Transcriptional dysregulation as a result of sequestration of essential transcription factors into protein aggregates formed by polyglutamine (polyQ) expansions can lead to late-onset progressive neurodegeneration. DNA microarray analysis of Drosophila expressing polyQ in the compound eye over time revealed large numbers of transcriptional changes at the earliest stages of the disease including repression of the transient receptor potential calcium channels in a polyQ-induced cell death specific manner. While significant differences in expression profiles were found between the Drosophila compound eye and polyQ-sensitive neural cells, a number of possible key overlapping regulators were extracted. Among these, PDK1 was shown to act as a mediator for polyQ-toxicity, suggesting the involvement of the TOR pathway in polyQ-induced neurodegeneration.
- Polyglutamine expansion