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John Hardy, PhD, right, accepted the 2015 Robert A. Pritzker Prize from MJFF VP Brian Fiske, PhD, and Michael J. Fox on April 15.

John Hardy awarded 2015 Robert A. Pritzker Prize for Leadership in Parkinson's Research

One of the UK Parkinson's Disease Consortium Principal Investigators, Prof John Hardy, has been awarded the 2015 Robert A. Pritzker Prize for his leadership in Parkinson's genetics research. The award was presented by Michael J. Fox at a ceremony in New York on April 15. From the Michael J. Fox Foundation website: More...

Webcast - Prof Nicholas Wood - Advances in Genetic Understanding of Parkinson's Disease.

Video: Advances in Genetic Understanding of Parkinson's Disease

Webcast of the presentation entitled ‘Advances in Genetic Understanding of Parkinson's Disease’ given by Nicholas Wood (University College London, United Kingdom) presented at the Biochemical Society Hot Topic event, PINK1-Parkin Signalling in Parkinson’s Disease and Beyond, held in December 2014. More...

Pedigrees and I-FP-CIT SPECT scan images of the four families with GCH1 mutations involved in this study.

GCH1 gene and Parkinson's risk

A study published in Brain, led by researchers at UCL Institute of Neurology, has shown that genetic mutations which cause a decrease in dopamine production in the brain and lead to a form of childhood-onset Dystonia, also play a role in the development of Parkinson’s disease.
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Leonard Wolfson Experimental Neurology Centre (LWENC)

The new Leonard Wolfson Experimental Neurology Centre (LWENC) has opened for clinical studies and trials

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Audioslide presentation on Claudia Manzoni's paper examining how fibroblasts with LRRK2 mutations react to starvation conditions and the possible deficits that they have in autophagy.

LRRK2 and autophagy in fibroblasts

In this paper Claudia Manzoni studies how fibroblast cells from people with Parkinson’s disease caused by mutations in LRRK2 react to starvation. Although the changes are quite subtle, there are differences between the way that fibroblasts that contain mutant LRRK2 respond to being starved – suggesting that there may be changes in the way that these cells regulate a key process called autophagy (a term which comes from the greek meaning to eat yourself, and is one of the ways that cells get rid of waste and recycle proteins and organellles).
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  • UK Parkinson's Disease Consortium (UKPDC) is a group of world-leading genetic, biochemical, clinical and other scientific researchers who possess complementary expertise, technology and other resources to identify and tackle the causes of Parkinson’s disease (PD).
  • Parkinson's disease is a common, disabling and currently incurable neurodegenerative condition that affects over 2% of people over the age of 75.
  • There has been tremendous progress in recent years in understanding better the possible causes of Parkinson's disease.
  • This has been principally driven by genetic discoveries of the genes/molecules that determine a higher risk factor for developing Parkinson's disease.
  • We now have the opportunity to harness these discoveries into a more complete understanding of neurodegeneration (cell death) and dysfunction in this disease and to fully characterise the common clinical traits so that Parkinson's disease treatment can be realised.
  • We have three main goals:

    • To undertake comprehensive genetic analysis of a large number of well characterised Parkinson's disease patients to identify rare variants and novel genes that cause and predispose to the disease.
    • To understand the biochemistry of existing and novel causative Parkinson's disease gene products, and their pathways, to describe the regulation and function of these proteins.
    • To collate the clinical traits of a large group of at-risk patients and to define the early Parkinson's disease symptoms, so that disease modifying treatments could be administered as early as possible.
  • This research should yield crucial new knowledge of the pathways leading to neurodegeneration and shed insight into the causation of Parkinson's disease.
     
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