Conformational behavior and aggregation of ataxin-3 in SDS

Helen Michelle Saunders, Victoria Anne Hughes, Roberto Cappai, Stephen Paul Bottomley

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7 Citations (Scopus)


Spinocerebellar ataxia type 3 (SCA3) is one of nine polyglutamine (polyQ) diseases all characterized by the presence of intraneuronal inclusions that contain aggregated protein. Aggregation of ataxin-3, the causative protein of SCA3, has been well characterized in vitro, with both pathogenic and non-pathogenic length ataxin-3 undergoing fibrillogenesis. However, only ataxin-3 containing an expanded polyQ tract leads to SCA3. Therefore other cellular factors, not present in previous in vitro studies, may modulate aggregation during disease. The interactions between fibrillar species and cell membranes have been characterized in a number of amyloid diseases, including Huntington s Disease, and these interactions affect aggregation and toxicity. We have characterized the effects of the membrane mimetic sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS) on ataxin-3 structure and aggregation, to show that both micellar and non-micellar SDS have differing effects on the two stages of ataxin-3 aggregation. We also demonstrate that fibrillar ataxin-3 binds phospholipids, in particular phosphorylated phosphotidylinositols. These results highlight the effect of intracellular factors on the ataxin-3 misfolding landscape and their implications in SCA3 and polyQ diseases in general are discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere69416
Number of pages10
JournalPLoS ONE
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 2013

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