Taking the next step in finding a cure. Together.
Learn about our Parkinson’s disease research and how you can help.
Our goal is to end Parkinson's disease by working to prevent it.
We launched our company in 2006 with the mission to help people access, understand and benefit from the human genome. A big part of that mission is research. In 2009, we launched one of the world’s largest genetic studies of Parkinson’s disease (PD). We wanted to contribute to research and better understand the impact genetics has on this disease. So, we launched a new kind of research. One that uses the web to bring people together to share their personal health and genetic data with researchers -- regardless of how close they live to a clinic or research facility.
Today our commitment to accelerating and advancing PD research is stronger than ever. We believe understanding more about how our genetics influence this disease should improve the ability to detect, treat and ultimately prevent Parkinson's disease.
Parkinson’s has many faces. We need everyone to be proactive toward our health, and the best way to do it is by participating in research. There’s strength in numbers.Claudia Revilla
We focus on unmet needs
PD is a progressive neurodegenerative disease related to the loss of dopaminergic neurons in specific regions of the brain. PD is diagnosed on the basis of involuntary motor symptoms such as stiffness, tremor and slowness of movement. However, research suggests the disease process starts years before diagnosis. While there are therapies that are effective at treating symptoms of the disease, they do not slow disease progression. The largest unmet need in the treatment of PD is an effective disease-modifying treatment.
Early detection is key
In order to successfully prevent PD, therapies will need to be applied early in the disease process, which means there need to be reliable ways to detect and monitor early signs of the disease process, even before an individual is diagnosed with PD.
It takes collaboration
An important pillar of our PD research program is collaboration with non-profit, academic, and industry partners. Through collaboration, we aim to facilitate the discovery and development of disease-modifying therapies by enabling early detection and monitoring of prodromal PD. To learn more about our PD research program strategy, please watch our latest webinar.
Collaboration with qualified Parkinson's disease researchers allows us to make the most of the data that our participants share with us. An important part of our mission to improve the lives of people living with Parkinson's and their caregivers and loved ones.Paul Cannon
You can play a major role
23andMe has the unique ability to identify and engage with consented research participants who may be at higher risk of developing PD, as well as those who have been diagnosed with Parkinson’s. Through the help of these research participants, we hope to learn more about detecting and monitoring signs of the disease with the goal of helping to develop therapies to prevent or delay disease progression.
Participation is transparent and meaningful
Here are some of the areas of research you can expect to see from us:
- Longitudinal data collection of participants who may be at increased risk of developing PD
- Novel phenotyping and risk prediction tools to better understand how genetics and the environment can impact an individual’s risk for developing PD and the progression of the disease
- Pilot interventions in at risk and prodromal cohorts
- New and emerging research topics as PD research evolves
We know that PD risk is made up of both genetic and non-genetic factors: nature and nurture. By testing hundreds of thousands of genetic variants and collecting extensive information about people’s lifestyle, behaviors and environment, we're able to see how these factors influence disease risk and how they interact with each other–something that is only possible with all of this data.Karl Heilbron
Any 23andMe customer consented to research, regardless of PD status, can contribute to the PD program.
If you are a 23andMe customer consented to research, you can participate by:
- Answering research questions within your 23andMe account
- Completing our Parkinson's disease background survey
- Participating in additional research opportunities that we may invite you to join
- Learning about PD risk factors by reviewing your 23andMe Parkinson's Disease Genetic Health Risk Report*Learn about Considerations and Limitations for 23andMe’s Parkinson's Disease Genetic Health Risk Report
Knowing I have a risk of developing PD, participating in research helps me feel more in control. I think it’s so important for people like me who may or may not develop PD to participate so they can learn about us in the early stages.Jessi Keavney
We have momentum on our side
Thanks to you, our consented research participants and our partners, we’re making an impact. Let’s do even more.
- 30K+participants with PD
- 196K+participants in the PD research program
Over 12 years of PD research
We launched the unprecedented web-based Parkinson’s Research Community. Within six months, we had one of the largest genetic research cohort in the world.
Hi. Still have questions about 23andMe and PD Research?
If you don't see your question here, get in touch with us.
For questions regarding this research initiative or your 23andMe account, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
We often highlight new research and our research participants in our blog posts. Visit blog.23andMe.com and search for “PD” or “Parkinson’s disease” in the search bar. You will see a number of blog posts about our research program.
*The 23andMe PGS test uses qualitative genotyping to detect select clinically relevant variants in the genomic DNA of adults from saliva for the purpose of reporting and interpreting genetic health risks. It is not intended to diagnose any disease. Your ethnicity may affect the relevance of each report and how your genetic health risk results are interpreted. Each genetic health risk report describes if a person has variants associated with a higher risk of developing a disease, but does not describe a person’s overall risk of developing the disease. The test is not intended to tell you anything about your current state of health, or to be used to make medical decisions, including whether or not you should take a medication, how much of a medication you should take, or determine any treatment. The Parkinson’s Disease genetic health risk report is indicated for reporting of the G2019S variant in the LRRK2 gene, and the N370S variant in the GBA gene and describes if a person has variants associated with an increased risk of developing Parkinson’s disease. The variants included in this report are most common and best studied in people of European, Ashkenazi Jewish, and North African Berber descent.