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Manifold studies point out the fundamental role of “misfolded proteins such as beta-amyloid and a-synuclein” (Forloni et al.) in Parkinson’s disease. Transmutation of the…
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12 November Summary: Nutraceuticals and the Parkinson’s disease
Parkinson’s disease is caused by the degenerative reduction of dopaminergic neurons (Chao et al.). Manifold studies point out the fundamental role of “misfolded proteins such as beta-amyloid and a-synuclein” (Forloni et al.) in Parkinson’s disease. Transmutation of the molecular marker “a-synuclein”, while believed to cause Parkinsonism, is seldom present in patients with Parkinson’s disease.
While aging is considered a major risk factor of Parkinsons disease, several environmental factors have also been discovered as contributing factors to Parkinsons disease morbidity (Chao et al.). The most common environmental factors are toxins and exposure to pesticides. Toxic chemicals like MPTP, Toluene, Carbon Disulphide, and cyanide; and certain pesticides like rotenone and paraquat affect significant changes in vital neural components. Exposure to toxic chemicals and pesticides are found to cause damage and loss of “dopaminergic neurons and clinical Parkinsonism” (Chao et al.). Pesticides like paraquat and rotenone has also been observed to depreciate both dopaminergic neurons and typical Parkinsonism. Furthermore, these chemicals inspire contact with genetic expression thereby curbing genetic mutations. As a result, genetics have been particularly considered in the continuing research on Parkinson’s disease. There is no known cure for Parkinson’s disease so far; and most of the treatments available today are used to either prevent or contain the degeneration of the disease. According to Chao et al (2012), current treatments for Parkinson’s disease are categorized into two main subgroups: symptom-relieving drugs and surgical treatments. Common symptom-relieving drugs include L-dopa, dopamine agonists, bromocriptine, ropinirole, cabergoline, and pergolide among others. Examples of surgical treatments for Parkinson’s disease patients are “deep brain stimulation, implantation of embryonic dopaminergic cells, and gene therapy” (Chao et al.). These surgical treatments generally aim for tempering motor and non-motor symptoms.
Recently, the use of nutraceuticals has been widely employed as an alternative to treating degenerative symptoms of Parkinson’s disease. One example of nutraceuticals – essentially refers to “food or food products” (Chao et al.) that are scientifically found to provide medical and health benefits, and which exhibit potential preventive capabilities against certain diseases – are antioxidants like Vitamins C and E. According to Anderson et al., consuming foods that are rich in Vitamin C and Vitamin E are “associated with lower risk of developing Parkinson’s disease”. Nevertheless, this study only accounts to foods that contain such nutraceuticals and does not particularly associate the vitamins itself. Scheider et al. claim that antioxidant vitamins like Vitamins C and E possesses the ability to substantially reduce “SN dopaminergic neurons in progressive disease”. It also precludes “lipid peroxidation in membranes” (Scheider et al.). This helps in prolonging the deteriorating symptoms of Parkinson’s disease.
Works Cited
Anderson, C, H Checkoway, GM Franklin, et al. "Dietary Factors in Parkinson’s disease: The
Role of Food Groups and Specific Foods. Mov Disord. 14.0 (1999):21–27. Print.
Chao, Jianfei, Yen Leung, Mingfu Wang, and Raymond Chuen-Chung Chang. “Nutraceuticals
and Their Preventive or Potential Therapeutic Value in Parkinsons disease”. Nutrition
Reviews® 70.7 (2012):373–386. Web. 11 November 2012.
Forloni, G, L Terreni, I Bertani, et al. "Protein misfolding in Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s
disease: Genetics and Molecular Mechanisms. Neurobiol Aging 23.0 (2002):957–976. Print.
Scheider, William, Linda Hershey, J Vena, et al. "Dietary Antioxidants and Other Dietary
Factors in the Etiology of Parkinson’s disease". Mov Disord. 12.0 (1997):190–196. Print. Read More
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