Β-hydroxybutyrate is a metabolic regulator of proteostasis in the aged and Alzheimer disease brain

New research out of the Buck Institute:

Loss of proteostasis is a hallmark of aging and Alzheimer disease (AD). Here, we identify β-hydroxybutyrate (βHB), a ketone body, as a regulator of protein solubility in the aging brain. βHB is a small molecule metabolite which primarily provides an oxidative substrate for ATP during hypoglycemic conditions, and also regulates other cellular processes through covalent and noncovalent protein interactions. We demonstrate βHB-induced protein insolubility across in vitro, ex vivo, and in vivo mouse systems. This activity is shared by select structurally similar metabolites, is not dependent on covalent protein modification, pH, or solute load, and is observable in mouse brain in vivo after delivery of a ketone ester. Furthermore, this phenotype is selective for pathological proteins such as amyloid-β, and exogenous βHB ameliorates pathology in nematode models of amyloid-β aggregation toxicity. We have generated a comprehensive atlas of the βHB-induced protein insolublome ex vivo and in vivo using mass spectrometry proteomics, and have identified common protein domains within βHB target sequences. Finally, we show enrichment of neurodegeneration-related proteins among βHB targets and the clearance of these targets from mouse brain, likely via βHB-induced autophagy. Overall, these data indicate a new metabolically regulated mechanism of proteostasis relevant to aging and AD.

Related (from 2019):

https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20190204005265/en/Juvenescence-and-the-Buck-Institute-Launch-New-Company-to-Develop-Ketone-Body-Based-Therapeutics

Product Roadmap:

BHB_2023.07.03.547547v1.full.pdf (5.6 MB)

I wonder what effects Ketone Ester has (which AIUI metabolises into beta Hydroxybutyrate)