Modeling protein misfolding in charcot-marie-tooth disease

Adv Exp Med Biol. 2015;820:91-102. doi: 10.1007/978-3-319-09012-2_7.


Charcot-Marie-Tooth (CMT) disease is the most common inherited neuromuscular disorder. Recent advancements in molecular biology have elucidated the molecular bases of this genetically heterogeneous neuropathy. Still, the major challenge lies in determining the individual contributions by malfunctions of proteins to the disease's pathology. This paper reviews the identified molecular mechanisms underlying major forms of CMT disease. A growing body of evidence has highlighted the role of protein misfolding in demyelinating peripheral neuropathies and neurodegenerative diseases. Several hypotheses have been proposed to explain how misfolded aggregates induce neuronal damage. Current research focuses on developing novel therapeutic targets which aim to prevent, or even reverse the formation of protein aggregation. Interestingly, the role of the cellular defence mechanisms against accumulation of misfolded proteins may play a key role leading to novel strategies for treatment accelerating the clearance of their toxic early aggregates. Based on these findings we propose a model for describing in terms of a formal computer language, the biomolecular processes involving proteins associated with CMT disease.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Charcot-Marie-Tooth Disease / genetics*
  • Charcot-Marie-Tooth Disease / prevention & control*
  • Demyelinating Diseases / genetics
  • Demyelinating Diseases / prevention & control
  • Gene Expression
  • Humans
  • Models, Genetic*
  • Peripheral Nervous System Diseases / genetics
  • Peripheral Nervous System Diseases / prevention & control
  • Protein Folding
  • Proteins / chemistry
  • Proteins / genetics*
  • Signal Transduction / genetics


  • Proteins