Perhaps one of the most well-studied and important cases on the relationship between neurotoxic chemical exposures and neurodegenerative disease is the "Case of the Frozen Addicts" report by Dr. William Langston. In this case, a form of synthetic heroin which contained the compound MPTP was found to be the culprit. More importantly, the parkinsonism induced by exposure to MPTP could be treated with the same medications used to treat idiopathic Parkinson's disease, indicating the that the two forms of parkinsonism shared a common neuropathology.
WGBH has a very nice documentary about this story which can be found in their archives here.
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