Team of the Research Group Parkinson's Disease

Research Group Parkinson's Disease

Our working group is focusing on pathophysiological pathways involved in PD using recent discovery in genetic of PD. Therefore, we use cell and animal models to study molecular mechanisms leading to cell toxicity in PD. More precisely, we use overexpression of alpha-synuclein to induce pathology closely related to the one found in PD. By identifying and studying new proteins involve in the function and in the degradation of alpha-synuclein (such as parkin, synphilin-1, calpain) we aim to highlight new pathway which may have a therapeutic interest.

Parkinson’s disease is a neurodegenerative disease, characterized clinically by tremor at rest, rigidity (permanently increased muscle tone), bradykinesia (slowness of movement), and postural instability. These symptoms correspond mainly to the degeneration of dopaminergic neurons of the substantia nigra, which are projecting to the striatum. PD is classically reported as a sporadic disease and may result from a combination of environmental factors and brain aging. However, some monogenic forms of PD and several genetic risk factors have been related in developing PD. Interestingly, genetic components of PD, converge on three, interconnected cellular processes: synaptic exocytosis and endocytosis, mediated autophagy, and mitochondrial quality control and stress response.

Our working group is focusing on pathophysiological pathways involved in PD using recent discovery in genetic of PD. Therefore, we use cell and animal models to study molecular mechanisms leading to cell toxicity in PD. More precisely, we use overexpression of alpha-synuclein to induce pathology closely related to the one found in PD. By identifying and studying new proteins involve in the function and in the degradation of alpha-synuclein (such as parkin, synphilin-1, calpain) we aim to highlight new pathway which may have a therapeutic interest.