The precise cause of Parkinson’s disease is not yet known. Although it is not fatal by itself, the symptoms can seriously impact quality of life. Likewise, some complications leave a patient at greater risk of injury or other health issues.
In addition to dopamine-producing nerve cells, people with Parkinson’s lose nerve endings responsible for producing norepinephrine, which regulates the autonomic nervous system. This leads to disruption in automatic functions like heart rate and blood pressure.
Current Parkinson’s research focuses on the presence of Lewy bodies in patients’ brain cells. These unusual clumps of protein may be related to certain genetic mutations.
Parkinson’s clinical trials attract more participants than many other chronic diseases. Millions of dollars have been donated to study it. A variety of new clinical resources for Parkinson’s are in advanced stages of development.