Protein Analysis Gives Insight into Parkinson's
News Feb 21, 2018 | Original Story from Rush University Medical Centre
Levels of a protein found in the brain called alpha-synuclein (α-syn) are significantly lower than normal in cerebrospinal fluid collected in Parkinson's disease patients suffering from postural instability and gait difficulty, a study led by movement disorders experts at Rush University Medical Center has found. The results recently were published online in the journal Movement Disorders.
"This report is an important contribution in our efforts to understand and quantify Parkinson's biology to accelerate drug development," said Mark Frasier, PhD, an author on the study and the senior vice president of research programs at the Michael J. Fox Foundation, which provided funding for the study.
A mysteriously harmful presence
Alpha-synuclein's function in the brain is currently unknown but of great interest to Parkinson's researchers because it is a major constituent of Lewy bodies - the protein clumps that are the pathological hallmark of Parkinson's disease.
The illness gradually destroys neurons that produce the chemical dopamine, which conveys nerve signals, in turn causing the tremors and difficulty moving that are a common symptom of Parkinson's disease. The prevailing wisdom has been that these neurons may die from a toxic reaction to alpha-synuclein deposits.
However, Parkinson's disease has been linked to some gene variants that affect how the immune system works, leading to an alternative theory that alpha-synuclein causes Parkinson's disease by triggering the immune system to attack the brain.
In addition to its presence in the brain, alpha-synuclein can be found in peripheral tissues and body fluids. The Movement Disorders study, called BioFIND, is the first to try to differentiate the biomarkers of neurodegeneration in Parkinson's disease patients based on fluids collected from spinal fluid, blood and saliva.
The cross-sectional, observational study collected data and body fluid samples from 120 people with moderately advanced Parkinson's disease and 100 control volunteers across eight academic sites in the U.S. at two points over two weeks.
Dr. Jennifer G. Goldman, a movement disorders neurologist at Rush University Medical Center and the study’s lead author, has profiled the Parkinson's-associated protein levels in these biofluids and their relationships to clinical features of the disease. The study found that levels of alpha-synuclein were lower in cerebrospinal fluid from Parkinson's patients with certain motor function impairments - specifically in those who had more problems with balance and walking compared to those with more tremor.
In addition, levels of beta-amyloid, known for its association with Alzheimer's disease, were lower in those with Parkinson's and related to worse scores on a memory recall in Parkinson's as measured on a rest of thinking and memory given to study participants.
The study also showed that alpha-synuclein levels in plasma and saliva did not differ between people with Parkinson's and control volunteers, and alpha-synuclein did not significantly correlate among other biological fluids.
"These are important insights for the ongoing pursuit of accessible biomarker tests to diagnose and track the disease," said Goldman. "For example, people with Parkinson's and lower beta-amyloid may be more likely to develop memory problems and therefore would benefit more from a cognitive therapy," said Goldman. "Enrolling this population in trials can help us see a treatment effect more clearly than testing the therapy on people who will not have this symptom."
Future studies may further explore biomarkers
Next steps include validation of these findings in the Parkinson's Progression Markers Initiative (PPMI), a biomarkers study sponsored by the Michael J. Fox Foundation that is following more than 1,500 people with Parkinson's or risk factors and control volunteers over at least five years. Additionally, trials ongoing or launching in the near future could use alpha-synuclein or beta-amyloid levels as exploratory biomarkers in motor symptom or cognition drug trials, respectively.
Parkinson's disease is the second most common age-related neurodegenerative disorder after Alzheimer's disease, affecting an estimated 7 million to 10 million people worldwide.
Many of the affected neurons signal via the neurotransmitter dopamine; therefore, traditional therapy continues to rely on dopamine replacement therapy. This approach alleviates symptoms, but does not halt disease progression. Currently, there is no cure for Parkinson's disease.
Exposure to Low Levels of BPA during Pregnancy Can Lead to Altered Brain DevelopmentNews
New research in mice provides an explanation for how exposure to the widely used chemical bisphenol A (BPA) during pregnancy, even at levels lower than the regulated “safe” human exposure level, can lead to altered brain development and behavior later in life.READ MORE
Catalyst Can Degrade Alzheimer's-Related Amyloid Peptide Under Near-Infrared LightNews
A new, biocompatible photooxygenation catalyst that can selectively oxygenate and degrade the pathogenic aggregation of Alzheimer's disease (AD)-related amyloid-β peptide (Αβ) under near-infrared (NIR) light irradiation has been developed.READ MORE
Comments | 2 ADD COMMENT
lesley samm | Mar 12, 2018
I am a 47-year-old man. My Parkinson's disease appeared at the age of 39. My symptoms, at the beginning, were fine tremors and rigidity with joint stiffness. I was taking entacapone with levodopa, carbidopa, and pramipexole. My Parkinson's disease was under control, but not totally reversed. After countless hours of online research and trial & error. What worked for me was Parkinson's disease herbal remedy I purchased from Best Health Herbal Centre. I only used the Parkinson's disease herbal remedy for five weeks. Now my Parkinson's disease is totally reversed, am totally free. I am so grateful for my success all thanks to Best Health Herbal Centre.....For more information visit their website ww w .besthealthherbalcentre. com
Sorice Madina | Feb 21, 2018
I was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis 1 month after I turned 50. My Grand-mum was 96 and had it since she was in her 20s. I was on Copaxone, the first year was daily and later I was on 40 mg, 3 times a week. It made a tremendous difference for me. Although the fatigue was what really gets to me. When I do too much, I do start to feel weak.There has been little if any progress in finding a cure or reliable treatment. My multiple sclerosis got significantly worse and unbearable because of my cognitive thinking.. Last year, i started on a natural multiple sclerosis Herbal therapy from Green House Herbal Clinic, i read a lot of positive reviews from patients who used the treatment and i immediately started on it. I had great relief with this herbal treatment. I am doing very much better now, no case of Cognitive thinking or memory Loss,, my multiple sclerosis condition is totally reversed. Visit Green House Herbal Clinic website w ww. greenhouseherbalclinic .com. I am thankful to nature, the medics failed. Share with friends!!
World Congress on Pathology and Laboratory Medicine
Sep 10 - Sep 11, 2018
World Congress on Advances in Addiction Science and Medicine
Sep 24 - Sep 25, 2018
International Conference on Molecular Biology and Stem Cells
Aug 13 - Aug 15, 2018