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Antibiotic now tackles Parkinson's

From San Diego, at the Society for Neuroscience meeting

Once of interest primarily to microbiologists, the antibiotic minocycline recently has drawn the interest of neuroscientists. Last year, for example, researchers reported that the antibiotic delayed death in mice that develop a neurological condition resembling Huntington's disease (SN: 8/19/00, p. 8). A trial of the drug in people with the illness is about to begin. Now, several groups find that minocycline seems to protect the class of brain cells that die in Parkinson's disease, another neurodegenerative disorder.

"I think minocycline has some remarkable neuroprotective effects," says Steven M. Paul of Lilly Research Laboratories in Indianapolis, a leader of one of those groups.

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