Environmental Risk Factors in Parkinson’s Disease

  • William C. Koller
Part of the Advances in Behavioral Biology book series (ABBI, volume 39)


The clinical syndrome of parkinsonism can be caused by a variety of insults to the basal ganglia [1]. Idiopathic parkinsonism or Parkinson’s disease is a distinct clinical entity with a defined neuropathology and neurochemistry. Neurons of the substantia nigra are degenerated and contain inclusion bodies called Lewy bodies [2]. There is disruption of neurotransmission in the dopaminergic nigrostriatal pathway because of nigral cell death. This results in a deficiency of dopamine in the striatum which is the neurochemical basis of Parkinson’s disease. Parkinson’s disease is a neurodegenerative condition for which the cause is unknown. Why do cells of the substantia nigra selectively die? New therapies or even preventative measures could be introduced if the etiology of Parkinson’s disease could be found.


Substantia Nigra Environmental Risk Factor Rural Environment Environmental Toxin Distinct Clinical Entity 


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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • William C. Koller
    • 1
  1. 1.University of Kansas Medical SchoolKansas CityUSA

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