17β-Estradiol regulates insulin-degrading enzyme expression via an ERβ/PI3-K pathway in hippocampus: Relevance to Alzheimer's prevention

Liqin Zhao, Jia Yao, Zisu Mao, Shuhua Chen, Yan Wang, Roberta Diaz Brinton

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

90 Scopus citations

Abstract

Insulin-degrading enzyme (IDE), an enzyme that primarily degrades insulin, has recently been demonstrated to play a significant role in the catabolism of amyloid β (Aβ) protein in the brain. Reduced IDE expression and/or activity have been associated with the etiology and development of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Using three model systems, the present investigation provides the first documentation indicating that estrogen robustly regulates the expression of IDE in normal, menopausal and early-stage AD brains. In vitro analyses in primary cultures of rat hippocampal neurons revealed that 17β-estradiol (17β-E2) increased IDE in both mRNA and protein levels in a time-dependent manner. Further pharmacological analyses indicated that 17β-E2-induced IDE expression was dependent upon estrogen receptor (ER) β and required activation of phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3-K). In vivo analyses in adult female rats revealed a brain region-specific responsive profile. Ovariectomy (OVX) induced a significant decline in IDE expression in the hippocampus, which was prevented by 17β-E2. Neither OVX nor 17β-E2 affected IDE expression in the cerebellum. In vivo analyses in triple transgenic AD (3xTg-AD) female mice revealed an inverse correlation between the age-related increase in Aβ load and the decrease in IDE expression in the hippocampal formation. Treatment with 17β-E2 attenuated Aβ accumulation/plaque formation and elevated hippocampal IDE expression in 12-month-old 3xTg-AD OVX mice. Collectively, these findings indicate that 17β-E2 regulates IDE expression in a brain region-specific manner and such a regulatory role in the hippocampus, mediated by an ERβ/PI3-K pathway, could serve as a direct mechanism underlying estrogen-mediated preventative effect against AD when initiated at the onset of menopause.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1949-1963
Number of pages15
JournalNeurobiology of Aging
Volume32
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 2011
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • 17β-Estradiol (17β-E2)
  • Alzheimer's disease (AD)
  • Amyloid β (Aβ)
  • Estrogen receptor β (ERβ)
  • Hippocampus
  • Insulin-degrading enzyme (IDE)
  • Ovariectomy (OVX)
  • Phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3-K)
  • Triple transgenic Alzheimer's disease (3xTg-AD) mouse model

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Aging
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Developmental Biology
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology

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