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Terazosin for the treatment of Parkinson's?
A drug that is actually used to treat an enlarged prostate also appears to be effective in Parkinson's disease.
A recent study by the University of Iowa and the Beijing Institute for Brain Disorders found that an enlarged prostate medication could also be an effective drug for Parkinson's. The results of the study were published in the English-language journal "Journal of Clinical Investigation" (JCI).
Can Terazosin Slow Parkinson's Progress?
Terazosin is used to treat benign prostatic hyperplasia by relaxing the muscles of the bladder and prostate. It appears that this drug also has a beneficial effect on Parkinson's brain cells. The researchers suspect that the drug could slow the progression of Parkinson's. The results of the study suggest that the alpha blocker drug protects the brain cells from destruction.
PGK1 could protect brain cells from destruction
Parkinson's is a progressive brain disorder for which there is currently no cure. Current Parkinson's treatments can help with some symptoms, but do not slow or reverse the loss of neurons associated with the disease. Terazosin could help by activating an enzyme called PGK1 to protect brain cells from being destroyed.
More research is needed
When terazosin was tested in rodents, it appeared to slow or stop the loss of nerve cells. To assess whether the drug has the same effect in humans, the research group examined the medical records of millions of US patients to identify men with benign prostatic hyperplasia and Parkinson's. Finally, they examined 2,880 Parkinson's patients who were taking terazosin or similar drugs that targeted PGK1. In addition, a comparison group of 15,409 Parkinson's patients who received another treatment that did not affect PGK1 was examined. Patients on PGK1-medicated medicines appeared to be performing better on symptoms and progression of Parkinson's disease, which researchers believe warrants further clinical trials to begin this year.
Given that terazosin has a proven track record in treating benign prostatic hyperplasia, it should be possible to approve terazosin as a Parkinson's drug if clinical trials go well. In these studies, which will take several years, the drug will be compared to a placebo to ensure that it is safe and effective in Parkinson's. (as)
Author and source information
This text corresponds to the requirements of the medical literature, medical guidelines and current studies and has been checked by medical doctors.
- Rong Cai, Yu Zhang, Jacob E. Simmering, Jordan L. Schultz, Yuhong Li et al .: Enhancing glycolysis attenuates Parkinson’s disease progression in models and clinical databases, in Journal of Clinical Investigation (query: 17.09.2019), JCI