Proteinaceous inclusions are common hallmarks of many neurodegenerative diseases. TDP-43 proteinopathies, consisting of several neurodegenerative diseases, including frontotemporal lobar dementia (FTLD) and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), are characterized by inclusion bodies formed by polyubiquitinated and hyperphosphorylated full-length and truncated TDP-43. The structural properties of TDP-43 aggregates and their relationship to pathogenesis are still ambiguous. Here we demonstrate that the recombinant full-length human TDP-43 forms structurally stable, spherical oligomers that share common epitopes with an anti-amyloid oligomer-specific antibody. The TDP-43 oligomers are stable, have exposed hydrophobic surfaces, exhibit reduced DNA binding capability and are neurotoxic in vitro and in vivo. Moreover, TDP-43 oligomers are capable of cross-seeding Alzheimer's amyloid-β to form amyloid oligomers, demonstrating interconvertibility between the amyloid species. Such oligomers are present in the forebrain of transgenic TDP-43 mice and FTLD-TDP patients. Our results suggest that aside from filamentous aggregates, TDP-43 oligomers may play a role in TDP-43 pathogenesis.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Physics and Astronomy(all)