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The role of Parkinson’s Disease biomarkers in drug development clinical trials

Molecular imaging has emerged as a key tool to advance our understanding of pathobiology and accelerate the development of therapeutics for Parkinson's Disease (PD). In this roundtable discussion, a panel of experts will discuss the state of PD biomarkers in clinical trials, including:

  1. The imaging landscape
  2. Complementary biomarkers for PD in the space of omics, digital, fluids and more
  3. Which markers to deploy for maximal value in clinical trials
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Rob Comley

Rob Comley

Senior Director and Head of Translational Imaging, Neuroscience Discovery Research, AbbVie

Mr. Rob Comley is a biomedical scientist with over 20 years’ experience using imaging biomarkers in early drug development. Mr. Comley currently leads the translational Imaging group within Neuroscience Discovery Research at Abbvie, having previously been employed at F. Hoffmann-La Roche and GlaxoSmithKline.

Kalpana M. Merchant

Kalpana M. Merchant

Adjunct Professor of Neurology, Founder President, Northwestern University and TransThera Consulting Co

Dr. Kalpana Merchant, Ph.D., is a neurobiologist and translational neuroscientist who has led and contributed to the discovery and development of drugs for neurological and psychiatric disorders at international pharmaceutical companies and start-ups for nearly 30 years. She is an Adjunct Professor of Neurology at Northwestern University, a senior advisor to the Michael J. Fox Foundation, serves on the Oregon Innovation Council and several advisory boards at the National Institutes of Health. She is the Founder President of TransThera Consulting Co., which provides strategic and scientific guidance on drug discovery and translational strategies to biotech/start-ups and investors. Dr. Merchant received her Ph.D. in neuropharmacology from the University of Utah, completed postdoctoral training at University of Washington and was Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at University of Washington before transitioning to pharmaceutical research in 1993 at the Upjohn Co followed by Eli Lilly and Co in 2003.

Kenneth Marek

Kenneth Marek

President and Senior Scientist, Institute for Neurodegenerative Disorders

Dr. Kenneth Marek, M.D., is President and senior scientist at the Institute for Neurodegenerative Disorders and special scientific advisor to The Michael J. Fox Foundation. Dr. Marek's major research interests include identification of biomarkers for early detection, assessment of disease progression and development of new treatments for Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s and related neurodegenerative disorders. His specific interest is in in vivo neuroreceptor imaging biomarkers. He has authored numerous neurology and neuroscience publications on these topics. Dr. Marek is the principal investigator of several ongoing multi-center international studies, including the Parkinson’s Progression Markers Initiative (PPMI) and the Parkinson’s Associated Risk Syndrome (PARS) study.

Andrew Siderowf

Andrew Siderowf

Hurtig-Stern Professor of Neurology, Chief of Movement Disorders, Penn Perelman School of Medicine Department of Neurology

Dr. Andrew Siderowf, M.D. MSCE, is the Hurtig-Stern Professor of Neurology and the Chief of the Movement Disorders Division at the Penn Perelman School of Medicine Department of Neurology. Dr. Siderowf received his M.D. from Duke University, completed residency training at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania and fellowship training in Movement Disorders and Experimental Therapeutics at the University of Rochester (under Ira Shoulson, M.D.). His research addresses the organization and conduct of clinical trials, particularly the use of biomarkers as outcome measures.

Roger Gunn
moderator

Roger Gunn

Chief Scientific Officer, Neuroscience and Emeritus Professor, Invicro and Imperial College London

Dr. Roger Gunn, Ph.D., is an international expert on imaging for disease understanding and drug development. In his role at Invicro, Dr. Gunn leads the company's CNS strategy including the R&D of new biomarkers and analytics along with the design, analysis and delivery of clinical imaging trials for pharmaceutical companies. He is also the founder and a director of MIAKAT Ltd. which develops image analysis software for PET imaging data. He has published over 200 peer reviewed papers in the field of imaging with an h-index of 64 and has delivered over 80 invited lectures.