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Mar 29, 2022

Enzyme blocker could open new treatments for neurodegenerative diseases

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, neuroscience

𝐍𝐞𝐰 𝐀𝐭𝐥𝐚𝐬:

The Neuro-Network.

𝐄𝐧𝐳𝐲𝐦𝐞 𝐛𝐥𝐨𝐜𝐤𝐞𝐫 𝐜𝐨𝐮𝐥𝐝 𝐨𝐩𝐞𝐧 𝐧𝐞𝐰 𝐭𝐫𝐞𝐚𝐭𝐦𝐞𝐧𝐭𝐬 𝐟𝐨𝐫 𝐧𝐞𝐮𝐫𝐨𝐝𝐞𝐠𝐞𝐧𝐞𝐫𝐚𝐭𝐢𝐯𝐞 𝐝𝐢𝐬𝐞𝐚𝐬𝐞𝐬

𝙍𝙚𝙨𝙚𝙖𝙧𝙘𝙝𝙚𝙧𝙨 𝙝𝙖𝙫𝙚 𝙪𝙣𝙘𝙤𝙫𝙚𝙧𝙚𝙙 𝙝𝙤𝙬 𝙖 𝙘𝙚𝙧𝙩𝙖𝙞𝙣 𝙢𝙤𝙡𝙚𝙘𝙪𝙡𝙖𝙧 𝙥𝙖𝙩𝙝𝙬𝙖𝙮 𝙩𝙧𝙞𝙜𝙜𝙚𝙧𝙨 𝙩𝙝𝙚 𝙗𝙧𝙚𝙖𝙠𝙙𝙤𝙬𝙣 𝙤𝙛 𝙣𝙚𝙧… See more.


Researchers have uncovered how a certain molecular pathway triggers the breakdown of nerve fibers in neurodegenerative diseases – and more importantly, how to potentially switch it off. The find could lead to a new class of drugs that slows the progression of these debilitating disorders.

The focus of the study was an enzyme called SARM1, which is expressed in neurons and plays a role as an immune regulator. However, it also functions as a sensor of metabolic stress, and at a certain point it sparks a cascade of processes that eventually begins to break down axons, leading to some of the issues associated with Parkinson’s disease, ALS, neuropathy, and other neurodegenerative diseases.

But exactly what is going on during that process has remained murky, so the researchers on the new study investigated closer using nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy, cryo-electron microscopy and X-ray crystallography.

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