A study by the University of Pennsylvania has discovered an enzyme that inhibits the production of dopamine
For about 30 years scientists have been pursuing different orientations in order to trace not so much the causes, but at least some substance inhibiting the adverse effects of the disease in the brain. Scientists of the time noticed that a chemical in a synthetic opioid MPTP grafts a new form of Parkinson’s disease. From that study, scientists at the School of Veterinary Medicine found that an enzyme present in the human body has the effect of inhibiting the effects of an alkaloid similar to the MTP.
This compound has been used to form a toxic metabolite (MPP+) which in turn has been transferred to brain dopamine producing neurons, by virtue of the fact that the brain of a person suffering from the disease is characterized by unusually low levels.
Experiments on murine models (laboratory mice) followed, thanks to which a neurodegenerative condition was observed, confirming the positive initial finding.
A subsequent study, published in the Journal of Biological Chemistry, established instead that the enzyme CYP2D6 was the most suitable pharmacological target in the treatment of the disease. So that, through further laboratory experiments, researchers have shown that mice without CYP2D6 do not show the typical symptoms of protein models.
According to Prof. Avadhani, the use of CYP2D6 inhibitor, used to safeguard the immunity of good mice, is the way forward in the treatment of individuals with the disease.