Lithium 'could combat Parkinson's'

Posted on 24 June 2011

People with neurodegenerative conditions, likely to be paying for care, may be using lithium supplements to combat the condition.

Now, an animal model study published in the Journal of Neuroscience Research, has discovered that lithium profoundly prevents the aggregation of toxic proteins and cell loss associated with Parkinson's disease.

Professor Julie Andersen, of the Buck Institute for Research on Aging, commented that the idea lithium could affect a patient's outcome on a subclinical level is "exciting", as this type of treatment would avoid many side effects linked to a higher dosage of the element.

Authors reflected that lithium could potentially also be used to treat Alzheimer's, Huntington's disease and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.

"This finding gives us an opportunity to explore lithium as a recognized therapeutic for PD, in doses that are safe and effective" she said.

Meanwhile, research at NeuroNova AB has shown that a new treatment, known as platelet-derived growth factor-BB (PDGF-BB), was shown to restore brain function in rodents with Parkinson's disease.

Posted by Nigel Murphy



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