Healthy Living

Parkinson's Disease: Training Old Drugs to do New Tricks


Well, the most important thing when it comes to searching for drugs to be repurposed, apart from knowing what disease the drug is currently used for, is knowing what the drug does to the body and the effects of the drug in the body. For example, Parkinson’s and hypertension are two different diseases but Isradipine, a blood pressure drug, could be quite useful in preserving the dopamine level in the body.[1] For people who have Parkinson’s disease, the neurons that are responsible for releasing dopamine die, and as a result, the patient experiences difficulty in directing their movement.

This drug also blocks the activity of specific receptors that have something to do with calcium getting in and out of cells, and in Parkinson’s the survival of the brain cells is dependent on the regulation of the calcium. With that, Isradipine may be found to be useful for Parkinson’s, but this has to be proven through further examinations, which may take a few years. There were also studies conducted showing that people who take Isradipine are less likely to develop Parkinson’s, which also makes it one of the candidates for drug repurposing.