Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Renewed hope for Parkinson’s patients

04.07.2005


Analysis of the brain of a patient suffering from Parkinson’s disease has shown for the first time that an experimental treatment can reverse the loss of nerve fibres.



Analysis of the brain of a patient suffering from Parkinson’s Disease has shown that the experimental treatment he received caused regrowth of the nerve fibres that are lost in this disease. The findings are reported in the July issue of Nature Medicine.
This is the first time that any treatment has been shown to reverse the loss of nerve fibres in Parkinson’s Disease.

The 62-year-old man was one of five patients in a pilot study carried out by Mr Steven Gill at Frenchay Hospital in Bristol, UK. In this study, an experimental drug (GDNF) was pumped through a fine catheter into a damaged part of the brain. Within a couple of months, patients were noticing dramatic improvements in their ability to move, and these continued over almost four years of treatment. Even after ceasing medication, the patients’ improvement has been maintained.



After the death of the 62-year-old patient from a heart attack, Professor Seth Love from Bristol University was able to examine his brain. Because the GDNF had been infused into one side of the brain only, the effects of the treatment could be assessed by comparing the two sides.

In Parkinson’s Disease, nerves containing the chemical messenger dopamine are lost from a region of the brain region known as the putamen, leading to tremors and other motor abnormalities characteristic of the disease.

Professor Love found that dopamine-containing nerve fibres had sprouted back in the putamen. He said: "This is the first neuropathological evidence that infusion of GDNF in humans causes sprouting of dopamine fibres, in association with a reduction in the severity of Parkinson’s Disease." The findings may revitalise interest in GDNF administration as a potential therapy for this degenerative condition, providing renewed hope for patients disappointed by the recent withdrawal of this drug due to concerns about its safety.

GDNF, which stands for glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor, is a natural growth agent needed by brain cells to produce dopamine, which transmits impulses between certain nerve cells including those that regulate movement. A reduced concentration of dopamine in the brain is associated with Parkinson’s Disease.

Cherry Lewis | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.bristol.ac.uk

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Organ-on-a-chip mimics heart's biomechanical properties
23.02.2017 | Vanderbilt University

nachricht Researchers identify cause of hereditary skeletal muscle disorder
22.02.2017 | Klinikum der Universität München

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: Breakthrough with a chain of gold atoms

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

Im Focus: DNA repair: a new letter in the cell alphabet

Results reveal how discoveries may be hidden in scientific “blind spots”

Cells need to repair damaged DNA in our genes to prevent the development of cancer and other diseases. Our cells therefore activate and send “repair-proteins”...

Im Focus: Dresdner scientists print tomorrow’s world

The Fraunhofer IWS Dresden and Technische Universität Dresden inaugurated their jointly operated Center for Additive Manufacturing Dresden (AMCD) with a festive ceremony on February 7, 2017. Scientists from various disciplines perform research on materials, additive manufacturing processes and innovative technologies, which build up components in a layer by layer process. This technology opens up new horizons for component design and combinations of functions. For example during fabrication, electrical conductors and sensors are already able to be additively manufactured into components. They provide information about stress conditions of a product during operation.

The 3D-printing technology, or additive manufacturing as it is often called, has long made the step out of scientific research laboratories into industrial...

Im Focus: Mimicking nature's cellular architectures via 3-D printing

Research offers new level of control over the structure of 3-D printed materials

Nature does amazing things with limited design materials. Grass, for example, can support its own weight, resist strong wind loads, and recover after being...

Im Focus: Three Magnetic States for Each Hole

Nanometer-scale magnetic perforated grids could create new possibilities for computing. Together with international colleagues, scientists from the Helmholtz Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR) have shown how a cobalt grid can be reliably programmed at room temperature. In addition they discovered that for every hole ("antidot") three magnetic states can be configured. The results have been published in the journal "Scientific Reports".

Physicist Dr. Rantej Bali from the HZDR, together with scientists from Singapore and Australia, designed a special grid structure in a thin layer of cobalt in...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Booth and panel discussion – The Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings at the AAAS 2017 Annual Meeting

13.02.2017 | Event News

Complex Loading versus Hidden Reserves

10.02.2017 | Event News

International Conference on Crystal Growth in Freiburg

09.02.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Stingless bees have their nests protected by soldiers

24.02.2017 | Life Sciences

New risk factors for anxiety disorders

24.02.2017 | Life Sciences

MWC 2017: 5G Capital Berlin

24.02.2017 | Trade Fair News

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>