Mar, 2022 - By WMR
Scientists used an innovative technology of cryo-electron microscopy to study the protein associated with Parkinson’s disease, which could help to accelerate development of treatment for the disease
Research studying Parkinson’s disease have been searching the pathway associated with the way brain cells process energy. Now a team of scientists at Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research created an exceptional live action view showing how a Parkinson’s protein called PINK1 is activated, offering a blueprint of treatments to prevent cell death linked to Parkinson’s disease.
When the nerve cells in the brain driving the production of dopamine become impaired or die, it results into development of Parkinson’s disease. However, the mechanism behind this procedure is was not clear. Earlier research has indicated the role of mitochondria might be at action to provide cells with chemical energy, and how this could become destructive when mitochondria starts to malfunction. It gets damaged with aging and starts building up in the human body, and as per these studies, this build up can give rise to toxic environment for diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. A protein known as PINK1 was found to be a key factor that handles the damaged mitochondria and allows them to be replaced with healthy mitochondria.
In this new research, the scientists used a cutting-edge technology of cryo-electron microscopy for observing the protein PINK1 in detail and how it is activated. With this technology the team created an exceptional live action view of this protein, which could be used for developing drugs for the treatment of Parkinson’s disease. With this new findings, the structure of this protein can be studied in detail and through which drugs can be created to activate the protein, helping to slow down or even end the progression of Parkinson’s disease.
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