Advantages of Vasoactive Intestinal Peptide for the Future Treatment of Parkinson's Disease.Curr Pharm Des. 2018; 24(39):4693-4701.CP
Parkinson's disease is the second most common neurodegenerative disorder in adults over the age of 65. The characteristic symptoms of Parkinson's disease, such as resting tremor, muscular rigidity, bradykinesia, postural instability and gait imbalance, are thought to be a result of the progressive degeneration of the dopaminergic neurons of the substantia nigra compacta, resulting in insufficient dopamine integrated signalling on GABAergic medium spiny neurons in the striatum. Despite tremendous research, the molecular mechanisms underlying the pathogenesis of neurodegeneration in Parkinson's disease have remained largely unknown. Although a variety of possible pathogenic mechanisms have been proposed over the years, including excessive release of oxygen free radicals, impairment of mitochondrial function, loss of trophic support, abnormal kinase activity, disruption of calcium homeostasis, dysfunction of protein degradation and neuroinflammation, the pathogenesis is still largely uncertain, and there is currently no effective cure for Parkinson's disease. To develop potential therapies for Parkinson's disease, inflammatory processes, mitochondrial dynamics, oxidative stress, production of reactive aldehydes, excitotoxicity and synucleinopathies are to be targeted. In this respect, vasoactive intestinal peptide has beneficial effects that provide an advantage for the treatment of Parkinson's disease. Vasoactive intestinal peptide is a major neuropeptide-neurotransmitter having antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, neurotropic, neuromodulator, and anti-apoptotic properties. In addition to its direct neuroprotective actions regulating the activity of astrocytes, microglia and brain mast cells, it also plays important roles for neuronal adaptation, maintenance and survival.