Health Canada gave a biotech venture the permission to initiate a Phase 1 clinical trial investigating the use of stem cell therapy targeting Parkinson’s Disease (PD). Titled “Phase 1 Safety and Tolerability Study of MSK-DA01 Cell Therapy for Advanced Parkinson’s Disease,” this actually represents the first time in Canada that researchers will test on humans pluripotent stem cell-derived dopaminergic neurons in patients with Parkinson’s disease. With the study hosted at University Health Network in Toronto, the venture is a clinical stage biotech company, wholly-owned subsidiary of Bayer AG called BlueRock Therapeutics LP. The stakes are considerable here as the sponsor’s President and Chief Executive Officer, Emile Nuwaysir, PhD, suggests “…this trial could shift the treatment paradigm for PD patients in Canada and around the world.”
Parkinson's disease is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder caused by nerve cell damage in the brain, leading to decreased dopamine levels. The worsening of motor and non-motor symptoms is caused by the loss of dopamine-producing neurons. At diagnosis, it is estimated that patients have already lost 60-80 percent of their dopami...
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