Systemic amyloidosis: lessons from {beta}2-microglobulin [Protein Structure and Folding]

March 6th, 2015 by Stoppini, M., Bellotti, V.

β2-microglobulin is responsible for systemic amyloidosis affecting patients undergoing long-term hemodialysis. Its genetic variant Asp76Asn causes a very rare form of familial systemic amyloidosis. These two types of amyloidoses differ significantly in terms of the tissue localization of deposits and for major pathological features. Considering how the amyloidogenesis of β2-microglobulin mechanism has been scrutinized in depth for the last three decades, the comparative analysis of molecular and pathological properties of wild type β2-microglobulin and of the Asp76Asn variant offers a unique opportunity to critically reconsider the current understanding of the relation between the protein's structural properties and its pathologic behavior.