Studies have found that for three out of every four people who develop Parkinson's disease (PD), the disease begins with a trembling or shaking in one of the hands, arms, legs, jaw, and face.
Others with PD may experience stiffness of the limbs and trunk; slowness of movement; and impaired balance and coordination as symptoms.
All this results from loss or loss of function of nerve cells in the brain that coordinate movement.
A team of researchers, led by Chung-Chin Kuo, at National Taiwan University College of Medicine, Taiwan, has now shown that pharmacological blockade of T-type calcium channels reduces deficiencies in the ability to move normally in a rat model of PD.
This has led them to suggest that targeting T-type calcium channels could provide a new approach to treating individuals with PD.