Dietary intake of α-ketoglutarate ameliorates α-synuclein pathology in mouse models of Parkinson’s disease

  • Impact factors: 9.207
  • Publication: CELLULAR AND MOLECULAR LIFE SCIENCES
  • Author:Zhang Wenlong, Ding Liuyan, Zhang Mengran, Zheng Shaohui, Ma Runfang, Gong Junwei, Mao Hengxu, Xu Huaxi, Xu Pingyi, Zhang Yunlong
  • DOI citation-doi:10.1007/s00018-023-04807-7
  • Date:2023-05-19

Parkinson’s disease (PD) is a progressive movement disorder characterized by dopaminergic (DA) neuron degeneration and the existence of Lewy bodies formed by misfolded α-synuclein. Emerging evidence supports the benefits of dietary interventions in PD due to their safety and practicality. Previously, dietary intake of α-ketoglutarate (AKG) was proved to extend the lifespan of various species and protect mice from frailty. However, the mechanism of dietary AKG’s effects in PD remains undetermined. In the present study, we report that an AKG-based diet significantly ameliorated α-synuclein pathology, and rescued DA neuron degeneration and impaired DA synapses in adeno-associated virus (AAV)-loaded human α-synuclein mice and transgenic A53T α-synuclein (A53T α-Syn) mice. Moreover, AKG diet increased nigral docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) levels and DHA supplementation reproduced the anti-α-synuclein effects in the PD mouse model. Our study reveals that AKG and DHA induced microglia to phagocytose and degrade α-synuclein via promoting C1q and suppressed pro-inflammatory reactions. Furthermore, results indicate that modulating gut polyunsaturated fatty acid metabolism and microbiota Lachnospiraceae_NK4A136_group in the gut-brain axis may underlie AKG’s benefits in treating α-synucleinopathy in mice. Together, our findings propose that dietary intake of AKG is a feasible and promising therapeutic approach for PD.

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