Scientists who developed the first yeast model of Parkinson’s disease (PD) have been able to describe the mechanisms of an important gene’s role in the disease. Tiago Fleming Outeiro, Ph.D., and Susan Lindquist, Ph.D., of the Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research in Cambridge, Massachusetts, studied the gene’s actions under normal conditions and under abnormal conditions to learn how and when the gene’s product, alpha-synuclein, becomes harmful to surrounding cells. The scientists created a yeast model that expresses the alpha-synuclein gene, which has been implicated in Parkinson’s disease (PD). Yeast models are often used in the study of genetic diseases because they offer researchers a simple system that allows them to clarify how genes work.
The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, part of the National Institutes of Health, funded the study, which appears in the December 5, 2003, issue of Science.
Additional information including fact sheets are available at the website for National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS).
Message posted by: Rashmi Nemade
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