In the present work, we use Western blotting and immunogold electron microscopy to demonstrate that significant amounts of mature nicastrin, presenilin-1, and APP are co-localized with lysosomal associated membrane protein-1 (cAMP-1) in the outer membranes of lysosomes. Furthermore, we demonstrate that these membranes contain an acidic gamma-secretase activity, which is immunoprecipitable with an antibody to nicastrin. These experiments establish APP, nicastrin, and presenilin-1 as resident lysosomal membrane proteins and indicate that gamma-secretase is a lysosomal protease. These data reassert the importance of the lysosomal/endosomal system in the generation of Abeta and suggest a role for lysosomes in the pathophysiology of AD.


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CRRD Object Information
CRRD ID: 724403
Created: 2003-10-01
Species: All species
Last Modified: 2003-10-01
Status: ACTIVE


RGD is funded by grant HL64541 from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute on behalf of the NIH.