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As superresolution microscopy has advanced, so too has scientists’ ability to dive deep into the neural network and the compounds that accumulate in conjunction with a variety of conditions. And a team at the VIB-KU Leuven Center for Brain & Disease Research has seized on this technology to understand a protein complex that is common in patients with Alzheimer’s disease and with cancer.
The γ-secretase complex is an enzyme composed of catalytic presenilin (PSEN), nicastrin (NCT), anterior-pharynx defective 1 (APH1), and presenilin enhancer 2 (PEN2) in a 1:1:1:1 ratio. The compound breaks down when this ratio is not present.
PSEN1/γ-secretase diffusion is fast at the cell surface. This is a…