A Saskatchewan family who wish to remain anonymous recently made a huge contribution to the medical world. They kindly donated their time, blood and often after dying their brains to a huge medical study which researches Parkinson’s disease. Who knows they could be your neighbours!
An international research team led by human genetics researchers at the University of British Columbia, accompanied by Saskatchewan’s very own Neurologists Dr. Ali Rajput and his son Dr. Alex Rajput, discovered an abnormal gene associated with typical late-onset Lewy Body Parkinson’s disease. This gene is called DNAJC13 and causes dopamine-producing cells to die.
Of the 57 members of the family participating in the research study, 12 had been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease. Their contributions reach back as far as 1983 when Dr. Rajput examined the first family member with Parkinson’s. During the next three decades, several others came to be diagnosed with the disease. The brains of several deceased family members were donated to Rajput’s group of over 500 brains.
Dr. Ali Rajput, one of the world's leading experts on the treatment of Parkinson's disease, is happy to call the University of Saskatchewan home.
He is travelling the world giving lectures on the subject. Recently he paid visits to Germany, Pakistan, Montreal and Vancouver, with more trips planned in the near future.
He plans to continue his research in the upcoming years whenever he can find spare time in his already busy life; luckily his wife of over 25 years is very supportive.