Parkinson's Disease - the chances of a trembling body Essay

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Parkinson's Disease - the chances of a trembling body

I have been closely following the news in the past months and I have noted a continuum in the coverage of the medical condition of one person who for many symbolizes the virtues of man, has been associated with the liberation of the minds of people under the communist era, has firmly supported the foundations of the Catholic faith and has been inspiration for many - the current Pope John Paul II. The newspaper photos of his almost expressionless face and the constant trembling hand which have started hindering his public activities and my deep respect to the his achievements made me look into the roots of the Parkinson's disease and its effects on behavior.

Parkinson's disease, …show more content…


The explanation of the processes in the nervous system, which lead to the distressing results of a completely changed lifestyle as well as behavior, is important for understanding the origins of the disease. For all movements/actions the body performs, the brain gathers information about the body position which comes together in the striatum. The striatum, in cooperation with the substantia nigra and other parts of the brain, sends out commands for balance and coordination. The substantia nigra produces dopamine, the neurotransmitter which is crucial to human movement and controlling of balance. In Parkinson's disease, there is a dying off of the nerve cells producing dopamine in the substantia nigra, resulting in a large loss of dopamine in the brain, which causes a disbalance in the dopamine/acetylcholine cooperation. (6)The effects are a lack of coordination of movements, manifesting through tremor, stiff muscles, difficult moving.

There appear to be two categories of the disease - the sporadic form which does not seem to be inherited and the non-sporadic or the familial form. For a long time the wide spread hypothesis had been that the causes were almost exclusively due to environmental factors, even though in many cases the exact environmental factor has not been pinpointed. However, in 1996 there was a breakthrough discovery which suggested that a genetic alteration is capable of causing

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