Role of Alph-Synuclein in Neurotransmitter Secretion

Sreeganga Chandra, Ph.D.
University of Texas
Southwestern Medical Center
Dallas, TX

Alpa-synuclein is a synaptic protein of unknown function that has been implicated in the pathophysiology of Parkinson’ disease(PD). Two Independent mutations in the a-synuclein gene [A30P, A53T] have been genetically linked to a familial form of PD. In addition, a-synuclein is a major component of Lewy bodies, a pathological hallmark of PD. This grant application addresses the physiological function of a-synuclein in neural transmission, in particular regulation of the synaptic vesicle cycle. These studies will likely promote a better understanding of synaptic mechanisms, as well as the pathogenesis of PD.