Tau alters global gene expression affecting chromatin in the early stages of Alzheimer's disease

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Tau alters global gene expression affecting chromatin in the early stages of Alzheimer's disease

Authors

Siano, G.; Varisco, M.; Terrigno, M.; Wang, C.; Groth, M.; Galas, M.-C.; Hoozemans, J. J. M.; Cellerino, A.; Cattaneo, A.; Di Primio, C.

Abstract

Recent research revealed that Tau plays critical roles in various neuronal functions. Our previous work demonstrated that destabilization and nuclear delocalization of Tau can alter the expression of glutamatergic genes, thereby mediating early neuronal damage. Upon analysing gene coexpression of AD temporal regions at different stages and the transcriptional output in differentiated neuroblastoma cells, we discovered that changes in Tau availability are linked to global alterations in gene expression that affect multiple neuronal pathways. Comparison with the human AD temporal region showed that the Tau-dependent modulation of gene expression closely resembles an intermediate stage of AD that precedes the definitive AD condition. Furthermore, we identified the chromatin remodelling pathway as being significantly affected by Tau in both our cellular model and AD brains, with reductions in heterochromatin markers. We propose that Tau is able to globally affect the neuronal transcriptome and that its availability is linked to changes in gene expression during intermediate stages of AD development. In addition, we found that the epigenetic pathway is strongly affected by Tau during the progression of AD.

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