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Update on Tozadenant Trial for Parkinson’s

On 11/20/17, Acorda Therapeutics, Inc. announced that it is discontinuing the tozadenant clinical trial A research study in humans that aims to test a new intervention – this could be a drug, surgery or therapy like exercise or diet guidelines – to make sure it is effective and safe..  They concluded that they could not be confident that weekly white blood cell count screening would sufficiently ensure patient safety.


On 11/15/17, Acorda Therapeutics, Inc. announced that several people living with Parkinson's who participated in the Phase III trial for tozadenant experienced agranulocytosis — a severe drop in the number of white blood cells which fight infection — leading to cases of sepsis and five fatalities. Participants in the trial will now have blood cell count monitoring increased from monthly to weekly.  The study has paused new enrollment in the long-term safety studies, pending further discussion with the independent Data Safety Monitoring Board (DSMB) and the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Tozadenant is an oral adenosine A2a receptor antagonist currently in Phase III development as an adjunctive Supplemental or secondary. In the context of Parkinson's, adjunctive medications are used to enhance the effects of levodopa. treatment to levodopa in Parkinson’s disease patients to reduce OFF time.

Statement from the Parkinson’s Foundation

Our thoughts are with the family members who lost a loved one enrolled in this trial. Their participation in clinical research will ultimately help make life better for the people diagnosed with Parkinson's in the future. 

The Parkinson’s Foundation remains confident that Acorda and the FDA will investigate this rare event. Clinical trials in Parkinson’s disease — from oral therapies to surgical treatments — have had a strong safety record and they are critical in testing the safety and efficacy of investigational therapies.

In order to discover new PD therapies, we rely on brave and altruistic people, like the ones in this trial, to participate in clinical research. The Parkinson’s Foundation remains committed to supporting clinical research through our global network of Centers of Excellence and Parkinson’s Advocates in Research.

If you would like more information about the benefits and risks of clinical trial participation, learn more here.  If you have questions or concerns, please call our toll-free Helpline at 1-800-4PD-INFO (473-4636).

Thursday, November 16, 2017
Parkinson’s Foundation Announces Five New Members of its People with Parkinson’s Advisory Council
Wednesday, June 13, 2018

NEW YORK & MIAMI — June 13, 2018 — The Parkinson’s Foundation today announced five new members of its People with Parkinson’s Advisory Council.

The Parkinson’s Foundation 2018 Gala in New York City Tuesday, May 8, 2018
Monday, May 14, 2018

The Parkinson’s Foundation 2018 Gala was held at Cipriani 25 Broadway in New York City on Tuesday, May 8, 2018.

Parkinson’s Foundation Adds Alison Herman to its Board of Directors
Tuesday, May 8, 2018

MIAMI – May 9, 2018 – The Parkinson’s Foundation today announced the election of Alison Herman to its board of directors. Herman is senior counsel at Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits, a company which has generously supported Parkinson’s Foundation fundraisers.

Statement on Nuplazid Drug
Tuesday, April 10, 2018

On 4/9/18, CNN published an article on the FDA-approved drug, Nuplazid, used to treat hallucinations and psychosis in Parkinson’s disease. The article investigates FDA data showing the number of reported deaths with people taking Nuplazid. Nuplazid was approved by the FDA in 2016 and is manufactured by Acadia Pharmaceuticals.

Parkinson’s Foundation Adds John D. Thomopoulos to its Board of Directors
Monday, March 19, 2018

MIAMI & NEW YORK – March 19, 2018 – The Parkinson’s Foundation today announced the election of John D. Thomopoulos to its board of directors. Thomopoulos is a partner at Ernst & Young.

In Memory of Edythe Kay Marsa
Monday, March 12, 2018

The Parkinson’s Foundation mourns the loss of emeritus board member, Edythe (Edy) Kay Marsa. From 1993 to 2014, she was a member of the Foundation’s board of directors and served on several committees. Edy is survived by her husband William Marsa, who founded the Herbert Kay Parkinson Chapter in honor of her first husband who passed away due to complications from Parkinson’s disease.

Parkinson’s Foundation Announces New Genetic Initiative Connecting Parkinson’s Genetic Data with Clinical Care
Tuesday, March 6, 2018

MIAMI & NEW YORK—March 6, 2018—The Parkinson’s Foundation today announced a new initiative offering genetic testing and counseling to Parkinson’s patients within its Center of Excellence network.

Delegates From The Parkinson’s Community Converge On Capitol Hill To Advocate For Critical Research Funding
Monday, March 5, 2018

—2018 Parkinson’s Policy Forum Co-Sponsored by the Parkinson’s Foundation and the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research—

Parkinson’s Foundation Appoints Jena E. Abernathy to Board of Directors
Tuesday, February 27, 2018

MIAMI – February 27, 2018 –  The Parkinson’s Foundation today announced the election of Jena E. Abernathy to its board of directors.

Parkinson’s Foundation Moving Day Walks Fund Local Parkinson’s Programs in Seven Cities for Spring 2018
Friday, February 16, 2018

NEW YORK & MIAMI, FEBRUARY 16, 2018 — The Parkinson’s Foundation is proud to announce that Moving Day, A Walk for Parkinson’s, has funded more than $17 million in mission services to make life better for people living with Parkinson’s disease (PD).

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