Structural basis of FPR2 in recognition of Aβ42 and neuroprotection by humanin

Nat Commun. 2022 Apr 1;13(1):1775. doi: 10.1038/s41467-022-29361-x.


Formyl peptide receptor 2 (FPR2) has been shown to mediate the cytotoxic effects of the β amyloid peptide Aβ42 and serves as a receptor for humanin, a peptide that protects neuronal cells from damage by Aβ42, implying its involvement in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease (AD). However, the interaction pattern between FPR2 and Aβ42 or humanin remains unknown. Here we report the structures of FPR2 bound to Gi and Aβ42 or N-formyl humanin (fHN). Combined with functional data, the structures reveal two critical regions that govern recognition and activity of Aβ42 and fHN, including a polar binding cavity within the receptor helical bundle and a hydrophobic binding groove in the extracellular region. In addition, the structures of FPR2 and FPR1 in complex with different formyl peptides were determined, providing insights into ligand recognition and selectivity of the FPR family. These findings uncover key factors that define the functionality of FPR2 in AD and other inflammatory diseases and would enable drug development.

MeSH terms

  • Amyloid beta-Peptides
  • Intracellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins
  • Neuroprotection*
  • Receptors, Formyl Peptide / chemistry*
  • Receptors, Formyl Peptide / metabolism
  • Receptors, Lipoxin / chemistry*


  • Amyloid beta-Peptides
  • FPR2 protein, human
  • Intracellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins
  • Receptors, Formyl Peptide
  • Receptors, Lipoxin
  • humanin