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Bacterial Extracellular DNA Promotes β-Amyloid Aggregation

Department of Neuroscience, Human Microbiology Institute, New York, NY 10128, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Mario Clerici
Microorganisms 2021, 9(6), 1301;
Received: 22 May 2021 / Revised: 5 June 2021 / Accepted: 11 June 2021 / Published: 15 June 2021
(This article belongs to the Section Molecular Microbiology and Immunology)
Alzheimer’s disease is associated with prion-like aggregation of the amyloid β (Aβ) peptide and the subsequent accumulation of misfolded neurotoxic aggregates in the brain. Therefore, it is critical to clearly identify the factors that trigger the cascade of Aβ misfolding and aggregation. Numerous studies have pointed out the association between microorganisms and their virulence factors and Alzheimer’s disease; however, their exact mechanisms of action remain unclear. Recently, we discovered a new pathogenic role of bacterial extracellular DNA, triggering the formation of misfolded Tau aggregates. In this study, we investigated the possible role of DNA extracted from different bacterial and eukaryotic cells in triggering Aβ aggregation in vitro. Interestingly, we found that the extracellular DNA of some, but not all, bacteria is an effective trigger of Aβ aggregation. Furthermore, the acceleration of Aβ nucleation and elongation can vary based on the concentration of the bacterial DNA and the bacterial strain from which this DNA had originated. Our findings suggest that bacterial extracellular DNA might play a previously overlooked role in the Aβ protein misfolding associated with Alzheimer’s disease pathogenesis. Moreover, it highlights a new mechanism of how distantly localized bacteria can remotely contribute to protein misfolding and diseases associated with this process. These findings might lead to the use of bacterial DNA as a novel therapeutic target for the prevention and treatment of Alzheimer’s disease. View Full-Text
Keywords: Alzheimer’s disease; amyloid-beta; amyloid plaques; bacterial DNA; protein aggregation Alzheimer’s disease; amyloid-beta; amyloid plaques; bacterial DNA; protein aggregation
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MDPI and ACS Style

Tetz, G.; Tetz, V. Bacterial Extracellular DNA Promotes β-Amyloid Aggregation. Microorganisms 2021, 9, 1301.

AMA Style

Tetz G, Tetz V. Bacterial Extracellular DNA Promotes β-Amyloid Aggregation. Microorganisms. 2021; 9(6):1301.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Tetz, George, and Victor Tetz. 2021. "Bacterial Extracellular DNA Promotes β-Amyloid Aggregation" Microorganisms 9, no. 6: 1301.

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