Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

LCSB coordinates European project on Parkinson’s research

03.12.2015

The Luxembourg Centre for Systems Biomedicine (LCSB) of the University of Luxembourg is coordinating an EU project for research into new active compounds against Parkinson’s disease (PD). SysMedPD (Systems Medicine of Mitochondrial Parkinson’s Disease) is the name of the project that just started with the involvement of five universities and three companies from Luxembourg, Germany, Ireland, the Netherlands and UK. The European Union is funding the researchers of this consortium with a total of 5.9 million euros.

With this funding, they will be developing novel techniques by which to identify and research into active compounds against PD. They will furthermore be advancing drug candidates towards their medical application.


From left: Prof. Jens Schwamborn (head of the LCSB group Development and Cell Biology), Prof. Rudi Balling (LCSB director and coordinator of SysMedPD) und Dr Ronan Fleming (Systems Biochemist

scienceRELATIONS / Universität Luxemburg

“Universities and biopharmaceutical companies complement each other’s expertise ideally in SysMedPD,” says Prof. Rudi Balling, LCSB director and coordinator of SysMedPD. “This creates optimal conditions in which to progress a good deal further in developing diagnoses and therapies for Parkinson’s disease.”

Parkinson’s disease is a gradually progressive disease of human nerve tissue, resulting among other things in muscle tremors and muscle rigidity. The mitochondria of nerve cells are often causally involved in the onset – mitochondria being the power plants of cells, in which biochemical reactions provide energy for cellular metabolic processes.

“We estimate that in about ten to twenty percent of all Parkinson’s patients, their mitochondria do not function properly,” says senior LCSB scientist Dr Ronan Fleming, who is significantly involved in the conception and coordination of SysMedPD. “In order to better diagnose, heal or at least effectively curb the progression of Parkinson’s disease, we must understand this dysfunction of mitochondria in detail.”

The researchers within SysMedPD are first concentrating on such patterns of PD in which the mitochondria are damaged by mutations in individual genes. “Later, the results can then be carried over to patient groups in which multiple genes and environmental factors are involved in the onset of PD,” adds Dr Fleming.

The SysMedPD consortium will tackle this task with different approaches: “At the LCSB, we place emphasis on developing new, computational models by which we can better depict the processes going on inside mitochondria,” Ronan Fleming says. Prof. Jens Schwamborn, head of the LCSB group Development and Cell Biology, describes a complementary approach: “We must verify any computational predictions using experiments. Therefore, in the scope of this EU project, we will also employ advanced cellular models, where skin samples obtained from Parkinson’s disease patients are reprogrammed into living human nerve cells.”

To ensure the research results obtained within SysMedPD are translated into application as quickly as possible, the consortium also has biopharmaceutical companies on board. Their areas of involvement are test development for new active compounds and identification of active compounds.

“The project is organised such that the insights that we and the other academic partners gain will complement those of the companies involved very well,” says Prof. Rudi Balling. “With this close connection between public and private research, we can ensure the EU funding, firstly, is employed optimally in the interest of the PD patients and, secondly, will generate economic stimuli. These are important objectives of the EU that we will fulfil here.”

The SysMedPD partners:
- Germany: University of Lübeck (Prof. Christine Klein), EURICE – European Research and Project Office GmbH (Corinna Hahn)
- Ireland: Maynooth University (Dr Niall Finnerty)
- Luxembourg: University of Luxembourg (Prof. Rudi Balling, Dr Ronan Fleming, Prof. Jens Schwamborn)
- Netherlands: Leiden University (Prof. Thomas Hankemeier), Khondrion BV (Prof. Jan Smeitink), Mimetas BV (Dr Paul Vulto)
- Great Britain: University College London (Prof. Anthony Schapira)

Weitere Informationen:

http://www.uni.lu/lcsb - Homepage of the Luxembourg Centre for Systems Biomedicine

Britta Schlüter | Universität Luxemburg - Université du Luxembourg

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht New study points the way to therapy for rare cancer that targets the young
22.11.2017 | Rockefeller University

nachricht Penn study identifies new malaria parasites in wild bonobos
21.11.2017 | University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Frictional Heat Powers Hydrothermal Activity on Enceladus

Computer simulation shows how the icy moon heats water in a porous rock core

Heat from the friction of rocks caused by tidal forces could be the “engine” for the hydrothermal activity on Saturn's moon Enceladus. This presupposes that...

Im Focus: Nanoparticles help with malaria diagnosis – new rapid test in development

The WHO reports an estimated 429,000 malaria deaths each year. The disease mostly affects tropical and subtropical regions and in particular the African continent. The Fraunhofer Institute for Silicate Research ISC teamed up with the Fraunhofer Institute for Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology IME and the Institute of Tropical Medicine at the University of Tübingen for a new test method to detect malaria parasites in blood. The idea of the research project “NanoFRET” is to develop a highly sensitive and reliable rapid diagnostic test so that patient treatment can begin as early as possible.

Malaria is caused by parasites transmitted by mosquito bite. The most dangerous form of malaria is malaria tropica. Left untreated, it is fatal in most cases....

Im Focus: A “cosmic snake” reveals the structure of remote galaxies

The formation of stars in distant galaxies is still largely unexplored. For the first time, astron-omers at the University of Geneva have now been able to closely observe a star system six billion light-years away. In doing so, they are confirming earlier simulations made by the University of Zurich. One special effect is made possible by the multiple reflections of images that run through the cosmos like a snake.

Today, astronomers have a pretty accurate idea of how stars were formed in the recent cosmic past. But do these laws also apply to older galaxies? For around a...

Im Focus: Visual intelligence is not the same as IQ

Just because someone is smart and well-motivated doesn't mean he or she can learn the visual skills needed to excel at tasks like matching fingerprints, interpreting medical X-rays, keeping track of aircraft on radar displays or forensic face matching.

That is the implication of a new study which shows for the first time that there is a broad range of differences in people's visual ability and that these...

Im Focus: Novel Nano-CT device creates high-resolution 3D-X-rays of tiny velvet worm legs

Computer Tomography (CT) is a standard procedure in hospitals, but so far, the technology has not been suitable for imaging extremely small objects. In PNAS, a team from the Technical University of Munich (TUM) describes a Nano-CT device that creates three-dimensional x-ray images at resolutions up to 100 nanometers. The first test application: Together with colleagues from the University of Kassel and Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht the researchers analyzed the locomotory system of a velvet worm.

During a CT analysis, the object under investigation is x-rayed and a detector measures the respective amount of radiation absorbed from various angles....

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Ecology Across Borders: International conference brings together 1,500 ecologists

15.11.2017 | Event News

Road into laboratory: Users discuss biaxial fatigue-testing for car and truck wheel

15.11.2017 | Event News

#Berlin5GWeek: The right network for Industry 4.0

30.10.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Underwater acoustic localization of marine mammals and vehicles

23.11.2017 | Information Technology

Enhancing the quantum sensing capabilities of diamond

23.11.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Meadows beat out shrubs when it comes to storing carbon

23.11.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>