April 3, 2000 |
This week we debut Medical Minute, an occasional column providing updates on various medical conditions and research advances. * Parkinson's disease affects 500,000 to 1 million people in the United States, including U.S. Atty. Gen. Janet Reno and actor Michael J. Fox. Although many people associate the disease with advancing age, Parkinson's can strike early. Fox, for instance, was diagnosed in his 30s.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 25, 1991 |
A naturally occurring brain hormone possibly could prevent brain cells from being killed by Parkinson's disease, New York researchers reported last week. Researchers at Regeneron Pharmaceuticals in Tarrytown reported in the British journal Nature that the hormone, known as brain-derived neurotrophic factor, or BDNF, appeared to slow degeneration and prevent the death of rat brain cells equivalent to those that die in humans afflicted with Parkinson's.
April 7, 1988 |
Canadian researchers have pinpointed the part of the brain that appears most damaged by Parkinson's disease and probably offers the best target for an experimental and controversial transplantation operation. Researchers at the Clarke Institute of Psychiatry in Toronto examined the brains of eight patients who died from Parkinson's disease. They found most of the damage appeared to be in a part of the brain known as the putamen.
August 29, 2011 |
I sat in an uncomfortable flower-print chair in my neurologist's office. The nurses in the front office were talking to each other about what type of sandwich they would order for lunch. The background was filled with traces of annoying soft-rock music and an overpowering smell of coffee. It was apparent that someone put much effort into creating a calm and relaxing environment, but at the moment it felt as irritating as wearing an itchy sweater in the desert. Hearing the diagnosis — "You have Parkinson's disease.
March 4, 2011 |
Taking ibuprofen regularly may lower the risk of developing Parkinson's disease by about a third, perhaps by reducing the inflammation that is thought to contribute to the onset of the disease, Harvard University researchers reported this week. Surprisingly, however, other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) that also reduce inflammation have no effect on the disease, they reported online in the journal Neurology. Dr. Alberto Ascherio and Dr. Xiang Gao of Harvard's Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston and their colleagues studied 98,892 women in the Nurses' Health Study and 37,305 men in the Health Professionals Follow-up Study, two well-established, ongoing programs.
June 7, 2012 |
The Austrian company AFFiRiS A.G. of Vienna said this week it has begun the first-ever clinical trials of a vaccine to treat Parkinson's disease. The study of as many as 32 patients is designed to test the safety and tolerability of the vaccine, called PD01A. Parkinson's is thought to result from the deposit of pathological forms of a protein called alpha-synuclein in the brain, causing the death of cells, particularly in the region known as the substantia nigra. The accumulation of alpha-synuclein disrupts the production of the neurotransmitter dopamine in the brain, impairing movement and causing tremors.