MIAMI & NEW YORK (July 18, 2023) – The Parkinson’s Foundation has announced an investment of $2.8 million in 30 grants to accelerate cutting-edge Parkinson’s disease (PD) research. Through research grants, the Foundation funds scientists conducting innovative studies across various aspects of PD to bring forward new therapies, treatments, and ultimately a cure for the 10 million people worldwide living with this debilitating neurological disease.
“Taking on a disease as complex as Parkinson’s requires the best scientific minds in the world. We are focused on supporting innovative scientific approaches to research, and individual scientists are the drivers of those advances,” said Chief Scientific Officer James Beck, PhD, of the Parkinson’s Foundation.
This year, the Parkinson’s Foundation 2023 Bill and Amy Gurley Impact Awards were made possible by a $1 million donation from Bill and Amy Gurley. These awards are designed to support out-of-the-box projects that bring a new light to the biology of PD, a new approach to research or a novel treatment idea.
Jingxin Wang, PhD, one of the award’s recipients from the University of Kansas School of Pharmacy, will utilize the grant to explore a potential new way to target the cause of PD by using RNA-degrading technology. This study will use new technology to investigate how to prevent over-accumulation of the alpha-synuclein protein in the brain, hopefully paving a way to halt the development of the disease. The study’s findings can potentially revolutionize the field of RNA therapeutics, not only for PD, but also for a wide range of neurological disorders.
“Receiving this esteemed award from the Parkinson’s Foundation is an incredible honor and a significant milestone in my journey as a researcher,” said Wang. “I am dedicated to advancing our understanding of Parkinson’s, and as a chemist, I am excited to harness the potential of RNA-degrading technology to target this complex neurological disorder.”
Parkinson's Foundation research grants are selected through a highly competitive application process that is comprised of a peer-review panel of scientific experts, including members of the Foundation’s Scientific Advisory Board and Foundation-trained research advocates. Research award categories include independent investigator awards, fellowships, early career awards and awards for institutions. For a complete list of 2023 recipients and more information about Parkinson’s Foundation research grant opportunities, please visit Parkinson.org/ResearchGrants.
About the Parkinson’s Foundation
The Parkinson’s Foundation makes life better for people with Parkinson’s disease by improving care and advancing research toward a cure. In everything we do, we build on the energy, experience and passion of our global Parkinson’s community. Since 1957, the Parkinson’s Foundation has invested more than $449 million in Parkinson’s research and clinical care. Connect with us on Parkinson.org, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or call 1-800-4PD-INFO (1-800-473-4636).
About Parkinson’s Disease
Affecting an estimated one million Americans, Parkinson’s disease is the second-most common neurodegenerative disease after Alzheimer’s and is the 14th-leading cause of death in the U.S. It is associated with a progressive loss of motor control (e.g., shaking or tremor at rest and lack of facial expression), as well as non-motor symptoms (e.g., depression and anxiety). There is no cure for Parkinson’s and nearly 90,000 new cases are diagnosed each year in the U.S.