Author(s): Tanaka M, Machida Y, Niu S, Ikeda T, Jana NR,
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Abstract Inhibition of polyglutamine-induced protein aggregation could provide treatment options for polyglutamine diseases such as Huntington disease. Here we showed through in vitro screening studies that various disaccharides can inhibit polyglutamine-mediated protein aggregation. We also found that various disaccharides reduced polyglutamine aggregates and increased survival in a cellular model of Huntington disease. Oral administration of trehalose, the most effective of these disaccharides, decreased polyglutamine aggregates in cerebrum and liver, improved motor dysfunction and extended lifespan in a transgenic mouse model of Huntington disease. We suggest that these beneficial effects are the result of trehalose binding to expanded polyglutamines and stabilizing the partially unfolded polyglutamine-containing protein. Lack of toxicity and high solubility, coupled with efficacy upon oral administration, make trehalose promising as a therapeutic drug or lead compound for the treatment of polyglutamine diseases. The saccharide-polyglutamine interaction identified here thus provides a new therapeutic strategy for polyglutamine diseases.
This article was published in Nat Med
and referenced in Journal of Developing Drugs