Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Promising Research On The Susceptibility To And Drug Targets For Parkinson's Disease

Date:
March 22, 2008
Source:
Public Library of Science
Summary:
Better understanding of Parkinson's disease onset during aging is important for improving diagnostics and developing strategies for therapeutic intervention. Scientists have now identified genes and processes that may underlie what makes some people more susceptible to this disease.

Better understanding of Parkinson's disease onset during aging is important for improving diagnostics and developing strategies for therapeutic intervention. Scientists from the University Medical Center in Groningen have now identified genes and processes that may underlie what makes some people more susceptible to this disease.

Related Articles


On average, the population of the western world is living longer, resulting in an increased number of people with age-related neurological conditions, including Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease. A cure for these diseases remains elusive because their molecular cause is only partially understood. It has been noted, however, that accumulations of folded proteins are commonly found within the brain cells of those who suffer from these diseases. For this reason "protein misfolding" seems to form the basis of these diseases.

To gain insight into the cellular processes that play a role in protein misfolding, the research group, led by Ellen Nollen, looked for genes in the round worm Caenorhabditis elegans that, if switched off, cause the number of inclusions to increase. During the course of their research, the scientists individually switched off 17,000 of the 19,000 genes and studied the effect on protein formation.

The study findings indicate that the gene sir-2.1 has a considerable effect on protein formation. In humans, this gene, called SIRT1, is evolutionarily conserved and is involved in the aging of yeast, flies, and worms and probably also in mammals. It lengthens the lifespan of worms by the activation of various routes through which signals are transmitted (stress response and insulin signal transduction). These findings suggest that sir 2.1 may represent a possible mechanistic relationship between aging and Parkinson's disease.

The accumulation of proteins has been shown to be strongly age-dependent and to occur in clearly distinguishable phases. From RNA-interference screening, it appears that the manner in which proteins accumulate in the roundworm model can be clearly differentiated from that of other diseases in which the aggregation of proteins occurs. Moreover, it shows a clear link with the aging process, in which the membranes of the endoplasmatic reticulum/Golgi system of the cell probably play a role.

This study points the way towards further clarification of the pathological mechanisms of, and the genetic susceptibility to, Parkinson's disease and other conditions in which the disease-specific protein alpha-synuclein plays a role.

Journal reference: van Ham TJ, Thijssen KL, Breitling R, Hofstra RMW, Plasterk RHA, et al. (2008) C. elegans Model Identifies Genetic Modifiers of a-Synuclein Inclusion Formation During Aging. PLoS Genet 4(3): e1000027. doi:10.1371/journal.pgen.1000027


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Public Library of Science. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Public Library of Science. "Promising Research On The Susceptibility To And Drug Targets For Parkinson's Disease." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 22 March 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/03/080320205217.htm>.
Public Library of Science. (2008, March 22). Promising Research On The Susceptibility To And Drug Targets For Parkinson's Disease. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/03/080320205217.htm
Public Library of Science. "Promising Research On The Susceptibility To And Drug Targets For Parkinson's Disease." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/03/080320205217.htm (accessed December 22, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Monday, December 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Touch-Free Smart Phone Empowers Mobility-Impaired

Touch-Free Smart Phone Empowers Mobility-Impaired

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Dec. 21, 2014) A touch-free phone developed in Israel enables the mobility-impaired to operate smart phones with just a movement of the head. Suzannah Butcher reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Earthworms Provide Cancer-Fighting Bacteria

Earthworms Provide Cancer-Fighting Bacteria

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Dec. 21, 2014) Polish scientists isolate bacteria from earthworm intestines which they say may be used in antibiotics and cancer treatments. Suzannah Butcher reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Existing Chemical Compounds Could Revive Failing Antibiotics, Says Danish Scientist

Existing Chemical Compounds Could Revive Failing Antibiotics, Says Danish Scientist

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Dec. 21, 2014) A team of scientists led by Danish chemist Jorn Christensen says they have isolated two chemical compounds within an existing antipsychotic medication that could be used to help a range of failing antibiotics work against killer bacterial infections, such as Tuberculosis. Jim Drury went to meet him. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Hugging It Out Could Help You Ward Off A Cold

Hugging It Out Could Help You Ward Off A Cold

Newsy (Dec. 21, 2014) Carnegie Mellon researchers found frequent hugs can help people avoid stress-related illnesses. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins