Effect of Pin1 or microtubule binding on dephosphorylation of FTDP-17 mutant Tau

Kensuke Yotsumoto, Taro Saito, Akiko Asada, Takayuki Oikawa, Taeko Kimura, Chiyoko Uchida, Koichi Ishiguro, Takafumi Uchida, Masato Hasegawa, Shin Ichi Hisanaga

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19 Citations (Scopus)


Neurodegenerative tauopathies, including Alzheimer disease, are characterized by abnormal hyperphosphorylation of the microtubule-associated protein Tau. One group of tauopathies, known as frontotemporal dementia with parkinsonism linked to chromosome 17 (FTDP-17), is directly associated with mutations of the gene tau. However, it is unknown why mutant Tau is highly phosphorylated in the patient brain. In contrast to in vivo high phosphorylation, FTDP-17 Tau is phosphorylated less than wild-type Tau in vitro. Because phosphorylation is a balance between kinase and phosphatase activities, we investigated dephosphorylation of mutant Tau proteins, P301L and R406W. Tau phosphorylated by Cdk5-p25 was dephosphorylated by protein phosphatases in rat brain extracts. Compared with wild-type Tau, R406W was dephosphorylated faster and P301L slower. The two-dimensional phosphopeptide map analysis suggested that faster dephosphorylation of R406W was due to a lack of phosphorylation at Ser-404, which is relatively resistant to dephosphorylation. We studied the effect of the peptidylprolyl isomerase Pin1 or microtubule binding on dephosphorylation of wild-type Tau, P301L, and R406W in vitro. Pin1 catalyzes the cis/trans isomerization of phospho-Ser/Thr-Pro sequences in a subset of proteins. Dephosphorylation of wild-type Tau was reduced in brain extracts of Pin1-knockout mice, and this reduction was not observed with P301L and R406W. On the other hand, binding to microtubules almost abolished dephosphorylation of wild-type and mutant Tau proteins. These results demonstrate that mutation of Tau and its association with microtubules may change the conformation of Tau, thereby suppressing dephosphorylation and potentially contributing to the etiology of tauopathies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)16840-16847
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number25
Publication statusPublished - 2009 Jun 19
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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