Research Topic

The Protein Kinase GSK3 in Neurobiological Functions and Neuronal Disorders

About this Research Topic

Background: Glycogen synthase kinase 3 (GSK3) is a ubiquitously expressed serine/threonine protein kinase that is highly conserved and present in all eukaryotes. In mammals, GSK3 is encoded by two distinct genes that lead to the production of the isoforms, GSK3 alpha, and GSK3 beta. GSK3 phosphorylates a wide range of substrates and has been implicated in numerous critical cellular processes, such as gene expression, intracellular signalling, metabolism, cytoskeletal dynamics, cellular transport, cell proliferation, and apoptosis. GSK3 is integral for normal neuronal functioning through its involvement in axonal transport, neuronal development, neuronal survival, and synaptic plasticity, among others. Consistently, GSK3 has been associated with neuronal disorders, including Alzheimer's disease, bipolar disorder, Fragile X Syndrome and Parkinson's disease. This central role in neurobiological functions and neuronal disorders has made GSK3 an attractive therapeutic target and sparked major drug development efforts. However, the neurobiological and pathophysiological roles of GSK3 still remain poorly understood, largely due to the lack of a detailed mechanistic characterization of its regulation, a comprehensive knowledge of all its functions and integration in various, complex signaling networks.

Goal: The goal of this Research Topic is to compile novel, impactful research into the role of GSK3 in neurobiological functions and neuronal disorders. In particular, we aim i) to advance the mechanistic understanding into physiological neuronal functions of GSK3, including gene regulation, axonal transport, protein/receptor trafficking, synaptic plasticity, and memory processes, as well as ii) to gain more insight into pathophysiological aspects of GSK3 in psychiatric and neurological disorders, including Alzheimer’s disease and bipolar disorder/depression.

Scope: The scope of this Research Topic encompasses communications of new knowledge and impactful discoveries into the roles of GSK3 in normal brain function and neuronal diseases for dissemination to a wide audience, ranging from academics and clinicians, to industry and the lay public. The Research Topic will feature studies that critically advance our understanding of the molecular mechanisms associated with GSK3 functions across all levels of biological organization, from genes to behavior, thereby stimulating scientific dialogue, facilitating new discoveries and inspiring new research that subsequently may translate into the development of novel therapeutic strategies.

Details for Authors: For this Research Topic, we welcome submissions investigating molecular aspects of GSK3 in neurobiological functions and neuropathophysiological processes. We are interested in studies that provide novel, detailed mechanistic insight into GSK3 functions using a wide range of in vitro and in vivo approaches as well as model organisms. In particular, we seek studies that explore translational aspects of GSK3 integrating novel molecular mechanisms, therapeutic target identification, and drug development.


Keywords: Glycogen Synthase Kinase 3 (GSK3), Synaptic plasticity, Learning & memory, Neurodegenerative diseases, Mental illnesses


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

Background: Glycogen synthase kinase 3 (GSK3) is a ubiquitously expressed serine/threonine protein kinase that is highly conserved and present in all eukaryotes. In mammals, GSK3 is encoded by two distinct genes that lead to the production of the isoforms, GSK3 alpha, and GSK3 beta. GSK3 phosphorylates a wide range of substrates and has been implicated in numerous critical cellular processes, such as gene expression, intracellular signalling, metabolism, cytoskeletal dynamics, cellular transport, cell proliferation, and apoptosis. GSK3 is integral for normal neuronal functioning through its involvement in axonal transport, neuronal development, neuronal survival, and synaptic plasticity, among others. Consistently, GSK3 has been associated with neuronal disorders, including Alzheimer's disease, bipolar disorder, Fragile X Syndrome and Parkinson's disease. This central role in neurobiological functions and neuronal disorders has made GSK3 an attractive therapeutic target and sparked major drug development efforts. However, the neurobiological and pathophysiological roles of GSK3 still remain poorly understood, largely due to the lack of a detailed mechanistic characterization of its regulation, a comprehensive knowledge of all its functions and integration in various, complex signaling networks.

Goal: The goal of this Research Topic is to compile novel, impactful research into the role of GSK3 in neurobiological functions and neuronal disorders. In particular, we aim i) to advance the mechanistic understanding into physiological neuronal functions of GSK3, including gene regulation, axonal transport, protein/receptor trafficking, synaptic plasticity, and memory processes, as well as ii) to gain more insight into pathophysiological aspects of GSK3 in psychiatric and neurological disorders, including Alzheimer’s disease and bipolar disorder/depression.

Scope: The scope of this Research Topic encompasses communications of new knowledge and impactful discoveries into the roles of GSK3 in normal brain function and neuronal diseases for dissemination to a wide audience, ranging from academics and clinicians, to industry and the lay public. The Research Topic will feature studies that critically advance our understanding of the molecular mechanisms associated with GSK3 functions across all levels of biological organization, from genes to behavior, thereby stimulating scientific dialogue, facilitating new discoveries and inspiring new research that subsequently may translate into the development of novel therapeutic strategies.

Details for Authors: For this Research Topic, we welcome submissions investigating molecular aspects of GSK3 in neurobiological functions and neuropathophysiological processes. We are interested in studies that provide novel, detailed mechanistic insight into GSK3 functions using a wide range of in vitro and in vivo approaches as well as model organisms. In particular, we seek studies that explore translational aspects of GSK3 integrating novel molecular mechanisms, therapeutic target identification, and drug development.


Keywords: Glycogen Synthase Kinase 3 (GSK3), Synaptic plasticity, Learning & memory, Neurodegenerative diseases, Mental illnesses


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

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Submission Deadlines

30 June 2021 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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Topic Editors

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Submission Deadlines

30 June 2021 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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