Parkinson’s disease could find a potential cure in these designer neurons


Parkinson’s disease is one of the most well-known and serious neurodegenerative diseases on Earth. The disease already scars the lives of 10 million people worldwide. But now we have new research that suggests a potential treatment. The process involves non-neuronal cells and their transformation. Once they turn into neurons, they can stay in the brain and perform normal functions, such as binding with other nerve cells to make neural tissue, forming synapses, and distributing dopamine. These cells would help to repair the damage caused by the disease to the dopaminergic cells.

Parkinson’s disease targets a region of the midbrain and affects the deterioration of neurons in that region. As a result, there is less dopamine left for the brain to feed on. Dopamine, being a neurotransmitter, affects the functioning and life of neurons.

The degeneration and progressive loss of dopaminergic neurons causes many mental and physical symptoms. These include rigidity, tremors and postural instability, which are hallmark symptoms of Parkinson’s disease. He may also show signs of depression, anxiety, memory loss, hallucinations and dementia.

The research was led by Jeffrey Kordower, founding director of the ASU-Banner Center for Neurodegenerative Disease Research at Arizona State University. The study is published in the current issue of the journal Nature Regenerative Medicine.

A press release issued by Arizona State University indicates that experimentally modified cells were planted in the brains of rats. These “designer” cells functioned optimally for survival, growth, neuronal connectivity and dopamine production.

The futuristic approach will soon be put to the test in the first clinical trial of its kind, which will be conducted on a specific population of patients with Parkinson’s disease. This trial, for best results, will be conducted at different locations, including the Barrow Neurological Institute in Phoenix, where Kordower would act as the principal investigator. The goal of these neural transplant techniques is to reverse the motor symptoms that are caused by Parkinson’s disease.

Kordower said in a statement that they are excited to be able to help people with this genetic form of Parkinson’s disease, but the lessons learned from this trial will also have a direct impact on patients with sporadic illnesses. or not genetic. , forms of the disease.


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