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Mutations in PARKIN, pten-induced putative kinase 1 (PINK1), and DJ-1 are individually linked to autosomal recessive early-onset familial forms of Parkinson disease (PD). Although mutations in these genes lead to the same disease state, the functional relationships between them and how their respective disease-associated mutations cause PD are largely(More)
RATIONALE Oxidative stress is a key contributor in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) pathogenesis caused by cigarette smoking. NRF2, a redox-sensitive transcription factor, dissociates from its inhibitor, KEAP1, to induce antioxidant expression that inhibits oxidative stress. OBJECTIVES To determine the link between severity of COPD, oxidative(More)
The role of dopamine as a vulnerability factor and a toxic agent in Parkinson's disease (PD) is still controversial, yet the presumed dopamine toxicity is partly responsible for the "DOPA-sparing" clinical practice that avoids using L-3,4-dihydroxyphenylalanine (L-DOPA), a dopamine precursor, in early PD. There is a lack of studies on animal models that(More)
Mutations in the DJ-1 gene were recently identified in an autosomal recessive form of early-onset familial Parkinson disease. Structural biology, biochemistry, and cell biology studies have suggested potential functions of DJ-1 in oxidative stress, protein folding, and degradation pathways. However, animal models are needed to determine whether and how loss(More)
Parkinson's disease (PD) may be caused by a complex interaction of environmental insults and genetic susceptibilities. Previous studies of DJ-1-deficient mice have noted dopaminergic dysfunction mainly in older mice. To simulate the interaction of genetic factors and environmental factors, we treated DJ-1-deficient mice with paraquat. Even in relatively(More)
Mitochondrial dysfunction has been reported in both familial and sporadic Parkinson's disease (PD). However, effective therapy targeting this pathway is currently inadequate. Recent studies suggest that manipulating the processes of mitochondrial fission and fusion has considerable potential for treating human diseases. To determine the therapeutic impact(More)
In vitro evidence suggests that the inefficient removal of damaged mitochondria by macroautophagy contributes to Parkinson's disease (PD). Using a tissue-specific gene amplification strategy, we generated a transgenic mouse line with human α-synuclein A53T overexpression specifically in dopamine (DA) neurons. Transgenic mice showed profound early-onset(More)
PINK1 (PTEN induced putative kinase 1), a familial Parkinson's disease (PD)-related gene, is expressed in astrocytes, but little is known about its role in this cell type. Here, we found that astrocytes cultured from PINK1-knockout (KO) mice exhibit defective proliferative responses to epidermal growth factor (EGF) and fetal bovine serum. In PINK1-KO(More)
The dopamine system is implicated in several neurological and psychiatric disorders. Genetic mutations or variations that affect dopamine system functions either directly cause or contribute to these disorders, even though other genetic and environmental factors may contribute significantly to some of these disorders as well. Transgenic mice increasingly(More)
The basic helix-loop-helix (bHLH) proteins comprise a eukaryotic transcription factor family involved in multiple biological processes. They have the ability to form multiple dimer combinations and most of them also bind a 6 bp site (E-box) with limited specificity. These properties make them ideal for combinatorial regulation of gene expression. The(More)