Parkinson’s Disease by Anthony West

Parkinson’s disease (PD) afflicts approximately 1.5 million Americans annually.  Although drugs such as levodopa (Sinemet) are available for the treatment of parkinsonian symptoms, they often produce disabling side effects called dyskinesias.  These side effects are thought to arise as a result of abnormal drug- and disease-induced neurotransmitter interactions in an area of the brain called the basal ganglia.  Our proposed studies will use an animal model of PD and examine the utility of combining a new drug (a cyclic nucleotide phosphodiesterase inhibitor called TP-10) with levodopa for treating disease symptoms and associated side effects.   We will also assess how this novel drug combination affects neuron activity in the basal ganglia.  We anticipate that our proposed studies will identify more efficacious treatment strategies for patients suffering from PD and levodopa-induced dyskinesias.

Other Grants

Rebekah C. Evans, Ph.D., Georgetown University
In Vivo and Ex Vivo Dissection of Midbrain Neuron Activity During Exercise
Exercise is important for the health of the body and the mind. Exercise promotes learning and reduces symptoms of brain-related diseases such as Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s disease. However, it…
William J. Giardino, Ph.D. Stanford University
Deciphering the Neuropeptide Circuitry of Emotional Arousal in Narcolepsy
This research project aims to investigate the neural mechanisms of a specific type of brain cell called neuropeptide neurons within a region of the brain’s amygdala network called the bed…
Howard Gritton, Ph.D., University of Illinois
Attention Mechanisms Contributing to Auditory Spatial Processing.
Our world is composed of a rich mixture of sounds. We often process sounds including speech in the presence of many other competing auditory stimuli (e.g., voices in a crowded…
Nora Kory, Ph.D., Harvard University
Elucidating the Fates and Functions of Lactate in the Brain
The human brain requires significant energy to function. Despite accounting for only 2% of our body weight, the brain consumes a substantial 20% of the body’s energy, relying on a…