With new technology comes testing previous suppositions.
This time, scientists have found that Mount Etna’s lava stones may be leaching manganese into the Sicilian drinking water.
The symptoms of manganism and Parkinson’s disease are similar: tremors, impaired motor skills, rigidity and more. The number of Parkinson’s sufferers around Mount Etna has been high enough to stump doctors’ explanations. Manganism might be the answer.
Lava rocks from Mount Etna were recently tested with x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS). XPS allowed scientists to study the composition of the rock bellow the surface by a few nanometers. Water samples also showed dangerously high levels of manganese; this will, over time, cause manganism.