Parkinson's disease begins in the gut

Scientists from the University of Aarhus (Denmark) conducted a study that proved that the origins of Parkinson's disease should be sought in the intestine. This disease, which, like Alzheimer's disease, often develops with age and affects the nervous system, is associated with an increased accumulation of alpha-synuclein protein in the brain. 

Investigators from Denmark suggested that the occurrence of toxic protein in the brain is preceded by an increase in its concentration in the intestine, where it enters the blood and then the nervous system. During the experiment, scientists introduced alpha-synuclein into the intestines of mice predisposed to brain damage, similar in manifestations to human Parkinson's disease. Just two months later, researchers found a protein in the nerve pathways of mice and in those parts of the brain that suffer from Parkinson's disease, and four months later, symptoms of the disease appeared.

Scientists say that a similar process, the flow of alpha-synuclein from the intestine to the brain, occurs in the human body. However, it takes people 20 years or more to implement this mechanism. According to scientists, this discovery, once again confirming the close connection between the intestine and the brain, provides opportunities for early diagnosis of Parkinson's disease and will allow to develop effective methods of prevention. 

Sept. 11, 2019, 11:49 a.m.

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