Research Abstract


Accumulation of multiple neurodegenerative disease-related proteins in familial frontotemporal lobar degeneration associated with granulin mutation

2017年5月4日 Scientific Reports 7 : 1513 doi: 10.1038/s41598-017-01587-6 (2017)


Masato Hosokawa, Hiromi Kondo, Geidy E. Serrano, Thomas G. Beach, Andrew C. Robinson, David M. Mann, Haruhiko Akiyama, Masato Hasegawa and Tetsuaki Arai

Corresponding Author

細川 雅人
東京都医学総合研究所 認知症プロジェクト

In 2006, mutations in the granulin gene were identified in patients with familial Frontotemporal Lobar Degeneration. Granulin transcript haploinsufficiency has been proposed as a disease mechanism that leads to the loss of functional progranulin protein. Granulin mutations were initially found in tau-negative patients, though recent findings indicate that these mutations are associated with other neurodegenerative disorders with tau pathology, including Alzheimer’s disease and corticobasal degeneration. Moreover, a reduction in progranulin in tau transgenic mice is associated with increasing tau accumulation. To investigate the influence of a decline in progranulin protein on other forms of neurodegenerative-related protein accumulation, human granulin mutation cases were investigated by histochemical and biochemical analyses. Results showed a neuronal and glial tau accumulation in granulin mutation cases. Tau staining revealed neuronal pretangle forms and glial tau in both astrocytes and oligodendrocytes. Furthermore, phosphorylated α-synuclein-positive structures were also found in oligodendrocytes and the neuropil. Immunoblot analysis of fresh frozen brain tissues revealed that tau was present in the sarkosyl-insoluble fraction, and composed of three- and four-repeat tau isoforms, resembling Alzheimer’s disease. Our data suggest that progranulin reduction might be the cause of multiple proteinopathies due to the accelerating accumulation of abnormal proteins including TDP-43 proteinopathy, tauopathy and α-synucleinopathy.