Understanding the mechanisms of neurodegeneration is crucial for development of therapies to treat neurological disorders. S100 proteins are extensively expressed in the injured brain but S100's role and signalling in neural cells remain elusive. We recently demonstrated that the S100A4 protein protects neurons in brain injury and designed S100A4-derived peptides mimicking its beneficial effects. Here we show that neuroprotection by S100A4 involves the growth factor family receptor ErbB4 and its ligand Neuregulin 1 (NRG), key regulators of neuronal plasticity and implicated in multiple brain pathologies. The neuroprotective effect of S100A4 depends on ErbB4 expression and the ErbB4 signalling partners ErbB2/Akt, and is reduced by functional blockade of NRG/ErbB4 in cell models of neurodegeneration. We also detect binding of S100A4 with ErbB1 (EGFR) and ErbB3. S100A4-derived peptides interact with, and signal through ErbB, are neuroprotective in primary and immortalized dopaminergic neurons, and do not affect cell proliferation/motility - features which make them promising as potential neuroprotectants. Our data suggest that the S100-ErbB axis may be an important mechanism regulating neuronal survival and plasticity.
|Status||Udgivet - 2018|