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Brain and Mental Performance Nutrition Parkinsons Disease

Vitamin D deficiency linked to Parkinson's disease

9 years, 10 months ago

746  0
Posted on Oct 14, 2008, 7 a.m. By Rich Hurd

Researchers from Emory University have found that vitamin D deficiency is far more common in people with Parkinson's disease than it is in healthy people.

Researchers from Emory University have found that vitamin D deficiency is far more common in people with Parkinson's disease than it is in healthy people.

Study results revealed that 55% of participants with Parkinson's disease had insufficient levels of vitamin D, compared to 36% of healthy age-matched controls. Whilst 23% of Parkinson's sufferers had vitamin D levels low enough to be classed as deficient, compared to just 10% of controls.

The researchers are uncertain as to whether the vitamin deficiency is a cause or a result of Parkinson's disease, however they note that previous research has suggested that an inadequate amount of vitamin D may have a detrimental effect upon areas of the brain that are affected by the disease. Indeed, neurons in the substantia nigra, the part of the brain mainly affected by Parkinson's, have a large number of vitamin D receptors, thus suggesting that the vitamin is somehow important for the normal functioning of the cells.

The researchers are currently conducting a pilot study where Parkinson's disease patients are being treated with vitamin D to determine whether it is able to reduce the symptoms of the disease.

Evatt ML, DeLong MR, Khazai N, Rosen A, Triche S, Tangpricha V. Prevalence of Vitamin D Insufficiency in Patients With Parkinson Disease and Alzheimer Disease. Arch Neurol. 2008;65:1348-1352.

 

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