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Cancer drug shows promise for Parkinson’s patients

Researchers have found out that a drug that has been used to fight chronic myeloid leukaemia can also help to fight against Parkinson’s disease.

The research was in its phase two trial when the discovery was made by scientists. The drug named Nilotinib is the generic version while its brand name is Tasigna. According to scientists, it increased the production of the dopamine hormone and also checked the degradation of the motor nerves in the body. The test was well tolerated by most of the participants.

According to Charbel Moussa who is the associate professor of neurology at Georgetown University Nilotinib is reasonably safe because it uses 25% to 50% lower than the normal cancer dose. Nilotinib also prevents the slow death of the neurons that release the dopamine hormone in the brain. It protects the neurons by lowering the levels of the toxic chemicals that kill the neurons that release the hormone which makes us feel happy and jovial.

Patients who were a part of the research had been taking their regular medication which might have affected the way Nilotinib worked. Scientists are now focused on studying how well the medicine works when it is taken solely without other medicines. The study needs to continue for at least a year before any conclusions are drawn.

For conducting the research the scientists chose 75 persons who were previously suffering from Parkinson’s disease. They were asked to either take a placebo, 150 milligrams of Nilotinib or 300 milligrams of Nilotinib. The study was conducted in such a way that neither the doctors nor the patients knew which medicine they had chosen.

The study was conducted over more than a year. In all 88% of the people finished the trial. Out of 75, only 2 persons quit sue to side effects.

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