Hydrogen therapy appears to be promising for a wide variety of human disease models. One, in particular, I have been asked about recently is Parkinson’s Disease. There is a growing body of evidence that supports molecular hydrogen holds therapeutic potential for Parkinson’s Disease (PD). I covered a portion of this data in an email to a client and I believe it will be helpful to share it publicly to provide a place where this information can be viewed as a whole. We will eventually create an H2Minutes video on the possible health benefits of molecular hydrogen for PD in the future but until then, this article should suffice.
I understand your statement or position. The research on hydrogen therapy and Parkinson’s Disease is promising and shows therapeutic potential. Parkinson’s Disease (PD) is a neurodegenerative disease that results from the death of dopamine generating cells in the part of the brain called the substantia nigra. The substantia is involved in the control of movement and the development of memory. Oxidative stress, mitochondrial dysfunction, inflammation, nitric oxide toxicity, alteration and/or accumulation in ubiquitin, and excitotoxicity, is a possible explanation for the causes and progression of PD.
Possible etiological markers:
“Chronic oxidative stress causes neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s disease (PD)”
“Oxidative stress contributes to the cascade leading to dopamine cell degeneration in Parkinson’s disease (PD). However, oxidative stress is intimately linked to other components of the degenerative process, such as mitochondrial dysfunction, excitotoxicity, nitric oxide toxicity, and inflammation.
“In Parkinson’s disease, mitochondrial dysfunction and the associated oxidative stress are major causes of dopaminergic cell loss in the substantia nigra .”
“Recently, altered ubiquitination and degradation of proteins have been implicated as key to dopaminergic cell death in PD.”
Molecular hydrogen has been demonstrated to have therapeutic effects or potential for every etiologic or pathophysiologic target mentioned above (oxidative stress, inflammation, etc). Here are some examples of each.
Hydrogen therapy and oxidative stress:
“In addition, it has been shown that hydrogen is able to increase antioxidant enzymes to help suppress the disastrous effects of oxidative stress.”
“Moreover, H2 shows not only effects against oxidative stress, but also various anti-inflammatory and anti-allergic effects.”
“The numerous publications on its biological and medical benefits revealed that H2 reduces oxidative stress not only by direct reactions with strong oxidants, but also indirectly by regulating various gene expressions. Moreover, by regulating the gene expressions, H2 functions as an anti-inflammatory and anti-apoptotic, and stimulates energy metabolism.”
Hydrogen therapy and inflammation:
“The anti-inflammatory effect of H2 has already been reported in many studies.”
“Hydrogen-rich saline plays a protective role in ANP-induced AHI through inhibiting inflammation and apoptosis, involving JNK and p38 MAPK-dependent reactive oxygen species.”
Hydrogen Therapy protects mitochondria/mitochondria dysfunction:
“Preliminary clinical trials show that drinking hydrogen-dissolved water seems to improve the pathology of mitochondrial disorders.”
“In conclusion, HS attenuates mitochondrial oxidative stress and dysfunction, and inhibits mitochondrial-mediated apoptosis in the livers of BDL mice.”
“Our study showed that hydrogen-rich saline was able to attenuate neuronal I/R injury, probably by protecting mitochondrial function in rats.”
Hydrogen Therapy promotes mitochondrial biogenesis:
“H2 inhalation during EVLP may play a pivotal role in preserving better graft function through promotion of anti-inflammatory and cytoprotective effects as well as activation of mitochondrial biogenesis in lungs.”
“PGC-1α also functions as the organizer of mitochondrial biogenesis. Recently, it was reported that H2 enhances mitochondrial membrane potential in damaged sperm.26 Multiple functions of H2 may be elucidated at least partly through the multiple functions of PGC-1α.”
Hydrogen Therapy regulates nitric oxide and its products (Hydroxyl radical (OH*) and Peroxynitrite (ONOO-)):
“Additionally, NO enhances oxidative stress via the reaction with ●O2– by the production of highly oxidative peroxynitrite (NO + ●O2– → ONOO–).”
“”H2 reduces cellular peroxynitrite, a highly toxic reactive nitrogen species. Thus, H2 may be an effective and novel clinical tool for treating glaucoma and other oxidative stress-related diseases.”
“This study implies that one of the H2 functions, including transcriptional alterations, is caused through reducing ONOO- derived from NO•.”
“Taken together, our studies indicate that hydrogen inhibits LPS/IFNγ-induced NO production through modulation of signal transduction in macrophages and ameliorates inflammatory arthritis in mice, providing the molecular basis for hydrogen effects on inflammation and a functional interaction between two gaseous signaling molecules, NO and molecular hydrogen.”
“This is particularly important, as mitochondria, the primary site of generation of reactive oxygen species, is notoriously difficult to target. Ohsawa, et al.  reported that hydrogen can target intracellular sources of reactive oxygen species and inhibit reperfusion-induced oxidative damage by selectively scavenging ONOO- and ·OH, the strongest of the oxidant species which reacts indiscriminately with nucleic acids, lipids and proteins. Therefore, H2 could selectively react with the ·OH to produce water, and did not react with other ROS that possess physiological functions.”
Hydrogen Therapy decreases ubiquitin accumulation via activating autophagy in the Central Nervous System:
“However, the ubiquitin-binding protein P62/SQSTM1 is an autophagy substrate, which, upon direct binding to LC3, incorporates into autophagosomes and is efficiently degraded by autophagy [29, 30]. Thus, when autophagy is arrested, P62 accumulates . Compared to group S, P62 in the spinal cord of group C was significantly increased on the 14th postoperative day (P < 0.05, n = 12, one-way ANOVA; Figures 2(a), 2(d), and 2(f)). Compared with that in CCI rats, P62 in the spinal cord of group C + H was significantly decreased (Figures 2(a), 2(d), and 2(f)). Thus, HRS treatment activated the autophagy pathway in rats with CCI of the spinal cord.”
Hydrogen Therapy may reduce excitotoxicity in the brain:
“In addition, HRW prevented the ischemia-induced reduction of parvalbumin and hippocalcin levels in vivo and also reduced the glutamate toxicity-induced death of neurons, including the dose-dependent reduction of glutamate toxicity-associated proteins in vitro. Moreover, HRW attenuated the glutamate toxicity-induced elevate in intracellular Ca(2+) levels.”
“Administration of HRS reduced glutamate excitotoxic injury and enhanced retinal recovery in guinea pigs.38 These beneficial results could be ascribed to the suppression of the glial cells and the promotion of glutamate clearance.”
This is just a small sampling of the data and as you can see hydrogen therapy (hydrogen water, hydrogen inhalation, etc) has therapeutic potential for each possible etiological target. This is also evident in the direct evidence of Parkinson’s Disease Studies (Animal models and Humans).
This study shows that H2 helped to reduce the loss of dopaminergic cells:
“Drinking H2 bubbled water reduced loss of dopaminergic neurons in substantia nigra induced by acute injection of MPTP.”
“Drinking H2/Mg water before and after acute injection of MPTP reduced loss of dopaminergic neurons.”
“H2 water also reduced the amount of ROS-derived oxidative products such as 4-HNE and 8-oxoG, which would be the primary causes of neuronal apoptosis in dopaminergic neurons. Thus, our study may pave the way toward a new neuroprotective strategy using H2 water in PD patients.”
This study shows that H2 has a positive effect on reducing the symptoms of PD:
“The results indicated that drinking H2‐water was safe and well-tolerated, and a significant improvement in total UPDRS scores for patients in the H2‐water group was demonstrated.”
Here are some additional quotes from the literature discussing hydrogen’s therapeutic effects for PD.
“Here, we describe the mechanism whereby oxidative stress evokes irreversible cell death, and propose a novel therapeutic strategy for PD using molecular hydrogen. Hydrogen has an ability to reduce oxidative damage and ameliorate the loss of nigrostriatal dopaminergic neuronal pathway in two experimental animal models. Thus, it is strongly suggested that hydrogen might provide a great advantage to prevent or minimize the onset and progression of PD.”
“Mitochondrial damage caused by oxidative stress is an important cause of many neurodegenerative diseases. Early clinical experiments on Parkinson’s disease  showed that H2 can significantly improve neurodegenerative symptoms with a therapeutic effect comparable to that of non-ergot dopamine therapy.
“A recent clinical trial showed that HW can improve the total Unified Parkinson’s Disease Rating Scale score of PD . Early clinical trials revealed that hydrogen improves PD through antioxidation. More recent research found that hydrogen may slightly increase oxidative stress or act as the rectifier of the mitochondrial electron flow and improve PD by regulating mitochondrial energy  or via hormetic mechanisms.”
If nothing else I want to demonstrate that hydrogen therapy holds legitimate therapeutic potential for PD patients and it is considered a novel therapeutic treatment or strategy for PD. This is why further larger-scale clinical studies/trials are being conducted on the disease model.
In my opinion of the data and the safety profile of medicinal hydrogen gas, I believe there is enough scientific data/evidence for the investment and/or engagement in the therapy. That’s my professional opinion. The choice is obviously yours but I didn’t want you to think the engagement in this therapy for PD had no merit. There is a growing body of evidence that suggests it’s a possible novel therapeutic agent for PD.
I hope this helps. “