Neurodegenerative disorders are spreading worldwide and are one of the greatest threats to public health. There is currently no adequate therapy for these disorders, and therefore there is an urgent need to accelerate the discovery and development of effective treatments. Although neurodegenerative disorders are broad ranging and highly complex, they may share overlapping mechanisms, and thus potentially manifest common targets for therapeutic interventions. Glycogen synthase kinase-3 (GSK-3) is now acknowledged to be a central player in regulating mood behavior, cognitive functions, and neuron viability. Indeed, many targets controlled by GSK-3 are critically involved in progressing neuron deterioration and disease pathogenesis. In this review, we focus on three pathways that represent prominent mechanisms linking GSK-3 with neurodegenerative disorders: cytoskeleton organization, the mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR)/autophagy axis, and mitochondria. We also consider the challenges and opportunities in the development of GSK-3 inhibitors for treating neurodegeneration.
- GSK-3 inhibitors