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MDS 2021 | Advances in the diagnosis of atypical parkinsonism

Irene Litvan, MD, FAAN, FANA, University of California San Diego, La Jolla, CA, highlights recent developments that have improved the diagnosis of atypical parkinsonism. New insights into the pathophysiology of atypical parkinsonian disorders have led to the discovery of novel biomarkers that can aid in diagnosis. Additionally, a substantial focus on identifying prodromal symptoms may aid earlier diagnosis. Many therapeutic trials are targeted towards the preclinical phase of disease and thus, identifying these patients early could have a great impact on outcomes. This interview took place during the 2021 International Congress of Parkinson’s Disease and Movement Disorders.


Dr Litvan’s research is supported by the National Institutes of Health grants: 2R01AG038791-06A, U01NS100610, U01NS80818, R25NS098999; U19 AG063911-1 and 1R21NS114764-01A1; the Michael J Fox Foundation, Parkinson Foundation, Lewy Body Association, CurePSP, Roche, Abbvie, Biogen, Centogene. EIP-Pharma, Biohaven Pharmaceuticals, Novartis, Brain Neurotherapy Bio and United Biopharma SRL – UCB. She was a member of the Scientific Advisory Board of Lundbeck and is a Scientific advisor for Amydis and Rossy Center for Progressive Supranuclear Palsy University of Toronto. She receives her salary from the University of California San Diego and as Chief Editor of Frontiers in Neurology.