Vitamin K, a cure for Parkinson's disease?
There has been a continuous search for treatment of Parkinson’s disease. Recently, neuroscientist Patrik Verstreken discovered the use of vitamin K2 affects the genetic defects that leads to Parkinson’s. The mitochondria in the cell supply energy needed for their operation by transporting electrons. This activity is disrupted in Parkinsons’ patients resulting in no energy production, causing brain cells to die and loose neural communication, which leads to lack of movement (akinesia), tremors and muscle stiffness. Parkinson’s patients have several genetic defects, including PINK 1 and Parkin mutations, that lead to reduced mitochondrial activity. In this study, researchers gave vitamin K2 to fruit flies (Drosophila) with a genetic defect in PINK1 or Parkin. As a result, mitochondrial energy production and electron transport was restored. Results of the study could lead to the development of new treatments for Parkinson's.