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Parkinson's symptoms 'reversed'

23rd June 2006

A new study has claimed to be able to reverse the symptoms of Parkinson's Disease in animals.

Researchers from the Whitehead Institute in Cambridge, Massachusetts, have stated that they can reverse the impact of Parkinson's in a variety of animals, including fruit flies, worms and rats.

The scientists focused on reducing the clumps of a protein which mysteriously form in the brain of Parkinson's sufferers.

They discovered that the impact of reducing the prevalence of these clumps was to lower the rate of the death of neurons, whose deterioration causes Parkinson's symptoms.

It is hoped that the breakthrough could help to develop a potential solution to the disease, offering patients ways to slow down and even reverse their symptoms.

"There are obvious implications for drug targets and the basic mechanism of how the disease occurs," commented Aaron Gitler, a postdoctoral researcher who was involved in the study.