Block LRRK2, increase autophagy?

For the past few years, Claudia Manzoni in the lab has been investigating what pathways LRRK2 links to in the cell. Using different inhibitors of LRRK2 kinase activity, she has discovered that blocking this aspect of LRRK2 biology causes an increase in a cellular process called autophagy – one of the ways that cells dispose of or recycle waste. Although we don’t yet know exactly how LRRK2 is regulating this process, this is a very interesting observation, especially in the context of an increasing awareness of the role that autophagy might be playing in Parkinson’s (see our earlier post on this). You can read all about the experiments we did online in Claudias paper:

http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bbamcr.2013.07.020

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