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UNMC Parkinson's Therapy Potentially a Breakthrough

Mar 31, 2017

Parkinson’s disease affects nearly one million Americans and costs around 25 billion dollars a year in the United States alone.  It’s a progressive neurodegenerative disease for which there is currently no cure, but a UNMC research team has evidence their new drug therapy can bring about improvements in patients with Parkinson’s.

The research team is led by Drs. Howard Gendelman and R. Lee Mosley, both Professors of Pharmacology and Experimental Neuroscience at UNMC. Their drug regimen changes disease-causing white blood cells into cells that protect and defend against brain injury. 

Gendelman calls their therapy a breakthrough in Parkinson’s treatment.

“If we can train or augment the immune system to alter the microenvironment – the injurious microenvironment of the brain, we can then shift a toxic setting, or a toxic environment for Parkinson’s disease, into something that will elicit repair and regeneration of specific nerve cells that are damaged or even dying during the disease process.”

Gendelman says the next step will involve clinical trials with larger numbers of patients, which should happen within the next one to two years. 

For more information on the study, the website is UNMC.edu