A clinical trial is currently underway to test whether the cholesterol-lowering drug Simvastatin could be effective in slowing down or halting the progression of Parkinson’s disease. Conducted by Plymouth University Peninsula Schools of Medicine and Dentistry, and part funded by the Cure Parkinson’s Trust (CPT), the trial will involve 198 people with Parkinson’s from at least 21 hospitals in the UK.
Parkinson’s is a progressive neurological condition caused by specific nerve cells in the brain dying. It’s thought the disease affects at least 10 million people worldwide, and the number of cases is set to double by 2010. Evidence has suggested Simvastatin may protect nerve cells from damage, pointing to the possibility of it being effective in the treatment of Parkinson’s. “We are leaving no stone unturned in our quest to find new treatments that will slow, stop or reverse Parkinson’s,” says Tom Isaacs, co-founder of CPT, “We want to make a difference to those of us living with this condition within five years.”