Journal of Neural Transmission | 2019
Agricultural work and reduced circulating uric acid are both associated with initial hospital admission for Parkinson’s disease
Monoamine oxidase type B inhibitors act in Parkinson’s disease (PD) via potentiation of dopamine, but may also have neuroprotective effects by reducing oxidative damage. Oxidative damage is also a feature of environmental toxins, including pesticides, that are an established risk factor for PD. Another risk factor is low circulating uric acid (UA), which may relate to UA being the major endogenous antioxidant in the human body. We have undertaken a study of 192 initial admissions for PD in a general hospital neurology department in a partly rural region of Southern China to determine if there is an increased rate of PD in agricultural workers who have a high risk of exposure to pesticides, and how it may relate to deficits in UA. We found a disproportionately high number of agricultural workers admitted with PD (66.7% vs. 54.3% of all neurology admissions) and that PD subjects have a substantial reduction in UA. This is further reduced in agricultural workers and thus may contribute to the increased vulnerability of this group to PD.