APP is a transmembrane precursor of β-amyloid, and its mutations cause early-onset familial Alzheimer's disease. We report a toxic function of normal wild-type APP (wtAPP). Treatment of neuronal F11 cells, immortalized embryonic day 13 neurons, overexpressing wtAPP with anti-APP antibodies caused death. Death was not induced by antibody in parental F11 cells, Death by antibody occurred through cell-surface APP, not through secreted APP, in a pertussis toxin-sensitive manner and was typical apoptosis, not observed in primary astrocytes or glioma cells overexpressing wtAPP, but observed in primary cortical neurons. Cell-surface APP thus performs a toxic function as an extracellularly controllable regulator of neuronal death. This study provides a novel insight into the normal and pathological functions of cell-surface wtAPP.
ASJC Scopus subject areas