Background: Parkinson’s disease (PD) is a neurodegenerative disorder characterized by a
complex interplay between peripheral and central inflammatory and oxidative stress pathways.
Objective: To investigate immune-inflammatory and oxidative stress pathways in relation to iron metabolism
in peripheral blood of PD patients and healthy controls.
Method: We recruited 56 healthy individuals and 56 PD patients in stages 1-3 of Hoehn and Yahr
Scale. Plasma haptoglobin (Hp), homocysteine, interleukin 6, soluble interleukin 6 receptor, iron (Fe),
ferritin, total iron binding capacity, transferrin (Tf), soluble transferrin receptor (sTfR), malondialdehyde
(MDA) and paraoxonase 1 (PON1) were measured.
Results: PD was associated with significant changes in Tf (lowered), sTfR, ferritin, Hp, interleukin
6 and MDA (all increased) levels, while there was a trend towards a negative association with PON1.
Logistic regression showed that the most significant biomarkers of PD were MDA, sTfR, Hp and ferritin.
Moreover, Fe levels were negatively associated with Hp and positively with PON1, total iron
binding capacity and Tf, while ferritin and sTfR were positively associated with MDA levels.
Conclusion: Our study indicates a state of systemic inflammation and oxidative stress in PD patients
coupled with alterations in Fe metabolism. Chronic inflammation and oxidative pathways in PD may in
part determine changes in iron metabolism. New drug treatments for PD should target inflammatory
and oxidative stress pathways and iron metabolism as well.