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Michael J. Fox Foundation Awards $2.8 Million to Drive Development of Parkinson's Disease Biomarker Pipeline
Date:2/4/2010

The development of drug biomarkers is also critical to provide researchers with a tool for conclusively assessing whether a given drug is reaching brain areas of interest and/or achieving its desired effect. Danna Jennings, MD, of the Institute for Neurodegenerative Disorders is working with a brain imaging molecule that can be used as a biomarker for drugs targeting a glutamate receptor in the brain known as mGluR5. Drugs that block mGluR5 (antagonists) have been shown in pre-clinical models to reduce dyskinesias, the involuntary movements that are a debilitating side effect of dopamine replacement therapy to treat PD. Dr. Jennings will use the imaging molecule to confirm that a clinically approved mGluR5 antagonist is reaching the brain at appropriate levels and to determine the most effective dose of the drug for use in future PD clinical trials.

The following is a complete list of funded projects, which are made possible through the generous support of The Brin Wojcicki Foundation. Grant abstracts and researcher bios are available on the Foundation's Web site, www.michaeljfox.org.

T-Cell Receptor Changes as a Biomarker of Parkinson's Disease

Chuanhai Cao, PhD, University of South Florida, College of Medicine

Analysis of the Enteric Nervous System Using Routine Colonoscopy Biopsies: a Biomarker of Neurodegeneration in Parkinson's Disease?

Pascal Derkinderen, MD, PhD, Department of Neurology, Inserm U913, Nantes, France

QE3 Trial Ancillary Biomarkers Study

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SOURCE Michael J. Fox Foundation
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