Parkinsonism due to mutations in PINK1, parkin, and DJ-1 and oxidative stress and mitochondrial pathways

Mark R Cookson
Cold Spring Harbor Perspectives in Medicine 2012 September 1, 2 (9): a009415
Three genes have been identified that cause, in humans, autosomally inherited parkinsonism. These are PARK2, encoding the E3 ubiquitin ligase parkin; PINK1, a mitochondrial kinase; and PARK7, which codes for the protein DJ-1. In several experimental systems, it has been shown that all three proteins impact mitochondrial function and/or oxidative stress responses. These are probably related because mitochondria produce oxidative stress in neurons. Moreover, it is clear that there are relationships between these genes, with a single pathway linking PINK1 and parkin and a parallel relationship with DJ-1. Work in progress in the field is aimed at understanding these relationships in more depth.

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