Development of alpha-synuclein as a potential molecular marker for Parkinson s disease

Lead Research Organisation: Lancaster University
Department Name: Lancaster Environment Centre

Abstract

Parkinson?s disease (PD) is a common, incurable brain disease, with characteristic symptoms including tremors of the hands, muscle rigidity and slowness of movement. In PD, structures called ?Lewy bodies? are found inside nerve cells in affected regions of the brain. Lewy bodies contain abnormal fibres made out of a protein called alpha-synuclein and the formation of these alpha-synuclein deposits inside Lewy bodies is an important step in the development of PD. Interestingly, we have found that alpha-synuclein is also present in human blood. Furthermore, the levels of this protein appear to be altered in blood samples from patients with PD. We now propose to set up an extensive study to determine if alpha-synuclein in blood can be used as a diagnostic marker to help to discriminate PD from other movement disorders, or to follow the clinical progression of the disease. We will also run a clinical trial on a potential new drug for PD and as part of this trial we will monitor the effects of this drug on alpha-synuclein levels in blood. This will help us to determine if alpha-synuclein can be used as a marker in many future drug trials. Ultimately, it is hoped that a blood test can be developed to allow detection of PD during its early stages, when treatment is likely to be most effective. The development of alpha-synuclein as a biological marker would be expected to lead to major improvements in the treatment and quality of life of people with PD.

Technical Summary

This proposal is focussed around the development of a protein called alpha-synuclein as a potential novel molecular marker for Parkinson?s disease (PD). This protein plays a key role in the histopathology and genetics of PD, and we have discovered that alpha-synuclein is present in human body fluids, including blood plasma. Recently, we have published preliminary evidence, involving relatively small scale studies, that the levels of this protein in cerebrospinal fluid and blood plasma are altered in patients with PD compared to controls, and that these levels can correlate with the clinical severity of disease. We now propose to carry out an extensive investigation into both normal and pathological forms of alpha-synuclein as a potential biomarker for the diagnosis and/or progression of PD. To assess the reliability of alpha-synuclein as a diagnostic marker, our ELISA methods will be refined so that we can reliably measure the levels of various forms of alpha-synuclein (e.g. total, oligomeric) in blood plasma samples. Blood samples will be collected from at least 300 cases of idiopathic PD and 600 neurological and non-neurological controls. Repeat blood samples will also be taken from some cases of PD for longitudinal studies to investigate if the levels of alpha-synuclein change progressively with the clinical course of the disease (to be monitored by clinical rating scales). These latter studies will determine if alpha-synuclein can be used as a surrogate marker for disease progression. This would be particularly useful for streamlining the testing of new drugs in clinical trials. This research will be carried out by a multi-disciplinary team involving neuroscientists, clinicians and statisticians/epidemiologists from Lancaster and Manchester Universities, and major clinical neuroscience units based in Manchester and Preston, in close collaboration with Zyentia, a small biotechnology company who specialise in the development of novel drugs for ?protein folding? disorders. As an integral part of the project, Zyentia will provide samples from animal models of PD for biomarker studies. They will also organise and fund a phase II clinical trial on one of their lead compounds, a novel inhibitor of alpha-synuclein aggregation, which will use alpha-synuclein as a surrogate marker for PD in combination with standard disease rating scales. It is expected that this trial will gauge the potential of alpha-synuclein as a surrogate biomarker for future clinical studies in PD, perhaps facilitating the development of new and improved therapies for this condition.

Publications

10 25 50
 
Description Assistant Director of Centre for Ageing Research at Lancaster University
Geographic Reach National 
Policy Influence Type Influenced training of practitioners or researchers
 
Description Masters Course Module on Brain Diseases
Geographic Reach Multiple continents/international 
Policy Influence Type Influenced training of practitioners or researchers
Impact Establishment of new Masters Module at Lancaster University on Brain Diseases, which is also available as CPD course for Biomedical Scientists.
 
Description Member of Research Council Executive of the Alzheimer's Society, UK
Geographic Reach National 
Policy Influence Type Membership of a guideline committee
 
Description Member of Steering Committee for DeNDRoN North West
Geographic Reach Local/Municipal/Regional 
Policy Influence Type Membership of a guideline committee
 
Description AR-UK Equipment Grant - Purchase of Qiagen luminex bead system
Amount £33,568 (GBP)
Funding ID ARUK-EG2011B-2 
Organisation Alzheimer's Research UK 
Sector Charity/Non Profit
Country United Kingdom
Start 10/2011 
End 10/2012
 
Description DeNDRoN FSF Funding - Biomarkers for Parkinson's disease
Amount £36,339 (GBP)
Organisation National Institute for Health Research 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 01/2012 
End 12/2012
 
Description George Barton Trust, Project Grant - Research into biomarkers for neurodegenerative disease
Amount £23,000 (GBP)
Organisation George Barton Trust 
Sector Charity/Non Profit
Country United Kingdom
Start  
 
Description Lancaster University PhD Studentship - Development of a luminex multiplex bead assay for biomarkers related to neurodegeneretaive diseases
Amount £30,000 (GBP)
Organisation Lancaster University 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 10/2012 
End 09/2015
 
Description Lancaster University Studentship (Expression of key proteins implicated in neurodegeneration)
Amount £45,000 (GBP)
Organisation Lancaster University 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 10/2009 
End 09/2012
 
Description NHS SIFT Masters Studentship - Biomarkers for Parkinson's disease
Amount £10,000 (GBP)
Organisation National Institute for Health Research 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 10/2011 
End 09/2012
 
Description Pilot Study - Development of a new ß-Amyloid PET tracer for early diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease
Amount £49,681 (GBP)
Funding ID ARUK-PPG2012B-16 
Organisation Alzheimer's Research UK 
Sector Charity/Non Profit
Country United Kingdom
Start  
 
Description Project Grant - A prospective study of the utility of TAR DNA-binding protein (TDP-43) and FUS, their oligomeric and aberrant forms, as biomarkers of motor neuron disease (MND)
Amount £46,000 (GBP)
Organisation Sir John Fisher Foundation 
Sector Charity/Non Profit
Country United Kingdom
Start  
 
Description Project Grant - Longitudinal investigation of novel biomarkers and the effects of anti-dementia treatments for Alzheimer's disease
Amount £330,000 (GBP)
Organisation Sir John Fisher Foundation 
Sector Charity/Non Profit
Country United Kingdom
Start 10/2009 
End 09/2017
 
Description Use of Multiple Biomarkers to Stratify Parkinsonian, Alzheimer and Frontotemporal Dementias
Amount £24,000 (GBP)
Organisation Higher Education Funding Council for England 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 01/2016 
End 12/2016
 
Title CSF sample collection 
Description We have full ethical approval for collection of additonal CSF from any neurology patients undergoing lumbar puncture for routine clinical investigations (Royal Preston Hospital). These can be used for biomarker research. Ventricular CSF is being collected by ART Manchester Brain Bank. 
Type Of Material Biological samples 
Provided To Others? No  
Impact Publications 18989684 and 21856424. 
 
Title Cross-sectional samples of plasma 
Description Cross-sectional samples of blood plasma have been collected from approximately 1100 patients with neurodegenerative disorders and controls (with full ethical approval). 
Type Of Material Biological samples 
Year Produced 2008 
Provided To Others? Yes  
Impact Publications 19823856, 18989684, 21865317. Prof. Kevin Morgan (Nottingham University), Prof. Stuart Pickering-Brown (Manchester University) are using samples for genetic research. 
 
Title Liquichip Workstation 
Description A luminex bead-based multiplex assay system has been purchased (September 2011) with a new equipment grant from Alzheimer's Research UK. 
Type Of Material Technology assay or reagent 
Provided To Others? No  
Impact Only just acquired. 
 
Title Longitudinal plasma samples from patients with Parkinson's Disease 
Description Longitudinal samples of human blood plasma have been collected from 200 recently diagnosed patients with Parkinson's disease for biomarker studies. 
Type Of Material Biological samples 
Provided To Others? No  
Impact As far as we are aware, this is a unique collection of clinical samples in the UK. Sample collection is continuing, and this material will be a valuable resource for the MRC-funded study, and for future investgation by ourselves and other collaborators. Samples used for publication 21865317. 
 
Title New assays for quantitative analysis of biomarkers in blood and CSF 
Description New immunoassays developed to detect and quantify various forms of alpha-synuclein and TDP-43 in biological fluids 
Type Of Material Technology assay or reagent 
Year Produced 2008 
Provided To Others? Yes  
Impact Publications 18989684, 19823856, 21865317, 21856424. Visiting scientists from London University and Japan have used these assay techniques for their research. 
 
Title New statistical model developed 
Description A new statistical model has been developed by Prof. Peter Diggle and Dr. Gerwyn Green (Lancaster University) for analysis of data from longitudinal samples collected for alpha-synuclein investigations. 
Type Of Material Model of mechanisms or symptoms - human 
Provided To Others? No  
Impact Published paper 21865317 has used this statistical model for interpretation of biomarker data. 
 
Description EU Framework 7, Marie Curie Training Network 
Organisation Eberhard Karls University of Tubingen
Country Germany 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Partner on EU Framework 7, Marie Curie Training Network, looking at the different forms of alpha-synuclein that are present in human blood plasma.
Collaborator Contribution Partners on 2009-2013 EU Framework 7, Marie Curie Training Network (11 collaborating partners), Academic-Industrial Training Network on Alpha-Synuclein-related Brain Diseases (NEURASYN), €4,770,000 (Lancaster share, €205,000).
Impact EU Framework 7, Marie Curie Training Network (11 collaborating partners), Academic-Industrial Training Network on Alpha-Synuclein-related Brain Diseases (NEURASYN), €4,770,000 (Lancaster share, €205,000), commenced October 2009. This is a multidisciplinary collaboration, involving partners with expertise in the cell and molecular biology of alpha-synuclein, human genetics and animal models.
Start Year 2009
 
Description EU-Framework 7 Grant, NAD 
Organisation University of Milan
Country Italy 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Partner on large EU-FP7 grant, investigating nanoparticles for early diagnosis and treatment of neurodegenerative disease. We are assessing the effects of the nanoparticles on protein aggregation. Collaborations with members of this consortium are still ongoing.
Collaborator Contribution Has resulted in large EU Framework 7, Specific Targeted Research Project (19 collaborating partners), on Nanoparticles for the diagnosis and therapy of neurodegenerative disease (NAD), €11,110,000 (Lancaster share €314,000).
Impact 2008-2012, EU Framework 7, Specific Targeted Research Project (19 collaborating partners), total value €11,110,000 (Lancaster share €314,000). Multidisciplinary collaboration, involving partners with expertise in nanoscience, brain imaging, animals models, and amyloid biochemistry.
Start Year 2008
 
Description Provision of novel antibodies and protein standard for biomarker studies 
Organisation Tokyo Research Institute of Psychiatry
Country Japan 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution We used the novel antibodies to investigate new biomarkers in human plasma. Phosphorylated alpha-synuclein supplied by the collaborators has been used as a standard for novel ELISA development.
Collaborator Contribution Drs. Akiyama, Arai and Hasegawa provided novel antibodies for biomarker discovery.
Impact Publications 19823856, 21865317, 21856424. Collaboration continues, with this group providing antibodies to phosphorylated alpha-synuclein, which are being currently investigated. Data also presented at British Neuropathological Society (BNS), London, January 2008; BNS January 2010; World Parkinson's Congress, Glasgow, October 2010; Parkinson's UK Conference, November 2010.
Start Year 2008
 
Description Research collaboration correlating brain pathology with biomarkers 
Organisation Northwestern University
Department Feinberg School of Medicine
Country United States 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution We carried out the measurements of biomarkers in plasma (Lancaster University), and correlated this with histopathology in matching brain tissue samples (Manchester University). The collaboration is ongoing, with more brain and plasma samples and relevant histopathology data.
Collaborator Contribution Co-authors on 19823856. Drs. Mishra, Johnson, Weintraub and Bigio provided clinical samples (brain and plasma) for our investigation.
Impact Publication 19823856. Data also presented at The British Neuropathological Society Meeting in London, January 2009.
Start Year 2008
 
Description Research collaboration investigating biomarkers 
Organisation Kyoto Prefectural University of Medicine
Country Japan 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Prof. Allsop and Dr. Foulds (Lancaster), Prof. Mann (Manchester) and Prof. Mitchell (Royal Preston Hospital) provided expertise and supplementary data for this study.
Collaborator Contribution Drs. Kasai, Tokuda, Ishigami, Sasayama and Nakagawa were co-authors and investigators on our paper 18989684. They provided clinical samples and data for this paper. Collaboration with Drs Kasai and Tokuda is still ongoing.
Impact Publication 18989684. Dr. Kasai is a visiting scientist at Lancaster University. He is studying molecular biomarkers in neurodegenerative disease, for 24 months, commencing July 2010. Data also presented at 19th International Symposium on ALS/MND in Birmingham, 2008.
Start Year 2008
 
Description AR-UK Visit 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an open day or visit at my research institution
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Officials from Alzheimer's Research UK visited alongside funding benefactors to hear about plans at Lancaster and Manchester Universities relating to new Luminex Bead equipment for carrying out multiplex assays on samples of blood or CSF.

We were asked by AR-UK to represent the scientific community on matters that may be of interest to the public (e.g. new discoveries about brain diseases).
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2011
 
Description ART Public Meeting (Manchester) 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? Yes
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Around 70 members of the public and carers attended. Dr. Penny Foulds gave a talk explaining the science behind neurodegererative brain diseases.

The talk was exceptionally well received. Dr. Foulds was interviewed on camera for launch of the new ART website in March 2011.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2010
 
Description ART Public Meeting - Nottingham 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Prof Mann gave a presentation on Biomarkers in Neurodegeneration, focussing on the MRC funded project.

The meeting was well recieved by members of the public, therefore raising the profile of the research carried out at lancaster and Manchester.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2009
 
Description Alzheimer's Research UK Visit 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an open day or visit at my research institution
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Type Of Presentation Paper Presentation
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Supporters
Results and Impact Members of Alzheimer's Research UK and their donors attended a meeting at Lancaster University which included a tour of the laboratories, and presentations by researchers on biomarkers of neurodegenerative disease.

AR-UK have funded the purchase of a luminex platform (£36k) for multiplex biomarker assays. A repeat visit is being held Summer 2013 to give us the opportunity to update AR-UK and their supporters on results arising from the use of this equipment.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2011
 
Description BBC Radio Lancashire Interview 
Form Of Engagement Activity A press release, press conference or response to a media enquiry/interview
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Media (as a channel to the public)
Results and Impact Prof. Allsop gave an interview (August 2011) on the research into brain diseases being carried out at Lancaster University that was broadcast on BBC Radio Lancashire and made available as a 'podcast' on their website.

Enquiries regarding participation in our research activities from members of the public.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2011
 
Description Beijing Summit Forum 2009 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Dr Foulds (Lancaster) and Prof Mann (Manchester) gave presentations to an audience mainly of Chinese medical students and neurologists presenting preliminary results from the MRC-funded study.

Arrangements are being made for a Chinese research study to carry out a PhD at Lancaster University focussing on biomarker research.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2009
 
Description Carers' group Meeting - Manchester 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an open day or visit at my research institution
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Patients, carers and/or patient groups
Results and Impact Prof Mann gave a talk to carers and patients on Neurodegenerative disease, and current research.

The talk raised the profile, and publisesed research carried out on the MRC funded project.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2009
 
Description DeNDRoN NW 3rd Annual Conference 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Oral presentations were given by Dr Foulds (Lancaster) and Prof Mann (Manchester) on peliminary results from the MRC-funded longitudinal biomarker studies.

Liaiason with clinical neurologists to encourage patient recruitment onto the MRC-funded study. Dr. Foulds was invited to give talks to patient groups.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2009
 
Description DeNDRoN National Conference Newcastle 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact A poster was presented on the proposed experimental approach to the MRC-funded study.

Prof. Allsop was invited by Dr. Richard Wyse to give a talk at The Cure For Parkinson's Trust Meeting held at RSM, London (2009). Here we met Dr. David Dexter (PDS brain bank) and arranged access to samples of brain tissue and matching CSF for the MRC-funded biomarker study.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2008
 
Description DeNDRoN National Conference Southampton 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Prof Mitchell (Royal Preston Hospital) and Angela Aldridge (DeNDRoN research co-ordinator for MRC project) presented a poster publicising the study.

Has helped patients recruitment into the study. The MRC-funded study is now the largest in terms of patient numbers to be adopted by DeNDRoN NW.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2009
 
Description Interview on BBC Radio Lancashire 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Media (as a channel to the public)
Results and Impact Prof. Allsop gave an interview that was broadcast live at 8.30am and centred on the MRC-funded research on biomarkers at Lancaster University.

Several offers of assistance regarding recruits onto the study.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2010
 
Description Lab Visits, Lancaster University 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an open day or visit at my research institution
Part Of Official Scheme? Yes
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Dr. Foulds hosted a tour around Prof. Allsop's laboratory, with talks from research staff to explain areas of research.

Invited to give further talks for Department of Continuing Education.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2009
 
Description Lancaster Girl's Grammar School Work Experience 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? Yes
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact Five pupils did some work experience in the laboratory, relating to Parkinson's disease. One of them was on a formal scheme funded by The Nuffield Foundation.

Confirmed their career choice in Science.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2010
 
Description Lancaster Girls' Grammar School Work Experience 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact 4 sixth form pupils participated in laboratory work at Lancaster University for one week, and were acknowledged on one of our publications.

All four have gone on to do degrees related to medicine.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2011
 
Description Lancaster Soroptomist's Society 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact 30 professional ladies attended a talk by Dr. Foulds on our research into Parkinson's disease.

The group have asked for a lab visit.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2011
 
Description Lancaster University Women's Association 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Attended by 35 members of the public who support research carried out at Lancaster University.

Encouraged audience to consider registering for brain donation.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2010
 
Description Lancaster University Women's Association talk 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact 40 retired members of the university staff attended a talk by Dr. Foulds on our research into brain diseases.

Many members have reported an interest in participating in studies.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2011
 
Description Lancaster and Morecambe University of the Third Age 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact More than 200 members of the public attended a talk by Dr. Foulds, who was voted as 'Most Popular Speaker'.

Raised awareness of neurodegenerative disease, and Penny Foulds was asked to give further talks to other interested groups.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2010
 
Description Launch Event of 'Lancaster University Centre for Ageing Research (C4AR)' 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Approximately 100 people associated with the newly formed Centre for Ageing Research and interested members of the public attended this meeting. Talks given by both Dr. Penny Foulds and Prof. David Allsop.

Stimulated interest in the C4AR. Publicised research done at Lancaster University into age-related diseases.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2010
 
Description MNDA Symposium Preston 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? Yes
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Prof. Allsop presented work on biomarkers and disease

Generated interest in further collection of clinical samples
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2008
 
Description MNDA Visit 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an open day or visit at my research institution
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact 40 members of the Blackpool and Fylde Branch of the Motor Neuron Disease Association attended presentations on our research and a guided tour of our labs. The presentations were given by PhD students at Lancaster University.

Fundraising activities for MNDA supported. Invited to give a talk at 2012 Annual Meeting.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2011
 
Description Manchester Parkinson's disease interest group meeting 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Talk given at a meeting organised by Dr Mark Kellet (consultant neurologist, Hope Hospital, Manchester) by Prof Allsop on biomarkers for Parkinsons disease.

Stimulated recruitment of patients into MRC-funded project.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2008
 
Description Meeting with patients recruited onto the MRC biomarker study 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Type Of Presentation Paper Presentation
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Participants in your research and patient groups
Results and Impact All 200 participants of the MRC-funded study were invited to Lancaster University to attend a presentation of results arising from the work. About 60 patients, health professionals and post-graduate students attended the meeting.

The participants were exceptionally grateful to be given the opportunity to learn about the results from the study. many of them have offered their help, if required in the future.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2012
 
Description Morecambe High School Talk 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact 25 pupils came to visit the university and attended a talk by Dr. Penny Foulds on our research into brain diseases.

Lab visits organised
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2011
 
Description Parkinson's Disease Society, Burnley Branch Meeting 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact 40-50 patients and healthworkers attended a talk by Dr. Penny Foulds.

Sparked interest in clinical study participation and tissue donation.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2010
 
Description Parkinson's UK Conference 2012 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Type Of Presentation Paper Presentation
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Dr. Foulds presented the results of the MRC-funded biomarker study at the Parkinson's UK Research Conference, which was held from 4-6 November 2012, at Royal York Hotel, York (see http://www.parkinsons.org.uk/researchconference). A poster presentation was also made. Title as follows, 'Development of phosphorylated alpha-synuclein as a molecular biomarker in Parkinson's disease' by Foulds, Diggle, Mitchell, Mann and Allsop.

We have been invited to apply for further funding to continue this area of research.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2012
 
Description Presentation to MSA Trust, Queen's Square, London 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Type Of Presentation Paper Presentation
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Other academic audiences (collaborators, peers etc.)
Results and Impact About 200 people attended the first meeting of the MSA Trust at Institute of Neurology, UCL, London on 2nd May 2012. MRC-funded work on alpha-synuclein as a biomarker was presented by Dr. Foulds (Lancaster) and Prof. Mann (Manchester).

Offers of collaboration with other research groups.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2012
 
Description Presentation to Parkinson's UK lancaster Support Network 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Type Of Presentation Paper Presentation
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Participants in your research and patient groups
Results and Impact 40 members of the Lancaster and Morecambe Parkinson's UK Support Network (patients and supporters) attended a talk giving an update on the results of the MRC-funded biomarker study.

The group asked for a lab visiit, which was scheduled for the following Summer.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2012
 
Description Press coverage 
Form Of Engagement Activity A press release, press conference or response to a media enquiry/interview
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Media (as a channel to the public)
Results and Impact Prof Allsop and Dr Foulds have had the following press coverage:- The Garstang Courier, September 2008; The Burnley Express, September 2008; The Morecambe Visitor, September 2008; The Lancashire Evening Post, September 2008; Nano Werk website, September 2008; Cordis Wire website, September 2008; The Lancaster and Morecambe Visitor, September 2008; The Lancaster Guardian, September 2008; Clitheroe Advertiser, September 2008; The Clitheroe Advertiser and Times, September 2008; The Lakeland Echo, September 2008; The Blackpool Gazette, November 2008; The Daily Telegraph, February 2009; BBC News Online, February 2009; BBC News Online, June 2009; The Independent. June 2009; Tehran Times, June 2009; The Express, June 2009; Morecambe News, September 2009; Burnley Express, September 2009; Longridge News, September, 2009; Pendle Today, September 2009; Lakeland Echo, September, 2009; Garstang Courier, September 2009; Chorley Guardian, September 2009; BBC WOWT-TV Online, September 2009; Bilingual News, September 2009; TheVisitor.co.uk, September 2009; Blackpool Gazette, September 2009; Lancashire Evening Post, September 2009; Garstang Courier, September 2009; Chorley & Leyland Guardian, September 2009; Pendle Today, September 2009; Longridgenews.co.uk, September 2009; Burnley Express, September 2009; Clitheroe Advertiser & Times, September 2009; Lakeland Echo, September 2009; Lancaster Guardian, September 2009; Clitheroe Advertiser & Times, February, 2010; Lancaster Guardian, February, 2010; Burnley Express, February, 2010; Blackpool Gazette, February, 2010; Lancashire Evening Post, February, 2010; TheVisitor.co.uk, February, 2010; Garstang Courier, February, 2010; Pendle Today, February, 2010; Chorley & Leyland Guardian, February, 2010; Longridgenews.co.uk, February, 2010; Daily Mail, November 2010; Pharma Denmark, August 2011; Medindia.com, August 2011; TopNews, August 2011; TopNews New Zealand, August 2011; Investor Village, August 2011; BBC News - Isle of Mann, August 2011; MediLexicon, August 2011; BioPortfolio, August 2011; Scottish Daily Express, August 2011; Express.co.uk, August 2011; Mirror.co.uk, August 2011; Sporting Life.com, August 2011; Health News, August 2011; Politiken.dk, August 2011; Science Daily, August 2011; The Medical News, August 2011; Alpagalileo, August 2011; The Examiner in Alabama, August 2011; MediLexicon, November, 2011; Medical News Today, November, 2011; LabSpaces.net, November, 2011; EurekAlert!, November, 2011; Best Syndication, November, 2011; London Free Press, November, 2011; KopalniaWiedzy, November, 2011, Lancashire Evening Post, November, 2011.


This has increased regional, national and international awareness of our research into neurodegenerative diseases at Lancaster University.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2008,2009,2010,2011
 
Description Preston MND care and Research Symposium 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? Yes
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Dr. Penny Foulds explained the causes of neurodegenerative diseases, which was well received by the audience and an extensive question and answer session ensued.

Members of the MNDA are to visit the laboratories at Lancaster University and learn more about diseases of the brain. Also, the group were alerted to the need for brain donations and participation in clinical trails. Members were given details of the ART Manchester Brain Bank and also DeNDRoN.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2010
 
Description Public Lecture, Lancaster Storey Institute 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? Yes
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact 50 members of the public attended a lecture by Dr. Penny Foulds on Parkinson's disease that was advertised in local papers/local radio.

Lab visit arranged
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2011
 
Description Seminar at Royal Preston Hospital 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Prof. Allsop gave a talk on biomarkers and Parkinson's disease to a group of clinician's at Royal Preston Hospital, organised by Prof. Douglas Mitchell.

Stimulated interest and patient recruitment into MRC-funded project
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2008
 
Description Senior Learners' Programme, Lancaster University 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? Yes
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Dr. Foulds presented an overview of current research into Parkinson's disease with a brief description of research into this disease at Lancaster University.

Dr. Foulds invted to give further talks at similar meetings in the future.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2009
 
Description Talk at Preston Royal Infirmary Neurology Ward 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Type Of Presentation Paper Presentation
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Health professionals
Results and Impact 12 health care professionals (doctors, ward and research nurses) attended a talk and discussion about engagement and collaboration in our reserarch activities.

Agreement to participate in collection of clinical samples.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2011
 
Description Visit by Parkinson's UK lancaster Support Network and XEED North West 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an open day or visit at my research institution
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Participants in your research and patient groups
Results and Impact 60 people (patients, carers, supporters, health professionals) attended a presentation by Lancaster University School of Health and Medicine on biomarkers in Parkinson's disease, and psychological problems associated with the disease.

Articles in local press, radio interview and publicity within the university, and online on the university website.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2012
 
Description Visit to Lancaster University by Lancaster and Morecambe Parkinson's UK Support Group 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an open day or visit at my research institution
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact 45 Members of Lancaster and Morecambe Parkinson's UK Support Group attended talks given by Prof. Allsop and his PhD students. There was also a tour of our labs.

Members of the group have indicated willingness to volunteer as participants in our future research.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2011
 
Description Visit to Lancaster and Morecambe Parkinson's UK Support Group 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact 40 members of The Lancaster and Morecambe Parkinson's UK Support Group attended their weekly meeting where Dr. Foulds was invited to talk about the MRC-funded research into a biomaker for PD.

They in turn have visited us at Lancaster University. Some members also volunteered to participate in our future studies.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2011
 
Description Visit to Neurology Ward at Royal Preston Hospital 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Prof. Allsop and Dr. Foulds talked to clinical staff on the ward about their research into biomarkers and encouraged participation in future studies.

Clinical staff are actively collecting samples of blood and CSF (with full LREC Approval). We plan to visit every four months to meet the new SHOs and keep staff up to date with our studies.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2011