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Clinical Research Study Focuses on Little Known Behavioral Changes Related to Parkinson's Disease
Date:1/22/2009

Study Recruiting Adult Parkinson's Patients with Behavioral Changes

KING OF PRUSSIA, Pa., Jan. 22 /PRNewswire/ -- Parkinson's disease affects 6.3 million people worldwide. While the disease is recognized for its profound effects on movement such as tremors, less known is that 1 in 3 Parkinson's disease patients will develop changes that include hallucinations, illusions and delusions.

ACADIA Pharmaceuticals, a biopharmaceutical company headquartered in San Diego is currently conducting a study aimed at improving the quality of life for people with Parkinson's disease and its behavioral complications. The company recently received an award from the Michael J. Fox Foundation for its continuing work in Parkinson's research.

ACADIA Pharmaceuticals is now evaluating an investigational medication that researchers hope will help treat the cognitive and behavioral changes caused by Parkinson's. As Parkinson's disease progresses, up to 40 percent of patients can experience what is called 'Parkinson's Psychosis.' A condition in which patients experience changes in thought, behavior and judgment that can have devastating effects. In more advanced stages these symptoms include hallucinations, illusions and delusions where patients see things that aren't really there, believe things that are untrue, create false ideas and falsely accuse those closest to them.

"While the physical manifestations of Parkinson's disease are difficult to deal with, the changes in thought, behavior and judgment strain the bonds between patients and their caregivers and families," said expert Dr. Bernard Ravina, Director of the Movement and Inherited Neurological Disorders Unit at the University of Rochester in New York.

An online survey conducted by MediciGlobal, a firm assisting ACADIA Pharmaceuticals in finding Parkinson's patients with Psychosis for this study, found that 4 out of every 10 Parkinson's caregivers were unaware that these behavioral and cognitive changes were associated with Parkinson's. Carol McLain, a registered nurse and caregiver who responded to the survey said, "As a nurse, I was prepared for the physical problems but I was totally unprepared for the psychiatric issues in caring for my husband."

There are currently no FDA-approved treatments for these particular non-physical symptoms of Parkinson's disease. Research is necessary to advance future medicines for Parkinson's Psychosis.

Those caring for someone who may be experiencing Parkinson's Disease Psychosis, are encouraged to call the toll-free study hotline , at 1-866-565-0261 or visit the clinical research Web site at www.ParkinsonsMindStudy.com. Here caregivers can find clinical research centers conducting this study.


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SOURCE MediciGlobal
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