Huntington's disease (HD) is a neurodegenerative disorder for which there are no diseasemodifying treatments. SIRT1 is a NAD+-dependent protein deacetylase that is implicated in maintaining neuronal health during development, differentiation and ageing. Previous studies suggested that the modulation of SIRT1 activity is neuroprotective in HD mouse models, however, the mechanisms controlling SIRT1 activity are unknown.We have identified a striatumspecific phosphorylation-dependent regulatory mechanism of SIRT1 induction under normal physiological conditions, which is impaired in HD. We demonstrate that SIRT1 activity is down-regulated in the brains of two complementary HD mouse models, which correlated with altered SIRT1 phosphorylation levels. This SIRT1 impairment could not be rescued by the ablation of DBC1, a negative regulator of SIRT1, but was linked to changes in the sub-cellular distribution of AMPK-α1, a positive regulator of SIRT1 function. This work provides insights into the regulation of SIRT1 activity with the potential for the development of novel therapeutic strategies.
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