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Autophagy. 2012 Apr;8(4):701-3. doi: 10.4161/auto.19522. Epub 2012 Apr 1.

Malin knockout mice support a primary role of autophagy in the pathogenesis of Lafora disease.

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Laboratory of Cellular Biology, Centro de Investigación Príncipe Felipe, Valencia, Spain.

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  • Autophagy. 2012 Jul 1;8(7):1163.


Lafora disease (LD), a fatal neurodegenerative disorder characterized by intracellular inclusions called Lafora bodies (LBs), is caused by recessive loss-of-function mutations in the genes encoding either laforin or malin. Previous studies suggested a role of these proteins in regulating glycogen biosynthesis, in glycogen dephosphorylation and in the modulation of intracellular proteolytic systems. However, the contribution of each of these processes to LD pathogenesis is unclear. Here we review our recent finding that dysfunction of autophagy is a common feature of both laforin- and malin-deficient mice, preceding other pathological manifestations. We propose that autophagy plays a primary role in LD pathogenesis and is a potential target for its treatment.

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