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Mol Neurodegener. 2009 Jul 23;4:32. doi: 10.1186/1750-1326-4-32.

Ectopic localization of FOXO3a protein in Lewy bodies in Lewy body dementia and Parkinson's disease.

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Department of Pathology, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio 44106, USA.


Lewy bodies and Lewy neurites constitute the cardinal neuropathological features of both Parkinson's disease (PD) and Lewy body dementia (LBD). Whereas alpha-synuclein has been found to be the major component of the Lewy body, the mechanisms by which neurons degenerate, as well as basic mechanisms involved in the formation of alpha-synuclein-related inclusions, remain obscure. We have suggested previously that potential mechanisms are likely to leave a "molecular signature" or protein adduct within the Lewy body, and have found examples of such signatures in previous studies. In this study, we demonstrate increased FOXO3 in association with Lewy bodies and Lewy neurites in LBD and PD brain tissue. Since FOXO proteins are involved in several pathways responsible for the regulation of cell death, cell proliferation, and cell metabolism, the ectopic localization of FOXO3 to Lewy bodies provides evidence that aberrations in basic cellular biochemistry may contribute to inclusion formation, which is likely more complex than a simple "gain of function" toxicity as is commonly opined. In light of the known interaction of FOXO3 and 14-3-3, basic protein-protein interaction between these proteins and alpha-synuclein may be key.

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