Skip to main content
Funded Studies

How Does Alpha-synuclein Cause Neurodegeneration?

Study Rationale:
The protein alpha-synuclein has a central, causative role in Parkinson's disease, but we do not understand how it contributes to cell degeneration. Mutations in the gene (SNCA) that encodes alpha-synuclein cause a rare hereditary form of the disease and provide an invaluable way to understand its role. We will study how these mutations affect the function of alpha-synuclein.

Hypothesis:
We hypothesize that the mutations causing Parkinson's disease all affect a common property of alpha-synuclein, thereby causing disease.

Study Design:
It has not previously been possible to test the effect of mutations on alpha-synuclein function because the function was not known. We will use a new laboratory test we have recently developed to determine how the mutations affect function, and if they do, determine the mechanism.

Impact on Diagnosis/Treatment of Parkinson's Disease:
The primary, causative role of alpha-synuclein in Parkinson's disease suggests that manipulating the function of the protein has great therapeutic potential.

Next Steps for Development:
We can screen for other proteins or manipulations that reverse the effect of alpha-synuclein changes.


Researchers

  • Robert Haas Edwards, MD

    San Francisco, CA United States


Discover More Grants

Search by Related Keywords

Within the Same Program

Within the Same Funding Year

We use cookies to ensure that you get the best experience. By continuing to use this website, you indicate that you have read our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.