Navigation Links
Excess protein linked to development of Parkinson's disease
Date:2/7/2013

Researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine say overexpression of a protein called alpha-synuclein appears to disrupt vital recycling processes in neurons, starting with the terminal extensions of neurons and working its way back to the cells' center, with the potential consequence of progressive degeneration and eventual cell death.

The findings, published in the February 6, 2013 issue of the Journal of Neuroscience, have major implications for more fully understanding the causes and mechanisms of Parkinson's disease (PD), a neurodegenerative movement disorder that affects an estimated one million Americans.

"This is an important new insight. I don't think anybody realized just how big a role alpha-synuclein played in managing the retrieval of worn-out proteins from synapses and the role of alterations in this process in development of PD," said principal investigator Mark H. Ellisman, PhD, professor of neurosciences and bioengineering and director of the National Center for Microscopy and Imaging Research (NCMIR), based at UC San Diego.

Parkinson's disease is characterized by the gradual destruction of select brain cells that produce dopamine, a neurotransmitter involved in regulating movement and emotion. Symptoms include increasing loss of muscle and movement control. While most cases are sporadic that is, their causes are unknown there are also inherited forms of PD linked to specific gene mutations and modifications.

The UC San Diego researchers, with colleagues at the University of Illinois, Urbana, focused upon one of those gene products: alpha-synuclein. Using a variety of leading-edge imaging technologies, including a new fluorescent tagging technique developed for electron microscopy by UC San Diego Nobel laureate Roger Tsien's lab and colleagues at NCMIR, the scientists created three-dimensional maps of alpha-synuclein distribution both in cultured neurons and in the neurons of mice engineered to over-express the human protein.

They found that excess levels of alpha-synuclein accumulated in the presynaptic terminal part of the junction where axons and dendrites of brain cells meet to exchange chemical signals.

"The over-expression of alpha-synuclein caused hypertrophy in these terminals," said Daniela Boassa, PhD, a research scientist at NCMIR and the study's first author. "The terminals were enlarged, filled with structures we normally don't see."

Boassa said that as alpha-synuclein accumulates in the terminals, it appears to hinder normal degradation and recycling processes in neurons. This would progressively impair the release of neurotransmitters. In time, the neurons might simply stop functioning and die.

"Other studies have noted that PD is characterized by progressive loss of vesicle traffic, and neurotransmitter release," Boassa said. "Our study provides a structural and mechanistic explanation for why that happens."

Boassa said the findings shed greater light upon how PD is caused, at least in some heritable forms. Researchers plan to now probe more deeply into how the disease is propagated and how dysfunctional alpha-synuclein proteins spread from one neuron to another, hastening the advance of the disorder.

"The better we understand the mechanisms of PD, the easier it will be to develop clinical interventions," she said.


'/>"/>

Contact: Scott LaFee
slafee@ucsd.edu
619-543-6163
University of California - San Diego
Source:Eurekalert  

Related medicine news :

1. Excessive alcohol use when youre young could have lasting impacts on your brain
2. Neuroscientists find excessive protein synthesis linked to autistic-like behaviors
3. Can Excessive Cellphone Use Become an Addiction?
4. Excess Pounds Raise Risk of Breast Cancer Recurrence, Death: Study
5. College Freshmen Urged to Keep Excess Pounds Away
6. Simple Measures May Curb Excessive Weight Gain in Pregnancy
7. Excessive sleepiness may be cause of learning, attention and school problems
8. Muscular Development Store Comments on Efficacy of Protein Blends
9. Scientists discover protein that allows safe recycling of iron from old red blood cells
10. The Muscular Development Store Comments on How Optimum Nutrition’s Protein Supplements Fit Into Your Workout
11. DNA-repairing protein may be key to preventing recurrence of some cancers
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Excess protein linked to development of Parkinson's disease
(Date:10/12/2017)... , ... October 12, 2017 , ... The American College ... to Carol Friedman, PhD, FACMI, during the Opening Session of AMIA’s Annual Symposium in ... , In honor of Morris F. Collen, a pioneer in the field of medical ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... Dr. Parsa Mohebi, the Los ... article to the newly revamped Cosmetic Town journal section, featuring articles ... procedure known as Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE). , Dr. Mohebi says ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... On Saturday, October 21, the Health & ... by Moonlight to raise money for the American Heart Association Heart Walk. Teams of ... will work together to keep their treadmills moving for 5 hours. Treadmills will start ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... BALTIMORE (PRWEB) , ... October 12, 2017 , ... ... average of $3,296 in property taxes a year. In some states—like New York, ... higher. , By contrast, many overseas retirement havens have extremely low property-tax rates, ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... ... sciences content management, presents its enhanced Pepper Flow promotional review platform at ... 2017. Pepper Flow’s increased insight-driven capabilities help marketers streamline the medical, legal, ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:9/27/2017)... 27, 2017  Commended for their devotion to personalized service, ... as number one in the South Florida Business Journal,s 50 ... 5000 yearly list, the national specialty pharmacy has found its ... will soon be honored by SFBJ as the 2017 ... Set to receive his award in October, Bardisa said ...
(Date:9/25/2017)... PROVIDENCE, R.I. , Sept. 25, 2017 /PRNewswire/ ... immunogenicity assessment, vaccine design, and immune-engineering today announced ... focused on the development of personalized therapeutic cancer ... and has provided exclusive access to enabling technologies ... MSc Eng., MBA will lead EpiVax Oncology as ...
(Date:9/22/2017)... 2017 AVACEN Medical (AVACEN) announced that its ... helping those with the widespread pain associated with fibromyalgia ... in Essex, England commented, "I ... experiencing no sleep at all, tremendous pain, with every ... recommend [the AVACEN 100] enough, how this has and ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: