Amyloid protein-mediated differential DNA methylation status regulates gene expression in Alzheimer's disease model cell line

Hye Youn Sung, Eun Nam Choi, Sangmee Ahn Jo, Seikwan Oh, Jung Hyuck Ahn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Scopus citations


The Swedish mutation of amyloid precursor protein (APP-sw) has been reported to dramatically increase beta amyloid production through aberrant cleavage at the beta secretase site, causing early-onset Alzheimer's disease (AD). DNA methylation has been reported to be associated with AD pathogenesis, but the underlying molecular mechanism of APP-sw-mediated epigenetic alterations in AD pathogenesis remains largely unknown. We analyzed genome-wide interplay between promoter CpG DNA methylation and gene expression in an APP-sw-expressing AD model cell line. To identify genes whose expression was regulated by DNA methylation status, we performed integrated analysis of CpG methylation and mRNA expression profiles, and identified three target genes of the APP-sw mutant; hypomethylated CTIF (CBP80/CBP20-dependent translation initiation factor) and NXT2 (nuclear exporting factor 2), and hypermethylated DDR2 (discoidin domain receptor 2). Treatment with the demethylating agent 5-aza-2'-deoxycytidine restored mRNA expression of these three genes, implying methylation-dependent transcriptional regulation. The profound alteration in the methylation status was detected at the -435, -295, and -271 CpG sites of CTIF, and at the -505 to -341 region in the promoter of DDR2. In the promoter region of NXT2, only one CpG site located at -432 was differentially unmethylated in APP-sw cells. Thus, we demonstrated the effect of the APP-sw mutation on alteration of DNA methylation and subsequent gene expression. This epigenetic regulatory mechanism may contribute to the pathogenesis of AD.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)700-705
Number of pages6
JournalBiochemical and Biophysical Research Communications
Issue number4
StatePublished - 4 Nov 2011

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was supported by RP-Grant 2010 of Ewha Womans University and the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) grant funded by the Korea government (MEST) (MRC, 2010-0029355 ).


  • Alzheimer's disease
  • Amyloid precursor protein
  • DNA methylation
  • Swedish mutation


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