Data from past Parkinson’s trials will be collected, standardized, and integrated, in order to inform new approaches to designing clinical trials focused on early-stage Parkinson’s.
LONDON and TUCSON, Ariz., October 14, 2015 – Parkinson’s UK, one of the world’s largest charity funders of Parkinson’s research, and Critical Path Institute (C-Path), a pioneering nonprofit organization dedicated to accelerating the pace and reducing the costs of medical product development, announced the formation of the Critical Path for Parkinson’s Consortium (CPP).
The consortium will bring together pharmaceutical companies and academic partners working toward a common goal of establishing best practices and more efficient protocols for planning and designing clinical trials in early Parkinson’s—ultimately improving the efficiency and success rates of much-needed treatments for people with Parkinson’s.
Parkinson’s UK has been a leader in bringing together many participants in the Parkinson’s research enterprise to find ways to share data and work collaboratively. Together, Parkinson’s UK and C-Path can maximize the benefit of data-sharing, which is critical for a condition such as Parkinson’s, for which there are no effective treatments.
“In the era of electronic knowledge exchange, only when data-sharing becomes the norm can we derive its full benefits,” says Sue Dubman, UCSF Cancer Bio-informatics Director, patient advocate, and Parkinson’s patient.
Parkinson’s UK Chief Executive Steve Ford says, “Despite huge scientific progress, there have been no major advances in the treatments available for Parkinson’s in the last decade.
“At Parkinson’s UK, we’re adopting a new approach: tackling the critical road blocks standing in the way of the scientific breakthroughs that could have a huge impact on the lives of people with Parkinson’s.
“It’s our goal that the partnership with the Critical Path Institute will improve the clinical trial process and deliver new and better treatments, faster, to the people who urgently need them.”
“The importance of the role of patient advocacy organizations, such as Parkinson’s UK, in making new innovations possible for patients has never been more critical. The partnership between C-Path and Parkinson’s UK will complement each organization’s strengths. With the extensive reach and data available from Parkinson’s UK, and C-Path’s scientifically rigorous approach to data standardization and clinical trial modeling and simulation, the potential value of this effort, both to those who develop treatments for Parkinson’s, and those who live with the condition, cannot be underestimated,” says Martha A. Brumfield, President and Chief Executive Officer of C-Path.
The new consortium will be co-directed by Dr. Arthur Roach (Director of Research, Parkinson’s UK) and Dr. Diane Stephenson (Executive Director, Critical Path for Parkinson’s Consortium, C-Path).
Parkinson’s is a progressive neurological condition. Traditionally, Parkinson’s has been viewed as a disorder in which individuals don’t have enough of a chemical called dopamine because specific nerve cells inside their brain have died. Low levels of dopamine slow the body’s movement, which makes everyday activities, such as eating, getting dressed, or using a phone or computer difficult or frustrating. It is not known why these cells die, but current research indicates that the processes that lead to dopamine deficit start much earlier (decades), making it a pressing need to increase the understanding of the condition’s progression. The main symptoms of Parkinson’s are tremor, muscle stiffness, and slowness of movement. But not everyone will experience all of these. As well as the symptoms that affect movement, other issues, such as tiredness, pain, and depression impact daily life. Parkinson’s doesn’t directly cause people to die, but symptoms do get worse over time, which greatly impacts the ability of individuals to function, leading to a severe decrease in quality of life.
About the organizations:
Every hour, someone in the UK is told they have Parkinson’s.
It affects 127,000 people in the UK, which is around one in 500 of the population.
Parkinson’s is a degenerative neurological condition, for which there currently is no cure. The main symptoms of the condition are tremor, slowness of movement and rigidity.
Parkinson’s UK is the UK’s leading charity supporting those with the condition. Its mission is to find a cure and improve life for everyone affected by Parkinson’s through cutting edge research, information, support and campaigning.
For advice, information and support, visit www.parkinsons.org.uk.
Established in 2005 as a nonprofit organization, C-Path (Critical Path Institute) was formed to deliver on the vision of FDA’s Critical Path Initiative. C-Path is committed to improving human health and well-being by developing new technologies and methods to accelerate the development and review of medical products. An international leader in forming collaborations around this mission, C-Path has established twelve global, public-private partnerships that include more than 1,000 scientists from regulatory and other government agencies, academia, patient advocacy organizations, and 41 major pharmaceutical companies. C-Path has headquarters in Tucson, AZ, and has been funded by public and private philanthropic support from the University of Arizona, Science Foundation Arizona (SFAz), the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and the Tucson community. For more information, visit www.c-path.org.