Photobiomodulation for Parkinson's Disease in Animal Models: A Systematic Review

Biomolecules. 2020 Apr 15;10(4):610. doi: 10.3390/biom10040610.


Photobiomodulation (PBM) might be an effective treatment for Parkinson's disease (PD) in human patients. PBM of the brain uses red or near infrared light delivered from a laser or an LED at relatively low power densities, onto the head (or other body parts) to stimulate the brain and prevent degeneration of neurons. PD is a progressive neurodegenerative disease involving the loss of dopamine-producing neurons in the substantia nigra deep within the brain. PD is a movement disorder that also shows various other symptoms affecting the brain and other organs. Treatment involves dopamine replacement therapy or electrical deep brain stimulation. The present systematic review covers reports describing the use of PBM to treat laboratory animal models of PD, in an attempt to draw conclusions about the best choice of parameters and irradiation techniques. There have already been clinical trials of PBM reported in patients, and more are expected in the coming years. PBM is particularly attractive as it is a non-pharmacological treatment, without any major adverse effects (and very few minor ones).

Keywords: Parkinson’s disease; abscopal; animal models; low-level laser therapy; parameters; photobiomodulation; transcranial.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Disease Models, Animal*
  • Humans
  • Low-Level Light Therapy*
  • Parkinson Disease / radiotherapy*
  • Publications