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Study finds new genes linked to Parkinson's

February 2, 2011 12:00:00 AM PST
In a potential breakthrough in the fight against Parkinson's disease, scientists identified five new genes linked to the illness.

Six other genes have already been identified.

Experts said there is increasing proof that the degenerative disease is sparked by genetics rather than environmental factors.

The discovery doesn't mean there are any new treatments just yet, but experts are optimistic they are getting closer.

Until recently, scientists weren't sure what caused Parkinson's disease, but assumed environmental factors like exposure to chemicals or past head injuries were largely to blame.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.