Biomarkers link fatigue in cancer, Parkinson's
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IMAGE: This is Chris Fagundes. view more 

Credit: Jeff Fitlow/Rice University

Biological markers responsible for extreme exhaustion in patients with cancer have now been linked to fatigue in those with Parkinson’s disease, according to new research from Rice University.

“Inflammation and fatigue in early, untreated Parkinson’s disease” will appear in an upcoming edition of Acta Neurologica Scandinavica. It is one of the first studies to link the biomarkers responsible for fatigue in patients with cancer and patients with Parkinson’s.

The researchers examined blood samples from 47 patients with Parkinson’s disease, half of whom experienced high levels of fatigue, which is characterized by feeling severely tired and unable to engage in usual activities and is disruptive to one’s work and social life and daily routines.

Chris Fagundes, an assistant professor of psychology at Rice and one of the study’s lead authors, said that although Parkinson’s disease is not fatal, patients often complain that fatigue is one of the most common and disabling side effects and a contributor to reduced quality of life.

“The No. 1 complaint among Parkinson’s disease sufferers is chronic fatigue,” Fagundes said.

The researchers found that individuals with Parkinson’s disease who suffered from fatigue had elevated levels

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