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Health Agencies Update
February 27, 2013

Parkinson Biomarker Program

JAMA. 2013;309(8):759. doi:10.1001/jama.2013.1276

A new initiative to intensify the hunt for biomarkers of Parkinson disease may make it possible for clinicians to identify and begin treatment early, before progression of the disease.

The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke organized the Parkinson Disease Biomarker Program (PDBP) and is funding 9 research programs across the country that will share their findings with each other and outside researchers through an online program created by the National Institutes of Health Center for Information Technology. Parkinson disease is currently diagnosed based on symptoms such as resting tremor or rigidity. Scientists hope that finding and validating biomarkers of Parkinson may make it possible to diagnose the condition even before symptoms appear.