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REVIEW: Cerebral Dopamine Neurotrophic Factor (CDNF): Structure, Functions, and Therapeutic Potential

Dmitry V. Eremin1, Tatiana V. Ilchibaeva1, and Anton S. Tsybko1,a*

1Institute of Cytology and Genetics, Siberian Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences, 630090 Novosibirsk, Russia

* To whom correspondence should be addressed.

Received April 28, 2021; Revised May 29, 2021; Accepted June 6, 2021
The cerebral dopamine neurotrophic factor (CDNF) together with the mesencephalic astrocyte-derived neurotrophic factor (MANF) form a unique family of neurotrophic factors (NTFs) structurally and functionally different from other proteins with neurotrophic activity. CDNF has no receptors on the cell membrane, is localized mainly in the cavity of endoplasmic reticulum (ER), and its primary function is to regulate ER stress. In addition, CDNF is able to suppress inflammation and apoptosis. Due to its functions, CDNF has demonstrated outstanding protective and restorative properties in various models of neuropathology associated with ER stress, including Parkinson’s disease (PD). That is why CDNF already passed clinical trials in patients with PD. However, despite the name, CDNF functions extend far beyond the dopamine system in the brain. In particular, there are data on participation of CDNF in the maturation and maintenance of other neurotransmitter systems, regulation of the processes of neuroplasticity and non-motor behavior. In the present review, we discuss the features of CDNF structure and functions, its protective and regenerative properties.
KEY WORDS: neurotrophic factors, cerebral dopamine neurotrophic factor CDNF, ER stress, unfolded protein response UPR, neuroprotection, Parkinson’s disease

DOI: 10.1134/S0006297921070063