, Volume 4, Issue 1, pp 77-81

The biochemical basis of Parkinson's disease: The role of catecholamineo-quinones: A review-discussion

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This paper reviews the possible role of catecholamineo-quinones (OQs) in the genesis of Parkinson's disease (PD). This disease is characterized by damage caused to the pigmented catecholaminergic cells in various areas of the brain. The pigment involved is neuromelanin that is the end product of catecholamine oxidation by theo-quinone route. Evidence is presented regarding the overproduction in PD of these catecholamine OQs that damage the electron chain in the mitochondria leading to cell death. The roles of glutathione S-transferase and reactive oxygen species in this are also surveyed. A review of all known biochemical properties of theseo-quinones is included. The hypothesis is put forward that an important factor in the genesis of PD may be the overload by environmental toxins of enzymes such as glutathioneS-transferase that also detoxify catecholamine OQs.