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Volume 1 Issue 3, March 2021

Small noncoding RNA dysregulation in Parkinson’s

In this issue, a study led by Andreas Keller as part of the Parkinson’s Progression Markers Initiative reports the longitudinal profiling of circulating small noncoding RNAs (sncRNAs) in the blood of patients with Parkinson's and identifies several microRNAs as potential diagnostic and prognostic biomarkers. The cover design illustrates disease progression as deterioration in the hand drawing of sncRNA structures and shows some of the blood cell types associated with sncRNA dysregulation in Parkinson’s.

See Kern et al. and the accompanying News & Views by Rosenthal et al.

Image: Dr. Valentina Galata, University of Luxembourg, 2021. Cover design: Lauren Heslop.


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News & Views

  • Zhang et al. describe a neural circuit that reduces lifespan when food-restricted worms smell food. This circuit signals the intestine via octopamine, the invertebrate homolog of norepinephrine, to activate AMPKα. Importantly, norepinephrine signaling also activates AMPKα in mammalian cells, suggesting a conserved mechanism.

    • Kaiden H. Price
    • Michael N. Nitabach
    News & Views
  • Chronological age fails to capture how the process of aging differs between individuals. Variability in rates of biological aging in youth is related to anatomical and functional differences already visible by midlife. This portends substantially different aging outcomes that have individual- and societal-level implications.

    • William J. Jagust
    News & Views
  • Biomarkers for Parkinson’s disease are critical to our efforts to identify disease-modifying therapies. Kern et al. document potential microRNA (miRNA) biomarkers and trends in miRNA regulation that occur in a bimodal distribution with age.

    • Liana S. Rosenthal
    • Jun Yang
    • Xiaobo Mao
    News & Views
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  • The authors review how the blood–brain barrier, a regulatory interface that controls interactions between the blood and central nervous system, changes during healthy aging, and discuss how some of these changes may predispose to age-associated diseases.

    • William A. Banks
    • May J. Reed
    • Michelle A. Erickson
    Review Article
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