Excerpt: “‘No one really knows what causes Parkinson’s disease, other than about 10 to 20 percent is genetic,'” said Ted M. Dawson, a professor of neurology at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Researchers such as Dawson have been searching for clues, and in the last two decades, a growing body of evidence points to an unexpected origin for Parkinson’s disease: the gut. What is known as the ‘gut-first’ — as opposed to ‘brain-first’— hypothesis states that Parkinson’s begins as abnormal proteins in the nerves of the gastrointestinal tract. Misfolded proteins, found excessively in the post-mortem brains of patients with Parkinson’s as well as Alzheimer’s, accumulate into large, toxic clumps that disrupt nerve cell function.”
You are here: / / WaPo: Origins of Parkinson’s may lie in the gut. Researchers hope to prove it.