A SCOTS university has thanked members of the public who funded the purchase of new technology that could lead to new treatments for Parkinson’s disease.
Scientists at the Dundee University’s Medical Research Council Protein Phosphorylation and Ubiquitylation Unit have managed to installed a liquid chromatography system.
The equipment, supported by a fundraiser, will allow experts to break down complex protein samples, and analyse the impact the disease has on a person’s cells and tissues.
It is hoped that a greater understanding of this will allow researchers to eventually develop life-changing therapies and treatments for those living with the condition.
Senior Research Scientist, Doctor Andy Howden, said:
“Researchers trying to understand Parkinson’s disease study the proteins that are packed into our cells and tissues.
“This is incredibly complex work, with thousands of different proteins within a single cell, and millions of copies of proteins.
“To study the complex mixture of proteins in detail we must first separate the protein samples into more manageable parts.
“The new liquid chromatography system will allow us to do this. We can then take these parts and look at which proteins are there and in what quantities.
“We then see whether there are differences between someone with Parkinson’s disease and a healthy person.
“The liquid chromatography system will be a critical piece of equipment in the Parkinson’s research lab and will become a valuable asset in our quest to unlock the mysteries of this horrendous condition.
“It is hard to state just how important the work being done here at Dundee could have in improving lives here in Scotland and around the world.
“Parkinson’s is a cruel illness. It affected my own father for more than 20 years, so I am aware of just how important it is that we can help those who live with the disease today.
“Having public backing for our work is crucial and everyone here is extremely grateful to the generous donors who support our work and have made the purchase of this latest technology possible.”
Parkinson’s disease is a disabling neurodegenerative illness which has no cure. There is currently an average of 30 people per week diagnosed in Scotland with the dosease.
The most successful drug to manage Parkinson’s – Levodopa – was developed 60 years ago, but since then there has been no major breakthrough in managing the disease.
Dundee University is a leading centre for Parkinson’s research, hosting world-renowned experts who are dedicated to improving our understanding of the condition.
Their efforts are backed by the Dundee Parkinson’s Research Campaign, which was launched in 2019 to establish the University as the global centre for Parkinson’s research.
Anyone wishing to learn more about or donate to the Dundee Parkinson’s Research Campaign can do so by clicking this link.