Lysosomal enhancement with microbial hydrolases: a novel strategy for removing protein aggregates.

In: New Trends in Alzheimer and Parkinson Disorders: ADPD 2005 (A. Fisher et al., eds.), Medimond, 2005, pp. 51-54.

Lysosomal enhancement with microbial hydrolases: a novel strategy for removing protein aggregates.

de Grey ADNJ.

Abstract

Abstract:

All neurodegenerative diseases are associated with the intracellular accumulation of substances that impair cellular function and viability. Reversing this accumulation may thus be valuable, but has proven challenging, doubtless because substances resistant to cellular catabolism are inherently hard to degrade. I suggest a radically new approach: augmenting humans’ natural catabolic machinery with microbial enzymes. Many highly recalcitrant organic molecules are naturally degraded in the soil. Since the soil in certain environments – graveyards, for example – is enriched in human remains but does not accumulate these substances, it presumably harbours microbes that degrade them. The enzymes responsible could be identified and engineered to metabolise these substances in vivo.