Af­ter years of fail­ures, the hunt for a new type of Parkin­son’s drug is on

Illustration by Kim Ryu for Endpoints News

Whenever research and development into new Parkinson’s drugs are brought up, people tend to think of failure — for good reason. There have been years upon years of clinical trial flops, and existing therapies and brain stimulation devices bring only moderate relief.

While some investors wrote off Parkinson’s as a lost cause, companies, researchers and outside observers are more optimistic. In recent years, the field gained a better understanding of the genetic basis of the disease, and drugs targeting new pathways advanced into clinical trials, including one program in late-stage testing. The need for treatments is acute, with a surge in worldwide diagnosis for Parkinson’s, a disease marked by symptoms like tremors and slowed movement, in what researchers bill as an epidemic.

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