Autophagy in Synucleinopathy: The Overwhelmed and Defective Machinery
Cells. 2019-06-09; 8(6): 565
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Alpha-synuclein positive-intracytoplasmic inclusions are the common denominators of the synucleinopathies present as Lewy bodies in Parkinson’s disease, dementia with Lewy bodies, or glial cytoplasmic inclusions in multiple system atrophy. These neurodegenerative diseases also exhibit cellular dyshomeostasis, such as autophagy impairment. Several decades of research have questioned the potential link between the autophagy machinery and alpha-synuclein protein toxicity in synucleinopathy and neurodegenerative processes. Here, we aimed to discuss the active participation of autophagy impairment in alpha-synuclein accumulation and propagation, as well as alpha-synuclein-independent neurodegenerative processes in the field of synucleinopathy. Therapeutic approaches targeting the restoration of autophagy have started to emerge as relevant strategies to reverse pathological features in synucleinopathies.