A drug made from a chemical found in the livers of sharks could be a new treatment for Parkinson’s disease, scientists believe.
The drug, called ENT-01, contains a synthetic form of squalamine, a compound produced in the liver of sharks to stop it getting infections.
Squalamine can reduce the build-up of proteins in the brain that cause the tell-tale signs of Parkinson’s, such as stiffness and tremors.
A major trial is under way in the United States to see if the shark compound can displace these harmful proteins from cells in the brain.
About 145,000 people in the UK suffer with the incurable disease. They include comedian Sir Billy Connolly, who was diagnosed with the illness in 2013.
Elderly people are more likely to be lonely in summer, according to a charity that supports isolated older people.
Silver Line says calls to its 24-hour helpline spike in the warmer months. Silver Line founder Dame Esther Rantzen says this is not just due to families being on holiday. ‘Neighbours, friendly shop assistants, carers – they are all away at this time of year,’ she adds.
15 July 2019