Sensitive Diagnostic Assay for Parkinson’s Disease

Sharon Ronit, HUJI, School of Medicine - IMRIC, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

Employing phospholipid binding properties of blood-cells expressed α-Synuclein for disease detection


Parkinson’s Disease, Diagnostics, Peptide/Protein, α-Synuclein

Development Stage

Proof of concept demonstrated

Patent Status

PCT no. PCT/IL2014/050191: An ELISA method for a sensitive detection of alpha synuclein, consisting of its phospholipids binding properties


  • In the brain, α-Synuclein (α-Syn) protein is associated with the pathogenesis and progression of Parkinson’s disease and the related synucleinopathies, neurodegenerative diseases characterised by the abnormal accumulation of aggregates of alpha-synuclein protein in neurons, nerve fibres or glial cells, such as Lewy Body Dementia.
  • α-Syn is expressed at high levels in red blood cells and platelets.
  • a-Syn pathology is detected in peripheral tissues many years before the onset of Parkinson’s disease in the brain.

Our Innovation

  • A novel and highly sensitive ELISA method for the detection of α-Synuclein (α-Syn) in human blood samples has been developed.
  • The assay is based on the biochemical property of α-Syn, including specific pathogenic forms of the protein, to specifically bind membrane lipids, consisting of phospholipids and sphingolipids, at high affinity.
  • The assay was tested using blood samples from healthy controls (n=21) and Parkinson’s patients (n=20), measuring total and proteinase K-resistant a-Syn levels with successful results (Abd Elhadi et al, Scientific Reports 2015).
  • This assay provides a promising tool for molecular diagnosis of Parkinson’s disease.

Key Features

A non-invasive and reliable assay that reflects the pathogenic process

Development Milestones

  • Seeking industrial cooperation for further development.
  • Seeking research collaboration involving sample donations from patients with Parkinson’s and healthy individuals

The Opportunity

Synucleinopathies include Parkinson’s disease and the familial and sporadic forms of the disease, as well as dementia with Lewy bodies, and multiple system atrophy, and other rare disorders such as various neuroaxonal dystrophies.

Researcher Information         



Patent Status

Published WO 2019/175883

Contact for more information:

Mel Larrosa
VP Business Development Healthcare
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