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New articles on Parkinson’s disease from Prof. Weidong Le, our Editor-in-Chief

Published on: 11 Aug 2021 Viewed: 414

Our staff editors continue to share exciting, interesting, and thought-provoking reading material in the recommended articles series.

Parkinson's disease (PD) is the second most common neurodegenerative disorder after Alzheimer's disease and is currently imposing a heavy economic and social burden on society as the population continues to age.

This week, we would like to share three latest articles about Parkinson's disease from Weidong Le, our Editor-in-Chief.

Title: Hot Topics in Recent Parkinson's Disease Research: Where We are and Where We Should Go
Authors: Song Li, Congcong Jia, Tianbai Li, Weidong Le
Type: Review from Neuroscience Bulletin
Parkinson’s disease (PD), the second most common neurodegenerative disease, is clinically characterized by both motor and non-motor symptoms. Although overall great achievements have been made in elucidating the etiology and pathogenesis of PD, the exact mechanisms of this complicated systemic disease are still far from being clearly understood. Consequently, most of the currently-used diagnostic tools and therapeutic options for PD are symptomatic. In this perspective review, we highlight the hot topics in recent PD research for both clinicians and researchers. Some of these hot topics, such as sleep disorders and gut symptoms, have been neglected but are currently emphasized due to their close association with PD. Following these research directions in future PD research may help understand the nature of the disease and facilitate the discovery of new strategies for the diagnosis and therapy of PD.
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Title: Recent Progress in Non-motor Features of Parkinson's Disease with a Focus on Circadian Rhythm Dysregulation
Authors: Yufei Liu, Long Niu, Xinyao Liu, Cheng Cheng, Weidong Le
Type: Review of Neuroscience Bulletin
Parkinson's disease (PD) is the second most common neurodegenerative disease, which manifests with both motor and non-motor symptoms. Circadian rhythm dysregulation, as one of the most challenging non-motor features of PD, usually appears long before obvious motor symptoms. Moreover, the dysregulated circadian rhythm has recently been reported to play pivotal roles in PD pathogenesis, and it has emerged as a hot topic in PD research. In this review, we briefly introduce the circadian rhythm and circadian rhythm-related genes, and then summarize recent research progress on the altered circadian rhythm in PD, ranging from clinical features to the possible causes of PD-related circadian disorders. We believe that future comprehensive studies on the topic may not only help us to explore the mechanisms of PD, but also shed light on the better management of PD.
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Title: Intestinal Inflammation and Parkinson's Disease
Authors: Yu Li, Yuanyuan Chen, Lili Jiang, Jingyu Zhang, Xuhui Tong, Dapeng Chen, Weidong Le
Type: Review of Aging and Disease
Parkinson's disease (PD) is the second most common neurodegenerative disease which significantly influences the life quality of patients. The protein α-synuclein plays an important driving role in PD occurrence and development. Braak’s hypothesis suggests that α-synuclein is produced in intestine, and then spreads into the central nervous system through the vagus nerve. The abnormal expression of α-synuclein has been found in inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). Intestinal inflammation and intestinal dysbiosis have been involved in the occurrence and development of PD. The present review aimed to summarize recent advancements in studies focusing on intestinal inflammation and PD, especially the mechanisms through which link intestinal inflammation and PD. The intestinal dysfunctions such as constipation have been introduced as non-motor manifestations of PD. The possible linkages between IBD and PD, including genetic overlaps, inflammatory responses, intestinal permeability, and intestinal dysbiosis, are mainly discussed. Although it is not confirmed whether PD starts from intestine, intestinal dysfunction may affect intestinal microenvironment to influence central nervous system, including the α-synuclein pathologies and systematic inflammation. It is expected to develop some new strategies in the diagnosis and treatment of PD from the aspect of intestine. It may also become an exciting direction to find better ways to regulate the composition of gut microorganism to treat PD.
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