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The chaperone Clusterin in neurodegeneration-friend or foe?

Bioessays. 2022 May 6:e2100287. doi: 10.1002/bies.202100287. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 35521968.

Authors/Editors: Yuste-Checa P, Bracher A, Hartl FU.
Publication Date: 2022


Fibrillar protein aggregates are the pathological hallmark of a group of age-dependent neurodegenerative conditions, including Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease. Aggregates of the microtubule-associated protein Tau are observed in Alzheimer's disease and primary tauopathies. Tau pathology propagates from cell to cell in a prion-like process that is likely subject to modulation by extracellular chaperones such as Clusterin. We recently reported that Clusterin delayed Tau fibril formation but enhanced the activity of Tau oligomers to seed aggregation of endogenous Tau in a cellular model. In contrast, Clusterin inhibited the propagation of α-Synuclein aggregates associated with Parkinson's disease. These findings raise the possibility of a mechanistic link between Clusterin upregulation observed in Alzheimer's disease and the progression of Tau pathology. Here we review the diverse functions of Clusterin in the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative diseases, focusing on evidence that Clusterin may act either as a suppressor or enhancer of pathology.


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