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Parkinson’s disease is classically defined by the presence of two or more of the following cardinal motor symptoms: bradykinesia, rigidity, tremor at rest, and gait disturbances. In the past two decades, the non‐motor symptom complex of the disease has gained increasing attention, warranted by the impact it has on patient quality of life. In this introductory chapter, the clinical characterization of the motor and non‐motor symptoms is extensively described and the possible pathophysiological mechanisms underlying each symptom are delineated. Furthermore, the subtypes of Parkinson’s disease, based on empirical and data‐driven systems, are discussed. An updated summary of the current state‐of‐the‐art in diagnosis and treatment is briefly covered. Finally, the currently unmet needs and direction of investigative efforts are analyzed, focusing on the non‐dopamine responsive symptoms and the search for biomarkers, cause‐directed effective treatments and neuroprotective therapies.

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