Elevated Levels of Pro-Apoptotic p53 and Its Oxidative Modification by the Lipid Peroxidation Product, HNE, in Brain from Subjects with Amnestic Mild Cognitive Impairment and Alzheimer's Disease


Oxidative stress has been implicated in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Both AD and arguably its earlier form, mild cognitive impairment (MCI), have elevated membrane oxidative damage in brain. The tumor suppressor and transcription factor p53 plays a pivotal function in neuronal apoptosis triggered by oxidative stress. Apoptosis contributes to neuronal death in many neurological disorders, including AD. In this study, we investigated p53 expression in a specific region of the cerebral cortex, namely the inferior parietal lobule (IPL), in MCI and AD brain, to test the hypothesis that alterations of this pro-apoptotic protein may be involved in neuronal death in the progression of AD. By immunoprecipitation assay, we also investigated whether 4-hydroxy-2-transnonenal (HNE), an aldehydic product of lipid peroxidation, was bound in excess to p53 in IPL from subjects with MCI and AD compared to control. Overall, the data provide evidence that p53 is involved in the neuronal death in both MCI and AD, suggesting that the observed alterations are early events in the progression of AD. In addition, HNE may be a novel non-protein mediator of oxidative stress-induced neuronal apoptosis.

Document Type


Publication Date


Notes/Citation Information

Published in Journal of Cellular and Molecular Medicine, v. 12, no. 3, p. 987-994.

© 2008 The Authors

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)


Funding Information

This work was supported in part by NIH grants AG-05119, AG-10836.