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Citation
Gajula Balija, M.B., Griesinger, C., Herzig, A., Zweckstetter, M., Jäckle, H. (2011). Pre-Fibrillar α-Synuclein Mutants Cause Parkinson's Disease-Like Non-Motor Symptoms in Drosophila.  PLoS ONE 6(9): e24701.
FlyBase ID
FBrf0215597
Publication Type
Research paper
Abstract

Parkinson's disease (PD) is linked to the formation of insoluble fibrillar aggregates of the presynaptic protein α-Synuclein (αS) in neurons. The appearance of such aggregates coincides with severe motor deficits in human patients. These deficits are often preceded by non-motor symptoms such as sleep-related problems in the patients. PD-like motor deficits can be recapitulated in model organisms such as Drosophila melanogaster when αS is pan-neurally expressed. Interestingly, both these deficits are more severe when αS mutants with reduced aggregation properties are expressed in flies. This indicates that that αS aggregation is not the primary cause of the PD-like motor symptoms. Here we describe a model for PD in Drosophila which utilizes the targeted expression of αS mutants in a subset of dopadecarboxylase expressing serotonergic and dopaminergic (DA) neurons. Our results show that targeted expression of pre-fibrillar αS mutants not only recapitulates PD-like motor symptoms but also the preceding non-motor symptoms such as an abnormal sleep-like behavior, altered locomotor activity and abnormal circadian periodicity. Further, the results suggest that the observed non-motor symptoms in flies are caused by an early impairment of neuronal functions rather than by the loss of neurons due to cell death.

PubMed ID
PubMed Central ID
PMC3169624 (PMC) (EuropePMC)
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Secondary IDs
    Language of Publication
    English
    Additional Languages of Abstract
    Parent Publication
    Publication Type
    Journal
    Abbreviation
    PLoS ONE
    Title
    PLoS ONE
    Publication Year
    2006-
    ISBN/ISSN
    1932-6203
    Data From Reference