U.S. Nobel Prize laureate eyes international cooperation in exploring curative treatment to Parkinson's disease

Source: Xinhua| 2019-10-07 18:55:53|Editor: xuxin
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SAN FRANCISCO, Oct. 6 (Xinhua) -- U.S. Nobel Prize laureate Randy Schekman said Sunday that international collaboration, including that from China, could add to new research efforts in the fight against Parkinson's disease.

At the daylong Berkeley China Summit 2019 that discussed technological impacts on modern life, Schekman, a professor of molecular and cell biology at University of California, Berkeley (UC Berkeley), delivered a keynote speech themed "An international collaborative approach to understanding the mechanism of Parkinson's Disease."

The winner of the 2013 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine told Xinhua that he visits China frequently and has maintained extensive cooperation with "many different" Chinese partners, including schools and hospitals of traditional Chinese medicine (TCM).

"I've been to many different institutions. There's a traditional Chinese medical school in Shenzhen that I visited. And I visited a Guangzhou pharmaceutical institution," which is heavily focused on TCM, he said, adding that he is going to attend a TCM congress to be held in Jinan, Shandong Province in northern China in late November.

Schekman said he is looking at every possible way, including TCM, to find a potential cure for Parkinson's disease.

He says TCM could be part of the overall exploration process to look at ways to address Parkinson's disease, citing his inspiration from the success story of China's 2015 Nobel laureate Tu Youyou, who led a team to discover the malaria drug artemisinin from Chinese herbal extracts.

If Chinese clinics are able to show reproducible effects of TCM in curing Parkinson's disease, "then that will be promising and worth pursuing," he said.

He also said that he hoped his Chinese counterparts and hospitals would conduct more open and active international cooperation to share data of Parkinson's patients, so that everyone around the world can learn more about what's going on as patients (are) progressing to the disease.

Schekman said he is optimistic about having a better understanding the disease in the next 10 years.

The annual Berkeley China Summit 2019, which opened earlier in the day, drew a host of prominent speakers, scholars, and senior executives from big tech companies to talk on topics ranging from artificial intelligence, computing, engineering to entrepreneurship, as well as their impact on innovation, media, entertainment and transportation that matter to human life.