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    Prostaglandin (PG) A1 is a metabolic product of cyclooxygenase 2 (COX-2) that is potentially involved in regulating the development and progression of Alzheimer's disease (AD). PGA1 is a cyclopentenone (cy) PG characterized by the presence of a chemically reactive α,β-unsaturated carbonyl. PGA1 is potentially involved in the regulation of multiple biological processes via Michael addition; however, the specific roles of PGA1 in AD remain unclear. TauP301S transgenic (Tg) mice were used as in vivo AD models, and neuroblastoma (N) 2a cells were used as an in vitro neuronal model. The PGA1-binding proteins were identified by HPLC-MS-MS after intracerebroventricular injection (i.c.v) of PGA1. Western blotting was used to determine tau phosphorylation in PGA1-treated Tg mice in the absence or in the presence of okadaic acid (OA), an inhibitor of protein phosphatase (PP) 2A. A combination of pull-down assay, immunoprecipitation, western blotting, and HPLC-MS-MS was used to determine that the PP2A scaffold subunit A alpha (PPP2R1A) is activated by the direct binding of PGA1 to cysteine 377. The effect of inhibiting tau hyperphosphorylation was tested in the Morris maze to determine the inhibitory effects of PGA1 on cognitive decline in tauP301S Tg mice. Incubation with N2a cells, pull-down assay, and mass spectrometry (MS) analysis revealed and indicated that PGA1 binds to more than 1000 proteins; some of these proteins are associated with AD and especially with tauopathies. Moreover, short-term administration of PGA1 in tauP301S Tg mice significantly decreased tau phosphorylation at Thr181, Ser202, and Ser404 in a dose-dependent manner. This effect was caused by the activation of PPP2R1A in tauP301S Tg mice. Importantly, PGA1 can form a Michael adduct with cysteine 377 of PPP2R1A, which is critical for the enzymatic activity of PP2A. Long-term treatment of tauP301S Tg mice with PGA1 activated PP2A and significantly reduced tau phosphorylation resulting in improvements in cognitive decline in tauP301S Tg mice. Our data provided new insight into the mechanisms of the ameliorating effects of PGA1 on cognitive decline in tauP301S Tg mice by activating PP2A via a mechanism involving the formation of a Michael adduct with cysteine 377 of PPP2R1A.


    Guo-Biao Xu, Pei-Pei Guan, Pu Wang. Prostaglandin A1 Decreases the Phosphorylation of Tau by Activating Protein Phosphatase 2A via a Michael Addition Mechanism at Cysteine 377. Molecular neurobiology. 2021 Mar;58(3):1114-1127

    PMID: 33095414

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