Acta Neuropathologica Communications
LRRK2 inhibition does not impart protection from α-synuclein pathology and neuron death in non-transgenic mice
Acta Neuropathologica Communications20197:28
© The Author(s). 2019
- Published: 26 February 2019
Mutations in leucine-rich repeat kinase 2 (LRRK2) are one of the most common causes of familial Parkinson’s disease (PD). The most common mutations in the LRRK2 gene induce elevated kinase activity of the LRRK2 protein. Recent studies have also suggested that LRRK2 kinase activity may be elevated in idiopathic PD patients, even in the absence of LRRK2 mutations. LRRK2 is therefore a prime candidate for small molecule kinase inhibitor development. However, it is currently unknown how LRRK2 influences the underlying pathogenesis of PD and how LRRK2 might influence extant pathogenesis. To understand whether LRRK2 inhibition would show some benefit in the absence of LRRK2 mutations, we treated a preclinical mouse model of PD with the potent LRRK2 inhibitor MLi-2. The inhibitor was well-tolerated by mice and dramatically reduced LRRK2 kinase activity. However, LRRK2 inhibition did not reverse motor phenotypes, pathological α-synuclein accumulation or neuron loss. The current study suggests that LRRK2 is not necessary for α-synuclein pathogenesis in this mouse model of PD and that further studies are needed to assess the likely clinical benefit of LRRK2 inhibition in idiopathic PD.
- Leucine-rich repeat kinase 2