Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Widely Used Cholesterol-lowering Drug May Prevent Progression Of Parkinson's Disease

Date:
November 9, 2009
Source:
Rush University Medical Center
Summary:
Simvastatin, a commonly used, cholesterol-lowering drug, may prevent Parkinson's disease from progressing further. Neurological researchers conducted a study examining the use of the FDA-approved medication in mice with Parkinson's disease and found that the drug successfully reverses the biochemical, cellular and anatomical changes caused by the disease.

Simvastatin, a commonly used, cholesterol-lowering drug, may prevent Parkinson's disease from progressing further. Neurological researchers at Rush University Medical Center conducted a study examining the use of the FDA-approved medication in mice with Parkinson's disease and found that the drug successfully reverses the biochemical, cellular and anatomical changes caused by the disease.

"Statins are one of the most widely used cholesterol-lowering drugs throughout the world," said study author Kalipada Pahan, PhD, professor of neurological sciences at Rush University Medical Center. "This may be a safer approach to halt the disease progression in Parkinson's patients."

Pahan and colleagues from Rush, along with researchers at the University of Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha published these findings in the October 28 issue of the Journal of Neurosciences.

The authors have shown that the activity of one protein called p21Ras is increased very early in the midbrain of mice with Parkinson's pathology. Simvastatin enters into the brain and blocks the activity of the p21Ras protein and other associated toxic molecules, and goes on to protect the neurons, normalize neurotransmitter levels, and improves the motor functions in the mice with Parkinson's.

"Understanding how the disease works is important to developing effective drugs that protect the brain and stop the progression of Parkinson's," said Pahan. "If we are able to replicate these results in Parkinson's patients in the clinical setting, it would be a remarkable advance in the treatment of this devastating neurodegenerative disease."

The study was supported by grants from National Institutes of Health and Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research.

Parkinson's is a slowly progressive disease that affects a small area of cells within the mid-brain known as the substantia nigra. Gradual degeneration of these cells causes a reduction in dopamine, which is a vital chemical neurotransmitter. The decrease in dopamine results in one or more of the classic signs of Parkinson's disease that includes, resting tremor on one side of the body, generalized slowness of movement, stiffness of limbs, and gait or balance problems. The cause of Parkinson's disease is unknown. Both environmental and genetic causes of the disease have been postulated.

Parkinson's disease affects about 1.2 million patients in the United States and Canada. Although 15 percent of patients are diagnosed before age 50, it is generally considered a disease that targets older adults, affecting one of every 100 persons over the age of 60. This disease appears to be slightly more common in men than women.


Story Source:

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


Cite This Page:

Rush University Medical Center. "Widely Used Cholesterol-lowering Drug May Prevent Progression Of Parkinson's Disease." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 9 November 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/10/091029211647.htm>.
Rush University Medical Center. (2009, November 9). Widely Used Cholesterol-lowering Drug May Prevent Progression Of Parkinson's Disease. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/10/091029211647.htm
Rush University Medical Center. "Widely Used Cholesterol-lowering Drug May Prevent Progression Of Parkinson's Disease." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/10/091029211647.htm (accessed July 22, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Gilead's $1000-a-Pill Drug Could Cure Hep C in HIV-Positive People

Gilead's $1000-a-Pill Drug Could Cure Hep C in HIV-Positive People

TheStreet (July 21, 2014) New research shows Gilead Science's drug Sovaldi helps in curing hepatitis C in those who suffer from HIV. In a medical study, the combination of Gilead's Hep C drug with anti-viral drug Ribavirin cured 76% of HIV-positive patients suffering from the most common hepatitis C strain. Hepatitis C and related complications have been a top cause of death in HIV-positive patients. Typical medication used to treat the disease, including interferon proteins, tended to react badly with HIV drugs. However, Sovaldi's %1,000-a-pill price tag could limit the number of patients able to access the treatment. TheStreet's Keris Lahiff reports from New York. Video provided by TheStreet
Powered by NewsLook.com
$23.6 Billion Awarded To Widow In Smoking Lawsuit

$23.6 Billion Awarded To Widow In Smoking Lawsuit

Newsy (July 20, 2014) Cynthia Robinson claims R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company hid the health and addiction risks of its products, leading to the death of her husband in 1996. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Tooth Plaque Provides Insight Into Diets Of Ancient People

Tooth Plaque Provides Insight Into Diets Of Ancient People

Newsy (July 19, 2014) Research on plaque from ancient teeth shows that our prehistoric ancestor's had a detailed understanding of plants long before developing agriculture. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Contaminated Water Kills 3 Babies in South African Town

Contaminated Water Kills 3 Babies in South African Town

AFP (July 18, 2014) Contaminated water in South Africa's northwestern town of Bloemhof kills three babies and hospitalises over 500 people. The incident highlights growing fears over water safety in South Africa. Duration: 02:22 Video provided by AFP
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