Discovery in Parkinson’s research: Lipids influence the formation of protein clumps

After Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s is the most common neurodegenerative disease in the world. More than six million people worldwide suffer from it. In this disease, alpha-synuclein proteins form thread-like structures called fibrils. When these fibrils clump together, they probably damage nerve cells. A research team has now shown for the first time how lipids bind to the fibril surface and influence the arrangement of the synuclein proteins within the fibrils. As it demonstrated, the drug candidate anle138b binds into a tube-shaped hole inside such a lipidic fibril. The researchers’ findings could open new approaches to diagnosing and treating Parkinson’s disease.

Quelle: IDW Informationsdienst Wissenschaft