FRIDAY, Oct. 2, 2020 (HealthDay News) — Plasma caffeine concentration is lower in individuals with Parkinson disease (PD), especially LRRK2 mutation carriers, according to a study published online Sept. 30 in Neurology.

Grace F. Crotty, M.D., from Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, and colleagues performed metabolomics profiling in individuals with PD and unaffected controls (UC) with and without the LRRK2 mutation. Plasma was included from 368 PD and UC individuals comprising 118 LRRK2+/PD+, 115 LRRK2+/UC, 70 LRRK2−/PD+, and 65 LRRK2−/UC. Differences were assessed for 282 analytes quantified in plasma and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF).

The researchers found that PD versus UC individuals had lower plasma caffeine concentration, more so among LRRK2+ carriers than LRRK2− individuals (by 76 versus 31 percent), with a significant interaction between LRRK2 and PD status. For caffeine metabolites and a non-xanthine marker of coffee consumption, similar results were found in plasma and in the subset of corresponding CSF samples. Compared with LRRK2+/UC, dietary caffeine was also lower in LRRK2+/PD+, with a significant interaction effect with the LRRK2+ mutation.

“These results are promising and encourage future research exploring caffeine and caffeine-related therapies to lessen the chance that people with this gene develop PD,” Crotty said in a statement.

Several authors disclosed financial ties to Denali Therapeutics.

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