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High Urate Levels in Blood Linked to Reduced Parkinson's Risk

th Parkinson's disease.

A team of researchers led by Alberto Ascherio, Associate Professor of Nutrition and Epidemiology at HSPH and senior author of the study and Michael Schwarzschild a movement disorder specialist at Massachusetts General Hospital then followed up on this clue and accessed the databases of two large, randomized studies conducted among patients with early Parkinson's disease.

The preliminary results, presented in abstract form at recent meetings, showed a slower progression of the disease among individuals with high blood urate.

"It is still uncertain whether urate exerts a neuroprotective effect, but approaches to elevating urate levels are nonetheless worth considering as a potential neuroprotective strategy," said Ascherio.

"But elevating blood urate increases the risk of kidney stones and may have adverse cardiovascular effects and should only be attempted in the context of a closely monitored randomized trial until beneficial effects are proven," he added.

The study was supported by National Institutes of Health/National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, the Kinetics Foundation and the Intramural Research Program of the National Institutes of Health/National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences.

The findings were published online on June 20, 2007 in The American Journal of Epidemiology and will appear in an upcoming print issue of the journal.


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