Dec 04, 2018 25 (10) 2742-2754.e31
Vol. 25, Issue 10, Medline Page 2742-2754.e31
Inhibiting Stearoyl-CoA Desaturase Ameliorates α-Synuclein Cytotoxicity.
The lack of disease-modifying treatments for neurodegenerative disease stems in part from our rudimentary understanding of disease mechanisms and the paucity of targets for therapeutic intervention. Here we used an integrated discovery paradigm to identify a new therapeutic target for diseases caused by α-synuclein (α-syn), a small lipid-binding protein that misfolds and aggregates in Parkinson's disease and other disorders. Using unbiased phenotypic screening, we identified a series of compounds that were cytoprotective against α-syn-mediated toxicity by inhibiting the highly conserved enzyme stearoyl-CoA desaturase (SCD). Critically, reducing the levels of unsaturated membrane lipids by inhibiting SCD reduced α-syn toxicity in human induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) neuronal models. Taken together, these findings suggest that inhibition of fatty acid desaturation has potential as a therapeutic approach for the treatment of Parkinson's disease and other synucleinopathies.