Newly discovered trigger for Parkinsons may lead to better treatment avenues

Newly discovered trigger for Parkinsons may lead to better treatment avenues

Newly discovered trigger for Parkinsons may lead to better treatment avenues

Category : Medical | Sub Category : Others Posted on 2023-09-29 19:20:24

Worldwide, it affects more than 10 million people and around 1 million people have the condition in the United States alone. Although not fatal, it is a progressive, chronic condition.

Parkinson’s disease is more common in men than in women, and the risk of developing the condition increases with age.

Some 10–15% of those with Parkinson’s disease have a genetic predisposition for it. In others, the cause is unclear, but environmental factors, such as chemicals, toxins, and head trauma, may increase the risk.

Symptoms, which include slowing of movements, resting tremor or rigidity, sleep dysfunction, and mood disorders, are largely due to low levels of the neurotransmitter dopamineTrusted Source.

These low dopamine levels have long been thought to result from the death of dopamine-containing neurons (nerve cells) in the substantia nigraTrusted Source, a region of the brain that is involved in motor control.

Now, researchers have discovered that the interaction of two genes may disrupt the function of the synapses between these dopaminergic neurons before the nerve cells themselves are affected.

They suggest that by targeting the synapses, treatments may be able to prevent damage to the neurons, thereby slowing progression of the disease.

The study appears in the journal NeuronTrusted Source.

Parkinson’s disease is the second most common neurodegenerative disorder worldwide, affecting more than 10 million people.

  • Symptoms include tremor, and problems with movement, balance and coordination.
  • Experts believe it is caused by death of dopamine-containing nerve cells in the region of the brain involved in motor control.
  • Now, a recent study suggests that synapses — the connections between these nerve cells — may start to become dysfunctional before the nerve cells are affected.
  • The authors suggest that new treatment strategies could target the synapses before neurons are affected.

Parkinson’s disease is a relatively common neurodegenerative disorder, second only to Alzheimer’s disease in frequency.

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