28 Jul Parkinson’s Disease: Sudden Drop in Testosterone may Trigger Symptoms
The Floyd A. Davis, M.D., Endowed Chair of Neurology
Departments of Neurological Sciences, Biochemistry and Pharmacology
Rush University Medical Center
1735 West Harrison St, Suite 320 Chicago, IL 60612
MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings of the study?
Dr. Pahan: While different toxins and a number of complex genetic approaches are used to model Parkinson’s disease in mice, this study delineates that simple castration is sufficient to cause persistent Parkinson’s like pathology and symptoms in male mice. This simple, but persistent, model may be helpful in discovering drugs against Parkinson’s disease. Furthermore, these results suggest that sudden drop of testosterone level could trigger Parkinson’s disease.
MedicalResearch.com: Were any of the findings unexpected?
Dr. Pahan: Different toxins failed to induce a persistent and stable model for Parkinson’s disease. Therefore, in the first place, it was little bit surprising for us that it could be possible by simple castration. However, the discovery of underlying mechanisms has helped us to understand the phenomenon and made this study very exciting. Interestingly, castration does not cause Parkinson’s like symptoms in male mice deficient in inducible nitric oxide gene, indicating that loss of testosterone causes symptoms via increased nitric oxide production.
MedicalResearch.com: What should clinicians and patients take away from your report?
Dr. Pahan: Preservation of testosterone in males may be an important step to become resistant to Parkinson’s disease.
MedicalResearch.com: What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?
Dr. Pahan: Future research must be conducted to see how we could potentially target testosterone levels in human males in order to find a viable treatment for Parkinson’s disease.
Castration Induces Parkinson Disease Pathologies in Young Male Mice via Inducible Nitric-oxide Synthase
Khasnavis S, Ghosh A, Roy A, Pahan K.
J Biol Chem. 2013 Jul 19;288(29):20843-55. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M112.443556.
Epub 2013 Jun 6.