Review Article - Journal of RNA and Genomics (2022) Volume 18, Issue 2
The "escape" of transposons in drosophila models of central nervous system diseases: An integrated overview.
Transposable elements are repetitive sequences widely present in eukaryotic genomes, embedded in the heterochromatin-the tightly condensed chromatin-which prevents their transposition. The unscheduled transcription of transposons and its harmful consequences have been proven to play a role in neuron degeneration. Drosophila models are crucial to unveiling this role and the mechanisms triggering transposon activity. Specifically, abnormal heterochromatin relaxation, which is also observed in Alzheimer’s disease, has been found as the key event leading to transposon “escape” in the brain. This review recapitulates the main efforts towards demonstrating the role of transposons in neurodegeneration focusing on drosophila models, and offers an integrated overview of common and specific molecular mechanisms useful for identifying new therapeutic targets.Author(s): Benedetta Saccomanno, Valeria Specchia