“ESP+” – Extending and Improving ESP in the Diagnosis of Dementia with Lewy Bodies and Parkinson’s Disease
Principal Investigator: Dr Lina Gliaudelytė
Image: Fibrils of alpha-synuclein produced using ESP
Each year in the UK there are around 20,000 new cases of dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB) and 20,000 Parkinson’s cases. DLB and Parkinson’s share similar pathological characteristics – the presence of neuronal protein aggregates consisting of α-synuclein (ASYN) protein. Current diagnosis involves extensive clinical examination supported by nuclear imaging. Early diagnosis is difficult, with no clinically validated laboratory tests to identify disease presence. Early disease detection would significantly help clinical management and facilitate early treatment.
The team have developed the “Extracellular Synucleinopathic Protein” (ESP) test to detect pathological forms of ASYN in cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). We will optimise ESP for detection of ASYN in patient blood samples. A non-invasive blood biomarker would have clear advantages over CSF, providing much wider clinical adoption.
This study aims to further develop ESP to increase sensitivity of detection and extend ESP for detection of ASYN in routine clinical blood samples.
- Novel molecular rotor dye synthesis and optimisation to increase assay sensitivity
- Establishing ESP+ reaction for CSF
- Establishing plasma isolation
- Assay characterisation using FACS analysis, EM, Western Blotting
- Establishing ESP+ reaction for plasma