NMNAT: It's an NAD+ synthase… It's a chaperone… It's a neuroprotector

Jennifer M. Brazill, Chong Li, Yi Zhu, Rong G Zhai

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

16 Scopus citations

Abstract

Nicotinamide mononucleotide adenylyl transferases (NMNATs) are a family of highly conserved proteins indispensable for cellular homeostasis. NMNATs are classically known for their enzymatic function of catalyzing NAD+ synthesis, but also have gained a reputation as essential neuronal maintenance factors. NMNAT deficiency has been associated with various human diseases with pronounced consequences on neural tissues, underscoring the importance of the neuronal maintenance and protective roles of these proteins. New mechanistic studies have challenged the role of NMNAT-catalyzed NAD+ production in delaying Wallerian degeneration and have specified new mechanisms of NMNAT's chaperone function critical for neuronal health. Progress in understanding the regulation of NMNAT has uncovered a neuronal stress response with great therapeutic promise for treating various neurodegenerative conditions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)156-162
Number of pages7
JournalCurrent Opinion in Genetics and Development
Volume44
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 1 2017

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics
  • Developmental Biology

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