Antibody transfection into neurons as a tool to study disease pathogenesis

Joshua N. Douglas, Lidia A. Gardner, Sang Lee, Yoojin Shin, Chassidy J. Groover, Michael C. Levin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Antibodies provide the ability to gain novel insight into various events taking place in living systems. The ability to produce highly specific antibodies to target proteins has allowed for very precise biological questions to be addressed. Importantly, antibodies have been implicated in the pathogenesis of a number of human diseases including systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), rheumatoid arthritis (RA), paraneoplastic syndromes, multiple sclerosis (MS) and human T-lymphotropic virus type 1 (HTLV-1) associated myelopathy/tropical spastic paraparesis (HAM/TSP) 1-9 . How antibodies cause disease is an area of ongoing investigation, and data suggests that interactions between antibodies and various intracellular molecules results in inflammation, altered cellular messaging, and apoptosis 10 . It has been shown that patients with MS and HAM/TSP produce autoantibodies to the intracellular RNA binding protein heterogeneous ribonuclear protein A1 (hnRNP A1) 3, 5-7, 9, 11 . Recent data indicate that antibodies to both intra-neuronal and surface antigens are pathogenic 3, 5-9, 11 . Thus, a procedure that allows for the study of intracellular antibody:protein interactions would lend great insight into disease pathogenesis. Genes are commonly transfected into primary cells and cell lines in culture, however transfection of antibodies into cells has been hindered by alteration of antibody structure or poor transfection efficiency 12 . Other methods of transfection include antibody transfection based on cationic liposomes (consisting of DOTAP/DOPE) and polyethylenimines (PEI); both of which resulted in a ten-fold decrease in antibody transfection compared to controls 12 . The method performed in our study is similar to cationic lipid-mediated methods and uses a lipid-based mechanism to form non-covalent complexes with the antibodies through electrostatic and hydrophobic interactions 13 . We utilized Ab-DeliverIN reagent, which is a lipid formulation capable of capturing antibodies through non-covalent electrostatic and hydrophobic interactions and delivering them inside cells. Thus chemical and genetic couplings are not necessary for delivery of functional antibodies into living cells. This method has enabled us to perform various antibody tracing and protein localization experiments, as well as the analyses of the molecular consequences of intracellular antibody:protein interactions 9 . In this protocol, we will show how to transfect antibodies into neurons rapidly, reproducibly and with a high degree of transfection efficiency. As an example, we will use anti-hnRNP A1 and anti-IgG antibodies. For easy quantification of transfection efficiency we used anti-hnRNP A1 antibodies labelled with Atto-550-NHS and FITC-labeled IgG. Atto550 NHS is a new label with high molecular absorbtion and quantum yield. Excitation source and fluorescent filters for Atto550 are similar to Cy3 (Ex. 556 Em. 578). In addition, Atto550 has high photostability. FITC-labeled IgG were used as a control to show that this method is versatile and not dye dependent. This approach and the data that is generated will assist in understanding of the role that antibodies to intracellular target antigens might play in the pathogenesis of human diseases.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournal of Visualized Experiments
Issue number67
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 26 2012

Fingerprint

Antibodies
Neurons
Transfection
Proteins
Tropical Spastic Paraparesis
Lipids
Fluorescein-5-isothiocyanate
Static Electricity
Antigens
Hydrophobic and Hydrophilic Interactions
Multiple Sclerosis
Electrostatics
Immunoglobulin G
Cells
Paraneoplastic Syndromes
Polyethyleneimine
Human T-lymphotropic virus 1
RNA-Binding Proteins
Spinal Cord Diseases
Liposomes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)

Cite this

Antibody transfection into neurons as a tool to study disease pathogenesis. / Douglas, Joshua N.; Gardner, Lidia A.; Lee, Sang; Shin, Yoojin; Groover, Chassidy J.; Levin, Michael C.

In: Journal of Visualized Experiments, No. 67, 26.09.2012.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Douglas, Joshua N. ; Gardner, Lidia A. ; Lee, Sang ; Shin, Yoojin ; Groover, Chassidy J. ; Levin, Michael C. / Antibody transfection into neurons as a tool to study disease pathogenesis. In: Journal of Visualized Experiments. 2012 ; No. 67.
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