Vision - To stop Parkinson’s disease by funding research through a partnership of scientists and consumers
Parkinson’s disease (PD) is a degenerative movement disorder of the central nervous system resulting from a loss of neurons in a region of the brain called the substantia nigra. These neurons produce dopamine, a neurotransmitter important for motor control; however, as PD progresses, the death of dopaminergic neurons results in reduced dopamine levels and impairment of motor control. The Parkinson’s Research Program (PRP; funded under the Neurotoxin Exposure Treatment Parkinson’s Research [NETPR] appropriation) was initiated in 1997 to provide support for research of exceptional scientific merit leading to an understanding of the cause, prevention, and treatment of the loss of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra that result in PD. Projects examine neurodegenerative mechanisms and compensatory effects that compromise motor, autonomic, and cognitive systems that are characteristic alterations in PD patients and also present performance and health risks for military personnel.
Several risk factors for the development of PD that are of particular interest to the military community have been identified in peer-reviewed studies. The most significant risk factors include: exposure to agriculture-type chemicals (including pesticides, insecticides, and solvents); traumatic injury to the head; depression; prolonged physiologic or mental stress; repeated or prolonged disruption of sleep architecture; and repeated or prolonged disruption of autonomic nervous function. These may immediately impact both physical and cognitive performance as well as predispose susceptible Warfighters to the development of neurodegenerative conditions such as PD. The PRP challenges the scientific community to develop the most impactful research that will advance the understanding of the disease, with the ultimate goal of ending PD.
Dr. Kenneth Marek Video
Institute for Neurodegenerative Disorders
Evaluating the Natural History of Prodromal PD in the PARS Cohort
Dr. Caroline Tanner
University of California, San Francisco
Persistent Organic Pollutants and Parkinson’s disease in Native Populations of Hawaii and Alaska
Dr. Paul Greengard
New P11 Biomarker Predicts Clinical Effectiveness of Antidepressant Drugs
Dr. Howard J. Federoff
University of California, Irvine
PGC-1α Therapy for Parkinson Neurodegeneration
Last updated Friday, October 6, 2017