Parkinson's Disease Gene Identified With Help of Mennonite Family: University of British Columbia-VCH Research
Published: Jun 28, 2012
An international team led by human genetic researchers at the University of British Columbia and Vancouver Coastal Health has identified the latest gene associated with typical late-onset Lewy body Parkinson's disease (PD), with the help of a Canadian Mennonite family of Dutch-German-Russian ancestry. Twelve of the 57 members of the Saskatchewan family who participated in the study had previously been diagnosed with PD. UBC Medical Genetics Prof. Matthew Farrer, who led the research, notes that unequivocal confirmation of the gene's linkage with PD required DNA samples from thousands of patients with PD and healthy individuals. He refers to the new discovery as the "missing link," as it helps to unify past genetic discoveries in PD.