The Luxemburg Parkinson’s Study (NCER-PD) aims to better understand the mechanisms of Parkinson’s disease and develop novel approaches for treatment. Prof. Rejko Krüger, the coordinator of the study, highlighted its hallmarks and current developments in his presentation at the digital NCER-PD summer party 2020.
“At the beginning of this year, the goal of recruiting 1,600 participants into the study was achieved”, Prof. Krüger reports. “We still welcome newly diagnosed patients to be included in the study to further improve its reliability”, he adds.
The NCER-PD study involves several national and international partners and is highly acknowledged worldwide as a key study in diagnostic research on Parkinson’s disease. By investigating molecular mechanisms such as the intestinal microbiome and gene regulation, researchers can get a better understanding of the disease.
As a consequence, this may lead to an earlier diagnose of the disease as well as an improved and patient-specific treatment. The study also aims to develop novel therapeutic and diagnostic approaches such as small pumps delivering medication or using a fingerprint of the microbiome as an indication of the state of the disease.
To pursue these goals, regular examinations and collecting samples from patients are key to gain continuous insights into the disease. Additionally, they ensure a close monitoring of the development of the disease for all patients involved in the study. This way, the individual therapy can be adapted when necessary.
In a second phase of the study, researchers will study the early stages of Parkinson’s disease by developing additional cohorts. They will for example focus on patients with REM-sleep behaviour disorder as this is thought to be an additional risk factor for Parkinson’s disease.
You can watch the full presentation Prof. Krüger (in German) below.