HUNTINGTON’S DISEASE SOCIETY OF AMERICA AWARDS $886,785 TO HUNTINGTON’S DISEASE HUMAN BIOLOGY PROJECTS
New York, NY, November 2, 2022 — Today, the Huntington’s Disease Society of America (HDSA) announced that six research grants have been awarded under the Society’s largest research initiative, the HDSA Huntington’s Disease Human Biology Project. These grants represent HDSA’s patient-centric research focus which brings basic and clinical researchers together to facilitate Huntington’s disease (HD) science in the human condition – instead of in animal models – with the direct participation of people affected by HD.
“This year’s large and diverse cohort of selected projects reflects the breadth of innovative approaches to Huntington’s disease being pursued worldwide, from biomarkers and therapeutic targets, to strategies for improving quality of life for people with HD,” said Dr. Leora Fox, Assistant Director of Research & Patient Engagement at HDSA.”
HDSA received applications from researchers all around the world. Ultimately, grants were awarded to research fellows from Hungary, Spain, the United Kingdom, and the United States. The winners and titles of the 2022 HDSA HD Human Biology Project Grants are:
- Ines Bras, PhD, University of Central Florida: Extracellular vesicles as non-invasive biomarkers for Huntington disease progression and huntingtin lowering therapy
- Lea Danics, PhD Semmelweis University: Identification of novel targets with therapeutic potential in HD using a patient-derived induced neuronal model
- Paul Dennis, MFA, Hunter College, CUNY: Movement Intervention for Neurodegenerative Disease (MIND): Dance for Huntington’s Disease (DfHD)
- Maria Rosario Fernandez-Fernandez, PhD, Fundación para la Investigación y la Innovación Biosanitaria del Principado de Asturias (FINBA)-ISPA: Alterations in polysomal architecture associated with Huntington’s disease (HD) progression
- Kilian Hett, PhD, Vanderbilt University Medical Center: Cerebrospinal fluid in glymphatic circuit in Huntington’s disease
- Mitsuko Nakajima, BSc, MBChB, PGCert, MPhil, University College London: Mapping Premanifest Huntington’s Disease at Ultra-high Resolution
For a complete summary of these six research projects, please visit www.HDSA.org/hbp.
“The HD Human Biology Project is a unique research program,” added Dr. Arik Johnson, Chief Mission Officer at HDSA, “in that it supports early career scientists, like this year’s fellows, who are working with human samples, or directly with people living with HD. We are excited to see how their work will move HD science forward towards effective treatments for people in the HD community.”
Huntington’s disease is a fatal genetic disorder that causes the progressive breakdown of nerve cells in the brain. It deteriorates a person’s physical and mental abilities during their prime working years and has no cure. Each child of a parent with HD has a 50/50 chance of inheriting the faulty gene that causes Huntington’s disease. Today, there are over 41,000 symptomatic Americans and more than 200,000 at-risk of inheriting the disease. The symptoms of Huntington’s disease are described as having ALS, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s – simultaneously.
The Huntington’s Disease Society of America is the premier nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the lives of everyone affected by HD. From community services and education to advocacy and research, HDSA is the world’s leader in providing help for today and hope for tomorrow for people with HD and their families.
To learn more about Huntington’s disease and the work of the Huntington’s Disease Society of America, visit www.hdsa.org or call 1-800-345-HDSA.