Amyloid-β precursor protein: Multiple fragments, numerous transport routes and mechanisms

Virgil Muresan, Zoia Ladescu Muresan

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

41 Scopus citations


This review provides insight into the intraneuronal transport of the Amyloid-β Precursor Protein (APP), the prototype of an extensively posttranslationally modified and proteolytically cleaved transmembrane protein. Uncovering the intricacies of APP transport proves to be a challenging endeavor of cell biology research, deserving increased priority, since APP is at the core of the pathogenic process in Alzheimer[U+05F3]s disease. After being synthesized in the endoplasmic reticulum in the neuronal soma, APP enters the intracellular transport along the secretory, endocytic, and recycling routes. Along these routes, APP undergoes cleavage into defined sets of fragments, which themselves are transported - mostly independently - to distinct sites in neurons, where they exert their functions. We review the currently known routes and mechanisms of transport of full-length APP, and of APP fragments, commenting largely on the experimental challenges posed by studying transport of extensively cleaved proteins. The review emphasizes the interrelationships between the proteolytic and posttranslational modifications, the intracellular transport, and the functions of the APP species. A goal remaining to be addressed in the future is the incorporation of the various views on APP transport into a coherent picture. In this review, the disease context is only marginally addressed; the focus is on the basic biology of APP transport under normal conditions. As shown, the studies of APP transport uncovered numerous mechanisms of transport, some of them conventional, and others, novel, awaiting exploration.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)45-53
Number of pages9
JournalExperimental cell research
Issue number1
StatePublished - May 15 2015

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Cell Biology


  • Amyloid-β Precursor Protein
  • Intracellular transport
  • Kinesin-1
  • Microtubule motors
  • Phosphorylation
  • Secretase cleavage


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