A small study done at the University of Edinburgh that focused on a sticky protein molecule, could help diagnose Parkinson’s Disease at an earlier stage. Sticky clumps of the molecule called alpha-synuclein are found in the brain cells of people with Parkinson’s – and in those of some dementia sufferers
Using samples of spinal fluid, researchers went looking for the protein molecule which is found in healthy brains too. It’s only when the protein sticks together in clumps that it causes problems, making brain cells die or stopping them performing properly.
The study is published in the journal Annals of Clinical and Translational Neurology. The scientists working the tests say the results are hugely promising but larger studies are now needed.