Previous studies have documented the protective impact of coffee on Parkinson’s disease. The GRIN2A gene, a genetic variant, protects against the development of Parkinson’s disease. A research study from two countries examined the combination of coffee and the GRIN2A gene and if there were any significant changes.
The research findings of this study reveal that molecular explanation for its protective effects against Parkinson’s disease and that caffeine integrates with a dopamine receptor that regulates the flow of calcium into the cell. Dopamine is part of the human reward system, and the interaction of caffeine with it, it has been speculated that individuals with certain genetic variations are not “rewarded” to the same extent by a cup of coffee, and therefore would not enjoy the same protective effect as others. The newly published study revealed that there was a strong inhibitory significance of both caffeine and the GRIN2A gene on developing Parkinson’s disease.
The study results also suggest that there may be a significant epigenetic impact through environmental influence on genes linked to Parkinson.
Naomi Yamada-Fowler, Mats Fredrikson, Peter Söderkvist. Caffeine Interaction with Glutamate Receptor Gene GRIN2A: Parkinson’s Disease in Swedish Population. PLoS ONE, 2014; 9 (6): e99294 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0099294