Parkinson’s is one of the most common neurogenerative diseases in the world. Approximately, 7 to 10 million people are suffering from it. It was predicted by 2020, nearly, 1 million will have this disorder. Nearly, 600,000 people are diagnosed with Parkinson’s in the US every year.

In a study, it was found that alterations in the gene, ATP10B, can increase the risk of developing Parkinson’s disease.

This post talks about ATP10B and Parkinson’s disease.

How Does Parkinson’s Disease Develop?

Since it is a neurogenerative disease, it might occur when certain nerve cells in your brain stop working or die. When these cells die, dopamine, an important messenger chemical, is not released. With low levels of dopamine, your brain activity is negatively affected. This causes symptoms like stiffness, shaking, and problems in walking.

Even after hundreds of studies, the exact cause remains unknown. However, several studies showed that hereditary and mutation of genes might increase risk factors.

Recently, a group researcher from Christine Van Broeckhoven Laboratory, identified a gene, ATP10B that will increase the risk of this disease.

Things You Need to Know About ATP10B

This gene is a transporter for glucosylceramide. It is a lipid, which has a key role to play in developing Parkinson’s. Because of a mutation in this gene, the production of ATP10B protein is reduced. It might lead to loss of neurons and make them sensitive to risk factors.

For a long time, scientists have worked on finding the cause with the hope to find a cure for this neurodegenerative disorder. So far, there is no treatment for this disease. Doctors use therapies to slow down the growth of the disease and reduce symptoms.

According to scientists, they can focus on the mutations of this gene and test new therapies for Parkinson’s disease patients. The experts will have a better understanding of the process and mechanisms.

Findings of the Study

In the study conducted by Stefanie Smolders at UAntwerpen laboratory, children with Parkinson’s disease were studies. These children were the carriers of two mutations in the gene; on one chromosome that they inherited from their parents.

Furthermore, the researcher discovered 6 more carriers of 2 ATP10B mutations; the group contained 617 people, all unrelated. In another study by Shaun Martin from the KU Leuven team, believes this gene removes lipids out of the lysosome. This gene works by protecting the nerve cells against the factors that are related to Parkinson’s.

With the identification of this gene, therapies can be developed for Parkinson’s. This also highlights the pathogenesis of the disease, which makes it easy to understand the changes that occur in the nerve cells.

Parkinson’s causes hindrances in a patient’s life by symptoms like slowed movement, shaking hands, fingers, and limbs, muscle stiffness, writing changes, impaired balance, speech problems, autonomic movement loss, and much more. Since there is no cure for this disease currently, it negatively impacts the life of the patient. The discovery of the gene mutation can lead to developing a cure for this disorder.

Wouldn’t it be great to find a cure for Parkinson’s disease? Let us know in the comments below!