Parkinson’s disease (PD) is the most common neurodegenerative diseases, which affects the people in old age. The neuropathological symptoms of PD include the degeneration of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra pars compacta, and presence of intracellular inclusions of α-synuclein (α-syn) aggregates. α-Syn, a natively unfolded protein, has been found to play a key role in PD pathology. Several mechanistic studies revealed the numerous aspects of α-syn fibrillation and aggregation process that lead to dopaminergic neurodegeneration in PD. Till to date, there is no complete cure of PD, but some therapeutic agents are able to halt the disease progression. Scutellaria baicalensis Georgi is a traditional Chinese medicine commonly used to treat the central nervous system diseases. Recently, it has been confirmed that root of S. baicalensis Georgi contains baicalein (5,6,7-trihydroxyflavone) as a major bioactive flavone constituent. Baicalein possess numerous pharmacological properties such as antiaggregation of amyloid proteins including α-syn, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and antiapoptotic. In the light of these properties, baicalein has potential therapeutic efficacy for PD. In this chapter, we explored the pharmacological protective actions of baicalein against α-syn fibrillation and aggregation that make it suitable for PD treatment and also discussed the possible mechanisms underlying the effects.
Part of the book: Synucleins