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AD/PD 2022 | Insights into Parkinson’s disease pathology: α-syn & phosphoinositides

Ronit Sharon, PhD, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Jerusalem, Israel, discusses her work looking into α-synuclein (α-syn) associations with phosphoinositides, which can provide insights into its physiology in the healthy brain and pathology in Parkinson’s disease. Prof. Sharon analyzed the association of α-syn phosphoinositides in relation to axon growth and vesicle traffic. Transgenic mouse models, cultured cells, and human brain sections post-mortem were utilized. It was observed that α-syn increases the levels of phosphoinositides involved in signaling and that are critical for the function of α-syn in vesicle traffic. Together with α-syn, the phosphoinositides cause enhanced axonal growth and accumulation of pathology. This is physiological but at an excessive rate leads to pathological accumulations. Current studies focus on understanding the mechanisms causing α-syn to increase and alter the delicate balance of phosphoinositides. This interview took place at the AD/PD™ 2022 International Conference on Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s Diseases hosted in Barcelona, Spain.