Parkinson's Linked to Gut Bacteria - Dream Health

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Friday, 16 December 2016

Parkinson's Linked to Gut Bacteria


Parkinson’s disease Linked – Bacteria in the Gut

Researchers, for the first time have discovered a practical link between the bacteria in the gut and the onset of Parkinson’s disease which is one of the most common debilitating brain disorders in the world. A team of scientists from many institutions in the United State as well as Europe have portrayed how changing the bacteria in the guts of mice have caused the appearances of the symptoms of Parkinson’s including also bacteria taken from the guts of humans affected by the disease.

The discoveries indicate a new system of treating the disease and the best target of treating could be the gut instead of the brain. The scientists expect that the new information could be utilised in developing `next generation’ probiotics, more sophisticated than the type of probiotics located on the shelves of health food stores presently.

One of the researchers on the team as well as professor of microbiology at the California Institute of Technology, Sarkis Mazmanian commented that `one could imagine a day maybe in our lifetimes; patients will be prescribed drugs and in the pills will be the bacteria that tend to protect them from disease or maybe treat their disease symptoms.

Second Most Common Neurodegenerative Disease

Their findings had been published recently in the journal Cell. Parkinson’s disease is a neurodegenerative disorder wherein the brain cells tend to amass excessive amount of protein known as alpha-synuclein and later die off.

 The person affected by this disease tends to lose motor function, experiences tremors and shaking and also faces other physical as well as mental disorders. Around one million people in the U.S and up to 10 million all over the world tend to be affected by this disease.

 It is said to be the second most common neurodegenerative disease in the world, after Alzheimer’s.It is not typically the cause of genetic, but most often it is influenced by environmental elements. Earlier researches have indicated links between gut bacteria and Parkinson’s together with other diseases like multiple sclerosis. However no research has indicated how precisely the two could be connected.

Alpha-Synuclein – Hallmark Protein of Disease

Three diverse experiments had been performed by the researchers which indicated the connection between the germs in the gut and the disease in the brain. At first, they assimilated two sets of mice which had been naturally altered to overproduce alpha-synuclein, the hallmark protein of the disease.

One set of the mice had complete microbiome which is the collective name for the bacteria in the gastrointestinal tract while the other set had no bacteria in their guts and were germ-free. The germ-free mice seemed to overproduce alpha-synuclein though their brain cells had not been accumulating the protein.

The germ-free mice showed less symptoms and their performance had improved on a series of motor skills test that were intended to model the kinds of test given to human patients. But the mice with the complete microbiome began accumulating the protein in their brain cells and started displaying brain damage in the areas which one would expect for a patient suffering from Parkinson’s.

 Then the team fed both the set of mice short-chain fatty acids which are usually produced by bacteria in the gut. They were checking to see if germ-free mice would portray symptoms if the researchers had imitated gut bacteria activity. The germ-free mice showed symptoms of the disease in the brain when fed with the chemicals which suggested that with the chemicals some types of gut bacteria produce deteriorate conditions in the brain.

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