Thanks for getting back to me with your clarification...I'm glad the
information I provided earlier has helped to ease some concerns you
I've looked into the information that's available on the prevalence of
PD in Norwegians relative to other populations. In a nutshell, not
very much is known about the distribution of PD in different parts of
the world, or among different groups of people. PD is a difficult
condition to diagnose, and statistics about it are notriously
unreliable, making any meaningful comparisons quite difficult.
A good overview of what is known about the epidemiology of PD can be found here:
EPIDEMIOLOGY OF PARKINSON'S DESEASE
In particular, one section discusses comparisons among populations,
but makes no reference to differences among industrialized countries:
Does Parkinson's disease occur equally in all races of the world?
It is clear that PD has a worldwide occurrence. Available data
suggests that the prevalence (frequency) of PD is lower in Orientals
(studies done in Japan and China) and in black Africans (studies done
in Nigeria). There is controversy as to whether PD occurs less
frequently in black Americans since several, but not all studies have
found a low prevalence among them. Studies performed in northern
Europe are simiiar to that in the United States.
That said, there is a bit of research available that suggests the some
cases of PD *may* have a genetic component, and that some people of
Norse descent may have a higher incidence of certain genes related to
PD. This isn't definitive work, by any means, but it is certainly
suggestive. The authors of one study hold out the hope that the
understanding of the genetic component may lead to improved treatment
I've included some information about this, along with some other
studies about Norwegian populations, or by Norwegian researchers,
along with brief excerpts from the abstracts (I can't reproduce them
in full as they are copyright):
Tidsskr Nor Laegeforen. 2004 Apr 1;124(7):922-4.
The genetics of Parkinson disease
Toft M, Aasly J.
Institutt for nevromedisin, Det medisinske fakultet, Norges
...A genetic component in Parkinson's disease was long thought to be
unlikely, but recent genetic studies have identified several genes
associated with the disease.
...a locus on chromosome 1 was linked to common late-onset PD in the
Icelandic population. Iceland's population is primarily of Norse
descent. This locus may be of significant importance to Norwegian PD
...The genes and loci identified have improved our understanding of
the pathogenesis in PD significantly. This knowledge may help to
create new treatment strategies for PD.
Neurology. 2004 Mar 23;62(6):937-42.
Mortality and Parkinson disease: A community based study.
Herlofson K, Lie SA, Arsland D, Larsen JP.
Departments of Neurology (Drs. Herlofson and Larsen) and Psychiatry (Dr.
Arsland), Central Hospital of Rogaland, Stavanger.
[This study did not compare rates of PD in Norway and elsewhere, but
these researchers are experts in the incidence of PD in Norway...you
may want to contact them]
[This study again makes an association between PD and a gene present
in Norwegian populations]
Neurosci Lett. 2002 Apr 5;322(2):83-6.
The tau H1 haplotype is associated with Parkinson's disease in the
Farrer M, Skipper L, Berg M, Bisceglio G, Hanson M, Hardy J, Adam A, Gwinn-Hardy
K, Aasly J.
Laboratory of Familial Movement Disorders, Mayo Clinic, Jacksonville, FL, USA.
We investigated the association of Parkinson's disease (PD) with tau gene H1
haplotypes in the Norwegian population...Findings provide evidence
that tau participates in the PD pathogenic process and demonstrate the
value of isolated populations in mapping complex traits.
[This study mentions a treatment approach that appeared to slow the
onset of PD in Scandanavian patients]
Eur J Neurol. 1999 Sep;6(5):539-47.
Does selegiline modify the progression of early Parkinson's disease? Results
from a five-year study. The Norwegian-Danish Study Group.
Larsen JP, Boas J, Erdal JE.
Department of Neurology, Central Hospital of Rogaland, Stavanger, Norway.
The objective of this study was to examine the effect of long-term treatment
with selegiline on the progression of Parkinson's disease (PD)...Results
indicated that patients treated with the combination of selegiline
and levodopa developed markedly less severe parkinsonism and required
lower doses of levodopa during the five-year study period than patients treated
with levodopa and placebo....
Lastly, I want to mention the existence of this site, which you are
probably aware of already, but just in case:
If you speak/read Norwegian, you may want to check it out.
I trust this answer provides the information you were looking for.
But before rating the answer, please let me know if there's anything
else that you need. Just post a Request for Clarification to let me
know how I can assist you further, and I'm at your service.
All the best to you,
search strategy -- Google searches on: