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Benefit of folic acid supplementation in parkinsonian patients treated with levodopa
  1. T Müller,
  2. D Woitalla,
  3. W Kuhn
  1. Department of Neurology, St Josef Hospital, Ruhr University Bochum, Gudrunstrasse 56, 44791 Bochum, Germany
  1. Correspondence to:
 Dr T Müller; 

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We read with interest the recent excellent review by Reynolds on the role of folic acid and the risks and benefits of its supplementation in the nervous system.1 It emphasises the beneficial importance of folate on the numerous methylation processes in combination with S-adenosylmethionine (SAM), which donates its methyl group to prevent hyperhomocysteinaemia.1 However SAM deficiency, which is associated with, for example, cognitive decline and/or mood disturbances, and increased total homocysteine levels, which support onset of vascular disease, may also caused by drugs, for example, levodopa.2,3 Levodopa is administered with dopa decarboxylase inhibitors (DDI) to prevent its peripheral degradation. This increases conversion of levodopa to 3-O-methyldopa (3-OMD) by the ubiquitious enzyme catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) in blood, peripheral tissues and in nigrostriatal neurons.2,3 COMT requires Mg2+ as cofactor and …

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