Nigrostriatal dopaminergic systems govern physiological functions related to locomotion, and their dysfunction leads to movement disorders, such as Parkinson’s disease and dopa-responsive dystonia (Segawa disease). Previous studies revealed that expression of the gene encoding nigrostriatal tyrosine hydroxylase (TH), a rate-limiting enzyme of dopamine biosynthesis, is reduced in Parkinson’s disease and dopa-responsive dystonia; however, the mechanism of TH depletion in these disorders remains unclear. In this article, we review the molecular mechanism underlying the neurodegeneration process in dopamine-containing neurons and focus on the novel degradation pathway of TH through the ubiquitin-proteasome system to advance our understanding of the etiology of Parkinson’s disease and dopa-responsive dystonia. We also introduce the relation of α-synuclein propagation with the loss of TH protein in Parkinson’s disease as well as anticipate therapeutic targets and early diagnosis of these diseases.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Biology
- Computer Science Applications
- Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
- Organic Chemistry
- Inorganic Chemistry