Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Hormone ghrelin can boost resistance to Parkinson's disease

27.11.2009
Ghrelin, a hormone produced in the stomach, may be used to boost resistance to, or slow, the development of Parkinson's disease, Yale School of Medicine researchers report in a study published in a recent issue of the Journal of Neuroscience.

Parkinson's disease is caused by a degeneration of dopamine neurons in an area of the midbrain known as the substantia nigra, which is responsible for dopamine production.

Reduced production of dopamine in late-stage Parkinson's causes symptoms such as severe difficulty in walking, restricted movements, delays in moving, lack of appetite, difficulty eating, periods of remaining motionless (known as "freezing") and head and limb tremors.

When the dopamine cells get sick and die, Parkinson's can develop. Yale researcher Tamas Horvath and colleagues found that ghrelin is protective of the dopamine neurons. "We also found that, in addition to its influence on appetite, ghrelin is responsible for direct activation of the brain's dopamine cells," said Horvath, chair and professor of comparative medicine and professor of neurobiology and obstetrics & gynecology at Yale School of Medicine. "Because this hormone originates from the stomach, it is circulating normally in the body, so it could easily be used to boost resistance to Parkinson's or it could be used to slow the development of the disease."

Horvath and colleagues conducted the study in mice that received ghrelin supplementation and in mice that were deficient in ghrelin hormone and in the ghrelin receptor. When compared to controls, mice with impaired ghrelin action in the brain had more loss of dopamine. Horvath said the results could be easily translated to human use because the ghrelin system is preserved through various species.

Ghrelin was previously associated with the release of growth hormones, appetite, learning, memory, and with the reward circuitry of the brain that regulates food cravings. Recent human studies show that body mass index, stored fat and diabetes are linked to Parkinson's disease. Past research also shows that obesity is a risk factor for neurodegeneration in mice.

In future work, Horvath and his team will try to determine ghrelin levels in both healthy individuals and Parkinson's patients. He will also determine whether altered ghrelin levels might be a biomarker of disease development and vulnerability.

The study was supported by the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research.

Other authors on the study include Zane B. Andrews, Derek Erion, Rudolph Beiler, Zhong-Wu Liu, Alfonso Abizaid, Jeffrey Zigman, John D. Elsworth, Joseph M. Savitt, Richard DiMarchi, Matthias Tschoep, Robert H. Roth and Xiao-Bing Gao.

Citation: The Journal of Neuroscience 29(45) 14057-14065.

Karen N. Peart | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.yale.edu

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Biofilm discovery suggests new way to prevent dangerous infections
23.05.2017 | University of Texas at Austin

nachricht Another reason to exercise: Burning bone fat -- a key to better bone health
19.05.2017 | University of North Carolina Health Care

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Strathclyde-led research develops world's highest gain high-power laser amplifier

The world's highest gain high power laser amplifier - by many orders of magnitude - has been developed in research led at the University of Strathclyde.

The researchers demonstrated the feasibility of using plasma to amplify short laser pulses of picojoule-level energy up to 100 millijoules, which is a 'gain'...

Im Focus: Can the immune system be boosted against Staphylococcus aureus by delivery of messenger RNA?

Staphylococcus aureus is a feared pathogen (MRSA, multi-resistant S. aureus) due to frequent resistances against many antibiotics, especially in hospital infections. Researchers at the Paul-Ehrlich-Institut have identified immunological processes that prevent a successful immune response directed against the pathogenic agent. The delivery of bacterial proteins with RNA adjuvant or messenger RNA (mRNA) into immune cells allows the re-direction of the immune response towards an active defense against S. aureus. This could be of significant importance for the development of an effective vaccine. PLOS Pathogens has published these research results online on 25 May 2017.

Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus) is a bacterium that colonizes by far more than half of the skin and the mucosa of adults, usually without causing infections....

Im Focus: A quantum walk of photons

Physicists from the University of Würzburg are capable of generating identical looking single light particles at the push of a button. Two new studies now demonstrate the potential this method holds.

The quantum computer has fuelled the imagination of scientists for decades: It is based on fundamentally different phenomena than a conventional computer....

Im Focus: Turmoil in sluggish electrons’ existence

An international team of physicists has monitored the scattering behaviour of electrons in a non-conducting material in real-time. Their insights could be beneficial for radiotherapy.

We can refer to electrons in non-conducting materials as ‘sluggish’. Typically, they remain fixed in a location, deep inside an atomic composite. It is hence...

Im Focus: Wafer-thin Magnetic Materials Developed for Future Quantum Technologies

Two-dimensional magnetic structures are regarded as a promising material for new types of data storage, since the magnetic properties of individual molecular building blocks can be investigated and modified. For the first time, researchers have now produced a wafer-thin ferrimagnet, in which molecules with different magnetic centers arrange themselves on a gold surface to form a checkerboard pattern. Scientists at the Swiss Nanoscience Institute at the University of Basel and the Paul Scherrer Institute published their findings in the journal Nature Communications.

Ferrimagnets are composed of two centers which are magnetized at different strengths and point in opposing directions. Two-dimensional, quasi-flat ferrimagnets...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Marine Conservation: IASS Contributes to UN Ocean Conference in New York on 5-9 June

24.05.2017 | Event News

AWK Aachen Machine Tool Colloquium 2017: Internet of Production for Agile Enterprises

23.05.2017 | Event News

Dortmund MST Conference presents Individualized Healthcare Solutions with micro and nanotechnology

22.05.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

New insights into the ancestors of all complex life

29.05.2017 | Earth Sciences

New photocatalyst speeds up the conversion of carbon dioxide into chemical resources

29.05.2017 | Life Sciences

NASA's SDO sees partial eclipse in space

29.05.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>