February 22, 2022
In February 2022, Dr. Robin Barry Chan, AliveX Biotech VP of Strategic Partnerships, published 2 articles on top journals of neuroimmunology, which are jointly collaborated with prestigious academic team and scholars from Chinese top universities. Dr. Robin Chan has 10+ years of experience in research of lipid metabolism and neurodegenerative disease with focus on pathology, cell biology, etc. He was the founding director of Lipidomics Core Laboratory, Columbia University, and has published 38+ articles on top-tier publications (i.e. Nature, Nat Neurosci.).
The studies look into two distinct phenomena associated with PD pathogenesis. The one published on the Journal of Neuroinflammation investigated the mechanism of peripheral monocytes hyperactivation during Parkinson's disease (PD) pathogenesis and describes the interaction of α-syn containing red blood cells, endocytosis, and LRRK2 in this process. It provides a novel perspective for peripheral immune dysregulation seen in PD patients. The other study published on GLIA provided insight into how Blood Brain Barrier (BBB) disruption occurs in PD pathogenesis, and the central role played by astrocytes in this process. A key finding from the work was that exposure to toxic oligomeric α-syn resulted in astrocyte activation, which responded by increasing production and release of VEGFA and NO, both of which cause the degradation of BBB integrity. These results suggest that the VEGFA and NO signaling pathways are potentially attractive therapeutic targets for BBB protection in PD.
PD is a disease with a single common clinical presentation but multiple pathogenic pathways, any one of which (or in combination) may be relevant for a particular patient, i.e. diseases within a disease. This implies that to successfully treat PD patients, pathways which are driving the disease in individual patients need to be identified. To do this, highly accurate biomarkers are needed to identify these mechanisms in patients, so as to aid clinical decisions that match patients with precise drugs with the right mechanism of action.
Previous research on PD has established that there is a strong link between chronic activation of the immune system that can stimulate neuroinflammation and thereby promote PD pathogenesis. Add to it that findings from the two studies above have put an empahsis on the link between PD and the immune system dysfunction and shown significant translational potential that could facilitate deeper understanding of scientists towards the underlying pathogenesis of neurological diseases. At AliveX, the team are now working with clinical partners to use a multi-omics and AI-driven computational approach to discover new blood biomarkers in PD patients, which can be used to provide an early and accurate diagnosis of patients, thus enabling precision treatment with a higher success potential.