Rhodiola rosea Improves Lifespan, Locomotion, and Neurodegeneration in a Drosophila melanogaster Model of Huntington’s Disease
Fantastic article on Rhodiola's potential long term effects. A must read! The full article will be found here. Enjoy!Huntington’s disease (HD) is a dominant, late-onset disease characterized by choreiform movements, cognitive decline, and
personality disturbance. It is caused by a polyglutamine repeat expansion in the Huntington’s disease gene encoding for the
Huntingtin protein (Htt) which functions as a scafold for selective macroautophagy. Mutant Htt (mHtt) disrupts vesicle trafcking
and prevents autophagosome fusion with lysosomes, thus deregulating autophagy in neuronal cells, leading to cell death. Autophagy
has been described as a therapeutic target for HD, owing to the key role Htt plays in the cellular process. Rhodiola rosea, a plant
extract used in traditional medicine in Europe and Asia, has been shown to attenuate aging in the fy and other model species.
It has also been shown to inhibit the mTOR pathway and induce autophagy in bladder cancer cell lines. We hypothesized that R.
rosea, by inducing autophagy, may improve the phenotype of a Huntington’s disease model of the fy. Flies expressing HttQ93 which
exhibit decreased lifespan, impaired locomotion, and increased neurodegeneration were supplemented with R. rosea extract, and
assays testing lifespan, locomotion, and pseudopupil degeneration provided quantitative measures of improvement. Based on our
observations, R. rosea may be further evaluated as a potential therapy for Huntington’s disease