Background: α-Synuclein is a protein of 140-amino acids expressed abundantly in the brain. α-Synuclein is also the main component of pathogenic Lewy bodies and Lewy neurites. Research studies have shown that mutations of the α-synuclein gene are linked to Parkinson's disease (1).
Background: Glycogen is a polysaccharide of glucose and serves as an energy storage in mammalian muscle and liver (1). Glycogen synthase catalyzes the rate-limiting step of glycogen biosynthesis and has two major isoforms in mammals -- muscle isoform (GYS1) and liver isoform (GYS2) respectively (1). Glycogen synthase kinase-3α (GSK-3α) and glycogen synthase kinase-3β (GSK-3β) phosphorylate glycogen synthase at multiple sites in its C-terminus (Ser641, Ser645, Ser649 and Ser653) inhibiting its activity (2, 3). Hypoxia alters glycogen metabolism including temporal changes of GYS1 expression and phosphorylation in cancer cells, suggesting the role of metabolic reprogramming of glycogen metabolism in cancer growth (1).