ALABAMA UDALL CENTER: OVERVIEW
  • “Innate and Adaptive Immunity in Parkinson Disease”
  • Program Director: David Standaert
  • Multiple Components
    • Project 1 – David Standaert
    • Project 2 – Tika Benveniste
    • Project 3 – Andrew West
    • Cores
      • Clinical Core – Talene Yacoubian
    • Animal Models – Laura Volpicelli-Daley
  • Support
    • NIH Award $9,555,813 (9/2018 – 7/2023)
    • Additional support from UAB School of Medicine and philanthropic funding

SCIENTIFIC PREMISE
  • The Alabama Udall Center is based on substantial and growing evidence for the role of the immune system in PD pathogenesis
  • Our central hypothesis is that immune cells are activated early in PD, and that inhibiting their pro-inflammatory activities will protect from neurodegeneration
  • Our questions:
    • Is there immune activation in persons with PD early in the disease, and and do increased pro-inflammatory signals predict more rapid clinical decline, particularly in cognition?
    • Can LRRK2 and JAK/STAT signaling pathways be targeted to modulate immune responses to α-synuclein (α-syn) induced neurodegeneration?