Apolipoprotein E4 (ApoE4) is the most important and prevalent risk factor for late-onset Alzheimer's disease (AD). The isoelectric point of ApoE4 matches the pH of the early endosome (EE), causing its delayed dissociation from ApoE receptors and hence impaired endolysosomal trafficking, disruption of synaptic homeostasis and reduced amyloid clearance. We have shown that enhancing endosomal acidification by inhibiting the EE-specific sodium-hydrogen exchanger 6 (NHE6) restores vesicular trafficking and normalizes synaptic homeostasis. Remarkably and unexpectedly, loss of NHE6 (encoded by the gene Slc9a6) in mice effectively suppressed amyloid deposition even in the absence of ApoE4, suggesting that accelerated acidification of early endosomes caused by the absence of NHE6 occludes the effect of ApoE on amyloid plaque formation. NHE6 suppression or inhibition may thus be a universal, ApoE-independent approach to prevent amyloid buildup in the brain. These findings suggest a novel therapeutic approach for the prevention of AD by which partial NHE6 inhibition reverses the ApoE4 induced endolysosomal trafficking defect and reduces plaque load.
All relevant data are included in the manuscript
- Joachim Herz
- Joachim Herz
The funders had no role in study design, data collection and interpretation, or the decision to submit the work for publication.
Animal experimentation: All animal procedures were performed according to the approved guidelines (Animal Welfare Assurance Number D16-00296) for Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas.
- Jeannie Chin, Baylor College of Medicine, United States
- Received: July 7, 2021
- Accepted: September 19, 2021
- Accepted Manuscript published: October 7, 2021 (version 1)
© 2021, Pohlkamp et al.
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