One of the major genetic risk factors believed to contribute to the development of Parkinson’s disease (PD) is having a mutation in the gene called GBA1 (glucocerebrosidase). Unable to do its job correctly, this damaged gene leads to the build-up of unhealthy, misfolded clumps of alpha-synuclein in the brain. These clumps, called Lewy bodies, impact dopamine production and are the hallmark of PD. What if there was a way to prevent the build-up of Lewy bodies in the first place?
Men are more likely to develop Parkinson’s disease (PD) than women, and the onset of PD in men happens at a younger age. However, women with PD have a higher mortality rate, and once they have Parkinson’s, progression is faster. Research suggests that women get the disease at later in life when compared to men, at least in part, due to the natural protection estrogen provides.
People with Parkinson’s disease (PD) and their caregivers frequently report cognitive decline as one of their greatest concerns. Commonly described in terms of mild cognitive impairment (PD-MCI) and Parkinson’s disease dementia (PDD), it is estimated that 30 percent of people with Parkinson’s do not develop dementia as part of the disease progression. Research shows that those with PD-MCI are at increased risk for progression to Parkinson’s dementia.
Parkinson’s disease (PD) is neurodegenerative disorder characterized, in part, by the clumping of the protein alpha-synuclein. These clumping proteins are called Lewy Bodies that can be found in an area of the brain stem where dopamine cells die. However, we do not know exactly how the two are connected. Researchers believe that better understanding this connection would help us develop optimal targeted therapies to treat PD.
A new study finds vitamin D levels are significantly correlated with falls and some non-motor symptoms in people with Parkinson’s disease (PD). The results of this clinical trial appear in the March 9, 2019 edition of Neurologica.
Parkinson’s disease (PD) results in the loss of dopamine-producing cells in the brain. Because dopamine cannot cross the blood-brain barrier (a safety feature of the brain), people cannot simply take dopamine pills. The drug levodopa (L-dopa) — a precursor to dopamine and the gold standard for treating PD — does have the ability to cross the blood-brain barrier, where it successfully converts into the much-needed dopamine.
Every day, potentially groundbreaking Parkinson’s disease (PD) research ideas are explored in labs funded by the Parkinson’s Foundation.
Many people with advanced Parkinson’s disease (PD) suffer from gait (walking) dysfunction, freezing of gait and postural instability. These symptoms can cause falling, resulting in a multitude of injuries, a loss of personal freedom, caregiver stress and a reduction in the quality of life (Pirker & Katzenschlager, 2017; Samotus, Parrent, & Jog, 2018).
One of the most common genetic risk factors for Parkinson’s disease (PD) is having a mutated GBA gene (which makes the enzyme glucocerebrosidase). In fact, 5 to 10 percent of people with PD have that specific GBA mutation in one copy of the gene (mutations in both copies of the gene lead to Gaucher disease).
All Science News articles summarize a research study and are not an official opinion, endorsement or position of the Parkinson’s Foundation’s.