The presynaptic α-synuclein is a prime suspect for contributing to Lewy pathology and clinical aspects of diseases, including Parkinson's disease, dementia with Lewy bodies, and a Lewy body variant of Alzheimer's disease. Here we examined the pathogenic mechanism of neuronal cell death induced by α-synuclein. The exogenous addition of α-synuclein caused a marked decrease of cell viability in primary and immortalized neuronal cells. The neuronal cell death appeared to be correlated with the Rab5A-specific endocytosis of α-synuclein that subsequently caused the formation of Lewy body-like intracytoplasmic inclusions. This was further supported by the fact that the expression of GTPase-deficient Rab5A resulted in a significant decrease of its cytotoxicity as a result of incomplete endocytosis of α-synuclein.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Molecular Biology
- Cell Biology