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Funding News - Research on the Pathogenesis and Treatment of Dyskinesias in Parkinson’s Disease Sought

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  • The information on this page is for historical and research purposes only.
  • For the most current NINDS funding announcements, please see the NINDS list of Active Funding Initiatives or Follow Us on Twitter for the latest funding news.

The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke invites grant applications for research on the development and treatment of dopamine-induced dyskinesias in Parkinson’s disease.*

Dyskinesias are a major complication of the treatment of PD. More than half of all persons treated with levodopa-the standard therapy for PD-or other dopaminergic agonists subsequently develop dyskinesias. In many cases these treatment-induced complications limit the amount of drug that can be administered and, as a result, limit symptom relief. Clinical presentations of dyskinesias vary significantly. When severe or painful, they limit therapy but when mild they can be well-tolerated by patients. However, even when mild, it is widely held that the appearance of dyskinesias foreshadows the development of other, more disabling motor complications. Therefore even mild dyskinesias may lead the treating physician to reduce therapy-at a price of increased rigidity for the patient. The pathogenesis of dyskinesias is poorly understood.

Examples of potential research areas of interest include: physiological and functional imaging studies in MPTP-treated primates followed by molecular neuroanatomy to establish the altered circuitry of dyskinesia; intraoperative recordings from humans during surgery to alleviate dyskinesias; pre-clinical studies of non-dopaminergic agents in dyskinetic primates; development and validation of clinical tools such as a dyskinesia rating scale or a predictor of motor complications; and pilot studies of non-dopaminergic agents in dyskinetic parkinsonian patients.

For more information, potential applicants should contact Dr. Paul Sheehy, Program Director, Neurodegeneration Cluster, NINDS, Neuroscience Center, 6001 Executive Boulevard, Room 2214, Bethesda, MD 20892; telephone: 301-496-5680; fax: 301-480-1080; e-mail: sheehyp@ninds.nih.gov.

*For a more detailed description of this program announcement, please visit the NIH web site at: http://grants1.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PAS-02-129.html.