Colds and other infections may trigger mutation that causes Parkinson’s

Parkinsons Disease Diagnosis
Dr Rejko Krüger with a patient. Image credit: Bruno Santos

Scientists report that the most common Parkinson’s gene mutation may change how immune cells react to generic infections like colds, which in turn trigger the inflammatory reaction in the brain that causes Parkinson’s. Their study (“Mutant LRRK2 Mediates Peripheral and Central Immune Responses Leading to Neurodegeneration In Vivo”), published in Brain, contradicts the long-held view that Parkinson’s was a disease that starts in the brain, destroying motion centers and resulting in the tremors and loss of movement.

Mutations in the LRRK2 gene are the most common cause of inherited Parkinson’s disease.

“We know that gene mutation is not enough to cause the disease,” said Dr. Kozina, a postdoc at Jefferson (Philadelphia University and Thomas Jefferson University). “We know that twins who both carry the mutation won’t both necessarily develop Parkinson’s. A second ‘hit’ or initiating event is needed.”

Related article:  Deadly antibiotic resistance could be countered by gene drives

Based on his earlier work showing that the flu might increase risk of Parkinson’s disease, Dr. Smeyne decided to investigate whether that second hit came from an infection.

[He said,] “Although we can’t treat people with immunosuppressants their whole lives to prevent the disease, if this mechanism is confirmed, it’s possible that other interventions could be effective at reducing the chance of developing the disease.”

Read full, original post: New Finding on Parkinson’s Gene Mutation Alters View of What Causes the Disease

Outbreak
Outbreak Daily Digest
Biotech Facts & Fallacies
Talking Biotech
Genetics Unzipped
can you boost your immune system to prevent coronavirus spread x

Video: How to boost your immune system to guard against COVID and other illnesses

Scientists have recently developed ways to measure your immune age. Fortunately, it turns out your immune age can go down ...
mag insects image superjumbo v

Disaster interrupted: Which farming system better preserves insect populations: Organic or conventional?

A three-year run of fragmentary Armageddon-like studies had primed the journalism pumps and settled the media framing about the future ...
dead bee desolate city

Are we facing an ‘Insect Apocalypse’ caused by ‘intensive, industrial’ farming and agricultural chemicals? The media say yes; Science says ‘no’

The media call it the “Insect Apocalypse”. In the past three years, the phrase has become an accepted truth of ...
globalmethanebudget globalcarbonproject cropped x

Infographic: Cows cause climate change? Agriculture scientist says ‘belching bovines’ get too much blame

A recent interview by Caroline Stocks, a UK journalist who writes about food, agriculture and the environment, of air quality ...
organic hillside sweet corn x

Organic v conventional using GMOs: Which is the more sustainable farming?

Many consumers spend more for organic food to avoid genetically modified products in part because they believe that “industrial agriculture” ...
benjamin franklin x

Are most GMO safety studies funded by industry?

The assertion that biotech companies do the research and the government just signs off on it is false ...
gmo corn field x

Do GMO Bt (insect-resistant) crops pose a threat to human health or the environment?

Bt is a bacterium found organically in the soil. It is extremely effective in repelling or killing target insects but ...
favicon

Environmental Working Group: EWG challenges safety of GMOs, food pesticide residues

Known by some as the "Environmental Worrying Group," EWG lobbies for tighter GMO legislation and famously puts out annual "dirty dozen" list of fruits and ...
m hansen

Michael Hansen: Architect of Consumers Union ongoing anti-GMO campaign

Michael K. Hansen (born 1956) is thought by critics to be the prime mover behind the ongoing campaign against agricultural biotechnology at Consumer Reports. He is an ...
News on human & agricultural genetics and biotechnology delivered to your inbox.
Optional. Mail on special occasions.
Send this to a friend