University of York
O-GlcNAc as a strategy for the treatment of tauopathies
Alzheimer's Research UK
The class of neurodegenerative diseases collectively termed the tauopathies result from the aggregation of a toxic form of tau in with it is hyper(over) phosphorylated. Less well known is that tau phosphorylation is reciprocal to its modification with a sugar termed O-GlcNAc and that O-GlcNAc levels are, concomitantly, reduced in the diseased brain. Proof of concept studies show that the toxic form of tau can be significantly reduced using a small molecule strategy that therapeutically raises tau-O-GlcNAc levels. We aim to study, in detail, the human enzymes responsible for this effect, providing a platform on which to design the next generation of inhibitors providing a new approach to the treatment of tauopathies such as frontotemporal dementia.