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New insight into Parkinson's disease

Date:
April 19, 2010
Source:
Rockefeller University Press
Summary:
New research provides crucial insight into the pathogenic mechanisms of Parkinson's disease, a prevalent neurodegenerative disorder.

New research provides crucial insight into the pathogenic mechanisms of Parkinson's disease (PD), a prevalent neurodegenerative disorder. The study appears in the April 19 issue of the Journal of Cell Biology.

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The identification of inherited mutations in genes such as Parkin and PINK1 ( PTEN-induced putative kinase 1 ) has revealed key factors in the development of familial forms of the disease. Parkin adds ubiquitin molecules to other proteins to trigger their degradation, while PINK1 regulates mitochondrial quality control. But how these two genes work together remains a mystery.

Now, Keiji Tanaka and colleagues show that PINK1 is rapidly and continuously degraded under steady-state conditions when mitochondria are healthy, and that a loss in mitochondrial membrane potential stabilizes PINK1's accumulation. Furthermore, PINK1 recruits Parkin from the cytoplasm to mitochondria with low membrane potential to initiate the disposal of damaged mitochondria. Interestingly, the ubiquitin ligase activity of Parkin is repressed in the cytoplasm under steady-state conditions; however, PINK1-dependent mitochondrial localization liberates the latent enzymatic activity of Parkin. Some pathogenic mutations of PINK1 and Parkin interfere with the aforementioned events, suggesting they play a role in causing the disease.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Rockefeller University Press. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Matsuda, N., et al. PINK1 stabilized by mitochondrial depolarization recruits Parkin to damaged mitochondria and activates latent Parkin for mitophagy. J. Cell Bio, April 19, 2010 Volume 189, No. 2 DOI: 10.1083/jcb.200910140

Cite This Page:

Rockefeller University Press. "New insight into Parkinson's disease." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 19 April 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/04/100419132346.htm>.
Rockefeller University Press. (2010, April 19). New insight into Parkinson's disease. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/04/100419132346.htm
Rockefeller University Press. "New insight into Parkinson's disease." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/04/100419132346.htm (accessed November 23, 2014).

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