UCLA researchers finds drug to slow progression of Parkinson's

9 October 2014

Researchers from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) found that a drug that is currently used to treat another disease could help slow down the progression of Parkinson's.

Published in the latest edition of the journal Neurotherapeutics, found that a drug called AT2101, which is currently used for Gaucher disease, was able to improve motor function, stop inflammation in the brain and reduce levels of alpha-synuclein - a critical protein for Parkinson's - in mice. 

Although the root cause of the disease is unknown, it is widely thought that high levels of alpha-synuclein play a significant role as it has been found in all people with the disorder. It is assumed that the protein is able to destroy neurons in the brain that create dopamine - therefore stopping it from regulating a number of functions such as movement.

"This is the first time a compound targeting Gaucher disease has been tested in a mouse model of Parkinson's disease and was shown to be effective," said the study's senior author, Marie-Francoise Chesselet, the Dr Charles Markham, professor of Neurology at UCLA and director of the UCLA Center for the Study of Parkinson's Disease. 

Posted by Edward Bartel​

 

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