Oregon Health & Science University is joining a select group of research institutions working to identify biological signals that indicate the presence or progression of Parkinson’s disease. The landmark clinical study will use a combination of brain imaging studies, lab tests and behavioral assessments to identify key markers of the disease. Modeled on a similar initiative in Alzheimer’s disease, the research has the potential to dramatically change treatment of this troubling disease.
“We need more sensitive tools to detect and measure Parkinson’s disease, especially early in its course,” said Penelope Hogarth, MD, Associate Professor, Department of Neurology, and clinical research director of the Parkinson Center of Oregon at OHSU. “The availability of reliable biomarkers is critical to the development of treatments that could delay the progression of Parkinson’s disease or even prevent its onset.”