Parkinson's Disease and the Gut: Models of an Emerging Relationship

Adam J Bindas, Subhash Kulkarni, Ryan A Koppes, Abigail N Koppes
Acta Biomaterialia 2021 April 12
Parkinson's disease (PD) is a common neurodegenerative disease characterized by a progressive loss of fine motor function that impacts 1-2 out of 1,000 people. PD occurs predominately late in life and lacks a definitive biomarker for early detection. Recent cross-disciplinary progress has implicated the gut as a potential origin of PD pathogenesis. The gut-origin hypothesis has motivated research on gut PD pathology and transmission to the brain, especially during the prodromal stage (10-20 years before motor symptom onset). Early findings have revealed several possible triggers for Lewy pathology - the pathological hallmark of PD - in the gut, suggesting that microbiome and epithelial interactions may play a greater than appreciated role. But the mechanisms driving Lewy pathology and gut-brain transmission in PD remain unknown. Development of artificial α-Synuclein aggregates (α-Syn preformed fibrils) and animal disease models have recapitulated features of PD progression, enabling for the first time, controlled investigation of the gut-origin hypothesis. However, the role of specific cells in PD transmission, such as neurons, remains limited and requires in vitro models for controlled evaluation and perturbation. Human cell populations, three-dimensional organoids, and microfluidics as discovery platforms inch us closer to improving existing treatment for patients by providing platforms for discovery and screening. This review includes a discussion of PD pathology, conventional treatments, in vivo and in vitro models, and future directions.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article


You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Related Papers

Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read

Save your favorite articles in one place with a free QxMD account.


Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"