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June 11, 2012 6:30 am

Technion Researchers Discover Group of Genes that Prevent Parkinson’s

avatar by Deby Medrez Pier

Technion University Medical School. Photo: wiki commons.

Members of the Rappaport Faculty of Medicine at Technion University in Israel have identified five genes that can predict Parkinson’s disease.

The scientists set out to evaluate whether a gene signature could be identified in the blood of early Parkinson’s disease patients and tests were run on blood samples from 62 early stage Parkinson’s disease patients.

“Currently, there is no blood test that can diagnose PD, making the detection of individuals at risk or at earliest stages of PD practically impossible. Instead it is identified by a clinical neurological examination based on findings suggestive of Parkinson’s disease,” said Dr. Silvia Mandel, Vice Director of the Eve Topf Center of Excellence for Neurodegenerative Diseases Research and Teaching.

Dr. Mandel added that “finding biomarkers for Parkinson’s disease will help to capture those high-risk subjects before symptoms develop, a stage where prevention treatment efforts might be expected to have their greatest impact to slow disease progression.”

The Rappaport Faculty of Medicine is home to Professors Avram Hershko and Aaron Ciechanover, both of whom won the 2004 Nobel Prize in Chemistry.

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