A Drug Designed For Treating Diabetes Could Be A Breakthrough Treatment For Parkinson’s

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MSDC-0160 could be the drug researchers have been searching for after decades of disappointment. Parkinson’s disease is a progressive disease that affects the central nervous system. It develops gradually, causes a range of motor symptoms, yet starts with a subtle tremor. Approximately 60,000 Americans are diagnosed with Parkinson’s yearly. More than 10 million individuals are living with Parkinson’s worldwide. Considering society is steadily increasing its lifespan; this number is likely to grow in the future.

There is no cure for Parkinson’s despite the fact billions of dollars of research are spent yearly. Levodopa; which is a drug designed in the 70s, is still in use. However levedopa’s benefits are limited and the side effects are troubling. The drugs currently available only treat the symptoms of Parkinson’s. There is no drug that treats the processes which cause the disease to progress.

As a result of this, any news of a possible breakthrough drug is likely to be of interest. Research published in the journal Science Translational Medicine, provides such a glimmer of hope. A drug, designed to treat diabetes, appears to treat the underlying causes of Parkinson’s. If this turns out to be true; it will be one of a kind and has the potential to change millions of lives.

Investigators from the Van Andel Research Institute’s Center for Neurodegenerative Science in Great Rapids, MI, feel their recent findings reveal that MSDC-0160 may be the breakthrough medical science has been waiting for.

“We hope this will be a watershed moment for millions of people living with Parkinson’s disease. All of our research in Parkinson’s models suggests this drug could potentially slow the disease’s progression in people as well.” Stated senior author, Dr. Patrik Brundin.

MSDC-0160 was designed by Kalamazoo, a Metabolic Solutions Development Company. It was created to treat type 2 diabetes as an insulin sensitizer. The company focuses on searching for drugs which may be repurposed to treat conditions other than the ones they were intended for.

MSDC-0160 has already been proven safe in humans and its manufacturing process is already established. As a result, the process through clinical trials and into widespread use is faster and easier to travel. Current trials in a mouse model of Parkinson’s provided positive results and trials in humans are set to begin next year.

Tom Isaacs, co-founder of The Cure Parkinson’s Trust, says:

“Our scientific team has evaluated more than 120 potential treatments for Parkinson’s disease, and MSDC-0160 offers the genuine prospect of being a breakthrough that could make a significant and permanent impact on people’s lives in the near future. We are working tirelessly to move this drug into human trials as quickly as possible in our pursuit of a cure.”

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