Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Researchers Find Link Between Developmental Exposure To Pesticide And Parkinson's Risk

Date:
July 7, 2006
Source:
Emory University Health Sciences Center
Summary:
A team of Emory University researchers has found a connection in laboratory mice between developmental exposure to the pesticide dieldrin (now banned from use) during gestation and lactation and an increased risk of developing Parkinson's disease (PD).

A team of Emory University researchers has found a connection in laboratory mice between developmental exposure to the pesticide dieldrin (now banned from use) during gestation and lactation and an increased risk of developing Parkinson’s disease (PD). The findings are significant because most studies aimed at determining the disease process in PD have been focused on events occurring during adulthood, not during developmental stages. The study results are published online today in The Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology (FASEB) Journal (http://www.fasebj.org/papbyrecent.dtl).

The pesticide dieldrin was banned for most uses by the Environmental Protection Agency in 1974, then totally banned in 1987, according to the researchers. Dieldrin was most commonly used for insect control in crops and for termite control in home foundations. "While many pesticides have been banned from use today, they still remain in the soil and can take decades to break down, as in the case of dieldrin," says Gary Miller, PhD, neurotoxicologist, researcher in Emory's Center for Neurodegenerative Disease and associate professor in the Department of Environmental and Occupational Health, Rollins School of Public Health at Emory. "Because of dieldrin's lingering effects, our research focuses on the role of the environment and its effects on PD." Dr. Miller is the senior author on this paper.

"Although most people are diagnosed in mid- to late-life with Parkinson's, experimental evidence suggests that neurodegeneration begins long before clinical diagnosis of PD," says Dr. Miller. "Recent research has led to the idea that the etiology of a number of diseases may result from alterations occurring during development. Therefore, we decided to examine whether developmental exposure to dieldrin causes persistent changes to the dopaminergic system and whether these changes can result in increased susceptibility to Parkinson's."

Parkinson's disease is considered a disease of aging, occurring when a group of cells in an area of the brain called the substantia nigra begin to malfunction and die. These cells produce a chemical called dopamine, a neurotransmitter or chemical messenger, that sends information to the parts of the brain that control movement and coordination. When a person has Parkinson's disease, his or her dopamine-producing cells begin to die, leaving that person incapable of initiating and controlling movements in a normal way.

In the Emory study, the researchers administered 0.3 mg/kg, 1 mg/kg, 3 mg/kg of dieldrin or no dieldrin (placebo) every three days to pregnant mice throughout gestation and lactation.

"Through analysis of brain samples, we found the pesticide does not directly kill the dopamine neurons, but instead alters the dopamine neuron homeostasis or equilibrium to cause increased vulnerability to a parkinsonism-inducing toxin," Dr. Miller explains. The study also found the enhanced vulnerability affected male rodent offspring more so than female rodent offspring. The finding is consistent with that observed in the human population affected by PD, in that Parkinson's affects more men than women.

"We also noted that exposure to dieldrin during critical periods of development may lead to the imprinting of genes that regulate the proper formation and maintenance of function of the dopamine system," says Jason Richardson, PhD, co-author and postdoctoral fellow in the Miller laboratory. "This alteration may induce a silent state of dopamine dysfunction and an increased vulnerability of dopamine neurons later in life."

"The results from this study provide a potential molecular mechanism responsible for the association between dieldrin exposure and increased risk of PD and suggests that greater attention should be focused on the role of early life exposures and the development of PD," says Dr. Miller.

Other Emory researchers involved in this study include: Michael Caudle, BS; Minzheng Wang, MD; Danielle Dean, MS; and Kurt D. Pennell, PhD.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Emory University Health Sciences Center. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Emory University Health Sciences Center. "Researchers Find Link Between Developmental Exposure To Pesticide And Parkinson's Risk." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 7 July 2006. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/07/060707020709.htm>.
Emory University Health Sciences Center. (2006, July 7). Researchers Find Link Between Developmental Exposure To Pesticide And Parkinson's Risk. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 24, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/07/060707020709.htm
Emory University Health Sciences Center. "Researchers Find Link Between Developmental Exposure To Pesticide And Parkinson's Risk." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/07/060707020709.htm (accessed July 24, 2014).

Share This




More Mind & Brain News

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

New Painkiller Designed To Discourage Abuse: Will It Work?

New Painkiller Designed To Discourage Abuse: Will It Work?

Newsy (July 24, 2014) The FDA approved Targiniq ER on Wednesday, a painkiller designed to keep users from abusing it. Like any new medication, however, it has doubters. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
China's Ageing Millions Look Forward to Bleak Future

China's Ageing Millions Look Forward to Bleak Future

AFP (July 24, 2014) China's elderly population is expanding so quickly that children struggle to look after them, pushing them to do something unexpected in Chinese society- move their parents into a nursing home. Duration: 02:07 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Idaho Boy Helps Brother With Disabilities Complete Triathlon

Idaho Boy Helps Brother With Disabilities Complete Triathlon

Newsy (July 23, 2014) An 8-year-old boy helped his younger brother, who has a rare genetic condition that's confined him to a wheelchair, finish a triathlon. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Huge Schizophrenia Study Finds Dozens Of New Genetic Causes

Huge Schizophrenia Study Finds Dozens Of New Genetic Causes

Newsy (July 22, 2014) The 83 new genetic markers could open dozens of new avenues for schizophrenia treatment research. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

    Health News

      Environment News

        Technology News



          Save/Print:
          Share:

          Free Subscriptions


          Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

          Get Social & Mobile


          Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

          Have Feedback?


          Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
          Mobile: iPhone Android Web
          Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
          Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
          Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins