Alzheimer's and Parkinson's Disease Gene Discovered -
PLA2G6 Leads to
Neuroaxonal Dystrophies Iron Build-up in Brain
June 19th 2006
Oregon scientists believe they have found the gene that can trigger
several genetic disorders called neuroaxonal dystrophies, which can lead
to Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases. The disorder is a rare
progressive childhood conditions that causes an abnormal buildup of iron
in the brain.
According to Susan J. Hayflick MD, “If you're a family with a kid with
one of these diseases, the impact is clear, specific and personal."
Susan is a professor of molecular and medical genetics, pediatrics and
neurology in the OHSU School of Medicine.
There are some very serious disorders caused by the build-up of iron in
the basal ganglia, a cluster of gray-matter tissue structures deep in
the brain that control motor function. The iron accumulates, causing
swelling of the branch-like axons that transmit electrical impulses from
the nerve cell body to its terminal. This interrupts the signal sent to
other nerve cells nearby.