2011 Research Grantees

2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008 | 2007 | 2006 | 2005 | 2004 | 2003

The Parkinson’s Disease Foundation provided support to 40 scientific projects in 2011 for a total of $5.5 million. These included projects and mentored fellowships initiated by individual investigators from the global scientific grassroots community and collaborative projects being conducted by research teams at major institutions.


Center Grants | $2.62 Million

Allow strong groups of talented scientists the flexibility and long-term support to collaborate on basic, translational and clinical research.

Columbia University Medical Center
Roy N. Alcalay, M.D.
Robert Burke, M.D.
Lorraine N. Clark, Ph.D.
Stanley Fahn, M.D.
Blair Ford, M.D.
Lloyd Greene, Ph.D.
Paul E. Greene, M.D.
Elan D. Louis, M.D., M.S.
Karen Marder, M.D., M.P.H.
Pietro Mazzoni, M.D., Ph.D.
Serge Przedborski, M.D., Ph.D.
Seth Pullman, M.D.
Yaakov Stern, Ph.D.
David Sulzer, Ph.D.
Jean Paul Vonsattel, M.D.
Cheryl Waters, M.D.
Nancy Wexler, Ph.D.
Ai Yamamoto, Ph.D

Rush University Medical Center
Brandon R. Barton, M.D.
Bryan A. Bernard, Ph.D.
Cynthia L. Comella, M.D.
Jennifer G. Goldman, M.D., M.S.
Christopher G. Goetz, M.D.
Deborah A. Hall, M.D.
Katie Kompoliti, M.D.
Jeffrey Kordower, Ph.D.
Kathleen M. Shannon, M.D.
Glenn T. Stebbins, Ph.D.
Leo Verhagen, M.D., Ph.D.

Weill Cornell Medical Center
M. Flint Beal, M.D.
Claire Henchcliffe, M.D., D.Phil.
Melissa J. Nirenberg, M.D., Ph.D.


International Research Grants | $825,000

Designed to promote innovative research projects that have high potential to significantly advance the knowledge of Parkinson’s.

Evaluating the Role of Mitochondrial Dynamics in Parkinson's Disease in an In Vivo Vertebrate Model: Real-Time Live Imaging of Mitochondrial Dynamics in Dopamine Neurons in Whole Zebrafish
Sarah Berman, M.D., Ph.D., and Edward Burton M.D., D.Phil., F.R.C.P., University of Pittsburgh

Impact of Low- and High-Frequency Electrical Stimulation on the Inputs, Integrative Properties and Output of the Subthalamic Nucleus
Mark Bevan B.Sc., Ph.D., Northwestern University

Telomere Biology in Patients with Incident Parkinson’s Disease*
Tobias Kurth, M.D., Sc.D., and Robert Y.L. Zee, Ph.D., M.P.H., Brigham and Women's Hospital

Identification of Neuroprotective Factors in Tobacco*
Leo J. Pallanck, Ph.D., University of Washington

Small Aromatic Molecules as Novel Inhibitors of Alpha-Synuclein Aggregation
Daniel Segal, Ph.D., Tel Aviv University, Israel

Identification of Genes for Parkinson's Disease in an Isolated Greek Community and a Greek Population Cohort 
Georgia Xiromerisiou Ph.D., M.D., and Henry Houlden M.D., M.R.C.P., Ph.D., University of Thessaly, Greece and University College London, England


Fellowship and Career Development Grants | $1.28 Million

Aim to support scientists and clinicians in the early stages of their careers in Parkinson's and to generate interest in Parkinson’s research and patient care among up-and-coming scientists.

Research Fellowship Projects | $250,000

Development of a Progressive Neurodegenerative Mouse Model of Parkinson's Disease
Ane Korff, Ph.D., St Jude Children's Research Hospital


Evaluating Pedunculopontine Nucleus Stimulation as a Treatment for L-DOPA- Resistant Gait Disorders in Advanced Parkinson's Disease
Abirami Muralidharan, Ph.D., University of Minnesota

The Role of Parkin in Regulating Mitochondrial Dynamics and Homeostasis in Cortical and Dopaminergic Neurons
Victor Van Laar, Ph.D., University of Pittsburgh

The Locus Coeruleus as a Substrate for Parkinsonian Cognitive Inflexibility
Elena Vazey, Ph.D., Medical University of South Carolina

Post Residency Fellowship Training | $720,000

Sheila Rane, M.D., Rush University Medical Center
Houman Homayoun, M.D., Rush University Medical Center
David Arkadir, M.D., Ph.D., Columbia University Medical Center
Christopher W. Hess, M.D., Columbia University Medical Center
Sheng-Han Kuo, M.D., Ph.D., Columbia University Medical Center
Alexander Shtilbans, M.D., Columbia University Medical Center
Sirinan Tazen, M.D., Columbia University Medical Center
Mary Ann Thengannat, M.D., Columbia University Medical Center
Tuhin Virmani, M.D., Ph.D., Columbia University Medical Center

Summer Student Fellowship Projects | $45,000

Identifying the Natural and Functional Progression of PD
Rachel Boehm, mentor Quincy Almeida B.Sc., M.Sc., Ph.D., Wilfrid Laurier University, Canada

R2* Changes in Substantia Nigra and Dentate Nucleus Related to Tremor-and Akinetic/Rigid-Predominant Parkinson’s Disease
Christopher DiMaio, mentor Mechelle Lewis, Ph.D., Penn State College of Medicine

The Effects of Autophagy Enhancement on Alpha-Synuclein in Vivo
Darius Ebrahimi-Fakhari, mentor Pamela J. McLean, Ph.D., Massachusetts General Hospital/Harvard Medical School

Instability in Persons with Parkinsonism: Assessment and Interventions in a Community Setting
David Galaso, mentor Lee Dibble P.T., Ph.D., A.T.C., University of Utah

β oscillations in the STN and SNr of Parkinson’s Disease Patients
Vahagn Karapetyan, mentor William D. Hutchison, Ph.D., University of Toronto

Cardiovascular Autonomic Dysfunction as an Early Biomarker for Parkinson’s Disease
Sung Kim, mentor Sheila Fleming, Ph.D., University of Cincinnati College of Medicine

Cognitive Profiles of PD: Implications for Dementia
Ivy Miller, mentor Alice Cronin-Golomb, Ph.D., Boston University

Effectiveness of O4 in the Regulation of Toxicity Levels in Parkinson's Disease Models
Anna Norton, mentors Erich Wanker, Ph.D., and Jan Bieschke, Ph.D., Charité Medical School of Humboldt University, Germany

Role of Beta-Band Activity within the Internal Segment of the Globus Pallidus in Non-Human Primates During a command/countermand motor task
Shaun Patel, mentor Emad Eskandar, M.D., Massachusetts General Hospital

In Vivo and In Vitro Assessment of Urate Modulation by Pyrazinamide
Matthew Pearce, mentor Michael A. Schwarzschild, M.D., Ph.D., Massachusetts General Hospital

GABAA Receptor Expression Profile and Function in the Globus Pallidus
Ruth Quintana, mentor C. Savio Chan, Ph.D., Northwestern University

Effect of Forced Exercise on Resting State Functional Connectivity in Parkinson’s Disease
Chintan Shah, mentor Michael D. Phillips, M.D., Cleveland Clinic Foundation

Examination of PGC-1α and SIRT3 Pathways in LRRK2 and Alpha-Synuclein | Models of Parkinson’s Disease
Aarthi Subramanian, mentor M. Flint Beal, M.D., Weill Cornell Medical College

Potential Abnormalities of Brain Circuits of Parkinson’s Disease
Lirong TAN, mentor Jing-Huei Lee, Ph.D., University of Cincinnati

The Effect of Wii Fitness Training on Postural Imbalance in Patients with Parkinson’s Disease
Megan Trager, mentor Helen Bronte Stewart, M.D., Stanford University

Collaborative Fellowships | $265,000

PDF-AANF Clinician-Scientist Development Award | $165,000 (three years)
(co-sponsored with American Academy of Neurology Foundation)

Mechanisms of Cell Type-Specific Vulnerability in Synucleinopathy: A Yeast-Stem Cell Dual Discovery Platform
Vikram Khurana, M.D., Ph.D., Massachusetts General Hospital

PDF-PSG Mentored Clinical Research Award | $100,000
(Funded by a grant from PDF to the Parkinson Study Group)

Behavioral Treatment of Anxiety in Parkinson’s (BEHTA-PD): A Pilot Study
Jessica Calleo, Ph.D., mentors Laura Marsh, M.D., and Melinda Stanley, Ph.D., Baylor College of Medicine

Genetic and Transcriptional Analysis of Susceptibility for PD Neuropathology
Joshua Shulman, M.D., Ph.D., mentors Philip De Jager, M.D., Ph.D., Lewis Sudarsky, M.D. and Clemens Scherzer, M.D., Harvard/Brigham and Women’s Hospital


Additional Research Programs | $189,000

Funds innovative collaborative programs, such the Advancing Parkinson’s Therapies grant to the Parkinson Study Group to facilitate the movement of treatments from “bench to bedside.”

*Denotes second year of funding