Michael J. Fox Foundation provides funding for early detection of Parkinson’s disease through urinary exosomes

The Michael J. Fox Foundation (MJFF) has provided funding to a Purdue University-affiliated company working to help make early detection of Parkinson’s and other diseases easier and less agonizing for patients.

The Michael J. Fox Foundation is one of the world’s largest organizations focused on the next generation of Parkinson’s disease treatments.

The foundation is supporting Tymora Analytical Operations’ efforts to study Parkinson’s using the startup’s EVtrap approach, which looks for certain biomarkers in a patient’s fluid samples.

No specific test exists to diagnose Parkinson’s, and current approaches are imperfect. The disease is typically diagnosed at a late stage, when the symptoms are apparent and treatment has limited effectiveness.

“This award will support our analysis work to find new urine biomarkers, which can lead to early Parkinson’s disease diagnoses and treatments,” said Anton Iliuk, Tymora’s chief technology officer.

Tymora’s EVtrap approach involves analyzing a urine sample to look for exosome proteins and phosphoproteins that are Parkinson’s-signaling molecules in the body.

“Because there is no specific test for Parkinson’s disease, doctors often review medical histories and perform neurological and physical examinations, which can often be inconclusive,” Iliuk said. “Our approach uses a simple urine test, often already performed during regular exams, to look for biomarkers. Diagnosing Parkinson’s at an early stage with our method would give doctors a greater opportunity to successfully treat the condition.”

The Tymora scientists will analyze more than 100 samples provided by MJFF to look for specific proteins found in Parkinson’s disease that contain enzymatically-attached phosphate groups.

The technology aligns with Purdue’s Giant Leaps celebration of the university’s global advancements in health as part of Purdue’s 150th anniversary.

Source – Purdue University

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