Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Severe flu increases risk of Parkinson's

Date:
July 20, 2012
Source:
University of British Columbia
Summary:
Severe influenza doubles the odds that a person will develop Parkinson's disease later in life, according to researchers.

Severe influenza doubles the odds that a person will develop Parkinson's disease later in life, according to University of British Columbia researchers.

However, the opposite is true for people who contracted a typical case of red measles as children -- they are 35 per cent less likely to develop Parkinson's, a nervous system disorder marked by slowness of movement, shaking, stiffness, and in the later stages, loss of balance.

The findings by researchers at UBC's School of Population and Public Health and the Pacific Parkinson's Research Centre, published online this month in the journal Movement Disorders, are based on interviews with 403 Parkinson's patients and 405 healthy people in British Columbia, Canada.

Lead author Anne Harris also examined whether occupational exposure to vibrations -- such as operating construction equipment -- had any effect on the risk of Parkinson's. In another study, published online this month by the American Journal of Epidemiology, she and her collaborators reported that occupational exposure actually decreased the risk of developing the disease by 33 percent, compared to people whose jobs involved no exposure.

Meanwhile, Harris found that those exposed to high-intensity vibrations -- for example, by driving snowmobiles, military tanks or high-speed boats -- had a consistently higher risk of developing Parkinson's than people whose jobs involved lower-intensity vibrations (for example, operating road vehicles). The elevated risk fell short of the statistical significance typically used to establish a correlation, but was strong and consistent enough to suggest an avenue for further study, Harris says.

"There are no cures or prevention programs for Parkinson's, in part because we still don't understand what triggers it in some people and not others," says Harris, who conducted the research while earning her doctorate at UBC. "This kind of painstaking epidemiological detective work is crucial in identifying the mechanisms that might be at work, allowing the development of effective prevention strategies."

Background information

Parkinson's disease results when brain cells that make the neurotransmitter dopamine are destroyed, preventing the brain from transmitting messages to muscles. The disease typically strikes people over age 50. Although some cases are genetic in origin, the cause for most cases of the disease is still unknown; possible explanations include repeated head trauma, or exposure to viruses or chemical compounds.

Treatment: There is no cure for Parkinson's, only medications to treat the symptoms.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of British Columbia. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal References:

  1. M. Anne Harris, Joseph K. Tsui, Stephen A. Marion, Hui Shen, Kay Teschke. Association of Parkinson's disease with infections and occupational exposure to possible vectors. Movement Disorders, 2012; DOI: 10.1002/mds.25077
  2. M. A. Harris, S. A. Marion, J. J. Spinelli, J. K. C. Tsui, K. Teschke. Occupational Exposure to Whole-Body Vibration and Parkinson's Disease: Results From a Population-based Case-Control Study. American Journal of Epidemiology, 2012; DOI: 10.1093/aje/kws017

Cite This Page:

University of British Columbia. "Severe flu increases risk of Parkinson's." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 20 July 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/07/120720135717.htm>.
University of British Columbia. (2012, July 20). Severe flu increases risk of Parkinson's. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 24, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/07/120720135717.htm
University of British Columbia. "Severe flu increases risk of Parkinson's." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/07/120720135717.htm (accessed July 24, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine 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
Doctor At Forefront Of Fighting Ebola Outbreak Gets Ebola

Doctor At Forefront Of Fighting Ebola Outbreak Gets Ebola

Newsy (July 24, 2014) Sheik Umar Khan has treated many of the people infected in the Ebola outbreak, and now he's become one of them. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Condemned Man's US Execution Takes Nearly Two Hours

Condemned Man's US Execution Takes Nearly Two Hours

AFP (July 24, 2014) America's death penalty debate raged Thursday after it took nearly two hours for Arizona to execute a prisoner who lost a Supreme Court battle challenging the experimental lethal drug cocktail. Duration: 00:55 Video provided by AFP
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

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