AANS Neurosurgeon | Volume 26, Number 1, 2017

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UAB Researchers Discover why Brain Neurons in Parkinson's Disease Stop Benefiting from Levodopa

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The mechanism may be therapeutic target to prevent or reverse dyskinesia

Though the drug levodopa (L-DOPA) can dramatically improve Parkinson’s disease symptoms, within five years one-half of the patients using L-DOPA develop an irreversible condition – involuntary repetitive, rapid and jerky movements. This abnormal motor behavior appears only while taking L-DOPA, a it stops if the drug is stopped. However, if L-DOPA is taken again, even many months later, it quickly re-emerges. In research to prevent this side effect and extend the usefulness of L-DOPA – which is the most effective drug treatment for Parkinson’s disease – University of Alabama at Birmingham researchers have uncovered an essential mechanism of this long-term memory for L-DOPA-induced-dyskinesia, or LID. To read more, click here.

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