Nonnative SOD1 trimer is toxic to motor neurons in a model of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis

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Protein aggregation is a hallmark of neurodegenerative disease and is hypothesized to cause neuron death. Despite extensive study of disease-associated aggregating proteins, mechanisms of neuron death remain a mystery, and no cures or effective treatments yet exist. Here, we demonstrate the toxicity of a small aggregate of the Cu,Zn superoxide dismutase (SOD1) protein, associated with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). We present an experimentally verified structural model of this toxic species and show that SOD1 mutants...
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