Author Archives: Marisa Wexler

Study Examines Genetics of Parkinson’s in Latinos

Genetic variations in the gene SNCA are tied to an increased risk of Parkinson’s disease (PD) among Latinos, according to a recent analysis. Also, Latinos with African ancestry are less likely to develop Parkinson’s. The analysis is “the most comprehensive examination of PD genetics in this population [Latinos] to…

Pathogens More Abundant in Mouths of Parkinson’s Patients

Opportunistic pathogens — microorganisms that live in us all,  but under specific circumstances can cause diseases like pneumonia — are more abundant in the mouths of people with Parkinson’s disease than healthy individuals, a study reported. This finding suggests that changes in oral bacteria in patients are related to disease…

Study: Alcohol, Tobacco Use May Reduce Parkinson’s Risk

Drinking alcohol and smoking tobacco may reduce a person’s risk of developing Parkinson’s disease, according to a new study that found evidence of a cause-and-effect relationship. “It is crucial to be aware that smoking and drinking pose serious health risks to individuals,” the researchers wrote, noting there was “no…

Parkinson’s Neurons Form Atypical Networks

Parkinson’s disease brain cells form abnormal networks that might predispose the cells toward damage, according to new research done using cells in laboratory conditions. “These discoveries open the door to early diagnosis, which would allow us to carry out a premature intervention that would slow down neuronal death, and…

Voice-assisted Devices May Help Patients to Speak More Clearly

People with Parkinson’s disease who use voice-assisted technologies (VATs) — software programs that respond to voice commands, like Amazon’s Alexa or Apple’s Siri — may find that they help to improve their speech by prodding them to practice speaking more clearly, a study based on an online patient survey…

Stem Cell Therapy Shows Safety, Possible Efficacy in Early Trial

Treatment with ISC-hpNSC, an investigational stem cell therapy for Parkinson’s disease, was safe and well-tolerated over at least two years in an early clinical trial in 12 patients. Results from the small trial, which treated patients at low, medium and high doses, also indicate that the therapy eased Parkinson’s-related symptoms…

Differences in Mouse, Human Astrocytes May Impact Research

Brain cells called astrocytes behave differently under stressful conditions in humans as compared with mice, new research suggests. Because mice are a commonly used model for research in Parkinson’s disease, these “species-specific differences” could have important implications for how such research is done, according to a team of…

Many Who Start Antipsychotics Discontinue Treatment

More than a third of people with Parkinson’s disease who are prescribed antipsychotics stop treatment within six months of starting, a new database analysis suggests. The data also indicate that rates of treatment discontinuation are lower with Nuplazid (pimavanserin) than with other antipsychotics. The findings were published in …

Low Levels of Some Fatty Acids Found in Parkinson’s Patients

People with Parkinson’s disease have lower-than-normal levels of certain fatty acids in their blood, which is not explained by dietary differences, a new study shows. The low levels of some of these fatty acids among Parkinson’s patients are associated with more severe motor symptoms, while high levels of…

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