Research from Queen Mary University of London has concluded that there is convincing evidence that type 2 diabetes is associated with an increased risk of Parkinson’s disease. The same study found that there was also evidence that type 2 diabetes may contribute to faster disease progression in patients who already have Parkinson’s.
Treating people with drugs already available for type 2 diabetes may reduce the risk and slow the progression of Parkinson’s. Screening for and early treatment of type 2 diabetes in patients with Parkinson’s may be advisable.
Previous systematic reviews and meta-analyses have produced conflicting results around the link between diabetes and the risk of Parkinson’s disease. This new study, published in the Movement Disorders Journal, used meta-analysis of observational data and meta-analysis of genetic data to evaluate the effect of type 2 diabetes on risk and progression of Parkinson’s disease.
Corresponding author Dr. Alastair Noyce from Queen Mary University of London said: “This research brings together the results from many other studies to provide convincing evidence that type 2 diabetes likely affects not only Parkinson’s risk, but also Parkinson’s progression. There are many treatment strategies for type 2 diabetes, including prevention strategies, which may be re-purposed for the treatment of Parkinson’s.”