Webinar Recap: An Update on Parkinson’s Disease Research presented by the UAB Udall Center



Update on Parkinson’s Disease Research


How can I get involved in the Sparx 3 study?

The study is enrolling soon. For more information, please contact Jenna Smith at (205) 996-2807.

Would this study include those with Parkinsonisms?

The Udall Center does not include Parkinsonism, just idiopathic Parkinson’s disease.

Have you reviewed the recent account from North Korea on stem cell implantation as a potential PD cure?

There was a recent publication about use of a patient’s own cells, which went through several steps in a laboratory to become dopamine producing cells, were grown in mice, and then surgically implanted in that patient’s brain. This was done in one patient and there weren’t any known complications over 18 to 24 months. Because it was only one patient and there was no control comparison, it isn’t known if this therapy will be beneficial, but more testing is needed.

Did you find changes in the hearing of people with PD?

There are reports of hearing impairment possibly being more common in PD compared to healthy controls.

Why does alertness seem to fluctuate for people affected by Lewy Body?

My husband, who was an accountant, seems to have the most confusion in the early morning upon awakening.  He has active involvement with “getting things copied” or “getting things in the right sequence”, etc. As the day progresses, he becomes less involved with his involvements in his own reality.  He has lewy bodies.

Lewy body dementia can cause fluctuations in thinking and alertness throughout the day and from day to day, so that may be what is causing these changes.

Who can I contact at at UAB to learn more about participating in research studies?

If people are specifically interested in the Udall study, another contact would be Lauren Ruffrage at (205) 934-5954.

Can inflammation and its effects on the immune system cause an increase in Eosinophil levels

We don’t know of evidence linking PD to eosinophils.  We have not seen this in any of our studies.