MOVING SCIENCE FORWARD
MultiPark is a strategic research area funded by the Swedish Government. Building on the strong tradition of cutting-edge research on Parkinson's and Alzheimer's diseases at Lund University, our vision is to create new and innovative strategies for improved and novel treatments, disease modifications and eventually cures for neurodegenerative diseases, in order to improve the quality of life for people living and ageing with these disorders.
In 2017 the European Research Council (ERC) marks its 10th anniversary. The main goal of the ERC is to encourage the highest quality research in Europe and to support investigator-driven frontier research through competitive funding on the basis of scientific excellence. Meet MultiPark's researchers who have received prestigious ERC grants.
Researchers at Lund University in Sweden have used the MAX IV synchrotron in Lund – the strongest of its kind in the world - to produce images that predate the formation of toxic clumps of beta-amyloid, the protein believed to be at the root of Alzheimer’s disease. The unique images appear to contradict a previously unchallenged consensus. Instead of attempting to eliminate beta-amyloid, or so-called plaques, the researchers now suggest stabilizing the protein.
Once considered to be just a ‘glue’ to support neurons, glial cells are emerging as critical regulators of chemical homeostasis, synaptic plasticity, blood flow, and immune responses in the brain. Our understanding of glial functions in health and disease is growing exponentially thanks to the availability of novel technologies. The symposium gathers speakers who are making outstanding contributions to this field of research using different study approaches and animal models, including models of Parkinson´s and Alzheimer´s disease.
With a simple blood test, scientists hope to make an earlier distinction between Parkinson's and related diseases, so-called atypical parkinsonism. Today, such a diagnosis requires samples of spinal fluid, a more painful, invasive and expensive method. Researchers at Lund University have developed a blood test that could offer an earlier and more accurate diagnosis. This would help make sure that people suffering from these diseases are receiving the right kind of treatment sooner.
In order to drive a car, you need a good balance between accelerator and brake. The same applies to a part of the brain – the striatum - that controls our movements. Research at Lund University in Sweden has led to new findings on the interaction between the “accelerator” and the “brake” in the striatum. These findings may guide the development of treatments for movement disorders such as those occurring in Parkinson’s disease.