Human serum albumin fusion protein as therapeutics for targeting amyloid beta in Alzheimer's diseases

Neurosci Lett. 2022 Jan 10;767:136298. doi: 10.1016/j.neulet.2021.136298. Epub 2021 Oct 18.


Alzheimer's disease (AD) is characterized by amyloid beta (Aβ) plaques and neurofibrillary tangles. AD drug development has been limited due to the presence of the blood-brain barrier (BBB), which prevents efficient uptake of therapeutics into the brain. To solve this problem, we used trans-activator of transcription (TAT)-transducing domain and added the human serum albumin (HSA) carrier to increase the half-life of the drug within the body. In addition, we included the protein of interest for lowering Aβ deposition and/or neurofibrillary tangles. We made HSA fusion protein (designated AL04) which contains Cystatin C (CysC) as core mechanism of action moiety in the construct containing tandem repeat TAT (dTAT). After purification of 80KDa AL04, we investigate the therapeutic potential of AL04 in vitro and AD mouse model Tg2576. We evaluated the permeability of AL04 through the BBB using a cell-basedhuman BBB model and show that dTAT plays a role in facilitating the delivery of 80 kDa protein. We found out that AL04 attenuates Aβ-induced neurotoxicity in PC12 cells. In Tg2576 mice brain, Aβ plaques were dramatically reduced in AL04 treated mice. These data suggest that BBB-crossing albumin fusion protein AL04 with CysC active moiety can be a disease modifying treatment for AD.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Alzheimer Disease*
  • Amyloid beta-Peptides / drug effects*
  • Animals
  • Blood-Brain Barrier
  • Brain / drug effects*
  • Brain / metabolism
  • Brain / pathology
  • Cystatin C / administration & dosage
  • Cystatin C / pharmacokinetics*
  • Drug Carriers / chemistry
  • Drug Carriers / pharmacokinetics*
  • Gene Products, tat / pharmacokinetics
  • Humans
  • Mice
  • PC12 Cells
  • Rats
  • Serum Albumin, Human / chemistry
  • Serum Albumin, Human / pharmacokinetics*


  • Amyloid beta-Peptides
  • Cystatin C
  • Drug Carriers
  • Gene Products, tat
  • Serum Albumin, Human