Washington : A team of researchers has brought a cure for Parkinson’s disease closer to reality.
Palmitoylethanolamide, an endogenous fatty acid amide signalling molecule well-known for its ability to promote the resolution of neuro inflammation and exert neuroprotection, has shown potential therapeutic action in such animal models.
The research showed that ultra-micronized palmitoylethanolamide (um-PEA), slows down disease progression and disability when used as add-on therapy in advanced PD patients.
30 patients with diagnosed PD (mean age of 73) receiving L-DOPA daily and other PD medications in some cases were assessed monthly over 3 consecutive months. Thereafter, um-PEA (Normast, a food for special medical purposes) was given at 1200 mg daily for 3 months, followed by 600 mg/day for up to 12 months.
The MDS-UPDRS questionnaire was used to assess motor and non-motor symptoms. Patients underwent clinical assessment at months 1, 3, 6 and 12. PD medications were maintained during the period of um-PEA treatment.
The um-PEA add-on therapy to L-DOPA led a significant and progressive reduction of total score in Non-Motor Aspects of Experiences of Daily Living, decreasing from 9.7 ± 1.18 at baseline to 4.5 ± 0.69 at month 12.
Moreover, one year um-PEA adjuvant therapy brought about a significant and progressive reduction in the average Motor Aspects of Experiences of Daily Living total score, from 12.7 ± 1.37 at baseline to 7.6 ± 1.06 at month 12.
In addition, average total motor complication score diminished from 8.8 ± 0.8 at baseline to 4.2 ± 0.48 after 12 months of um-PEA adjuvant therapy.
The addition of um-PEA treatment also induced a significant and progressive reduction of motor complications that went from 8.8 ± 0.8 at baseline to 4.2 ± 0.48 at the end of um-PEA therapy.
None of the participants reported side effects attributable to um-PEA.
In conclusion, um-PEA represents a safe and efficacious adjuvant treatment in patients with advanced PD receiving L-DOPA therapy, by providing clinically meaningful improvements in non-motor and motor aspects of daily living, as well as motor symptoms and motor complications of the disease. Moreover, our findings demonstrate the translatability of um-PEA action in PD from rodent to man.
The study is CNS & Neurological Disorders Drug Targets.