Those familiar with the course of Parkinson’s will know that every Parkinson’s journey is unique and that there are treatments that work well for some and not for others. There have been times where past research studies have failed because of the assumption that all patients will react to a treatment in the same way. Researchers now understand that we need to approach each individual’s condition differently, including the potential to develop a personalized treatment plan for each person. This expansive effort requires the involvement of a network of labs, clinics, and research facilities across the country. This critical research is not possible without the support of people living with Parkinson’s and the community.
To meet this challenge, Parkinson Canada has partnered with Brain Canada as well as clinicians and researchers at top universities across the country to create the Canadian Open Parkinson Network (C-OPN). It’s among Canada’s first national research networks aimed at delivering the type of personalized treatments that will improve the lives of people living with Parkinson’s.
In the words of C-OPN Co-Director Dr. Edward Fon, “C-OPN is the only platform that has the capacity to match patients with researchers and clinicians to help drive personalized medicine and treatments leading to a better quality of life. It’s a game-changer.”
C-OPN is a Connector
C-OPN is the first national platform to capture data from those living with Parkinson’s; it makes the data accessible to a wide number of researchers to advance efforts towards better treatments and a cure. The platform features a national patient registry to collect demographic and clinical data. The registry will include a biobank of blood, urine and other biological specimens, which could open the door to pivotal genetic research.
How C-OPN Will Help People Living with Parkinson’s
We are on the brink of transformative changes to the treatment of Parkinson’s disease, thanks to the generosity of donors like you. This shift couldn’t come at a better time. Canada has more cases of Parkinson’s disease per capita than almost any other country in the world.
C-OPN is a major first step towards delivering personalized treatment plans for people living with Parkinson’s. The collaboration between researchers, clinicians, and people with Parkinson’s will result in data that can be used to test the effectiveness of potential therapies on specific types of patients and identify the best outcomes depending on the person. Types of analysis include brain imaging to pinpoint biomarkers, stem cell development and genetic therapies, and microbiome studies.
The planned growth for C-OPN is ambitious. You can help this vital research network by registering and getting involved as someone who has Parkinson’s and through donor support.
You Can Be Part of the Search for a Cure
When you sign up as a participant with C-OPN, the unique specimens and information you provide will be added to the secure database, National Registry and the BioBank. In doing so, you will be participating directly in necessary research spanning the network. You will be a part of a movement to find better, personalized treatments and, ultimately, a cure – No Matter What.