PDF-funded researcher Natalie Kukulka (Credit-Kellie Doyle, Lake Forest College)
Parkinsonís Research Now: Surprising Treatment Options
Candy sweeteners, diabetes drugs and chemotherapy. What do these three items have in common? They have all made headlines as possible avenues for new PD treatments. In this issue of Research Now, let's look at what these headlines really mean.
Common Natural Sweetener May Treat Parkinson's
Could a sweetener found in sugar-free gums and candies hold potential for Parkinson's? Yes, but unfortunately, it isn't as simple as eating more sweets (the drug has to be injected and needs further study), but initial results are exciting.
Potential of Diabetes Drug for Parkinson's
Could we speed progress for Parkinson's by borrowing drugs from other disease areas? Scientists think it is possible, so they studied a drug already used for treating type 2 diabetes for its potential in Parkinson's. Their early results suggest that the drug exenatide (Byetta®) may have potential for PD.
Cancer Drug Shows Promise for Parkinson's
Another team tested a chemotherapy treatment already approved for adults with leukemia. In an early study in mice, the treatment was able to reduce levels of a harmful protein in the brain and improve motor symptoms. Scientists have not yet determined the drug's potential for people living with PD, but this early study offers hope.
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Dr. James Beck
Director of Research Programs
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