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Review

Phytochemicals Bridging Autophagy Induction and Alpha-Synuclein Degradation in Parkinsonism

1
Human Anatomy, Department of Translational Research and New Technologies in Medicine and Surgery, University of Pisa, Via Roma 55, 56126 Pisa (PI), Italy
2
I.R.C.C.S Neuromed, Via Atinense, 86077 Pozzilli (IS), Italy
3
Aliveda Laboratories, Crespina Lorenzana, 56042 Pisa (PI), Italy
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2019, 20(13), 3274; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms20133274
Received: 21 May 2019 / Revised: 30 June 2019 / Accepted: 2 July 2019 / Published: 3 July 2019
Among nutraceuticals, phytochemical-rich compounds represent a source of naturally-derived bioactive principles, which are extensively studied for potential beneficial effects in a variety of disorders ranging from cardiovascular and metabolic diseases to cancer and neurodegeneration. In the brain, phytochemicals produce a number of biological effects such as modulation of neurotransmitter activity, growth factor induction, antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activity, stem cell modulation/neurogenesis, regulation of mitochondrial homeostasis, and counteracting protein aggregation through modulation of protein-folding chaperones and the cell clearing systems autophagy and proteasome. In particular, the ability of phytochemicals in restoring proteostasis through autophagy induction took center stage in recent research on neurodegenerative disorders such as Parkinson’s disease (PD). Indeed, autophagy dysfunctions and α-syn aggregation represent two interdependent downstream biochemical events, which concur in the parkinsonian brain, and which are targeted by phytochemicals administration. Therefore, in the present review we discuss evidence about the autophagy-based neuroprotective effects of specific phytochemical-rich plants in experimental parkinsonism, with a special focus on their ability to counteract alpha-synuclein aggregation and toxicity. Although further studies are needed to confirm the autophagy-based effects of some phytochemicals in parkinsonism, the evidence discussed here suggests that rescuing autophagy through natural compounds may play a role in preserving dopamine (DA) neuron integrity by counteracting the aggregation, toxicity, and prion-like spreading of α-syn, which remains a hallmark of PD. View Full-Text
Keywords: curcumin; bacosides; ashwagandha; gallic/asiatic acids; resveratrol; catechins; synucleinopathy; cell-clearing pathways; metabolic syndrome curcumin; bacosides; ashwagandha; gallic/asiatic acids; resveratrol; catechins; synucleinopathy; cell-clearing pathways; metabolic syndrome
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MDPI and ACS Style

Limanaqi, F.; Biagioni, F.; Busceti, C.L.; Ryskalin, L.; Polzella, M.; Frati, A.; Fornai, F. Phytochemicals Bridging Autophagy Induction and Alpha-Synuclein Degradation in Parkinsonism. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2019, 20, 3274. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms20133274

AMA Style

Limanaqi F, Biagioni F, Busceti CL, Ryskalin L, Polzella M, Frati A, Fornai F. Phytochemicals Bridging Autophagy Induction and Alpha-Synuclein Degradation in Parkinsonism. International Journal of Molecular Sciences. 2019; 20(13):3274. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms20133274

Chicago/Turabian Style

Limanaqi, Fiona, Francesca Biagioni, Carla L. Busceti, Larisa Ryskalin, Maico Polzella, Alessandro Frati, and Francesco Fornai. 2019. "Phytochemicals Bridging Autophagy Induction and Alpha-Synuclein Degradation in Parkinsonism" International Journal of Molecular Sciences 20, no. 13: 3274. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms20133274

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