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China develops therapeutic apparatus for Parkinson's disease

HARBIN, March 2 (Xinhua) -- A therapeutic apparatus to treat Parkinson's disease has been developed in northeast China's Heilongjiang Province, according to the provincial science and technology department.

It is a worldwide breakthrough in treating the disease with transcranial magnetic stimulation, concluded an expert panel with the Heilongjiang Provincial Department of Science and Technology.

The team said it came to the conclusion after evaluating technical documents and clinical test results Monday.

This is the first time that transcranial magnetic stimulation has been adopted to treat Parkinson's disease, said Sun Zuodong, chairman of Aobo Medicine Apparatus Co., Ltd. (AMA), the developer based in the provincial capital Harbin.

Transcranial magnetic stimulation is a noninvasive method which causes depolarization in the brains' neurons so as to restore the functions of brain nerves.

The apparatus consists of three parts, namely brain wave stimulator, field effect cap and multiplier, said Sun.

Clinical tests over more than 100 patients showed that the apparatus had a 70 percent success rate in reducing the disease's symptoms, according to Wang Aili, planning manager of AMA.

The new equipment will help generation of dopamine, the reduction of which within the brain caused the disease, said Wang Weixiang, a consulting doctor with the Heilongjiang Provincial Rehabilitation Hospital.

Parkinson's disease is a disorder of the neural system, which leads to limb tremors and difficulty in walking and other movements.

China has 2 million patients suffering from Parkinson's disease, mostly people over the age of 50, and the number is increasing by 100,000 annually, said Dr. Wang.

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