Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Announcing 23andMe's First Patent in Parkinson's


Parkinson's Research Initiative

Dear Robert,

In October, we announced our discovery that a version of the gene called SGK1 may be protective against Parkinson's in those carrying the high-risk version of the LRRK2 gene. We were immediately excited about this discovery because such a finding could be the basis of a new drug target for Parkinson's. So we partnered with researchers at Scripps to explore this finding in greater detail. If this research is successful, we hope that a biotechnology or pharmaceutical company will develop this into a new therapy so that patients can benefit from the finding. Because bringing a new treatment to market generally takes more than ten years and costs more than $1 billion, pharmaceutical companies typically only invest in developing treatments that are protected by patentable findings. Therefore we filed for a patent on these findings.

We are excited to announce that this patent has been approved. This is exciting as it gives us the best shot of translating this finding into a new treatment that could help people with Parkinson's.

We will continue to update you as we learn more about how SGK1 works and if it could be translated into a new treatment for Parkinson's.

You can read more about what this patent means in our recent blog post.   

Warmest wishes,  
Emily Drabant, Ph.D.  
Parkinson's Research Manager

PS - We are still enrolling! If you know someone with Parkinson's, they are eligible for free 23andMe genotyping and research participation at www.23andme.com/pd

There are many ways to advance Parkinson's research. Find out which clinical trials need you at the Fox Trial Finder.   

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