Inflammation to Alpha-Synuclein to Parkinson's

You might recall the links drawn between the protein alpha-synuclein and development of Parkinson's disease:

Patients with Parkinson's disease (PD) have elevated levels of the protein called alpha-synuclein in their brains. As the protein clumps, or aggregates, the resulting toxicity causes the death of neurons that produce the brain chemical dopamine. Consequently, nerves and muscles that control movement and coordination are destroyed.

It looks possible that the reason behind all this clumping synuclein is chronic inflammation - that catch-all bugbear that appears to contribute to all the major diseases and degenerations of aging. As we get older, our immune system slips into faulty states that lead to rising levels of inflammation, damaging our biochemistry in many different ways such that we degrade that much faster. This might be one of those ways:

Aging enhances the neuroinflammatory response and alpha-synuclein nitration in rats:

The Lewy body is a pathological hallmark of Parkinson's disease. It has been revealed that the Lewy body contains nitrated alpha-synuclein which is prone to [forming aggregates]. We tested the hypothesis that aging may enhance nitration of alpha-synuclein due to an exaggerated neuroinflammatory reaction ... greater nitration of proteins like alpha-synuclein occurs in the substantia nigra of 16-month-old rats versus 3-month-old rats ... These results imply that an exaggerated neuroinflammatory response that occurs with aging might be involved in the increase in prevalence of neurodegenerative diseases like Parkinson's disease.

Whether or not this particular linkage is established beyond doubt, there is more than enough evidence demonstrating chronic inflammation to be bad for your health and longevity. Making sensible life choices to minimize inflammation as best you can is a sensible response to the research findings amassed to date.


is there any data showing that liposuction of fatty tissues in thighs and tummy, in addition to weight loss and better eating habits, helps avoid this chronic inflammation?

Posted by: annette sorensen at November 9th, 2008 4:10 PM

No. The only benefits in the mouse studies accrued when visceral fat was removed - the fat in the abdominal cavity, packed up against the organs, not the stuff they remove with liposuction. Visceral and surface fat apparently have very different biochemical behaviors and very different contributions to the way in which your metabolism functions. See:

Posted by: Reason at November 9th, 2008 5:07 PM

I'm curious as to what your take is on the possible increase in government regulations/price controls on the pharmaceutical/biotechnology industry?

Posted by: Mike at November 10th, 2008 9:49 AM

How 3-Deoxyglucosone (3DG) helps in modification of alpha synuclein and what is the role of this modified protein in aggregation &/or inflammation?

Posted by: shraddha at September 28th, 2011 4:58 AM

How to alpha synuclein expressed after neurodegeneration. Because in PD 70 -80% of neurons degenerate. In this condition How to alpha synuclein expressed in neurons

Posted by: Anandhan at May 4th, 2012 3:42 AM

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