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Update on Tozadenant Trial for Parkinson’s

On 11/20/17, Acorda Therapeutics, Inc. announced that it is discontinuing the tozadenant clinical trial.  They concluded that they could not be confident that weekly white blood cell count screening would sufficiently ensure patient safety.


On 11/15/17, Acorda Therapeutics, Inc. announced that several people living with Parkinson's who participated in the Phase III trial for tozadenant experienced agranulocytosis — a severe drop in the number of white blood cells which fight infection — leading to cases of sepsis and five fatalities. Participants in the trial will now have blood cell count monitoring increased from monthly to weekly.  The study has paused new enrollment in the long-term safety studies, pending further discussion with the independent Data Safety Monitoring Board (DSMB) and the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Tozadenant is an oral adenosine A2a receptor antagonist currently in Phase III development as an adjunctive treatment to levodopa in Parkinson’s disease patients to reduce OFF time.

Statement from the Parkinson’s Foundation

Our thoughts are with the family members who lost a loved one enrolled in this trial. Their participation in clinical research will ultimately help make life better for the people diagnosed with Parkinson's in the future. 

The Parkinson’s Foundation remains confident that Acorda and the FDA will investigate this rare event. Clinical trials in Parkinson’s disease — from oral therapies to surgical treatments — have had a strong safety record and they are critical in testing the safety and efficacy of investigational therapies.

In order to discover new PD therapies, we rely on brave and altruistic people, like the ones in this trial, to participate in clinical research. The Parkinson’s Foundation remains committed to supporting clinical research through our global network of Centers of Excellence and Parkinson’s Advocates in Research.

If you would like more information about the benefits and risks of clinical trial participation, learn more here.  If you have questions or concerns, please call our toll-free Helpline at 1-800-4PD-INFO (473-4636).

Thursday, November 16, 2017
PDF Research Advocates Guide $16 Million in Parkinson’s Research Funding
Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Recently, two Parkinson’s Disease Foundation (PDF) volunteers helped guide $16 million in government funding for Parkinson’s disease (PD) research.

This spring, Sam Erwin, M.S., M.A., of West Des Moines, IA, and Paul Zimmet, D.D.S., of Reston, VA – both PDF Research Advocates, people living with PD and US Army Veterans – served as consumer reviewers of research funded by the US Department of Defense (DoD).

Parkinson's Disease Foundation Announces $4 Million in Research Investments to Solve, Treat and End Parkinson's Disease
Thursday, June 9, 2016

Research Funding for Early-Career Scientists Reflects Urgent Need for Better Therapies

Adaptive Athlete Announces 300 Skydives in 24 Hours
Wednesday, June 8, 2016

“300 Imperfect Jumps” Raises Funds for Parkinson’s Disease Research

NPF Celebrates the Life and the Legend of Muhammad Ali
Saturday, June 4, 2016

MIAMI — Today we mourn the loss and celebrate the life of Muhammad Ali, a longtime friend of the National Parkinson Foundation (NPF). Mr. Ali passed away at age 74 after being hospitalized for respiratory problems, a common complication in advanced Parkinson’s disease.

Parkinson’s Disease Foundation Marks Tenth Year of People with Parkinson’s Advisory Council
Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Patient Advisors Drive PDF Mission to Solve, Treat and End Parkinson’s

The Parkinson’s Disease Foundation® (PDF®) is pleased to mark the tenth year of its People with Parkinson’s Advisory Council and welcome five new members. Created in 2006, the council is made up of people living with Parkinson’s and care partners who drive PDF’s goals of ending the disease and improving the lives of those affected by it.

Fourth Annual Celebrate Spring Boston Raises $50,000 for Parkinson’s Disease Foundation
Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Boston Area Women Inspire Fellow Young Professionals to End Parkinson’s

FDA Approves Drug to Treat Parkinson’s Disease Psychosis
Friday, April 29, 2016

Today, the FDA approved Nuplazid (pimavanserin) as the first drug to treat hallucinations and delusions associated with Parkinson’s disease psychosis, which affects up to 40% of people with Parkinson’s.

FDA Panel Backs Approval of Pimavanserin
Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Big News for Advanced Parkinson’s

Lea Dempsey, Seventh Grader from NJ, Designs Winning Parkinson’s Awareness T-Shirt
Thursday, March 24, 2016

A digital drawing by 13-year-old Lea Dempsey of Princeton, NJ, came out on top in the Parkinson’s Disease Foundation’s (PDF) Seventh Annual Parkinson’s Awareness T-Shirt Design Contest. In PDF’s “kids only” contest, Ms. Dempsey’s design was a contender along with 20 other submissions from children ages five to 15-years-old. Her design was chosen as the winner by the general public in an online vote.

National Parkinson Foundation Campaign Promotes the Power of Exercise During Parkinson’s Disease Awareness Month
Monday, March 21, 2016

The National Parkinson Foundation (NPF) launched the #Move4PD campaign in recognition of National Parkinson’s Disease Awareness Month today. The campaign’s goal is to highlight the importance of exercise for those with Parkinson’s disease (PD) and its positive effects on the brain.

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