From the Daily Beast, some needed good news in this crazy world.
Scientists have known for years that Parkinson’s Disease is caused – in whole or in part – by the body’s inability to produce the neurotransmitter Dopamine. The deficiency leads directly to the primary Parkinson’s symptoms: tremors, slowed movement, memory issues. This new treatment would trigger the body to regenerate those dopamine-producing nerve cells which have died off.
“What we then do is add a series of very specific proteins—so-called growth factors—so that the cells develop into the necessary dopamine-producing nerve cells in the petri dish,” Agnete Kirkeby, a University of Copenhagen neuroscientist who’s helped pioneer the new treatment, told The Daily Beast. “Then the cells are surgically inserted into the brain using a special type of needle, and will hopefully produce dopamine in place of the patient’s dead nerve cells.”
The fact that this treatment is in the ‘clinical trials’ stage is very encouraging. It means that – if those trials are successful – the timeframe for the approval of this drug could be years and not decades.
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