- Western Blot
Parkinson's disease (PD) is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder that affects movement. It is characterized by the loss of predominately dopamine-producing neurons in a specific area of the brain called substantia nigra. α-Synuclein is a component of Lewy bodies, protein aggregations found in the neurons, that are the pathological hallmark of Parkinson's disease. Asparagine endopeptidase (AEP) has recently be found to play a role in neurogenerative diseases like Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s disease. Emory researchers have shown that AEP cleaves α-synuclein, leading to fragments which can aggregate together with other proteins into the Lewy bodies that escalates its neurotoxicity, thus leading to dopaminergic neuronal loss and motor impairments in a mouse model. They have developed two polyclonal antibodies, one that recognizes α-synuclein fragments that have been cleaved by asparagine endopeptidase (AEP) and one that recognizes activated AEP. These polyclonal antibodies will be useful in the study of Parkinson’s disease and the development of therapeutic targets.
Publications: Zhang, Z. et al. (2017). Nat Struc Mol Biol, 24(8), 632-642.