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Open Access Parkinson's Disease: From Genetics to Treatments

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Parkinson's disease (PD) is a common neurodegenerative disease and typically presents with tremor, rigidity, bradykinesia, and postural instability. The hallmark pathological features of PD are loss of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra (SN) and the presence of neuronal intracellular Lewy body (LB) inclusions. In general, PD is sporadic; however, familial PD, while uncommon, can be inherited in an autosomal dominant (AD) or autosomal recessive (AR) manner. The molecular investigations of proteins encoded by PD-linked genes have clarified that ADPD is associated with α-synuclein and LRRK2, while ARPD is linked to Parkin, PINK1, DJ1, and ATP13A2. Understanding these genes can bring insights into this disease and create possible genetic tests for early diagnosis. Long-term pharmacological treatment is so far disappointing, probably due to unwanted complications and decreasing drug efficacy. Several strategies have been proposed and tested as alternatives for PD. Cellular transplantation of dopamine-secreting stem cells opens the door to new therapeutic avenues for restoration of the functions of degenerative and/or damaged neurons in PD.

Keywords: ATPase type 13A2 (ATP13A2); Cellular transplantation; DJ1; Familial Parkinson's disease (PD); Genetics; Leucine-rich repeat kinase (LRRK2); PTEN-induced kinase 1 (PINK1); Parkin; α-Synuclein

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Department of Pediatrics, Tri-Service General Hospital, National Defense Medical Center, Taipei, Taiwan, ROC

Publication date: 2013-04-01

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  • Cell Transplantation publishes original, peer-reviewed research and review articles on the subject of cell transplantation and its application to human diseases. To ensure high-quality contributions from all areas of transplantation, separate section editors and editorial boards have been established. Articles deal with a wide range of topics including physiological, medical, preclinical, tissue engineering, and device-oriented aspects of transplantation of nervous system, endocrine, growth factor-secreting, bone marrow, epithelial, endothelial, and genetically engineered cells, among others. Basic clinical studies and immunological research papers are also featured. To provide complete coverage of this revolutionary field, Cell Transplantation will report on relevant technological advances, and ethical and regulatory considerations of cell transplants. Cell Transplantation is now an Open Access journal starting with volume 18 in 2009, and therefore there will be an inexpensive publication charge, which is dependent on the number of pages, in addition to the charge for color figures. This will allow work to be disseminated to a wider audience and also entitle the corresponding author to a free PDF, as well as prepublication of an unedited version of the manuscript.
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