We've updated our Privacy Policy to make it clearer how we use your personal data.

We use cookies to provide you with a better experience. You can read our Cookie Policy here.

Advertisement
Tunneling nanotubes between neurons enable the spread of Parkinson's disease via lysosomes
News

Tunneling nanotubes between neurons enable the spread of Parkinson's disease via lysosomes

Tunneling nanotubes between neurons enable the spread of Parkinson's disease via lysosomes
News

Tunneling nanotubes between neurons enable the spread of Parkinson's disease via lysosomes

Read time:
 

Want a FREE PDF version of This News Story?

Complete the form below and we will email you a PDF version of "Tunneling nanotubes between neurons enable the spread of Parkinson's disease via lysosomes "

First Name*
Last Name*
Email Address*
Country*
Company Type*
Job Function*
Would you like to receive further email communication from Technology Networks?

Technology Networks Ltd. needs the contact information you provide to us to contact you about our products and services. You may unsubscribe from these communications at any time. For information on how to unsubscribe, as well as our privacy practices and commitment to protecting your privacy, check out our Privacy Policy

Scientists from the Institut Pasteur have demonstrated the role of lysosomal vesicles in transporting α-synuclein aggregates, responsible for Parkinson's and other neurodegenerative diseases, between neurons. These proteins move from one neuron to the next in lysosomal vesicles which travel along the "tunneling nanotubes" between cells. These findings are published in The EMBO Journal.


See Also: Parkinson’s disease: New insights into a traveling protein


Synucleinopathies, a group of neurodegenerative diseases including Parkinson's disease, are characterized by the pathological deposition of aggregates of the misfolded α-synuclein protein into inclusions throughout the central and peripheral nervous system. Intercellular propagation (from one neuron to the next) of α-synuclein aggregates contributes to the progression of the neuropathology, but little was known about the mechanism by which spread occurs.


In this study, scientists from the Membrane Traffic and Pathogenesis Unit, directed by Chiara Zurzolo at the Institut Pasteur, used fluorescence microscopy to demonstrate that pathogenic α-synuclein fibrils travel between neurons in culture, inside lysosomal vesicles through tunneling nanotubes (TNTs), a new mechanism of intercellular communication.


After being transferred via TNTs, α-synuclein fibrils are able to recruit and induce aggregation of the soluble α-synuclein protein in the cytosol of cells receiving the fibrils, thus explaining the propagation of the disease. The scientists propose that cells overloaded with α-synuclein aggregates in lysosomes dispose of this material by hijacking TNT-mediated intercellular trafficking. However, this results in the disease being spread to naive neurons.


Learn More: New model recreates early spread of Parkinson’s disease in the brain


This study demonstrates that TNTs play a significant part in the intercellular transfer of α-synuclein fibrils and reveals the specific role of lysosomes in this process. This represents a major breakthrough in understanding the mechanisms underlying the progression of synucleinopathies.


These compelling findings, together with previous reports from the same team, point to the general role of TNTs in the propagation of prion-like proteins in neurodegenerative diseases and identify TNTs as a new therapeutic target to combat the progression of these incurable diseases.


Note: Material may have been edited for length and content. For further information, please contact the cited source.


Institut Pasteur   press release


Publication

Abounit S et al. Tunneling nanotubes spread fibrillar α-synuclein by intercellular trafficking of lysosomes.   The EMBO Journal, Published Online August 22 2016. doi: 10.15252/embj.201593411


Advertisement