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Gangliosides May Protect Against Parkinson's Disease

Date:
May 1, 2009
Source:
American Journal of Pathology
Summary:
Researchers in Japan have established the mechanism by which gangliosides may help treat Parkinson's disease.
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Researchers at the Tokyo Metropolitan Institute for Neuroscience, Tokyo, Japan have established the mechanism by which gangliosides may help treat Parkinson's disease.

These data are presented in the May 2009 issue of The American Journal of Pathology.

Parkinson's disease is caused by a loss of dopamine-secreting cells in the brain, which results in impaired motor skills, speech, and other functions. Abnormal accumulation of the protein α-synuclein may contribute to this neuronal cell death.

Gangliosides have been shown to inhibit a-synuclein aggregation. To discover the mechanism that drives ganglioside-mediated protection from a-synuclein-caused cell death, Wei et al treated cells with a molecule that disrupts the function of lysosomes, cell components responsible for digesting unneeded and excess material in cells. Treatment with gangliosides reversed the lysosomal disruption, which suggests that gangliosides protect against the lysosomal damage of a-synuclein accumulation.

Based on their present result, Wei et al "speculate that deregulation of the expression of gangliosides may underlie the process of axonal degeneration. If this is the case, it is naturally expected that restoration of the protective action of gangliosides might be a useful therapeutic strategy."


Story Source:

The above post is reprinted from materials provided by American Journal of Pathology. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Wei J, Fujita M, Nakai M, Waragai M, Sekigawa A, Sugama S, Takenouchi T, Masliah M, Hashimoto M. Protective Role of Endogenous Gangliosides for Lysosomal Pathology in a Cellular Model of Synucleinopathies. American Journal Of Pathology, 2009; 174 (5): 1891 DOI: 10.2353/ajpath.2009.080680

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American Journal of Pathology. "Gangliosides May Protect Against Parkinson's Disease." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 1 May 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/04/090426082838.htm>.
American Journal of Pathology. (2009, May 1). Gangliosides May Protect Against Parkinson's Disease. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 4, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/04/090426082838.htm
American Journal of Pathology. "Gangliosides May Protect Against Parkinson's Disease." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/04/090426082838.htm (accessed August 4, 2015).

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