Researchers have identified a link between the presence of the Desulfovibrio bacterial strain in the gut and the development of Parkinson’s disease. The researchers at the University of Helsinki and the University of Eastern Finland found that the microbes excrete compounds that trigger proteins inside brain cells to form toxic α-synuclein clumps. They isolated Desulfovibrio strains from fecal samples of Parkinson’s patients and their healthy spouses. Further they fed the strains to genetically modified nematode worms, which were then observed to produce similar clumps. The researchers hope to target the harmful bacteria in the gut, potentially slowing the progression of Parkinson’s disease.