I was introduced to the work of Dr Laurie Mischley by David Spry, who pointed me towards a video recording of a seminal presentation given by Laurie [see below]. I have since had a number of very fruitful dialogues with Laurie herself in the Parkinson's Disease Fighters United forum. David says "The correct approach is seen in one person. A new breed. Not a neurologist or even a naturopathic doctor, but a holistic PD doctor. Laurie Mischley". I say, simply, that Laurie respresents a new hope for people with Parkinson's Disease everywhere.
Online Research Tool for Parkinson's Disease
One of the very important new directions that Laurie is developing, and is already using to great effect - as demonstrated in the video presentation below - is an online data collection tool. Quite simply, Laurie is using the input data from thousands of people with PD to determine statiscally the factors which help to keep the disease at bay. This is, in my, view wellness engineering at its best - working out what actually works and applying it to ease suffering right now, not waiting for medical scientists to ponder why it works down to the level of trivia before it is rolled out to improve lives.
Laurie says "I sure hope all of you are all reporting your successes to the CAM Care study!!!
Your participation allows us to collect data on complementary therapies, so that docs/ researchers/other patients can be better informed". Below is a snapshot of how simple the online survey is and how it works:
Notes from GLUTATHIONE IN PARKINSON’S DISEASE
by LAURIE K MISCHLEY, a dissertation submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy, University of Washington 2016.
Having become very intrigued by Laurie's work, I have recently been reading her published PhD thesis, and, because it such a mine of information about PD, much of which I was unaware of myself, I started taking notes. I have decided to share my annotations here, simply because I do believe these could help people with PD to start thinking more for ourselves, and outside the box of hopless degeneration that neurologist are still mis-informing us about.
"Originally thought to be exclusively a motor disorder, PD is now recognized as a syndrome affecting non-motor and cognitive facilities. The most significant advance in PD therapeutics [was] ... the provision of the dopamine precursor, levodopa (l-dopa), provided symptomatic relief."
"It is now known that the dopaminergic system is affected late in the course of the disease. While the provision of dopamine is essential for symptomatic relief, [...] prevention [...] efforts may, or may not, involve dopaminergic pathways. On autopsy, individuals with PD have distinct cellular inclusions, called Lewy bodies; an increasing body of literature suggests these inclusions first appear in the intestinal tract up to a decade before the disease and spread [...] up the vagus nerve, into the midbrain, eventually reaching the substantia nigra (SN)."
"In every cell in the body, homeostastasis between radical exposure, both naturally occurring and environmentally induced, and the antioxidant mechanisms of the body are carefully regulated. When the capacity to reduce radicals is outweighed by the production of radicals, oxidative stress ensues. The high oxygen-dependentmetabolic activity naturally makes the brain vulnerable to oxidative damage. Given the delicate environment, it is reasonable that a generalized state of excessive oxidative [...] stress, the brain will be among the organs most severely affected."
"The human brain is particularly vulnerable to oxidative stress due to its high metabolic activity. While it represents only about two percent of body weight, it is responsible for approximate 20% of total body metabolic activity. Glucose is the main fuel of the brain, but when glucose is low (i.e. fasting, ketogenic diets, exercise), the brain can use lactate during exercise and ketone bodies for fuel during glucose depletion. The general reliance on glucose means that, per tissue volume, the brain uses disproportionately more oxygen than other tissues."
"Dopamine, produced in the SN, is especially prone to oxidation. When dopamine is produced (or possibly supplied as l-dopa) in excess of what can be removed... the dopamine molecule may autoxidize, it may be oxidized [...] to dopamine quinones which can react [...] to cause cellular toxicity, or it can react with iron, copper, or oxygen resulting in superoxide, or hydrogen peroxide."
"[However] post mortem brains from individuals with premotor PD [also] show a deficiency of reduced glutathione [...] body of research supports the hypothesis that glauthione depletion contributes to PD and that [it] has therapeutic potential as [a] treatment [...] strategy. A major role of glauthione is in cellular detoxification. Glauthione is essential [... but] individuals with PD [...] appear unable to synthesize sufficient quantities to supply demand, [it] should be considered a conditionally essential vitamin [...] with increasing benefit from [supplementation] becoming apparent, with improved [...] cellular detoxification processes. Among those deficient, it is unlikely that food alone will be able to adequately supply needs, which are in excess of normal physiological demands."
"[It] fluctuates in a rhythmic fashion... Glutathione peaks in the morning and detoxification activity peaks in the late afternoon. Not only do circadian rhythms impact Glutathione, [it...] may also impact chronobiological rhymicity. The role of sleep and circadian rhythm [involve] melatonin [which...] stimulates other antioxidants including glutathione [...] Studies demonstrate [...] susceptibility to pesticide exposure is regulated by circadian rhythm [...] able to restore glauthione [levels] in [...] muscular dystrophy via admininstration of oral melatonin."
Food for Thought
Now, here is the video I mentioned at the start. I am strongly recommending everyone with a PD diagnosis, everyone involved in care giving for people with PD and everyone involved in providing Parkinson's related healthcare, to take an hour to watch Laurie's presentation from beginning to end. I guarantee it will be one of the most important hours you've ever spent in relation to this disease and its management.