Structure of Parkinson's Protein Could Lead to New Diagnostic and Treatment Options
With patients who have been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, the protein alpha-synuclein forms long fibrils in the brain that disrupt normal brain activity. This is similar to what happens Alzheimer’s patients with beta-amalyoid structures but less is known about the structure of the alpha-synuclein which make it more complex for researchers. However, in a recent study, a University of Illinois chemist along with peers at the University of Pennsylvania, Vanderbilt University and Queen Mary University of London, the chemical structure of the protein was identified. “This is the first structure of the full-length fibril protein, which is now well established to be important for the pathology of Parkinson’s disease,” said study leader Chad Rienstra, a University of Illinois chemistry professor. “Knowing that structure will open up many new areas of investigation for diagnosing and treating Parkinson’s disease.” Click here to read more.
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