What if Parkinson's disease did not develop just in the brain? A disease designated as neurodegenerative, one of its origins could be well in the digestive system. A study of 1.5 million people in Sweden published in the journal Science Translational Medicine found a relationship between the elimination of appendicitis and the onset of Parkinson's disease.
Conducted in 1.7 million people, the study found that individuals who had the deleted appendix were up to 20% less likely to develop Parkinson's disease. On the other hand, people who had appendectomy and had a late onset of the disease for 4 years on average.
In addition, groups of proteins previously associated with the disease in the appendix and other parts of the digestive system have been found, thus adding existing evidence that relates the intestine to brain disease.
The appendix is not useless
The appendix contains a protein, alpha-sinuclein, known to accumulate in the brain of patients with Parkinson's disease. "Alpha-synuclein is a protein that does not want to remain immobile, is able to move from the neuron to the neuron, if it enters the brain, it can germinate and spread and have neurotoxic effects that may eventually lead to Parkinson's disease", describes Viviane Labrie, one of the authors of the study.
Although its reputation is largely unnecessary, the appendix really plays an important role in our immune system, in regulating the composition of our intestinal bacteria and now, as shown in this study, in the Parkinson's Disease aspect.
Be careful, however, this study does not recommend that you remove the appendix, far from that. "We're not saying that if you had ablation, you will not have Parkinson's disease"warns the researcher For now, no cause-effect relationship has been established. Like studies of this type, other factors not taken into account may explain the difference between those who were ablated and others.