Editor's Note: For more Foundation news and research updates, read the Fall/Winter 2018 edition of The Fox Focus, our biannual newsletter.
The Michael J. Fox Foundation (MJFF) takes a comprehensive approach to Parkinson's disease. We work to understand the full scope of resources that Parkinson's researchers need, and do everything we can to provide them.
It begins with a willingness to take risks. Innovative ideas for new therapies are often untested, which makes it difficult for them to get funding. MJFF was founded to take bold chances and help these ideas move forward. Now, the FDA is reviewing two therapies we supported in early clinical trials with decisions expected in January 2019.
These therapies — an inhaled form of levodopa and an under-the-tongue strip of apomorphine — are on track to become the first funded by MJFF to reach patients. Both are designed to treat "off" episodes in Parkinson's, which are periods when medication levels fluctuate and motor symptoms recur. Patients report that "off" episodes seriously impact their quality of life, which is why treating them was a priority for the Foundation.
Today, there is a robust pipeline of therapies in development for Parkinson's thanks to MJFF support. While we continue to help new ideas enter the pipeline, we are devoting more of our efforts to ensure those programs have all the resources necessary to succeed. MJFF is creating cohorts and providing researchers with recruitment and support for clinical trials, data and biospecimens to test new ideas and develop diagnostic measures, and tools specific for Parkinson's.
Each of these resources represents significant time, expertise and money. No single researcher or company could have provided them to the entire field, but thanks to your support, The Michael J. Fox Foundation can — and will. This year, we are on track to invest more than $85 million in research. Together, we are driving progress.
Thank you for all you do.