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Keywords:

  • Dopamine neuron;
  • inflammation;
  • neurodegeneration;
  • mitochndria;
  • misfolded protein

Parkinson's disease is a common adult-onset neurodegenerative disorder whose pathogenesis remains essentially unknown. Currently, it is believed that the neurodegenerative process in Parkinson's disease is a combination of both cell-autonomous and non-cell-autonomous mechanisms. Proposed cell-autonomous mechanisms include alterations in mitochondrial bioenergetics, dysregulation of calcium homeostasis, and impaired turnover of mitochondria. As for the proposed non-cell-autonomous mechanisms, they involve prion-like behavior of misfolded proteins and neuroinflammation. This suggests that cell death in Parkinson's disease is caused by a multifactorial cascade of pathogenic events and argues that effective neuroprotective therapy for Parkinson's disease may have to rely on multiple drug interventions. © 2013 Movement Disorder Society