Diabetic Drug Could Lead to Parkinson’s Cure Jul 29, 2015 1:01:35 GMT -5
Post by Joanna on Jul 29, 2015 1:01:35 GMT -5
Diabetic Drug Could Reduce Development of Parkinson’s Disease
A drug originally intended for diabetes could possibly reduce the development of Parkinson's disease, according to a published study. The new study, which appears in the journal PLOS Medicine, was led by the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine. Researchers found that the diabetes treatment pioglitazone or rosiglitazone (glitazones, aka thiazolidinediones) lowered the incidence of Parkinson's disease by 28 percent in those who took the drugs compared to those who didn't. The study, sponsored by The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research, looked into data of more than 160,000 diabetics in the UK, reports Medical News Today.
Researchers studied electronic health records taken from the UK Clinical Practice Research Datalink. They matched 44,597 glitazone drug users with 120,373 users of other diabetic treatments. The data was from 1999 to 2013 and during this period, researchers were able to see how many people were found to have Parkinson's disease. The result was the 28 percent lowered incidence mentioned above and it did not change even when researchers considered other factors that could affect the risk of the disease, such as smoking and head injury. "We often hear about negative side effects associated with medications, but sometimes there can also be unintended beneficial effects," senior researcher Ian Douglas told Reuters.
According to the statistics from the Parkinson's Disease Foundation, around one million Americans have the disease and an estimated 60,000 Americans are diagnosed every year, not including the undetected cases. Currently, there are no treatments considered effective for Parkinson's disease, a condition that affects dopamine-producing nerve cells important for transmitting signals for controlling muscle movement.
The findings from the new study are consistent with animal and in vitro experiments suggesting that glitazone drugs, which target the receptor called peroxisome proliferation-activated gamma (PPAR), can have neuroprotective properties.
The new research, however, does not suggest that Parkinson's disease patients should turn to the diabetic drugs immediately. Researchers also emphasized the drugs have been associated with serious side effects, which include heart problems and bladder cancer. The findings should provide a step toward finding an appropriate treatment for Parkinson's disease.
Source: Wendy Lemeric, Christian Today, July 28, 2015.