Correction of symptoms of Huntington's disease by genistein through FOXO3-mediated autophagy stimulation - this is the title of an article published in the journal Autophagy, whose authors are scientists from the Department of Molecular Biology, Faculty of Biology, UG: prof. Grzegorz Węgrzyn, dr Karolina Pierzynowska, dr Magdalena Podlacha, dr Lidia Gaffke, mgr Estera Rintz, mgr Karolina Wiśniewska and mgr Zuzanna Cyske.
Prof. Grzegorz Węgrzyn's team is involved in various research areas: from bacteria, viruses and bacteriophages to genetic and neurodegenerative diseases. Among the researchers' scientific interests are the mechanisms of genetic and neurodegenerative diseases such as Huntington's disease (HD).
The researchers have achieved another success, as we can read in a publication in the journal ‘Autophagy’.
'The paper concerns the demonstration on an animal model of the efficacy of genistein in Huntington's disease (previously, we had results only on cellular models), even when the therapy was started after the onset of symptoms, as well as an indication of the molecular mechanism of genistein's action,' says Head of the Department of Molecular Biology at the Faculty of Biology of the UG, Chairman of the Council for Scientific Excellence, prof. Grzegorz Węgrzyn.
As the abstract reads, genistein treatment stimulates the autophagy process in the brains of HD mice, leading to a correction of HD symptoms, suggesting that it could be considered a potential treatment for the disease. Combined with a recent report indicating that impaired autophagy may be a significant cause of neurodegenerative changes, these findings may point the way towards developing effective therapeutic approaches for various neurodegenerative diseases by testing compounds (or possibly combinations of compounds) capable of stimulating autophagy and/or unblocking this process.