Parkin accumulation in aggresomes due to proteasome impairment

Eunsung Junn, Sang Seop Lee, Unsun T. Suhr, M. Maral Mouradian

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20 Scopus citations


Parkinson's disease (PD) is characterized by loss of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra and by the presence of ubiquitinated cytoplasmic inclusions known as Lewy bodies. α-Synuclein and Parkin are two of the proteins associated with inherited forms of PD and are found in Lewy bodies. Whereas numerous reports indicate the tendency of α-synuclein to aggregate both in vitro and in vivo, no information is available about similar physical properties for Parkin. Here we show that overexpression of Parkin in the presence of proteasome inhibitors leads to the formation of aggresome-like perinuclear inclusions. These eosinophilic inclusions share many characteristics with Lewy bodies, including a core and halo organization, immunoreactivity to ubiquitin, α-synuclein, synphilin-1, Parkin, molecular chaperones, and proteasome subunit as well as staining of some with thioflavin S. We propose that the process of Lewy body formation may be akin to that of aggresome-like structures. The tendency of wild-type Parkin to aggregate and form inclusions may have implications for the pathogenesis of sporadic PD.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)47870-47877
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number49
StatePublished - Dec 6 2002
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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