Today, Alzheimer’s disease (AD) as the most prevalent type of dementia turns into one of the most severe health problems. Neurofibrillary tangle (NFT), mostly comprised of fibrils formed by Tau, is a hallmark of a class of neurodegenerative diseases. Tau protein promotes assembly and makes stable microtubules that play a role in the appropriate function of neurons. Polyanionic cofactors such as heparin, and azo dyes, can induce aggregation of tau protein in vitro. Sunset Yellow is a food colorant used widely in food industries. In the current work, we introduced degradation product (DP) of Sunset Yellow as an effective inducer of Tau aggregation. Two Tau aggregation inducers were produced, and then the aggregation kinetics and the structure of 1N4R Tau amyloid fibrils were characterized using ThT fluorescence spectroscopy, X-Ray Diffraction (XRD), circular dichroism (CD) and atomic force microscopy (AFM). Also, the toxic effects of the induced aggregates on RBCs and SH-SY5Y cells were demonstrated by hemolysis and LDH assays, respectively. Both inducers efficiently accelerated the formation of the amyloid fibril. Along with the confirmation of the β-sheets structure in Tau aggregates by Far-UV CD spectra, X-ray diffractions revealed the typical cross-β diffraction pattern. The oligomer formation in the presence of DPs was also confirmed by AFM. The possible in vivo effect of artificial azo dyes on Tau aggregation should be considered seriously as a newly opened dimension in food safety and human health.
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