Parkinson's Movement
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GDNF (Glial Derived Neurotrophic Factor) / walking exercize

Previous to walking four miles, 3 to 4 X per week, I could not brush my teeth with my right hand. (freezing, weak, no control). Now that is not the case. I can brush my teeth normally, but still weak. Greatly improved condition.

I am past two years DX. I take no medicine. I have tried: diet, ketogenics, coconut oil, vitamins, NO improvement. My wife says she noticed slight improvement when I took CO. I stopped CO and turned to exercise. I do continue watching my menu for reduced sugar and carbs.

I learned a lot from my experiment with diets. Not so much for PD but for weight loss. No sugar and max 30g carbs each day and I lost so much weight my wife feared for my health. I have since returned to sugar and carbs (moderation) and have maintained, have not gained the weight back. No calorie counting for me, I found counting carbs was the trick.

Copy from a post by member JohnPepper:

GDNF (Glial Derived Neurotrophic Factor) was discovered way back in 1993. In 2005, a study was carried out on human beings in Bristol, England, on 7 patients. One of those patients died from an unrelated heart problem but the condition of all the others managed to improve quite considerably. This story about GDNF has been on and off ever since 2005, with the manufacturers stopping manufacture of the GDNF and the stopping of all trials. Then pressure was brought to bear on the manufacturer to start producing the GDNF again and then new trials continued, but with no promising results so far.

In 2006, at the 1st World Parkinson's Congress, held in Washington DC, it was announced by Doctor Beth Fisher that human beings produce this GDNF, in the brain, when they do certain types of energetic exercise. The studies carried out by Dr Fisher proved that the condition of all those taking part improved considerably, due to the damage to the brain cells being repaired by the GDNF.

18 Replies

A more accurate history of GDNF is here

And here


My observation and personal experience: They injected GDNF. The body saw that as an invasion which affected their study and results. If the gdnf is allowed and promoted within the body naturally, shouldn't that be the wiser course?

The other major factor in the decision to stop the trial was the detection of “neutralizing antibodies” in two study participants. Antibodies are made by cells to defend the body against foreign material. Neutralizing antibodies could clear the body of the GDNF drug, as well as possibly reduce the body’s natural supply of GDNF. It is unclear if such a reduction in natural GDNF is harmful, and researchers are still testing blood samples to determine the cause and risks of this phenomenon. Blood sample collections will continue for at least one year.


Hi Hikoi. Dr Steven Gill's study was not conducted 2 years after 2003 as is witnessed by the details that followed confirming other studies carried out in 2004, which referred to Dr Gills results.

I am of the firm opinion that there is another agenda involved in all this.

But why waste our time in discussing artificial GDNF infusions into the brain, at huge expense, when all we have to do to produce GDNF in our own brains is to exercise for 1 hour, 3 times a week and the brain does it for us.

Yes there are many people who are genuinely unable to walk fast but there are many who can and should. I have shown a huge number of people with Parkinson's that they are able to walk properly, even though they exhibit a shuffling gate and suffer with 'freezing'.

I have shown them all how they can take conscious control of their walking and thus should be able to start doing meaningful walking exercises and build up their strength and improve their quality of life

It isn't popular with the medical profession and certainly not with the pharmaceutical industry, who would not make any money out of patients producing their own GDNF and getting better, as I have

I know you don't believe all this and are committed to following the doctor's advice to continue taking your medication until a cure is found. That is your choice. Let others know that there is something they can do about it.

How many cures for chronic illnesses have been found so far? I rest my case!



John, THREE CHEERS AND A CLAP to you for championing a simple yet stubbornly difficult path to take for many. I am 74 + 6 months and DX'd a year and a half that late-age DX??? I wonder if you are familiar with progression of disease for older-age onset people? I read that late-age onset people have a faster progression. Have you read anything about that? Also Isradipine off-label use for slowing progression study? What do you think of the science underlying that study now in progress??? Something about this lowering blood pressure medication blocking channels in destruction of dopamine....I think calcium blockers. I'm interested in opinions not as a doctor or scientist but as a fellow participant in this group.


Hi Racer. I have heard that late-age-onset Pd patients do progress quicker, but I have seen no studies or other confirmation of this.

I have come across the name Isadoprine but I do not pass any comment on any medication I have not personally taken. It is not a normal Pd medication.

I am against taking any medication that does not do anything to slow down or reverse Pd. As you know, I am all for doing exercise to slow down or reverse the Pd. It works for me and many of the people I work with.

I do know that calcium is also a neurotransmitter, but it is not the one with which we have problems.




Great to read your positive results.. you may also be interested in this which i read recently



What happens in the brain to produce these visible benefits? Researchers at the University of Southern California - beth Fisher and others, looked at the brains of the mice that had exercised under conditions parallel to a human treadmill study. They found that:

Exercising changed neither the amount of dopamine nor the amount of neurons in the animals’ brains.

But in the ones that had exercised, the brain cells were using dopamine more efficiently.

They also found that exercise improves that efficiency by modifying the areas of the brain where dopamine signals are received — thesubstantia nigra and basal ganglia.

Scientists at University of Pittsburgh found that in animal models, exercise induces and increases the beneficial neurotrophic factors, particularly GDNF (glial-derived neurotrophic factor), which reduces the vulnerability of dopamine neurons to damage.


We all are hoping for a cure. Many of us are taking matters into our own hands as we research, look at others ideas and try not to be fooled by fake remedies from those that prey on the desperate. Many of us with PD try various possible solutions.

I for one have not given up on a food being the cause or cure. We are all different, differing in symptoms and progression, tells me that what we ingest is the common denominator.


I should buy a stationary bike for my exercise during the Winter or bad weather. To supplement my walking time.


•And at the Cleveland Clinic, Dr. Alberts et al. found that when people with Parkinson’s pedaled on a stationery bike 30% faster than their preferred “voluntary” rate (or forced exertion), they not only gained in aerobic fitness, but also showed improvement in motor function and coordination as well as manual dexterity. This improvement was retained some weeks after the exercise stopped.


Hi royprop I have brought a stationary bike as I have been getting out of breath with my walking I have had chest X-ray blood tests I having iam.a test on my heart this week as my tests are all clear.i have the brealthless attacks if I walk to fast or walk up hills I have been trying to follow John Pepper fast walking as I think he gives such good advice.I thought having these attacks have been caused by medication but gp and parkinson nurse do not think so.hopefully I will back working kind regards


Hi Royprop. Your a pal! There must be other ways of producing GDNF in the brain. All we have to do is look for them!

Keep at it, we are winning this battle.


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I've been working closely with Dr. Alberts since 2009, riding my own bike (not a tandem) either inside on a trainer or outside weather permitting, keeping at t he forced cadence of 80-90 rpm for an hour. All of my symptoms have improved dramatically, enabling me to cycle across Iowa 4 times, climb Mt. Kilimanjaro, to Annapurna Base Camp and Machu Picchu among other things. I am still at level 1 after 7 years. Check out


BRAVA, Nan! You are absolutely awesome! You inspire me.



Hi Nan, i have read your story before, its great encouragement. How much medication do you find you need now?


Nan, this is a big encouragement.


pedaling might diminish some of the symptoms of the disease. Alberts and his team had demonstrated a 35 percent reduction in Parkinson’s disease symptoms by the simple act of cycling at 80 to 90 rpms for 45 minutes three times a week.


It certainly helps me be consistent with my walking! It's hard to maintain an exercise program without great incentive like this.


I'm glad you find inspiration in my story. I fin it amazing as well and am happy to share it. After seven years, I take 2 1/2 25:100 Carbidopa levodopa and 8 mg Requip XL for PD and .5 mg Clonazapam for REM sleep disorder. And I bike A LOT!



Great inspiration for us all, but only 2 1/2 25/100 plus Requip 8mg a day. Is that correct, or do you take 2 1/2 Sinemet or Madopar tablets several times a day?



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