Diagnosing Parkinson’s is a challenge at best. There is currently no definitive test to diagnose the disease. We must rely upon a movement disorder specialist’s knowledge and experience; many times they are right, but sometimes mis-diagnosis occurs. We need a test to help this process.
Researchers at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston are working to find a biomarker which can be tested for to help diagnose Parkinson’s. Their first study has had positive results with the study group showing higher levels of alpha-synuclein than the control group without Parkinson’s. The researchers next step is to replicate the study with a larger sample size. You can read more about their work on the Michael J. Fox Foundation website.
If the research studies come back with positive results, we may able to diagnose Parkinson’s sooner and with higher accuracy. Ideally, it may be diagnosed before the motor symptoms become manifest. This is very hopeful news and we will eagerly await the results of the larger study from the researchers at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. Progress is being made!