Study Suggests New Risk Factor for Parkinson’s

A study recently published in the journal, Brain, has suggested that deficiencies in lysosomal storage genes may promote the development of Parkinson’s disease.
Parkinson’s disease is a central nervous system disorder that affects movement in the body. It is progressive, and there are limited treatment options available to fight it. Scientists currently believe that the death of certain neurons cause Parkinson’s, but they do not know why these deaths occur. Thus, the biological causes behind Parkinson’s are still largely unknown. To learn more about Parkinson’s, click here.

On the other hand, lysosomal storage genes, which are responsible for recycling and breaking down cell waste products, have been known to contribute towards Gaucher disease and other disorders.

Specifically, the gene glucocerebrosidase (GBA) is known to cause Gaucher, but this latest study points to it causing Parkinson’s, as well. Many patients with Gaucher disease have family members with Parkinson’s, further backing up this hypothesis.

Thus, it is highly probable that lysosomal disorders and Parkinson’s have similar fundamental biological mechanisms.
This finding could greatly help the diagnosis and subsequent treatment of a confusing condition in patients. Hopefully, additional research will be done soon to develop drugs that can target this biological mechanism.

In the meantime, to learn more about the study on Our Parkinson’s Place, click here!


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