Rochester, Minn. -- Researchers from Mayo Clinic have discovered that allergic rhinitis is associated with the development of Parkinson's disease later in life. Findings will be published in the Aug. 8 issue of the journal Neurology.
"The association with Parkinson's disease is increased to almost three times that of someone who does not have allergic rhinitis," says James Bower, M.D., Mayo Clinic neurologist and lead study investigator. "That's actually a pretty high elevation."
Previous studies had shown that people who regularly take nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, such as ibuprofen, are less likely to develop Parkinson's disease. These results prompted the Mayo Clinic investigators to look further into the links between diseases characterized by inflammation and Parkinson's. They studied 196 people who developed Parkinson's disease, matched with people of similar age and gender who did not develop Parkinson's. The study was conducted in Olmsted County, Minn., home of Mayo Clinic, over a 20-year period.
The researchers examined these groups to determine if those who developed Parkinson's disease had more inflammatory diseases. They found that those with allergic rhinitis were 2.9 times more likely to develop Parkinson's. They did not find a similar association between inflammatory diseases such as lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, pernicious anemia or vitiligo and Parkinson's disease. The researchers hypothesize that they may not have found significant links between these diseases and Parkinson's disease due to the relatively small number of those in the population who have these diseases, and thus the small number with these diseases in their population sample study. They also did not find the same association with Parkinson's disease in patients with asthma that they discovered in those with allergic rhinitis.
Would fairly regular use of Flonase (nasal anti-allergy spray) reduce the risk of Parkinson's? Or would antihistamines reduce the risk?
Researchers from the Erasmus Medical Center in the Netherlands studied around 5,300 participants over the age of 55, and found that those who had the highest intake of vitamin B6 had up to a 50 percent reduction in Parkinson's disease risk.
The researchers suspect that B6 exerts a protective effect by lowering blood homocysteine. If that is the mechanism then other nutrients that lower homocysteine (most notably folic acid) might also reduce the risk of Parkinson's.
|Share |||Randall Parker, 2006 August 11 12:04 AM Brain Aging|