(CNN) – Parkinson’s disease may begin before birth, a new study suggests.
The research by Cedars-Sinai Medical Center focused on young onset Parkinson’s disease (YOPD). That’s when the neurodegenerative disorder develops before the age of 50.
The study found two key abnormalities in the brain cells of people with YOPD.
"This exciting new research provides hope that one day we may be able to detect and take early action to prevent this disease in at-risk individuals," the study says.
Researchers have begun testing drugs to try to reverse the abnormalities.
One drug that’s already in use for treating precancerous skin lesions was successful in reducing one of the anomalies.
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