Alpha Synuclein: Function

The function of alpha synuclein in healthy individuals is poorly understood, however, it has been proposed to regulate vesicular transport between brain cells1. Down regulation of alpha synuclein in knockout mice and primary neurons confirmed its regulation of synaptic neurotransmission16. Alpha synuclein also functions in neurodegeneration; it is the main component of Lewy bodies and Lewy neurites, and has been linked to the destruction of dopamine producing neurons which causes the movement problems associated with Parkinson’s Disease1.