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Am J Neurodegener Dis. 2012;1(3):217-25. Epub 2012 Nov 18.

Exosomes-associated neurodegeneration and progression of Parkinson's disease.

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Department of Biology, University of Padova Via Ugo Bassi 58/B, 35121 Padova, Italy.


Growing evidence indicates the role of exosomes in a variety of physiological pathways as conveyors of biological materials from cell-to-cell. However the molecular mechanism(s) of secretion and their interaction with receiving cells are yet unclear. Recently, it is emerging that exosomes are involved in pathological processes as potential carriers in the progression of neurodegenerative pathologies associated with misfolded proteins. In the current review we will discuss some recent findings on the key role of exosomes in the spreading of the aggregated products of α-synuclein from neuron-to-neuron and of inflammatory response propagation from immune cell-to-cell; we will highlight the implication of exosomes in the neurodegeneration and progression of the disease and the their potential interplay with genes related to Parkinson's disease. Increasing our knowledge on the cell-to-cell transmissions might provide new insights into mechanism of disease onset and progression and identify novel strategies for diagnosis and therapeutic intervention in Parkinson and other neurodegenerative diseases.


Exosomes; LRRK2; Parkinson’s disease; neuronal degeneration; α-synuclein


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