Parkinson’s disease and the gut: Symptoms, nutrition, and microbiota

Nehal Yemula, Celina Dietrich, Vaclav Dostal, Michael Hornberger

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27 Citations (Scopus)
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Parkinson’s disease (PD) is the second most common neurodegenerative disease worldwide, characterized by symptoms of bradykinesia, rigidity, postural instability, and tremor. Recently, there has been a growing focus on the relationship between the gut and the development of PD. Emerging to the forefront, an interesting concept has developed suggesting that the initial pathophysiological changes occur in the gastrointestinal tract before changes are seen within the brain. This review is aimed at highlighting the relationship between PD and the gastrointestinal tract, along with the supporting evidence for this. Firstly, we will focus on the gastrointestinal conditions and symptoms which commonly affects patients, including both upper and lower gastrointestinal issues. Secondly, the impact of nutrition and diet on neurological health and PD physiology, with particular emphasis on commonly consumed items including macronutrients and micronutrients. Finally, variability of the gut microbiome will also be discussed and its link with both the symptoms and signs of PD. The evidence presented in this review highly suggests that the initial pathogenesis in the gut may proceed the development of prodromal PD subtypes, and therefore building on this further could be imperative and lead to earlier diagnosis with new and improved therapeutics.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1491-1505
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Parkinson's Disease
Issue number4
Early online date7 Jul 2021
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2021


  • Gut
  • Parkinson's disease
  • microbiota
  • nutrition

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