Quinones and Other Reactive Oxygen Species in Neurobiologic, Apoptotic, and Neurotoxic Processes

Free radicals and dopamine system degeneration

Richard M. Kostrzewa

The review by D. Offen and E. Melamed summarizes some of the newer studies that implicate apoptotic mechanisms in nigrostriatal neuronal degeneration in Parkinson's disease. Your findings give evidence that the proto-oncogene bcl-2 is important in protecting against oxidative damage during dopamine metabolism, and that an important mechanism is prevention of apoptotic processes. This is an intriguing finding. Let me ask if there are likely to be families of prodeath and antideath genes that are continually in competition for preventing or promoting cell death? Do you foresee that the next generation of anti-Parkinsonian drugs will be those that target such genes?
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