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Trends Mol Med. 2011 Mar;17(3):158-65. doi: 10.1016/j.molmed.2010.11.002. Epub 2010 Dec 9.

Mitophagy: the latest problem for Parkinson's disease.

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Department of Neurology, Columbia University, New York, NY, USA.


Parkinson's disease (PD) is a common neurodegenerative disorder of unknown cause. Some familial forms of PD are provoked by mutations in the genes encoding for the PTEN (phosphatase and tensin homolog)-induced putative kinase-1 (PINK1) and Parkin. Mounting evidence indicates that PINK1 and Parkin might function in concert to modulate mitochondrial degradation, termed mitophagy. However, the molecular mechanisms by which PINK1/Parkin affect mitophagy are just beginning to be elucidated. Herein, we review the main advances in our understanding of the PINK1/Parkin pathway. Because of the phenotypic similarities among the different forms of PD, a better understanding of PINK1/Parkin biology might have far-reaching pathogenic and therapeutic implications for both the inherited and the sporadic forms of PD.

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