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Beta-synuclein is a protein that in humans is encoded by the SNCB gene.[1][2][3]

The protein encoded by this gene is highly homologous to alpha-synuclein. These proteins are abundantly expressed in the brain and putatively inhibit phospholipase D2 selectively. The encoded protein, which may play a role in neuronal plasticity, is abundant in neurofibrillary lesions of patients with Alzheimer's disease. This protein has been shown to be highly expressed in the substantia nigra of the brain, a region of neuronal degeneration in patients with Parkinson's disease; however, no direct relation to Parkinson's disease has been established. Two transcript variants encoding the same protein have been found for this gene.[3]

Beta-synuclein is a synuclein protein found primarily in brain tissue and is seen mainly in presynaptic terminals. Beta-synuclein is predominantly expressed in the neocortex, hippocampus, striatum, thalamus, and cerebellum. It is not found in Lewy bodies, but it is associated with hippocampal pathology in PD and DLB.[4]

Beta-synuclein is suggested to be an inhibitor of alpha-synuclein aggregation, which occurs in neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson's disease. Thus, beta-synuclein may protect the central nervous system from the neurotoxic effects of alpha-synuclein and provide a novel treatment of neurodegenerative disorders.[5][6]

See also


  1. Spillantini MG, Divane A, Goedert M (Nov 1995). "Assignment of human alpha-synuclein (SNCA) and beta-synuclein (SNCB) genes to chromosomes 4q21 and 5q35". Genomics. 27 (2): 379–81. doi:10.1006/geno.1995.1063. PMID 7558013.
  2. Lavedan C, Leroy E, Torres R, Dehejia A, Dutra A, Buchholtz S, Nussbaum RL, Polymeropoulos MH (Jan 1999). "Genomic organization and expression of the human beta-synuclein gene (SNCB)". Genomics. 54 (1): 173–5. doi:10.1006/geno.1998.5556. PMID 9806846.
  3. 3.0 3.1 "Entrez Gene: SNCB synuclein, beta".
  4. George, JM (2002). "The synucleins". Genome Biology. 3 (1): REVIEWS3002. doi:10.1186/gb-2001-3-1-reviews3002. PMC 150459. PMID 11806835.
  5. Hashimoto, M; Bar-On, P; Ho, G; Takenouchi, T; Rockenstein, E; Crews, L; Masliah, E (2004). "Beta-synuclein regulates Akt activity in neuronal cells. A possible mechanism for neuroprotection in Parkinson's disease". The Journal of Biological Chemistry. 279 (22): 23622–9. doi:10.1074/jbc.M313784200. PMID 15026413.
  6. Hashimoto, M; Rockenstein, E; Mante, M; Mallory, M; Masliah, E (2001). "beta-Synuclein inhibits alpha-synuclein aggregation: a possible role as an anti-parkinsonian factor". Neuron. 32 (2): 213–23. doi:10.1016/S0896-6273(01)00462-7. PMID 11683992.

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