Activation of microglial cells by PrP and β-amyloid fragments raises intracellular calcium through L-type voltage sensitive calcium channels

Valerio Silei, Cinzia Fabrizi, Giorgio Venturini, Mario Salmona, Orso Bugiani, Fabrizio Tagliavini, Giuliana Maria Lauro

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The prion protein (PrP) and the amyloid β (Aβ) precursor protein (APP) are two normal proteins constitutively synthesised in human brain. An altered form of PrP accumulates in Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, while Aβ is involved in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease. Synthetic fragments of both proteins, PrP106-126 and β25-35 (β25-35), have been demonstrated to induce neurodegeneration and microglia activation. This study was undertaken to compare PrP106-126 and β25-35 capability of activating human resting microglial cells. Our results show that both peptides are able to induce microglial activation and to elicit an increase in [Ca2+](i) levels in cells loaded with calcium-green 1. Inhibitors of L-type voltage-sensitive calcium channels (verapamil, nifedipine and diltiazem) prevented the increase in [Ca2+](i) concentration as observed after treatment with PrP106-126 and β25-35, thus indicating a transmembrane calcium influx through these channels. In addition, verapamil abolished the proliferative effect of both PrP106-126 and β25-35.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)168-170
Number of pages3
JournalBrain Research
Volume818
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Feb 6 1999

Keywords

  • β-amyloid
  • Calcium channel
  • Human microglia
  • PrP

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)

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