Parkinson's disease

Updated 17 March 2016

Causes of Parkinson’s disease

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Parkinson's disease occurs when certain nerve cells, or neurons, die or become impaired.

Normally, these neurons produce dopamine and other neurotransmitters. Dopamine is a chemical messenger responsible for transmitting signals within the brain.

Loss of dopamine results in patients being unable to direct or control their movement in a normal manner. Parkinson's is not usually inherited. 

Read more: 

Treating Parkinson's disease 

Symptoms of Parkinson's disease 

What is Parkinson's disease?

Revised and reviewed by Prof Carr February 2015. Reviewed by Dr Andrew Rose-Innes, MD, Department of Neurology, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven.