Year of Publication
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A
Frealix, prion, Protein aggregation, Protein Folding, systemic amyloidosis
Amyloid fibrils are proteinaceous aggregates associated with diseases in humans and animals. The fibrils are defined by intermolecular interactions between the fibril-forming polypeptide chains, but it has so far remained difficult to reveal the assembly of the peptide subunits in a full-scale fibril. Using electron cryomicroscopy (cryo-EM), we present a reconstruction of a fibril formed from the pathogenic core of an amyloidogenic immunoglobulin (Ig) light chain. The fibril density shows a lattice-like assembly of face-to-face packed peptide dimers that corresponds to the structure of steric zippers in peptide crystals. Interpretation of the density map with a molecular model enabled us to identify the intermolecular interactions between the peptides and rationalize the hierarchical structure of the fibril based on simple chemical principles.