Parkinson?s disease (PD) is a debilitating neurodegenerative disease characterized by progressive bradykinesia, rigidity, tremor and postural instability. The etiology, mechanism and progression of pathology and its relationship to clinical manifestations is not fully understood. These factors, coupled with its insidious onset, clinical heterogeneity, overlap with dementias, and the variability in speed and pattern of symptom progression, make a rigorous characterization and prognosis of PD difficult. Recent bench research on the trans-neuronal ?prion-like? transmission of misfolded proteins is at last filling the gaps in the pathological context of PD, whereby misfolded alpha-synuclein protein can trigger misfolding in adjacent cells. If this spread mechanisms could be quantitatively modeled, it could enable accurate prediction of PD progression. This is the aim of our proposal. We will turn hitherto qualitative neuropathological insights into a rigorous ?network-diffusion? model of disease spread. The model will be fed baseline in vivo MRI of PD patients, and will produce a deterministic and testable prediction for PD progression and conversion to dementia. By explicitly incorporating the brain?s connectivity network, our model will quantify the role of the brain?s anatomic connectivity network in disease transmission. We are targeting various applications, including diagnostic imaging biomarker, prognostic tool for assessing likely future patterns of disease and future neurocognitive status including likelihood of conversion to dementia. Relevance Parkinson?s Disease is a debilitating and common age-related degenerative disorder. The proposed network model will yield a validated deterministic and predictive model for PD progression, with applications in prediction of a patient?s future atrophy patterns, neurocognitive and motor scores.

Public Health Relevance

Parkinson?s Disease is a widespread and debilitating age-related degenerative disorder now known to involve trans-neuronal spread of pathology. By capturing these findings in a quantitative and mathematical model based on the brain?s connectivity network, the proposed project aims to obtain a fully validated deterministic and predictive tool for diagnostic and prognostic purposes in Parkinson?s Disease.

Agency
National Institute of Health (NIH)
Institute
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS)
Type
Research Project (R01)
Project #
5R01NS092802-02
Application #
9313353
Study Section
Neuroscience and Ophthalmic Imaging Technologies Study Section (NOIT)
Program Officer
Babcock, Debra J
Project Start
2016-07-15
Project End
2021-04-30
Budget Start
2017-05-01
Budget End
2018-04-30
Support Year
2
Fiscal Year
2017
Total Cost
$535,876
Indirect Cost
$208,269
Name
Weill Medical College of Cornell University
Department
Radiation-Diagnostic/Oncology
Type
Schools of Medicine
DUNS #
060217502
City
New York
State
NY
Country
United States
Zip Code
10065