Neurodegenerative diseases damage and destroy neurons, ravaging both mental and physical health. Parkinson’s disease, which affects over 10 million people worldwide, is no exception.
The most obvious symptoms of Parkinson’s disease arise after the illness damages a specific class of neurons located in the midbrain.
The effect is to rob the brain of dopamine—a key neurotransmitter produced by the affected neurons.
Scientists from Arizona State University found a process for converting non-neuronal cells into functioning neurons able to take up residence in the brain, form synapses, dispense dopamine and restore capacities undermined by Parkinson’s destruction.
They found that one group of experimentally engineered cells performs optimally in terms of survival, growth, neural connectivity, and dopamine production when implanted in the brain.
The study demonstrates that this method could effectively reverse motor symptoms due to Parkinson’s disease.
The research is published in Nature Regenerative Medicine and was conducted by Jeffrey Kordower et al.
The team says stem cell replacement therapy represents a radical new strategy for the treatment of Parkinson’s and other neurodegenerative diseases.
The futuristic approach will soon be put to the test in the first its kind clinical trial, in a specific population of Parkinson’s disease sufferers, bearing a mutation in the gene parkin.
The clinical study will be conducted at various locations, including the Barrow Neurological Institute in Phoenix.
Degeneration and loss of dopaminergic neurons cause the physical symptoms of rigidity, tremor, and postural instability, which characterize Parkinson’s disease.
Additional effects of Parkinson’s disease can include depression, anxiety, memory deficit, hallucinations, and dementia.
Due to an aging population, humanity is facing a mounting crisis of Parkinson’s disease cases, with numbers expected to swell to more than 14 million globally by 2040.
Current therapies, which include the use of the drug L-DOPA, are only able to address some of the motor symptoms of the disease and may produce serious, often intolerable side effects after 5-10 years of use.
There is no existing treatment capable of reversing Parkinson’s disease or halting its pitiless advance.
If you care about Parkinson’s disease, please read studies about drug that could help lower risk of Parkinson’s disease, and these vitamins could help prevent Parkinson’s disease.
Copyright © 2022 Knowridge Science Report. All rights reserved.