It is known that the brain cells damaged in Parkinson's disease (PD) struggle to generate energy. This is because mitochondria -- powerhouses of the cell -- are faulty in these cells. These faulty mitochondria may hold the key to understanding what causes Parkinson's and how to treat it.
Our study will provide additional insight into the production of faulty mitochondria and will give us new therapeutic targets to treat this energy failure in patients with Parkinson's disease.
We will use brain samples and new technology to look inside individual brain cells. This technology allows us to look at many different components of the cell at the same time. This tells us how these components work together and how we might correct the abnormalities using drugs so cells produce better mitochondria.
Impact on Diagnosis/Treatment of Parkinson's disease:
In this study, we expect to find new therapeutic targets to treat people with PD. We also hope that if we can identify abnormal components of the cell, these might help in the diagnosis of PD.
Next Steps for Development:
If our research project is successful, we will look for drugs to act upon the identified targets. We will then test these drugs in the laboratory, and, if they work as expected, we will develop them for clinical use in people with Parkinson's disease.