Gene therapy 'successful in treating Parkinson's'

Gene therapy 'successful in treating Parkinson's'

A gene therapy has been found to successfully reduce symptoms in patients with Parkinson's disease, giving hope to many with the condition around the world.

The study, published in Lancet Neurology, found that half of all patients who received the treatment exhibited "clinically meaningful improvements" of their condition within six months of the surgery.

While most recent Parkinson's research has focused on dopamine levels, the NLX-P101 therapy focused on an alternative neurotransmitter involving the GABA chemical.

Lead author Peter LeWitt said: "Subjects in our study who received the NLX-P101 treatment displayed better motor performance and control of Parkinsonism than subjects who received sham surgery.

"This benefit occurred early and was long-lasting."

Meanwhile, a drug known as phenylbutyrate has been found to halt the progression of Parkinson's disease in mice and is now being tested on humans.

A study published online in the Journal of Biological Chemistry found that the drug switches on a gene able to protect the dopamine neurons in those with the condition.

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