Tag Archives: oxidative stress


Low level of an antioxidant in the blood is a cause of Parkinson’s disease

Evidence that low levels of blood urate (an antioxidant) are a cause of Parkinson’s disease.

  • Description: “Higher serum urate concentrations predict more favorable prognosis in individuals with Parkinson disease (PD). The purpose of this study was to test the causality of this association using a Mendelian randomization approach.
  • Source Link: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/?term=25257975

posted on my Facebook page: Parkinson’s News

Will Pomegranate help my Parkinson's?

Will Pomegranate help my Parkinson’s?

This is my first post for this project. Normally I let Dr. Steve do the writing, but this is a topic I really want people to understand. I’ve been talking as much as I can with folks on Facebook who are members of various Parkinson’s groups. Some groups provide more emotional support, some focus on practical tips, and some are interested in research. I see what concerns people, what people are confused about, and what gets them excited. BTW, feel free to friend me.
Recently there’s been a buzz about a chemical found in pomegranates that might help people with Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. Previously there was a buzz about cinnamon, and before that I think it was the spice turmeric. So what’s the story? If I have Parkinson’s should I eat more pomegranates? Or maybe I should take pomegranate extracts in capsule form?

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CoQ10 Powder

Should I take CoQ10 for my Parkinson’s?

Since I’ve started working on this project to slow Parkinson’s, quite a number of people have asked me about a dietary supplement called Coenzyme Q10, commonly abbreviated CoQ10. It is a natural substance in your body that is critical to mitochondria, the power generators in your cells.

CoQ10 has gained interest from the alternative health community because it also functions as a potent antioxidant for both lipids and proteins, and can also regenerate other antioxidants. Also, oral supplementation of CoQ10 is effective at replenishing the body’s concentrations of CoQ10. And since many disease conditions deplete CoQ10, an obvious way to help fight those diseases is to supplement with CoQ10.

Indeed, many studies have generated evidence suggesting that CoQ10 is beneficial for a number of conditions. It also may correct a potentially dangerous side effect of statin use, which reduces serum levels of CoQ10 dramatically. The desire for supplementation has increased steadily over the past 10 years, and prices have dropped.

Regarding Parkinson’s disease, there was the feeling that CoQ10 could be helpful because oxidative stress is involved in Parkinson’s disease, either as a cause or an effect, depending on the Parkinson’s subtype. Parkinson’s also involves the inability to properly dispose of old or damaged mitochondria (mitophagy), so the desire to keep mitochondria healthy was reasonable.

Like other diseases, patients with Parkinson’s disease are also deficient in CoQ10. Additionally, CoQ10 appears to be effective at protecting dopaminergic neurons and other brain tissue from certain toxins and other insults (neuroprotection). I suspect that CoQ10 supplementation may be useful as part of a prevention strategy for those who are at greater risk of developing Parkinson’s. Supplementation also appears to be useful for certain patients that experience headaches and migraines.

However, increasing mitochondrial longevity through CoQ10 supplementation might have value for only certain subtypes of Parkinson’s patients . For those patients, one would at least want to pair CoQ10 with a mitophagy inducer. Our algorithms are busy examining the data, looking for existing supplements and compounds that should be effective as mitophagy inducers.

Indeed, a large clinical trial of CoQ10 in Parkinson’s patients was stopped in 2011 because it failed to show any particular benefit. This was disappointing because a number of animal models showed significant benefit of CoQ10. It is important to note that these were general Parkinson’s patients, not segmented based on subtype. I would be curious if certain subtypes would see more benefit, but I’m skeptical that CoQ10 supplementation alone would slow Parkinson’s neurodegeneration significantly.

The experiment on humans was certainly worth doing, however Parkinson’s is not a single issue that can be slowed with a single supplement. By the time somebody is diagnosed, there is an avalanche of multiple issues, caused by problems in multiple pathways, requiring multiple directions of attack. Multiple supplements are required to attack Parkinson’s from these directions. Adding to this complexity is that Parkinson’s is made up of multiple subtypes, each with a different origin. The mission of this project is to determine exactly what combination of supplements, and in what quantities, would benefit the most patients.

Future Brain

Is Parkinson’s an autoimmune disease?

Inflammatory processes can initiate a “complement cascade” leading to “waves of synaptic destruction that characterize neurodegenerative disease”. It can be inferred from the Stanford study that Parkinson’s disease can indeed be described as an autoimmune disease, as accumulation of the C1q protein, in combination with an inflammatory trigger, creates an immune response that destroys synapses.

posted on my Facebook page: Parkinson’s News


Will preventing oxidative stress cure Parkinson’s disease?

Researchers hope to uncover methods of preventing the oxidative stress from occurring, which will lead to minimizing of the deterioration seen in the brains of Parkinson’s sufferers, and prevent the manifestation of symptoms.

posted on my Facebook page: Parkinson’s News