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What's Hot in PD?

What's Hot in PD? Parkinson’s Disease and Parkinsonism: Updates on Welding and Mining

Date: 
Thursday, January 5, 2017
Author: 
Dr. Michael S. Okun

There has long been a fascination about the relationship between welding, mining and Parkinson-like symptoms. In this month’s What’s Hot blog and in my NEJM Journal Watch blog I explore this murky history and relationship. Doctors and health care professionals long ago identified a Parkinson-like syndrome that developed in welders and manganese miners. Manganese, the chemical, has been linked to Parkinson-like symptoms (also referred to as parkinsonism).

What's Hot in PD? Accumulating Evidence for a Role of Gut Microbiota in Parkinson’s Disease

Date: 
Tuesday, December 6, 2016
Author: 
Dr. Michael S. Okun

Considerable evidence has been mounting in support of a relationship between the gastrointestinal (GI) system and Parkinson’s disease (PD). Many pathologists and neurologists even believe that Parkinson’s may start in the gut, but this view remains speculative. Many GI symptoms, such as constipation, occur as prominent and disabling PD symptoms. In the July 2013 What’s Hot in PD? column, I addressed H.

What's Hot in PD?: Current Steering and New Deep Brain Stimulation Technologies: What’s Here and What’s Coming

Date: 
Friday, November 4, 2016
Author: 
Dr. Michael S. Okun

A surprising fact about Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) surgery technology is that human DBS leads (the wire implanted in the brain and connected to the neurostimulator) and their four shiny, tiny contacts have not really changed much over the last two decades. One reason for the durability of DBS lead design has been the long-term beneficial effects of using this simple approach.

Parkinson Report: Fall/Winter 2016

How to Address Prominent, Caregiver Challenges, NPF and PDF Complete Merger to Form the Parkinson’s Foundation, Parkinson’s Outcomes Project Links Age to Increased Risk, of Caregiver Strain Caregiver Spotlight: Julie Beck, Top Questions and Answers from "Ask the Doctor", Caregiver Tips for Daily Living What’s Hot in Parkinson’s Disease?, Spotlight on Moving Day® Dallas/Fort Worth, Caregiver Self Quiz, NPF Legacy Society

What's Hot in PD? Lymphoctye Activation Gene 3 (LAG3) Antibodies as a Potential Future Treatment for Parkinson’s Disease

Date: 
Tuesday, October 4, 2016
Author: 
Dr. Michael S. Okun

Ted Dawson, PhD, and colleagues at the Johns Hopkins University, a National Parkinson Foundation Center of Excellence, have uncovered a potential new approach to treat Parkinson’s disease (PD). Researchers in Dawson’s laboratory focused on a protein called lymphocyte-activation gene 3, known as LAG3. This protein has been shown to be important in cell to cell transfers of α-synuclein (Lewy bodies), which is a protein found in the brain of a person with PD.

What's Hot in PD? The Importance of Imaging Biomarkers to Diagnose and Track Parkinson’s Disease Progression

Date: 
Wednesday, August 31, 2016
Author: 
Dr. Michael S. Okun

A recent press release from the National Institutes of Neurological Disorders and Stroke detailed exciting ongoing work aimed to uncover magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) techniques capable of tracking Parkinson’s disease (PD) progression. In this month’s What’s Hot in PD? column we will review the recent progress of MRI-based biomarkers for Parkinson’s diagnosis and progression, and discuss the importance of the findings, especially in the context of clinical trials.

What's Hot in PD? Hot on the Trail for a Urine Biomarker for Parkinson’s Disease

Date: 
Monday, August 1, 2016
Author: 
Dr. Michael S. Okun

Previous What’s Hot blogs have addressed the promise and challenge of developing biomarkers for Parkinson’s disease (PD). Several groups of researchers have been working on blood and imaging biomarkers to provide more information on Parkinson’s: diagnosis, prediction, monitoring and methods to measure progression. In this month’s What’s Hot blog, we examine a new approach that utilizes a urine sample to detect the presence of Parkinson’s disease activity.

What's Hot in PD? More Evidence Links Parkinson’s Disease to Pesticide Exposure from Farming

Date: 
Tuesday, July 12, 2016
Author: 
Dr. Michael S. Okun

A French group presented data at the 20th International Congress of Parkinson’s Disease and Movement Disorders in Berlin Germany last month. Their results suggested a strong link between farming, pesticides and risk of Parkinson’s disease. Sofiane Kab and her colleagues demonstrated that living in rural French regions with more crops was a high risk for the later developing Parkinson’s. The authors noted that these are typically regions where vineyards are located.

Parkinson Report: Summer 2016

Topics include: NPF's landmark patient registry enrolls 8,000 Parkinson's patients, how ot help people with Parkinson's maintain identity and dignity, a day in the life of a center coordinator, top questions and answers from "Ask the Doctor," Tips for daily living, What's Hot in Parkinson's disease, spotlight on Moving Day in D.C., 2016 Fall event calendar, and supporting the future of Parkinson's care and research today.

What's Hot in PD? The Myth About Focused Ultrasound Therapy Being the Scalpel-less Cure for Parkinson’s Disease

Date: 
Thursday, June 2, 2016
Author: 
Dr. Michael S. Okun

We are blessed to have the National Parkinson Foundation’s terrific free 1-800-4PD-INFO Helpline staffed by nurses and social workers with experience in the field. Recently, many people have called the Helpline after seeing a video declaring focused ultrasound therapy as “the scalpel-less cure for Parkinson’s disease.” The Helpline staff thought it important to objectively explore this therapy and discuss whether it is indeed a scalpel-less cure.

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