Oligomeric forms of the Parkinson's disease-causing protein α-synuclein are suspected to mediate neurodegeneration, but the mechanisms are not understood. The present study of Shrivastava et al.(2015) provides a fresh insight into this old mystery. α-Synuclein oligomers are shown by a combination of top state-of-the-art biochemical and super-resolution microscopy methods to sequester the neuronal sodium-potassium pump. Such perturbation of ion currents would ultimately lead to Ca2+ excitotoxicity. Oligomeric forms of the Parkinson's disease-causing protein α-synuclein sequester the neuronal sodium-potassium pump to perturb ion currents, ultimately leading to Ca2+ excitotoxicity.