Autophagy, inflammation and neurodegenerative disease

Authors

  • Mehrdad Alirezaei,

    1. Department of Immunology and Microbial Science, SP30-2110, The Scripps Research Institute, 10550 N. Torrey Pines Rd, La Jolla, CA 92037, USA
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  • Christopher C. Kemball,

    1. Department of Immunology and Microbial Science, SP30-2110, The Scripps Research Institute, 10550 N. Torrey Pines Rd, La Jolla, CA 92037, USA
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  • J. Lindsay Whitton

    1. Department of Immunology and Microbial Science, SP30-2110, The Scripps Research Institute, 10550 N. Torrey Pines Rd, La Jolla, CA 92037, USA
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Dr J. L. Whitton, as above.
E-mail: lwhitton@scripps.edu

Abstract

Autophagy is emerging as a central regulator of cellular health and disease and, in the central nervous system (CNS), this homeostatic process appears to influence synaptic growth and plasticity. Herein, we review the evidence that dysregulation of autophagy may contribute to several neurodegenerative diseases of the CNS. Up-regulation of autophagy may prevent, delay or ameliorate at least some of these disorders, and – based on recent findings from our laboratory – we speculate that this goal may be achieved using a safe, simple and inexpensive approach.

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