Scientific publications

Stabilization of 14-3-3 protein-protein interactions with Fusicoccin-A decreases alpha-synuclein dependent cell-autonomous death in neuronal and mouse models

Jul 19, 2023 | Magazine: Neurobiology of Disease

Rodrigo Vinueza-Gavilanes  1 , Jorge Juan Bravo-González  2 , Leyre Basurco  3 , Chiara Boncristiani  4 , Joaquín Fernández-Irigoyen  5 , Enrique Santamaría  6 , Irene Marcilla  7 , Alberto Pérez-Mediavilla  8 , María Rosario Luquin  9 , Africa Vales  10 , Gloria González-Aseguinolaza  11 , María Soledad Aymerich  12 , Tomás Aragón  13 , Montserrat Arrasate  14


Synucleinopathies are a group of neurodegenerative diseases without effective treatment characterized by the abnormal aggregation of alpha-synuclein (aSyn) protein. Changes in levels or in the amino acid sequence of aSyn (by duplication/triplication of the aSyn gene or point mutations in the encoding region) cause familial cases of synucleinopathies.

However, the specific molecular mechanisms of aSyn-dependent toxicity remain unclear. Increased aSyn protein levels or pathological mutations may favor abnormal protein-protein interactions (PPIs) that could either promote neuronal death or belong to a coping response program against neurotoxicity.

Therefore, the identification and modulation of aSyn-dependent PPIs can provide new therapeutic targets for these diseases. To identify aSyn-dependent PPIs we performed a proximity biotinylation assay based on the promiscuous biotinylase BioID2. When expressed as a fusion protein, BioID2 biotinylates by proximity stable and transient interacting partners, allowing their identification by streptavidin affinity purification and mass spectrometry.

The aSyn interactome was analyzed using BioID2-tagged wild-type (WT) and pathological mutant E46K aSyn versions in HEK293 cells. We found the 14-3-3 epsilon isoform as a common protein interactor for WT and E46K aSyn. 14-3-3 epsilon correlates with aSyn protein levels in brain regions of a transgenic mouse model overexpressing WT human aSyn.

Using a neuronal model in which aSyn cell-autonomous toxicity is quantitatively scored by longitudinal survival analysis, we found that stabilization of 14-3-3 protein-proteins interactions with Fusicoccin-A (FC-A) decreases aSyn-dependent toxicity. Furthermore, FC-A treatment protects dopaminergic neuronal somas in the substantia nigra of a Parkinson's disease mouse model.

Based on these results, we propose that the stabilization of 14-3-3 epsilon interaction with aSyn might reduce aSyn toxicity, and highlight FC-A as a potential therapeutic compound for synucleinopathies.

CITATION  Neurobiol Dis. 2023 May 26;106166. doi: 10.1016/j.nbd.2023.106166