Study Validates Using Imaging to Study Parkinson’s in Preclinical Animal Studies
Using preclinical molecular imaging, scientists from Southern Research Institute and LSU Health Sciences Center in Shreveport have published data which could lead to better diagnosis and treatment of Parkinson's disease.
Study findings suggest that MPTP-induced Parkinson's disease in a mouse model is appropriate for following the degeneration of the dopaminergic system and that the[18F]-DTBZ analog is a potentially sensitive radiotracer that can be used to diagnose changes associated with Parkinson's by positron emission technology (PET) imaging in mice.
Many scientists believe finding the cure for Parkinson's will require a much deeper understanding of what causes the disease.
"This imaging pilot validates a diagnostic approach which could lead to better diagnosis and treatment of Parkinson's disease," says Penman, Vice President of Drug Development at Southern Research. "By validating this imaging model we can acquire better data faster, more cheaply, and also limit the number of animals required to conduct a study in the search for new drugs to treat this debilitating disease."
"Parkinson's researchers who are working to develop novel therapeutics for this disease now have a new option — a validated, non-invasive model that further quantifies the use of preclinical imaging as a way to follow the degeneration process of Parkinson's disease," says Mathis, Director, Small Animal Imaging Facility at the LSU Health Sciences Center.
Approximately 60,000 Americans are diagnosed with Parkinson's disease each year, with as many as one million Americans living with Parkinson's. It is estimated that seven to ten million people worldwide are living with Parkinson's disease. The combined direct and indirect cost of Parkinson's including treatment, social security payments and lost income from inability to work is estimated to be nearly $25 billion per year in the U.S. alone. Medication costs for an individual with Parkinson's disease averages $2,500 a year. Therapeutic surgery can cost up to $100,000 per patient.
Southern Research and the LSU Health Sciences Center in Shreveport, along with the Biomedical Research Foundation of Northwest Louisiana, formed a collaborative partnership last year to conduct preclinical imaging studies.
Southern Research conducts both contract research and basic research for clients, providing preclinical drug discovery, development, and clinical trial support services in cancer, infectious diseases, and CNS/neurological disease to pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies. Scientists conduct translational science to invent small molecules and advance them from the design stage to the clinic. Services available include medicinal chemistry, molecular biology, biochemistry, high-throughput screening and a full set of in-house GLP development services including toxicology, ADME/PK, animal models, formulations and bioanalytical services.
Source: Southern Research Institute