Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Mayo Clinic Finds Genetic Variation That Protects Against Parkinson's Disease

31.08.2011
An international team of researchers led by neuroscientists at Mayo Clinic in Florida has found a genetic variation they say protects against Parkinson's disease.

The gene variants cut the risk of developing the disease by nearly 20 percent in many populations. The study, published in the online Aug. 31 issue of Lancet Neurology, also reports the discovery of different variants of the same gene, LRRK2— the most important Parkinson's risk gene found to date — that double Parkinson's risk in Caucasians and Asians.

Parkinson's disease is a common movement disorder that affects 1 to 2 percent of people over age 65. The researchers say that although the relative influence of the variants in this study on risk is small, given the late-onset nature of Parkinson's, any variation that can delay the disease is important. In addition, the finding provides evidence that Parkinson's disease is influenced by multiple genetic risks that act together to cause disease.

"The idea that Parkinson's disease occurs mostly in a random sporadic fashion is changing," says lead investigator Owen Ross, Ph.D., a neuroscientist at Mayo Clinic Florida. "Our study, one of the largest to date in the study of the genetics of Parkinson's disease, shows that a single gene, LRRK2, harbors both rare and common variants that in turn alter the susceptibility to PD in diverse populations.''

Researchers hope to use these and future genetic findings to predict who is at risk of Parkinson's and to develop novel targeted therapies, Dr. Ross says.

The Genetic Epidemiology of Parkinson's Disease consortium that contributed to the three-year study included investigators from 23 sites representing 15 countries on five continents. The investigators contributed clinical samples on a total of 15,540 individuals (8,611 PD patients and 6,929 controls). The researchers in Mayo Clinic Florida, funded by The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research and the Mayo Clinic Morris K. Udall Center of Excellence in Parkinson's disease Research, then quantified Parkinson's risk for each LRRK2 variant. Co- investigator Matthew Farrer, Ph.D., is a former Mayo Clinic neuroscientist now at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver.

"This is an important study that will help us learn more about how the same gene can both increase and reduce risk of late-onset, sporadic Parkinson's disease, the kind that affects most people," says co-author Zbigniew Wszolek, M.D., a Mayo Clinic neurologist who has helped build international collaborations at Mayo Clinic. "Our goal is to find out how we can intervene in this process to help prevent development of this disease."

In 2004,Mayo researchers led by Dr. Wszolek discovered that the little understood LRRK2 gene was responsible for causing a form of "familial" or inherited Parkinson's. "Through this study and subsequent follow-up investigation, we and others identified a LRRK2 variant (G2019S) which turned out to be the most common genetic cause of familial PD yet found. For example, it is found in more than 30 percent of Arab-Berber patients with the disease," he says. To date, seven such familial pathogenic LRRK2 variants have been discovered in different ethnic populations.

However, LRRK2 variation has also been found to increase the risk of sporadic late-onset Parkinson's, so in this study, researchers set out to address every possible variant in the part of the LRRK2 gene that codes for protein production to determine which variants affect risk, and by how much. The researchers found that common and rare variants contributed to late-onset sporadic PD in both a risk or protective manner. Dr Ross adds that there remain many more PD risk genes to be found outside of LRRK2, and that together they contribute to a significantly higher likelihood of developing PD.

Major funding for the study also came from the National Institutes of Health, Mayo Foundation, and several international funding agencies.

About Mayo Clinic
Mayo Clinic is a nonprofit worldwide leader in medical care, research and education for people from all walks of life. For more information, visit MayoClinic.com or MayoClinic.org/news.

Kevin Punsky | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.mayo.edu

Further reports about: Genetic clues LRRK2 Parkinson Parkinson's disease Single gene gene variant

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht During HIV infection, antibody can block B cells from fighting pathogens
14.08.2018 | NIH/National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases

nachricht First study on physical properties of giant cancer cells may inform new treatments
14.08.2018 | Brown University

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: New interactive machine learning tool makes car designs more aerodynamic

Scientists develop first tool to use machine learning methods to compute flow around interactively designable 3D objects. Tool will be presented at this year’s prestigious SIGGRAPH conference.

When engineers or designers want to test the aerodynamic properties of the newly designed shape of a car, airplane, or other object, they would normally model...

Im Focus: Robots as 'pump attendants': TU Graz develops robot-controlled rapid charging system for e-vehicles

Researchers from TU Graz and their industry partners have unveiled a world first: the prototype of a robot-controlled, high-speed combined charging system (CCS) for electric vehicles that enables series charging of cars in various parking positions.

Global demand for electric vehicles is forecast to rise sharply: by 2025, the number of new vehicle registrations is expected to reach 25 million per year....

Im Focus: The “TRiC” to folding actin

Proteins must be folded correctly to fulfill their molecular functions in cells. Molecular assistants called chaperones help proteins exploit their inbuilt folding potential and reach the correct three-dimensional structure. Researchers at the Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry (MPIB) have demonstrated that actin, the most abundant protein in higher developed cells, does not have the inbuilt potential to fold and instead requires special assistance to fold into its active state. The chaperone TRiC uses a previously undescribed mechanism to perform actin folding. The study was recently published in the journal Cell.

Actin is the most abundant protein in highly developed cells and has diverse functions in processes like cell stabilization, cell division and muscle...

Im Focus: Lining up surprising behaviors of superconductor with one of the world's strongest magnets

Scientists have discovered that the electrical resistance of a copper-oxide compound depends on the magnetic field in a very unusual way -- a finding that could help direct the search for materials that can perfectly conduct electricity at room temperatur

What happens when really powerful magnets--capable of producing magnetic fields nearly two million times stronger than Earth's--are applied to materials that...

Im Focus: World record: Fastest 3-D tomographic images at BESSY II

The quality of materials often depends on the manufacturing process. In casting and welding, for example, the rate at which melts solidify and the resulting microstructure of the alloy is important. With metallic foams as well, it depends on exactly how the foaming process takes place. To understand these processes fully requires fast sensing capability. The fastest 3D tomographic images to date have now been achieved at the BESSY II X-ray source operated by the Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin.

Dr. Francisco Garcia-Moreno and his team have designed a turntable that rotates ultra-stably about its axis at a constant rotational speed. This really depends...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Within reach of the Universe

08.08.2018 | Event News

A journey through the history of microscopy – new exhibition opens at the MDC

27.07.2018 | Event News

2018 Work Research Conference

25.07.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

'Building up' stretchable electronics to be as multipurpose as your smartphone

14.08.2018 | Information Technology

During HIV infection, antibody can block B cells from fighting pathogens

14.08.2018 | Life Sciences

First study on physical properties of giant cancer cells may inform new treatments

14.08.2018 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>