BrightFocus-Funded Research Shows Parkinson’s Drug Could be Repurposed to Save Sight of Millions
In a major scientific breakthrough, a drug used to treat Parkinson’s and related diseases may be able to delay or prevent macular degeneration, the most common form of blindness among older Americans.
The findings, published in the American Journal of Medicine, are a groundbreaking effort in the fight against age-related macular degeneration (AMD), which affects as many as 11 million Americans. AMD hinders central vision, and even when it does not lead to blindness it can severely reduce the ability to read, drive, and recognize faces.
In the study, supported in part by BrightFocus Foundation, researchers discovered a biological connection between darker pigmented eyes, that are known to be resistant to AMD, and increased levels of a chemical called L-DOPA in those eyes. Since L-DOPA is frequently prescribed for Parkinson’s patients, the researchers wanted to know whether patients who received the drug L-DOPA as treatment for Parkinson’s or other diseases were protected from AMD. By combing through massive databases of medical chart data, they reported that patients receiving L-DOPA were significantly less likely to get AMD, and when they did, its onset was significantly delayed.
“Rather than looking at what might cause AMD, we instead wondered why certain people are protected from AMD. This approach had never been done before,” says senior author Brian McKay of the University of Arizona.
The research findings are based off an analysis of the medical records of 37,000 patients at the Marshfield Clinic in Wisconsin. Because the average age of those given L-DOPA is 67, while the average age of AMD diagnosis is 71, scientists were able to effectively track patterns. These major findings were then confirmed by reviewing a data set of 87 million patients. In this large scale data set, L-DOPA also delayed or prevented AMD from progressing to its “wet” form, the most devastating form of the disease.
“This exciting breakthrough shows the power of scientific discovery to give hope to millions of people across the nation and the world. Their methodology is a reminder that ‘big data’ is not a buzzword—it is a bold and innovative new approach to science,” said BrightFocus president and CEO Stacy Pagos Haller.
The Latest on: L-DOPA
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The Latest on: L-DOPA
- Neuropathy in Parkinson’s Disease May Be Related to L-Dopa Exposureon February 22, 2020 at 4:00 pm
The odds ratio for exposure to L-dopa in the IPD patients with PN was 12.4 (95% confidence interval, 1.4–109.1). There were no differences between the groups in the use of other PD drugs ...
- Discovery of entirely new class of enzymes could one day lead to bespoke diets, therapeuticson February 18, 2020 at 12:00 am
Microbial chemist Emily Balskus recently discovered that certain bacteria eat the common Parkinson’s drug L-dopa and convert it to dopamine, which can dampen the effects of the treatment and cause ...
- GH Therapy Now Used to Slow Down Agingon February 14, 2020 at 9:57 am
The most commonly used ingredients are Arginine, Glutamine, Ornithine, Glycine, Lysine, L-Dopa, GABA, L-Ornithine and Alpha-GPC to name a few. The most important benefit of Growth Hormone Releaser’s ...
- The Dopamine D5 receptor contributes to activation of cholinergic interneurons during L-DOPA induced dyskinesiaon February 13, 2020 at 2:10 am
Together with the dopamine D2 receptor it is highly expressed in striatal cholinergic interneurons and therefore is poised to be a positive regulator of cholinergic activity in response to L-DOPA in ...
- Therapy for Dyskinesias in Parkinson's Disease Patientson February 11, 2020 at 4:00 pm
However, the severity of L-Dopa-induced dyskinesia (LID) varies between patients, being quite tolerable in late-onset patients. Understanding the pathogenesis of LID has contributed to the ...
- Awakenings: The romantic science of Oliver Sackson February 9, 2020 at 2:04 pm
After one week of treatment (and on a dose of 2 gm. L-DOPA daily), Mrs B. started talking -quite audibly for the first time in many years, although her vocal force would decay after two or three ...
- Every Billy Crystal Oscars Song Parody, Rankedon February 5, 2020 at 1:55 pm
Team owners had locked out players in February 1990, but an agreement was signed a mere seven days after Crystal’s zing. Coincidence? Not just anyone can rhyme coma with L-dopa, but that’s why Billy ...
- USPTO issues patent on Neurolixis Parkinson's disease drug candidateon February 4, 2020 at 9:03 pm
Neurolixis plans to investigate the antidyskinetic activity of NLX-112 in patients with L-DOPA-induced Parkinson's disease and, potentially, with other movement disorders. About Neurolixis, Inc.
- Watch Awakeningson February 18, 2017 at 11:57 pm
The L-Dopa drug was introduced to Dr. Sayer at a medical conference. It had been used for Parkinson’s sufferers but Dr. Sayer saw potential for it with the catatonic. He first put Leonard Lowe on the ...
- L-Dopa Capsuleon November 6, 2013 at 11:28 pm
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 or at www.fda.gov/medwatch. In Canada - Call your doctor ...
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