“Grow every stem cell,Tom Isaacs, to the tune of Climb Every Mountain, for the World Parkinson’s Congress 2016
search every gene,
sequence every exosome,
till you cure PD!”
For the past 4 years I have tried to summarize for you any PD research that I have come across in layman’s terms, so that it is easier for all of us to understand. In my last post, I stated that I was optimistic about finding a cure and disease modifiying treatments in the next couple of years. I just received a blog post from The Science of Parkinson’s about the current clinical trials that blew me away. The road ahead: 2020 reviews much of the clinical research that is focused on disease modification in Parkinson’s. I knew there is a lot going on with research, but had no idea to what extent. So yes, I am still optimistic that the next couple of years will be some major breakthroughs for us.
There is no way I can summarize all of this for you. My head is spinning just from scanning through the entire article. I need to go back and study it more closely. Here is what the author, Simon Stott, the deputy director of Research at the Cure Parkinson’s Trust, says he will be focusing on:
As stated in the intro, I am going to focus primarily on clinical trials of potentially disease modifying experimental therapies in this post, as a broader discussion of ‘all Parkinson’s research in 2020’ is too greater task.
And in keeping with previous years outlooks, I am going to frame this discussion around the idea that:
Any ‘curative therapy’ for Parkinson’s is going to require three core components:
- A disease halting mechanism
- A neuroprotective agent
- Some form of restorative therapy
Now, the bad news is (as far as I am aware) there is no single treatment currently available (or being tested) that can do all three of these things. By this I mean that there is no disease halting mechanism therapy that can also replace lost brain cells. Nor is there a restorative therapy that stop the progression of the condition.
That statement can obviously be read as bad news, but it shouldn’t.
Let me explain:
A curative therapy for Parkinson’s is going to need to be personalised to each individual, with varying levels of each of the three component listed above. It will be a multi-modal approach designed for each individual’s needs.
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Warning, this will most likely make your eyes glaze over after a few minutes. Don’t plan to read everything at one sitting. It will take you hours to go through it all. Even if you do not understand it all, I think it will give you some hope for the near future. Enjoy.