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Papers of the Week

Papers: 23 Sep 2023 - 29 Sep 2023


Molecular/Cellular, Neurobiology, Pharmacology/Drug Development

2023 Sep 26

Trends Mol Med


d-Amino acids: new clinical pathways for brain diseases.


Souza INO, Roychaudhuri R, de Belleroche J, Mothet JP


Free d-amino acids (d-AAs) are emerging as a novel and important class of signaling molecules in many organs, including the brain and endocrine systems. There has been considerable progress in our understanding of the fundamental roles of these atypical messengers, with increasingly recognized implications in a wide range of neuropathologies, including schizophrenia (SCZ), epilepsy, Alzheimer’s disease (AD), amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), substance abuse, and chronic pain, among others. Research has enabled the discovery that d-serine, d-aspartate and more recently d-cysteine are essential for the healthy development and function of the central nervous system (CNS). We discuss recent progress that has profoundly transformed our vision of numerous physiological processes but has also shown how d-AAs are now offering therapeutic promise in clinical settings for several human diseases.