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  • New implicated in neurodegenerative diseases

    images25Brain development is a highly complex phenomenon that includes several sequential steps: determining regional specification of neuronal types, control of cell migration, formation of neural networks, etc. The correct orchestration of all elements and processes involved is essential for the development, organization and functioning of the brain. Among the agents that may be taken into account, a glycoprotein, reeling, has a prominent role for the proper organization and cellular architecture of the central nervous system. But, despite this prior knowledge, we know little of its role in the adult brain, although it could be involved in signaling processes linked to neurodegeneration.

    Spanish researchers from the Institute of Neurosciences of Allocate, the Institute for Biomedical Research of Barcelona, Foundation Jimenez Diaz de Madrid and the Hospital de la Santa Cree I Sant Pau, Barcelona have analyzed the expression of reeling in brain and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) of healthy patients, and were compared with expression in patients suffering from Alzheimer’s disease and other neurodegenerative disorders. The results were published in PNAS last April. Among the observations drawn from the work highlights a 40% increase in the levels of messenger RNA and reeling in the cortex of Alzheimer patients, compared to levels in healthy patients. The same trend was detected in CSF, but not in blood plasma. The researchers also observed reeling expression levels higher in other neurodegenerative diseases.

    These results, together with those from the study of different glycosylation patterns of reeling in plasma and CSF, or between healthy and affected patients of Alzheimer’s, suggest that reeling may be over-regulated in the brain and CSF for these neurodegenerative diseases. It also appears that the reeling has a different cellular origin in both physiological fluids, due to their differential behavior. This would support the idea that reeling plays an important role in the genesis or development of many neurodegenerative diseases and opens new avenues in the future treatment of diseases of the brain.

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