The synaptic function of parkin

Jenny Sassone, Giulia Maia Serratto, Flavia Valtorta, Vincenzo Silani, Maria Passafaro, Andrea Ciammola

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

6 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Loss of function mutations in the gene PARK2, which encodes the protein parkin, cause autosomal recessive juvenile parkinsonism, a neurodegenerative disease characterized by degeneration of the dopaminergic neurons localized in the substantia nigra pars compacta. No therapy is effective in slowing disease progression mostly because the pathogenesis of the disease is yet to be understood. From accruing evidence suggesting that the protein parkin directly regulates synapses it can be hypothesized that PARK2 gene mutations lead to early synaptic damage that results in dopaminergic neuron loss over time. We review evidence that supports the role of parkin in modulating excitatory and dopaminergic synapse functions. We also discuss how these findings underpin the concept that autosomal recessive juvenile parkinsonism can be primarily a synaptopathy. Investigation into the molecular interactions between parkin and synaptic proteins may yield novel targets for pharmacologic interventions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2265-2272
Number of pages8
JournalBrain
Volume140
Issue number9
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep 1 2017

Fingerprint

Dopaminergic Neurons
Parkinsonian Disorders
Synapses
Mutation
Neurodegenerative Diseases
Genes
Disease Progression
parkin protein
Therapeutics
Pars Compacta

Keywords

  • Dopamine
  • Glutamate
  • Parkin
  • Parkinson's disease
  • Synapse

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology

Cite this

The synaptic function of parkin. / Sassone, Jenny; Serratto, Giulia Maia; Valtorta, Flavia; Silani, Vincenzo; Passafaro, Maria; Ciammola, Andrea.

In: Brain, Vol. 140, No. 9, 01.09.2017, p. 2265-2272.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Sassone, Jenny ; Serratto, Giulia Maia ; Valtorta, Flavia ; Silani, Vincenzo ; Passafaro, Maria ; Ciammola, Andrea. / The synaptic function of parkin. In: Brain. 2017 ; Vol. 140, No. 9. pp. 2265-2272.
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