Research We Fund

research lab

Better treatment starts with better research. We now know that some people with Parkinson’s disease (PD) live well for decades with only minimal impact from their disease. We focus our research on understanding how these people — and their doctors — achieve these excellent results. Our goal is to help others apply what we learn to their own unique condition.

The Parkinson’s Foundation funds research through four main programs dedicated to finding the cause(s) of and a cure for PD:

  • Centers of Excellence Network: We choose our Centers of Excellence from the top ranks of academic medical centers that combine dedication to expert patient care with groundbreaking research. Through this program, we are raising the standard of care for everyone with Parkinson’s. The Parkinson’s Foundation offers annual funding to each designated center.
  • Parkinson’s Outcomes Project: Our signature clinical study of how people with Parkinson’s thrive. This groundbreaking initiative is the largest-ever study of Parkinson’s, with more than 12,000 patients enrolled across our Parkinson’s Foundation Centers of Excellence.
  • Research Centers: These designated academic or medical institutions are dedicated to creating and furthering innovative Parkinson’s research that can advance the understanding and treatment of Parkinson's. Each center manages at least three interconnected PD research studies.
  • PD GENEration: Mapping the future of Parkinson’s Disease: Our national initiative is the first-of-its-kind that offers free genetic testing for clinically relevant Parkinson's-related genes and free genetic counseling to help participants better understand their results.
  • Grants and Fellowship Awards: Our grants support investigators through funding to junior faculty, movement disorder fellows and researchers investigating special topics. These competitive awards and grants keep researchers in the PD field while continuously funding opportunities that lead to new advances.

We are focused on the next Parkinson’s disease breakthrough while working to bring expert care access to everyone living with PD to ensure they achieve the best results now. We’ve already shown that our model of Parkinson’s care — the highest standard of care — reduces complications and dramatically increases quality of life.

Our research is leading to care and treatment breakthroughs that bring hope to thousands of people and familiesWe have already shown that:

  • Regular neurologist care can save the lives of thousands of people with PD each year
  • Depression and anxiety are the number one factors impacting the overall health of people living with PD
  • Patients receive different medicines and treatment plans depending on where they receive care, with vastly different results

When you give to the Parkinson’s Foundation, you’re also helping push scientific discovery forward.

Grant Awards

The Parkinson’s Foundation pilots transformative research by investing $4.5 million in innovative projects. Learn more about grant opportunities.

Your participation in research is critical to finding new treatments and ultimately improving life for people with Parkinson’s around the world. To learn more, listen to our podcast episode “Why and How to Participate in Parkinson’s Research.”

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