Washington: Scientists have tapped into the restrictive action potential of a leukemia drug to hinder accumulation of deadly proteins linked to Parkinson's, a new study says.

Researchers at Georgetown University Medical Centre made known results of their study, after using tiny doses of a leukemia drug to halt accumulation of toxic proteins linked to Parkinson's disease in the brains of mice.

This finding provides the basis to plan a clinical trial in humans to study the effects, reports a daily.

The scientists say their study, published online in Human Molecular Genetics, offers a unique and exciting strategy to treat neurodegenerative diseases that feature abnormal buildup of proteins in Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), frontotemporal dementia, Huntington disease and Lewy body dementia, among others.

"This drug, in very low doses, turns on the garbage disposal machinery inside neurons to clear toxic proteins from the cell. By clearing intracellular proteins, the drug prevents their accumulation in pathological inclusions called Lewy bodies and/or tangles, and also prevents amyloid secretion into the extracellular space between neurons, so proteins do not form toxic clumps or plaques in the brain," says the study's senior investigator, neuroscientist Charbel E-H Moussa, who heads the laboratory of dementia and Parkinsonism at Georgetown.


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