October 22, 2016
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I copy news articles pertaining to research, news and information for Parkinson's disease, Dementia, the Brain, Depression and Parkinson's with Dystonia. I also post about Fundraising for Parkinson's disease and events. I try to be up-to-date as possible. I have Parkinson's diseases as well and thought it would be nice to have a place where updated news is in one place. That is why I began this blog.
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Saturday, October 22, 2016
22nd October 2016
CVT-301 is the name of an inhaled version of L-dopa presently being developed for the treatment of Parkinson's Disease. CVT-301 uses the ARCUS inhalation technology, which delivers a reliable and consistent drug dose with a compact, breath actuated inhaler. It uses a dry powder and inhaler combination that is unique in its ability to deliver a large, precise dose independent of inspiratory flow rate from a simple, easy-to-use device suitable for convenient self-administration.
Among people with Parkinson's Disease inhaling CVT-301 as a single 50mg dose during an "off" period, 77% of them showed an increase in plasma L-dopa within 10 minutes. Only 27% of those people with Parkinson's Disease taking oral carbidopa/levodopa reached the same levels. The improvements in motor function were seen as quickly as 5 and 15 minutes after administration, which were the earliest assessment times. So the effect may have been even quicker.
The most common adverse event was a cough. However, all cough events were mild to moderate, occurred at the time of inhalation, resolved rapidly, and became less frequent after initial dosing. Less common adverse effects were dizziness and headache. There were no adverse effects on cardiovascular or lung function.
The speed of effect of the L-dopa inhaler and its limited adverse effects could enable it to be widely used when a rapid effect on Parkinson's Disease is required.
Reference : Science Translational Medicine  8 (360) : 360ra136 (M.M.Lipp, R. Batycky, J.Moore, M.Leinonen, M.I.Freed)
Complete abstract : http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27733560
Oct 22, 2016
: A new study has found out that consuming pills that prevents the accumulation of toxic molecules in the brain might someday help prevent or delay Alzheimer's disease.
Common diseases like Parkinson's, Alzheimer's and dementia are caused in part by abnormal accumulation of certain proteins in the brain.
The study took a three-pronged approach to help subdue early events that occur in the brain long before symptoms of Alzheimer's disease are evident. (Photo: Pixabay)
According to scientists at Baylor College of Medicine, Texas Children's Hospital and Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, the study took a three-pronged approach to help subdue early events that occur in the brain long before symptoms of Alzheimer's disease are evident.
The scientists were able to prevent those early events and the subsequent development of brain pathology in experimental animal models in the lab.
"Common diseases like Parkinson's, Alzheimer's and dementia are caused in part by abnormal accumulation of certain proteins in the brain," said senior author Huda Zoghbi. "Some proteins become toxic when they accumulate; they make the brain vulnerable to degeneration. Tau is one of those proteins involved in Alzheimer's disease and dementia."
"Scientists in the field have been focusing mostly on the final stages of Alzheimer's disease," said first author Cristian Lasagna-Reeves. "Here we tried to find clues about what is happening at the very early stages of the illness, before clinical irreversible symptoms appear, with the intention of preventing or reducing those early events that lead to devastating changes in the brain decades later," Lasagna-Reeves added.
The scientists reasoned that if they could find ways to prevent or reduce tau accumulation in the brain, they would uncover new possibilities for developing drug treatments for these diseases.
Cells control the amount of their proteins with other proteins called enzymes. To find which enzymes affect tau accumulation, the scientists systematically inhibited enzymes called kinases.
"We inhibited about 600 kinases one by one and found one, called Nuak1, whose inhibition resulted in reduced levels of tau," said Zoghbi, who is also an investigator at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute.
The scientists screened the enzymes in two different systems, cultured human cells and the laboratory fruit fly. Screening in the fruit fly allowed the scientists to assess the effects of inhibiting the enzymes in a functional nervous system in a living organism.
"Screening hundreds of kinases in the fruit fly animal model was critical because we could assess degeneration caused by tau in the fly's nervous system and measure neuronal dysfunction. Screening such a large number cannot be done with other animal models like the mouse, and cultured cells cannot model complex nervous system functions," said co-senior author Juan Botas.
Brain section from mouse carrying the dementia-causing P301S mutation in human tau shows accumulation of tau neurofibrillary tangles (in dark brown, left). When Nuak1 levels are decreased by 50 percent (P301S/Nuak1+/-; right), fewer tau tangles accumulate.
"We found one enzyme, Nuak1, whose inhibition consistently resulted in lower levels of tau in both human cells and fruit flies," said Zoghbi. "Then we took this result to a mouse model of Alzheimer's disease and hoped that the results would hold, and they did. Inhibiting Nuak1 improved the behavior of the mice and prevented brain degeneration."
"Confirming in three independent systems - human cells, the fruit fly and the mouse - that Nuak1 inhibition results in reduced levels of tau and prevents brain abnormalities induced by tau accumulation, has convinced us that Nuak1 is a reliable potential target for drugs to prevent diseases such as Alzheimer's," said Zoghbi. "The next step is to develop drugs that will inhibit Nuak1 in hope that one day would be able to lower tau levels with low toxicity in individuals at risk for dementia due to tau accumulation."
Scientific studies like this one that uncover basic biological mechanisms of disease make it possible to develop new strategies to prevent or treat diseases such as Alzheimer's, Parkinson's or dementia.
In the future it might be possible to treat people at risk for Alzheimer's disease by keeping tau low. Think of how taking drugs that lower cholesterol has helped control the accumulation of cholesterol in blood vessels that leads to atherosclerosis and heart disease.
"When people started taking drugs that lower cholesterol, they lived longer and healthier lives rather than dying earlier of heart disease," said Zoghbi.
"Nobody has thought about Alzheimer's disease in that light. Tau in Alzheimer's can be compared to cholesterol in heart disease. Tau is a protein that when it accumulates as the person ages, increases the vulnerability of the brain to developing Alzheimer's. So maybe if we can find drugs that can keep tau at levels that are not toxic for the brain, then we would be able to prevent or delay the development of Alzheimer's and other diseases caused in part by toxic tau accumulation," added Zoghbi.
The study has been published in Neuron.
Brain section from mouse carrying the dementia-causing P301S mutation in human tau shows accumulation of tau neurofibrillary tangles (in dark brown, left). When Nuak1 levels are decreased by 50 percent (P301S/Nuak1+/-; right), fewer tau tangles accumulate. NeuroscienceNews.com image is credited to The Zoghbi lab/Baylor College of Medicine.
Sleeping in the side position may help reduce the chances of developing Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s disease
October 22, 2016 By: Bel Marra Health
Oct 22, 2016 By Cory Correia, CBC News
Smartphones tested as tools for medical research
App gives voice to people with disabilities
Mini-games test reaction time and working memory to help people manage their Parkinson's disease
The Gift Shop game tests working memory by asking players to recall items from the store. (Helen Goddard/Conquer Mobile)
A new app called Cognitia PD is connecting gamer skills and health care to improve disease management for people with Parkinson's disease.
The app is made up of several mutli-level mini-games and will be distributed to Parkinson's support groups throughout North America.
Researchers from UBC's Pacific Parkinson's Research Centre are gathering information on players' working memories and reaction times.New Apple CareKit health apps help users manage medical conditions
Smartphones tested as tools for medical research
App gives voice to people with disabilities
Kathy O’Donoghue (right) of Surrey-based Conquer Mobile is developing a new app to help patients manage Parkinson's disease. Her sister Nancy (left) was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease 10 years ago. (Kathy O’Donoghue/Conquer Mobile)
The project began in August following a chance encounter at a Parkinson's fundraiser a few months earlier, where the managing director of Surrey based Conquer Mobile, Kathy O'Donoghue, met the director of UBC's Pacific Parkinson's Research Centre, Dr. Martin McKeown.
O'Donoghue, whose sister Nancy has had Parkinson's for 10 years, was interested in connecting her game development skills with Parkinson's research.
"It feels good to build technology for family. And ... beyond my passion for helping people with Parkinson's, it's really great to see gaming, technology and mobile apps help us solving problems that we face in our everyday lives," said O'Donoghue.
Improvements to patient care
According to Dr. McKeown, one of the key concerns with Parkinson's patients is the monitoring of their symptoms and medication.
He says patients normally meet with a specialist just once a year and the scarcity of professionals in remote areas can amplify that problem.
The Cognitia PD app aims to reduce this issue by providing physicians with daily or weekly records of a patient's disease progression based on their game play, instead of a once-a-year snapshot.
"In between visits, if you're playing this game and your health changes, you're not just on your own. You know there's some comfort in the fact that your doctor is monitoring the data once a week or how ever often you play," said O'Donoghue.
The app developers and researchers are currently sifting through data from their first test of the games at the World Parkinson's Congress in Portland last month, but McKeown says they are also looking for participants with and without Parkinson's to sign up to use the app.
"This is becoming an increasingly important area in Parkinson's. I think we've always known that we needed to be able to monitor people over time. I think the problem is that the technology just wasn't there to enable us to do this," said McKeown.
O'Donoghue and McKeown say they are working on a few more games to test other functions and plan to have the app available across all platforms soon.