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Unbiased Screens for Modifiers of Alpha-Synuclein Toxicity.

Curr Neurol Neurosci Rep. 2019 Feb 9;19(2):8. doi: 10.1007/s11910-019-0925-z.

Authors/Editors: Höllerhage M, Bickle M, Höglinger GU.
Publication Date: 2019



PURPOSE OF REVIEW: We provide an overview about unbiased screens to identify modifiers of alpha-synuclein (αSyn)-induced toxicity, present the models and the libraries that have been used for screening, and describe how hits from primary screens were selected and validated.

RECENT FINDINGS: Screens can be classified as either genetic or chemical compound modifier screens, but a few screens do not fit this classification. Most screens addressing αSyn-induced toxicity, including genome-wide overexpressing and deletion, were performed in yeast. More recently, newer methods such as CRISPR-Cas9 became available and were used for screening purposes. Paradoxically, given that αSyn-induced toxicity plays a role in neurological diseases, there is a shortage of human cell-based models for screening. Moreover, most screens used mutant or fluorescently tagged forms of αSyn and only very few screens investigated wild-type αSyn. Particularly, no genome-wide αSyn toxicity screen in human dopaminergic neurons has been published so far. Most unbiased screens for modifiers of αSyn toxicity were performed in yeast, and there is a lack of screens performed in human and particularly dopaminergic cells.

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