Inflammatory mechanisms in Parkinson's disease

Math Cuajungco m.cuajungco at
Wed Jan 15 11:40:35 EST 1997

Serge Helfrich wrote:
> Hi!
> I'm working on some preparations for a research on the pathogenesis of
> (idiopathic) Parkinson's disease in relation to the increment of
> inflammatory proteins in certain brain regions. I'm wondering if the
> involvement of interleukins merely concerns the process of
> neurodegeneration or that it in fact reflects a mechanism of
> compensation, i.e. that those proteins act as neurotrofic factors.
> A possible mechanism of interleukin induction involves the activation of
> transcription factor NF-kappa B by reactive oxygen intermediates
> (Kaltschmidt et. al. 1993, Mol. Asp. Med. 14:171-190). So there seems to
> be a link with the oxidative stress hypothesis.
> Any useful ideas on this?
> Greetz,
> Serge Helfrich
> s.helfrich at
> helfrich at

  Your quite right. The oxidative stress hypothesis is also supported by 
the observations that iron is significantly elevated in the substantia 
nigra of PD brains (Dexter et al. 1989a,b,1991; Jenner et al. 1992). 
Although, I'm not too familiar about ILs role, in my opinion cytokine 
induction is a secondary phenomenon following the initial neuronal death. 
I do believe that they (cytokines) contribute to (as much as they help 
against) degenerative processes (which remains to be proven).


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