Parkinson’s disease is currently the second most widespread neurogenerative pathology. It is a motor disorder caused by the loss of dopaminergic neurons in the black substance of the brain. These neurons are the nerve cells that produce dopamine, a neurotransmitter that plays a key role in the modulation of involuntary movements.

The research carried out at the UPV/EHU was developed in an experimental model that allows different stages of Parkinson’s disease to be reproduced. The results showed that the changes caused by the condition were not homogeneous in the different parts of the brain affected. “The impairment is correlated with the specific anatomic distribution of the dopaminergic neurons and their terminals,” pointed out the researcher Catalina Requejo. In other words, those areas of the black substance in which the dopaminergic neurons have more connections with regions that remain whole were found to be less affected.

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