The effect of oxysterols on the interaction of Alzheimer's amyloid beta with model membranes

Biochim Biophys Acta. 2013 Nov;1828(11):2487-95. doi: 10.1016/j.bbamem.2013.06.021. Epub 2013 Jun 22.


The interaction of amyloid beta (Aβ) peptide with cell membranes has been shown to be influenced by Aβ conformation, membrane physicochemical properties and lipid composition. However, the effect of cholesterol and its oxidized derivatives, oxysterols, on Aβ-induced neurotoxicity to membranes is not fully understood. We employed here model membranes to investigate the localization of Aβ in membranes and the peptide-induced membrane dynamics in the presence of cholesterol and 7-ketocholesterol (7keto) or 25-hydroxycholesterol (25OH). Our results have indicated that oxysterols rendered membranes more sensitive to Aβ, in contrast to role of cholesterol in inhibiting Aβ/membrane interaction. We have demonstrated that two oxysterols had different impacts owing to distinct positions of the additional oxygen group in their structures. 7keto-containing cell-sized liposomes exhibited a high propensity toward association with Aβ, while 25OH systems were more capable of morphological changes in response to the peptide. Furthermore, we have shown that 42-amino acid Aβ (Aβ-42) pre-fibril species had higher association with membranes, and caused membrane fluctuation faster than 40-residue isoform (Aβ-40). These findings suggest the enhancing effect of oxysterols on interaction of Aβ with membranes and contribute to clarify the harmful impact of cholesterol on Aβ-induced neurotoxicity by means of its oxidation.

Keywords: Amyloid beta; Aβ localization; Membrane dynamics; Model membranes; Oxysterols.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Alzheimer Disease / metabolism*
  • Amyloid beta-Peptides / chemistry
  • Amyloid beta-Peptides / metabolism*
  • Cholesterol / analogs & derivatives
  • Cholesterol / chemistry*
  • Liposomes
  • Membranes, Artificial*


  • Amyloid beta-Peptides
  • Liposomes
  • Membranes, Artificial
  • Cholesterol