Dr Richard Wyse, Head of Research, The Cure Parkinson's Trust discusses this research in more details in the video above. The footage was taken at our recent patient research meeting on the 11th April 2014 (with thanks to Eros Bresolin).

If you would like to attend future meetings please email [email protected]

Positive Trial Data suggests Exenatide has the Potential to be a Disease Modifying Agent in Parkinson’s Disease

Exenatide has previously been identified as having a positive impact on insulin resistance  in the treatment of Diabetes

The Cure Parkinson's Trust, a charity founded by four people with Parkinson's disease, which is dedicated to facilitating and funding work towards a cure, today announces the publication of trial results which suggest possible disease modifying advantages twelve months after cessation of exposure to Exenatide in patients with Parkinson’s disease.

Exenatide has previously been identified as having a positive impact on insulin resistance.  In a Parkinson’s study published in May 2013, significant and clinically meaningful differences were demonstrated between the scores for those receiving Exenatide and the controls for both motor and cognitive symptoms 12 months after the start of the trial.  Both the original and the  follow-up trials were  conducted at the UCL Institute of Neurology and were funded by The Cure Parkinson’s Trust. The twenty participants from a previous twelve-month exposure to Exenatide (10ug bd) and twenty-four randomised control participants took part. The participants who had previously been exposed to Exenatide had an advantage of 5.6 points over their controlled tested counterparts when using the blinded MDS-UPDRS motor subscale and 5.3 points on the Mattis Dementia Rating scale. In other words, patients on Exenatide appeared essentially unchanged throughout and beyond the trial period, while the control group had an expected rate of gradual decline in movement and cognitive ability.

The conclusion from the trial was that while these data must still not be interpreted as evidence of neuroprotection, they nevertheless provide strong encouragement for the further study of this drug as a potential disease modifying agent in Parkinson’s disease.

Tom Isaacs, Co-founder and President of The Cure Parkinson's Trust, said: Although it is important to stress that there is still more evidence required before we can emphatically support the use of Exenatide in Parkinson’s, we are hugely encouraged by these findings.  This is the first time in the twenty years I have lived with Parkinson’s that I have witnessed such robust data which supports the view that we can permanently alter the degenerative nature of Parkinson’s.  The results of this trial also bear out The Cure Parkinson’s Trust’s policy to accelerate new treatments through conducting clinical trials on medicines already in use in humans. 

The results are published in the Journal of Parkinson’s Disease under the title “Motor and Cognitive Advantages Persist 12 Months after Exenatide Exposure in Parkinson’s Disease.” Ref: Journal of Parkinson’s Disease 10.3233/JPD-140364