Full-length TDP-43 forms toxic amyloid oligomers that are present in frontotemporal lobar dementia-TDP patients

Yu Sheng Fang, Kuen Jer Tsai, Yu Jen Chang, Patricia Kao, Rima Woods, Pan Hsien Kuo, Cheng Chun Wu, Jhih Ying Liao, Shih Chieh Chou, Vinson Lin, Lee Way Jin, Hanna S. Yuan, Irene H. Cheng, Pang Hsien Tu, Yun Ru Chen

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105 Citations (Scopus)


Proteinaceous inclusions are common hallmarks of many neurodegenerative diseases. TDP-43 proteinopathies, consisting of several neurodegenerative diseases, including frontotemporal lobar dementia (FTLD) and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), are characterized by inclusion bodies formed by polyubiquitinated and hyperphosphorylated full-length and truncated TDP-43. The structural properties of TDP-43 aggregates and their relationship to pathogenesis are still ambiguous. Here we demonstrate that the recombinant full-length human TDP-43 forms structurally stable, spherical oligomers that share common epitopes with an anti-amyloid oligomer-specific antibody. The TDP-43 oligomers are stable, have exposed hydrophobic surfaces, exhibit reduced DNA binding capability and are neurotoxic in vitro and in vivo. Moreover, TDP-43 oligomers are capable of cross-seeding Alzheimer's amyloid-β to form amyloid oligomers, demonstrating interconvertibility between the amyloid species. Such oligomers are present in the forebrain of transgenic TDP-43 mice and FTLD-TDP patients. Our results suggest that aside from filamentous aggregates, TDP-43 oligomers may play a role in TDP-43 pathogenesis.

Original languageEnglish
Article number4824
JournalNature communications
Publication statusPublished - 2014

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)


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