Overexpression of α-Synuclein Down-Regulates BDNF Expression
ABSTRACT Parkinson's disease (PD) is a chronic progressive neurodegenerative movement disorder characterized by the selective loss of nigrostriatal dopaminergic neurons. However, the molecular pathways leading to the dopaminergic neuron degeneration have remained obscure until recently. Reports demonstrated that reduction of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) was involved in the etiology and pathogenesis of PD, but its mechanism has not been elucidated. alpha-Synuclein has a causal role in Parkinson's disease, and could interfere with transcriptional regulation of dopamine neurons. In this study, alpha-synuclein overexpression was found to decrease the expression of BDNF, and also to suppress the transactivation of nuclear factors of activated T-cells (NFAT) and cAMP response element binding protein (CREB), both of which regulate BDNF expression. Furthermore, overexpressed alpha-synuclein could associate with protein kinase C (PKC) and impair its activity. Meanwhile glycogen synthase kinase-3beta (GSK3beta) was activated and extracellular signal-regulated protein kinase (ERK) activity was inhibited by overexpression of alpha-synuclein; both of them were downstream kinases of PKC. Therefore, the impaired PKC signal pathway caused by alpha-synuclein overexpression might account at least partially for the down-regulation of BDNF.
Conference Paper: A comprehensive framework for evaluating nonutility generation projects[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: With the rapid increase of electricity demand in the developing countries, there is a need for nonutility generation investment that cannot be met by the government finance. In Asia, the BOT (build, operate and transfer) approach is emerging as the dominant form of nonutility generation arrangement. In this paper, a comprehensive framework for evaluating BOT-type nonutility generation projects is presented. The framework provides a useful tool in assisting decision-making and contract negotiation. Two kinds of uncertainties of different nature must be considered in project assessment. One type is beyond participants' control, such as error in demand forecast, change in fuel price, or interest rate, etc. The other type is due to participants' actions in operation in response to changing economic situations. In our framework, game theory is used to model the participants' actions and the Monte Carlo method is used to model the other uncertainties. An example is presented to illustrate the effectiveness of the proposed frameworkPower Engineering Society Winter Meeting, 2000. IEEE; 02/2000
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ABSTRACT: Alpha-synuclein (α-Syn) is a small neuronal protein that has been found to be expressed throughout the brain. It has been shown that α-Syn regulates the homeostasis of monoamine neurotransmitters and is involved in various degenerative and affective disorders. There is indication that α-Syn may regulate expression of the brain-derived neurotropic factor (BDNF) which plays an important role in the mood disorders. The study aimed to analyze the mRNA levels of Snca and Bdnf genes in the ventral tegmental area (VTA) and raphe nuclei of the midbrain in male mice that had each won or defeated 20 encounters (20-time winners and 20-time losers, respectively) in daily agonistic interactions. Groups of animals that had the same winning and losing track record followed by a no-fight period for 14 days (no-fighting winners and no-fighting losers) were also studied. Snca mRNA levels were increased in the raphe nuclei in the 20-time losers and in the VTA of the 20-time winners. After no-fight period Snca mRNA levels decreased in both groups. Snca mRNA levels were similar to the control level in the VTA of the 20-time losers and in the raphe nuclei of the 20-time winners. However Snca gene expression increased in these areas in the no-fighting winners and no-fighting losers in comparison with respective mRNA levels in animals before no-fight period. Bdnf mRNA levels increased in VTA of 20-time winners. Significant positive correlations were found between the mRNA levels of Snca and Bdnf genes in the raphe nuclei. Social experience affects Snca gene expression depending on brain areas and functional activity of monoaminergic systems in chronically victorious or defeated mice. These findings may be useful for understanding the mechanisms of forming different alpha-synucleinopathies.PLoS ONE 11/2010; 5(11):e14089. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0014089 · 3.53 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) is the most widely distributed neurotrophin in the CNS, where it plays several pivotal roles in synaptic plasticity and neuronal survival. As a consequence, BDNF has become a key target in the physiopathology of several neurological and psychiatric diseases. Recent studies have consistently reported altered levels of BDNF in the circulation (i.e., serum or plasma) of patients with major depression, bipolar disorder, Alzheimer's disease, Huntington's disease and Parkinson's disease. Correlations between serum BDNF levels and affective, cognitive and motor symptoms have also been described. BDNF appears to be an unspecific biomarker of neuropsychiatric disorders characterized by neurodegenerative changes.Biomarkers in Medicine 12/2010; 4(6):871-87. DOI:10.2217/bmm.10.111 · 2.86 Impact Factor