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Biochim Biophys Acta. 2013 Dec;1832(12):1913-21. doi: 10.1016/j.bbadis.2013.06.012. Epub 2013 Jun 28.

Amyloid beta-induced glycogen synthase kinase 3β phosphorylated VDAC1 in Alzheimer's disease: implications for synaptic dysfunction and neuronal damage.

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Neurogenetics Laboratory, Division of Neuroscience, Oregon National Primate Research Center, Oregon Health & Science University, 505 NW 185th Avenue, Beaverton, OR 97006, USA; Department of Physiology and Pharmacology, Oregon Health & Science University, 3181 SW Sam Jackson Park Road, Portland, OR 97239, USA. Electronic address:


Glycogen synthase kinase 3 (GSK3) is a serine/threonine protein kinase that is involved in the multiple signaling processes of a cell. Increasing evidence suggests that GSK3β plays a key role in multiple cellular processes in the progression of diabetes, obesity, Alzheimer's disease (AD), Parkinson's disease (PD), inflammatory diseases, schizophrenia, bipolar and several mood disorders, and mitochondrial diseases. Recent research has found that increased GSK3β activity is linked to the pathogenesis of AD through amyloid beta (Aβ), phosphorylated tau and mitochondrial dysfunction. Recent research has also revealed that GSK3β is elevated in AD-affected tissues and is critically involved in dissociating the voltage-dependent anion channel 1 (VDAC1) protein from hexokinases, and causing disrupted glucose metabolism, mitochondrial dysfunction and activating apoptotic cell death. The purpose of this article is to review recent research that is elucidating the role of GSK3β in AD pathogenesis. We discuss the involvement of GSK3β in the phosphorylation of VDAC1 and dissociation of VADC1 with hexokinases in AD neurons.


Alzheimer's disease; Amyloid beta; Amyloid beta precursor protein; Glycogen synthase kinase 3beta; Mitochondria; Voltage-dependent anion channel 1

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