TitleHigher Levels of Protein Palmitoylation in the Frontal Cortex across Aging Were Associated with Reference Memory and Executive Function Declines.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2019
AuthorsZamzow, DR, Elias, V, Acosta, VA, Escobedo, E, Magnusson, KR
Date Published2019 Jan-Feb
KeywordsAging, Animals, Cognitive Dysfunction, Executive Function, Frontal Lobe, Lipoylation, Male, Maze Learning, Memory, Mice, Inbred C57BL, Receptors, N-Methyl-D-Aspartate

Cognitive decline with aging is often due to altered levels of protein expression. The NMDA receptor (NMDAR) and the complex of proteins surrounding the receptor are susceptible to age-related changes in expression. In the frontal cortex of aged mice, there is a significant loss of expression of the GluN2B subunit of the NMDAR, an increase in Fyn expression, and no change in PSD-95. Studies have also found that, in the frontal cortex, phosphorylation of GluN2B subunits and palmitoylation of GluN2 subunits and NMDAR complex proteins are affected by age. In this study, we examined some of the factors that may lead to the differences in the palmitoylation levels of NMDAR complex proteins in the frontal cortex of aged animals. The Morris water maze was used to test spatial learning in 3- and 24-month-old mice. The acyl-biotinyl exchange method was used to precipitate palmitoylated proteins from the frontal cortices and hippocampi of the mice. Additionally, brain lysates from old and young mice were probed for the expression of fatty acid transporter proteins. An age-related increase of palmitoylated GluN2A, GluN2B, Fyn, PSD-95, and APT1 (acyl protein thioesterase 1) in the frontal cortex was associated with poorer reference memory and/or executive functions. These data suggest that there may be a perturbation in the palmitoylation cycle in the frontal cortex of aged mice that contributes to age-related cognitive declines.

Alternate JournaleNeuro
PubMed ID30740518
PubMed Central IDPMC6366935