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Cholecystokinin modulates the release of dopamine and dopamine-related behaviours in the mesolimbic pathway, where cholecystokinin and dopamine coexist in dopaminergic neurones. Because cholecystokinin and its receptors (A and B) have a functional interaction with dopaminergic neurotransmission, alterations in them may constitute a predisposition for Parkinson's disease. We performed a case–control study to investigate the association between the cholecystokinin system and Parkinson's disease using genetic markers for three genes: cholecystokinin and its two receptors (A and B). One hundred and sixty patients with Parkinson's disease and 160 controls, matched for age, gender, ethnic origin and area of residence, were recruited. Cholecystokinin −45C>T, cholecystokinin-A receptor 779T>C and cholecystokinin-B receptor 1550G>A gene polymorphisms were studied using polymerase chain reaction-restriction fragment length polymorphism analyses. These three gene polymorphisms showed no correlation with risk of Parkinson's disease; however, the cholecystokinin CT/TT genotype was associated with a 4.429-fold increased risk for visual hallucinations in Parkinson's disease. Cholecystokinin-A receptor and B receptor polymorphisms, considered alone, showed no correlation with hallucinations in Parkinson's disease; however, a combined effect was found in patients with hallucinations harboring both the cholecystokinin CT/TT and cholecystokinin-A receptor TC/CC genotypes. Parkinson's disease patients harboring this genotype have a 5.922-fold increased risk for developing visual hallucinations. These results suggest that, in Chinese, visual hallucinations in Parkinson's disease are associated with cholecystokinin −45C>T polymorphism, and this association was still observed in the presence of the cholecystokinin-A receptor TC/CC genotype, indicating a possible interaction of these two genes in the visual hallucinogenesis in Parkinson's disease.