Plasma DOPA and growth hormone in parkinsonism: Oscillations in symptoms

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Article abstract

In 19 patients with Parkinson disease, we studied the relationship of the therapeutic effect of levodopa, or dyskinesia, to the plasma content of DOPA and growth hormone (GH). Those with stable responses to levodopa, individually or as a group, showed stable and lower plasma DOPA levels than those with unstable symptomatic responses. These results show that stable and oscillating clinical responses in Parkinson disease parallel plasma DOPA levels, suggesting that there are different mechanisms in peripheral levodopa metabolism and that extracerebral mechanisms are important in regulating the availability of levodopa to the brain. Plasma GH did not differ in the two groups, suggesting that the secretion of GH is independent of the effects of levodopa in parkinsonism.

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