- Senior Research Fellow
Dr Laura Parkkinen heads the Neuropathology arm of OPDC and has a team of one PhD student and one research scientist. Her group focuses on high-throughput studies relating common genomic variation with expression patterns of Parkinson's risk genes, proteins and subsequent burden of pathology in human post-mortem brain. In OPDC, she is working to establish whether regional/cell-type specific gene expression may underpin the selective neuronal vulnerability in Parkinson's. Her group is also trying to establish whether a-synuclein pathology in peripheral nervous tissues and in CSF can provide a simple, reliable diagnostic tool for Parkinson's to identify patients at the earliest pre-symptomatic stages as well as to monitor disease progression and the effects of potential neuroprotective therapies.