Treating Parkinson's disease

Treating Parkinson's disease

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Credit: DR P. MARAZZI/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: MODEL RELEASED. Treating Parkinson's disease. 71-year-old man being administered apomorphine. Parkinson's disease is a progressive degenerative disorder of the central nervous system, where the muscles become rigid and difficult to control. Parkinson's is thought to occur because dopamine, a neurotransmitter (signalling chemical), is unable to act on the brain cells controlling muscle movement. Apomorphine is a dopaminergic agonist, meaning that it enhances the action of dopamine in the brain and allows muscle movement to be regained. However, apomorphine is only a temporary alleviator, as the effect is short-lived and only lasts about an hour. There is no cure for Parkinson's disease.

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