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News Update for the Week of 2.24.20

Monday February 24, 2020
New Insights into the Processes that Cause Parkinson's
Medical Xpress
"In a breakthrough for Parkinson's, scientists at Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne have reconstructed the process by which Lewy bodies form in the brain of patients. The study offers new insights into how Parkinson's begins and evolves, and opens up a set of potential new treatment targets."
Survival Of The Friendliest:
How Our Close Friendships Help Us Thrive
Researcher Lydia Denworth finds that, on average, people have only four very close relationships, and very few people can sustain more than six.
"But the effect of these few core relationships extends beyond our social lives, influencing our health on the cellular level — from our immune system to our cardiovascular system."
New Evidence of Gut-Brain Connection in Parkinson's
New Atlas
"In the early 2000s German scientist Heiko Braak published a series of studies with a controversial hypothesis suggesting the damaging Lewy bodies first form in the gut, before moving up into the brain via the vagus nerve. The Braak hypothesis is still relatively divisive to this day, however, a number of recent studies are beginning to build a body of evidence backing it up."
In this new research from Caltech, scientists set out to better investigate the mechanisms by which toxic proteins move from the gut to the brain.
Study: People Skip Parkinson's, Alzheimer's Meds as Prices rise
Senior researcher Dr. Brian Callaghan, a neurologist with the University of Michigan, in Ann ArborPeople, concludes that people with Parkinson's and Alzheimer's are less likely to fill necessary prescriptions as out-of-pocket costs increase. "It's a pretty predictable 5 percent to 10 percent drop for every $50 increase in cost," Callaghan said.
Iron in Brain Shows Cognitive Decline in People with Parkinson's
Medical Xpress
This study's findings suggest that iron deposition could be valuable to track if a treatment is working in a clinical trial, and might eventually be helpful for early diagnosis of Parkinson's or other neurodegenerative conditions.