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MDS 2023 | The interface between neurology and psychiatry: the case of Parkinson’s disease

Santiago Perez Lloret, MD, PhD, University of Buenos Aires, Buenos Aires, Argentina, delves into the historical connection between schizophrenia and Parkinson’s disease, highlighting the progress made in understanding the underlying mechanisms of these conditions. Initially, researchers discovered that schizophrenia and Parkinson’s disease shared similarities, leading to the formulation of the dopaminergic tone theory. This theory suggests that schizophrenia is caused by an excessive dopaminergic tone in the mesolimbic and mesocortical pathways, while Parkinson’s disease results from a reduced dopaminergic tone in the nigrostriatal pathway. Dr Perez Lloret touches on the use of animal models, such as reserpine-induced catalepsy in rodents and monkeys, to gain insights into the brain alterations associated with Parkinson’s disease and assess the effects of pharmacological agents. However, certain observations couldn’t be explained by the dopaminergic tone theory, prompting the need for a more comprehensive understanding of how the basal ganglia functions. This interview took place at the 2023 International Congress of Parkinson’s Disease and Movement Disorders in Copenhagen, Denmark.

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Honoraria from IPMDS and DNDI. Editor-in-Chief of NDI.