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Researchers Identify One Way Alpha-Synuclein Spreads Throughout the Brain in Parkinson’s Disease

Researchers Identify One Way Alpha-Synuclein Spreads Throughout the Brain in Parkinson’s Disease

Parkinson’s disease is caused by the accumulation of alpha-synuclein, a misfolded protein that interferes with the brain’s ability to produce dopamine. Researchers recently identified one way that alpha-synuclein is able to spread in the brain, a finding that could contribute to the development of disease-modifying treatments for Parkinson’s.

Using a stem cell model of Parkinson’s disease, researchers discovered that alpha-synuclein binds to another protein called LC3B. In cells that are functioning normally, LC3B targets misfolded proteins for degradation, but in Parkinson’s disease, LC3B is inactivated. This allows alpha-synuclein to accumulate and spread to other areas of the brain.

The researchers were able to reactivate LC3B and restore its ability to degrade alpha-synuclein, identifying a potential pathway for slowing or stopping the progression of Parkinson’s disease.

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CND Life Sciences

CND Life Sciences

CND Life Sciences is the creator of the Syn-One Test™, the world’s first commercially available test to visualize abnormal, phosphorylated alpha-synuclein in cutaneous nerve fibers. The test is an objective, evidence-based diagnostic tool to aid in the diagnosis of Parkinson’s disease, dementia with Lewy bodies, multiple system atrophy, pure autonomic failure, or REM sleep behavior disorder.