Evidence is now overwhelming that inflammation is a central process in the pathogenesis of progressive Parkinson's disease (PD). The hallmark of this neuroinflammation is the activation of microglial cells and the secondary role of adaptive immunity in both the familial and idiopathic forms of PD, leading to the loss of dopamine‐producing cells within the Substantia nigra. This activation is characterized by the oxidative stress response, production of inflammatory mediators, recruitment and activation of immune effector cells which create a toxic environment for dopaminergic neurons, and in forming a continuous cycle of inflammatory responses that result in chronic neuroinflammation and progressive neurodegeneration. This chapter focuses on the different components of the inflammatory response that are involved in Dopamine‐neurodegeneration, the evidence for inflammation in different forms of PD, and the role of inflammation in the various animal models of PD. Finally, we provide current evidence that targeting this inflammation with a number of anti‐inflammatory therapies can be an effective way to halt the progression of chronic neuroinflammation‐induced PD.
Part of the book: Challenges in Parkinson's Disease
Inflammation is a key component of the dopaminergic neurodegeneration seen in progressive Parkinson’s disease (PD). The presence of activated glial cells, the participation of innate immune system, increased inflammatory molecules such as cytokines and chemokines, and increased oxidative stress and reactive oxygen species are the main neuroinflammatory characteristics present in progressive PD. Therapeutic targets which suppress pro-inflammatory responses by glial cells (mainly microglia) have been shown to be effective treatments for slowing or eliminating the progressive degeneration of neurons within the substantia nigra. In this chapter, we will detail a specific anti-inflammatory therapy using agonists to β2-adrenergic receptors that have been shown to be effective treatments for models of dopaminergic neurodegeneration and that have had efficacy in patients with progressive PD. We will also detail the possible molecular mechanisms of action of this therapeutic in stopping or reversing inflammation within the CNS.
Part of the book: Neuroprotection