Is Gut Microbiome The Biomarker Of Parkinson’s Disease?

Parkinson’s is a psychological disorder of the brain due to which individuals face difficulty in walking, balancing, and coordinating. A recent study suggests that Parkinson’s disease relates to an imbalanced gut microbe. Moreover, individuals’ situations can get worse, and they may suffer difficulty in talking. 

Many research projects regarding Parkinson’s disease are already published. Yet Parkinson’s disease is a topic of scientific research, as scientists aim to find new, more effective methods for its treatment. 

Multiple disorders occur when the gut microbiome production rate alters. The secretion of the gastrointestinal tract is vital for the digestion of food. Alterations in the digestion of food cause abnormalities in human physiology. 

Dr. Peipei Li is a former postdoc fellow at the Van Andel Institute. According to a study by Dr. Peipei Li, gut health has links with brain health. The authors of the study suggest that their findings open new opportunities for understanding the possible new treatment and diagnosis techniques that can help in curing patients of Parkinson’s disease. Dr. Peipei Li’s research is available in the Journal Metabolites. 

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Gut Microbiome Impacts Appendix

For research, Dr. Peipei Li and the team gathered tissue samples of the appendix, ileum, and liver. The sample collection belongs to two categories of people: 12 individuals with Parkinson’s disease and 16 individuals with healthy bodily functions.

The gut microbiome of both groups’ analysis leads to the findings that individuals with Parkinson’s disease have higher levels of Peptostreptococcaceae, Lachnospiraceae, and Burkholderiales.

The microbe species Burkholderiales is capable of altering brain function and causing infection in it. Moreover, Burkholderiales inhibits the synthesis of secondary bile acids altering the digestion of fats. Bile acids and bile pigments emulsify fat molecules and aid in digesting nutrients. Digestion of fats becomes slow in the absence of bile ( containing bile acid, bile-salts, and bile-pigments).

Another alteration seen in the composition of the gut microbiome is the decrease in levels of Methanobacteriales, Odoribacter, Clostridium, unclassified Sutterellaceae, and Escherichia. 

Study Findings And Possible Treatment Strategy For Parkinson Disease

The digestion of lipids, fats and proteins alters as the composition of the gastrointestinal microbiome changes. Individuals with altered compositions have an abnormal composition of gut microbiome due to which paths of cellular activity, protein localization, antigen presentation, glycolysis, and immune activity face hindrance.

According to Dr. Peipei Li, research shows that Parkinson’s disease can disturb bile acid control. Moreover, the disease affects the regulation of cholesterol levels and overall fat metabolism.

Parkinson’s disease cause constipation which can alter the microbiome. However, the research author finds that constipation does not stay for that long that it can cause alterations of the gut microbiome.

According to Dr. Stewart Graham, when individuals with abnormal gut microbiome receive treatment of Parkinson changes in bile acid metabolism occur. The composition of the gut microbiome becomes better and the overall situation of the patient improves.

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Study Significance In Parkinson’s Treatment

Dr. Stewart Graham, the co-author of the study, suggests that changes in microbiome composition can be helpful as blood-based biomarkers of Parkinson’s disease. Furthermore, giving anti-inflammatory bile acid UDCA to Parkinson’s disease patients can improve their condition remarkably.

Moreover, the new study provides possibilities for treating and detecting Parkinson’s disease. Diagnosing the condition of individuals in their early stages of the disease enables initiating to initiate proper treatment quickly without losing any time. Furthermore, this will also increase the chances of recovery as individuals will be able to get treatment on time.

The chance of complications and development of Parkinson’s disease lowers when diagnosis occurs at its initial stage.

Research suggests that initiating treatment at an early stage will yield much better results than starting treatment therapy later. The sooner nerve cell death is noticed, the more likely it is to control the damage.


Adeena Tariq Lari
The author is a graduate of dental surgery from the Dow University Health Sciences, Karachi. She has an academic background in content writing as well as English literature, giving her an edge in the field. Adeena is always curious about physical and mental health. She is always passionate about research and delivering high-quality reliable content to users.