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    Correlative light and electron microscopy suggests that mutant huntingtin dysregulates the endolysosomal pathway in presymptomatic Huntington’s disease

    Zhou, Y. and Peskett, T.R. and Landles, C. and Warner, J.B. and Sathasivam, K. and Smith, E.J. and Chen, S. and Wetzel, R. and Lashuel, H.A. and Bates, G.P. and Saibil, Helen R. (2021) Correlative light and electron microscopy suggests that mutant huntingtin dysregulates the endolysosomal pathway in presymptomatic Huntington’s disease. Acta Neuropathologica Communications 9 (1), ISSN 2051-5960.

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    Huntington’s disease (HD) is a late onset, inherited neurodegenerative disorder for which early pathogenic events remain poorly understood. Here we show that mutant exon 1 HTT proteins are recruited to a subset of cytoplasmic aggregates in the cell bodies of neurons in brain sections from presymptomatic HD, but not wild-type, mice. This occurred in a disease stage and polyglutamine-length dependent manner. We successfully adapted a high-resolution correlative light and electron microscopy methodology, originally developed for mammalian and yeast cells, to allow us to correlate light microscopy and electron microscopy images on the same brain section within an accuracy of 100 nm. Using this approach, we identified these recruitment sites as single membrane bound, vesicle-rich endolysosomal organelles, specifically as (1) multivesicular bodies (MVBs), or amphisomes and (2) autolysosomes or residual bodies. The organelles were often found in close-proximity to phagophore-like structures. Immunogold labeling localized mutant HTT to non-fibrillar, electron lucent structures within the lumen of these organelles. In presymptomatic HD, the recruitment organelles were predominantly MVBs/amphisomes, whereas in late-stage HD, there were more autolysosomes or residual bodies. Electron tomograms indicated the fusion of small vesicles with the vacuole within the lumen, suggesting that MVBs develop into residual bodies. We found that markers of MVB-related exocytosis were depleted in presymptomatic mice and throughout the disease course. This suggests that endolysosomal homeostasis has moved away from exocytosis toward lysosome fusion and degradation, in response to the need to clear the chronically aggregating mutant HTT protein, and that this occurs at an early stage in HD pathogenesis.


    Item Type: Article
    Keyword(s) / Subject(s): Huntington’s disease, Correlative light and electron microscopy, Electron tomography, Huntingtin aggregation, Polyglutamine, Endolysosomal system, Multivesicular body, Amphisome, Autolysosome, Exocytosis
    School: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Science > School of Natural Sciences
    Depositing User: Administrator
    Date Deposited: 23 Apr 2021 12:45
    Last Modified: 02 Aug 2023 18:09


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