A PINK shade of inflammation

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Inflammation is the means by which tissue in our bodies communicate with the immune system to indicate when something is wrong. Tiny messenger proteins are released from stressed or damaged cells to alert neighbouring cells of their situation.

Ailing cells can also release additional components – such as DNA – that can activate immune cells and cause inflamation.

Recently, researchers have identified both messenger proteins and specific types of DNA that are present in the blood of individuals with a genetically-associated sub-type of Parkinson’s. The discovery could provide both novel biomarkers, but also point towards specific biological pathways that could be therapeutically targetted.

In today’s post, we will review this new research.

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Ouch! Source: MedicalExpress

When cells in your body are stressed, damaged, or sick, they begin to release large amounts of tiny messenger proteins which inform the rest of your body that something is wrong.

When enough of these messenger proteins are released, cells of the immune system will become activated, and come looking for the source of the trouble.

This is inflammation.

Source: Youtube

Inflammation is a critical part of the immune system’s response to problems. It is the body’s way of communicating with the immune system and explaining that something is wrong. This also aid in activating the immune system so that it can help deal with the situation.

By releasing the messenger proteins (called cytokines), injured/sick cells kick off a process that results in multiple types of immune cells entering the troubled area of the body and undertaking very specific tasks.

The inflammatory process. Source: Trainingcor

The strength of the immune response depends on the volume of the signal arising from those released messenger proteins.

For a long time, it has been hoped that some of these messenger proteins might be useful as biomarkers for conditions like Parkinson’s. And recently, researchers have published data suggesting that they might have found one cytokine that could be very useful for a specific sub-set of people with Parkinson’s.

What did they find?

Continue reading “A PINK shade of inflammation”

The Wim Hof method

 

A regular theme of the SoPD website is the reviewing of novel phamarcological treatments that are being tested on models of Parkinson’s. And while the breadth of the research is exciting and encouraging, the average reader may feel distant to the results of those studies as the experimental drug being tested is still a long way from possible regulatory approval.

There have been numerous requests to explore more readily applicable research, which could be useful for the Parkinson’s community to explore (for example, diet and exercise). This is dangerous ground for a blogger to tread on, but in the interest of stimulating discussion (and possibly research), we shall do our best.

In today’s post, we will discuss what the Wim Hof method is, what research supports it, and potential issues with applying it to conditions like Parkinson’s.

Before we start: This post is not an endorsement of the Wim Hof method, but rather an exploration of the research that has been conducted on it. The author has had no contact with Mr Hof or any associated parties, nor is he aware of any clinical research investigating the Wim Hof method in the context of Parkinson’s. The author is simply fulfilling a request to discuss the topic.

 


Source: PDUK

I am regularly asked to give an opinion (or write a blog post) about a method or technique that is being advertised online as a remedy for all aliments (including Parkinson’s).

What do you think of the ________ method?” folks will ask.

Many of these techniques I am unaware of and I can simply give a polite “I honestly don’t know” kind-of response. But for others, where I do have a little information I find myself rather conflicted.

Why conflicted?

A lot of these online methods/techniques involve commercially-focused entities hidden behind a veneer of testimonials, and very few of them have any actual real science backing them. It is difficult for anyone to give an opinion, let alone write a post about it.

But if people in the Parkinson’s community are experiencing some kind of benefits from a particular method, who am I to say otherwise or pour doubt on their experience given the lack of alternatives (I do draw a line, however, at dodgy stem cell clinics – they are all charlatans).

Source: The conversation

But recently a friend within the PD community asked me to look into the “Wim Hof method”. And while I reluctantly agreed to, I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised

Why surprised?

Because there was actual real research backing up some of the claims! The method has never been clinically tested on Parkinson’s (as far as I’m aware), but researchers have had a look at the method and the results are worth discussing.

What is the Wim Hof method?

Continue reading “The Wim Hof method”