Kenneth Marek, MD Joins the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research as Scientific Advisor

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research (MJFF) announced that Kenneth Marek, MD, has joined the Foundation as Scientific Advisor. In this role, Dr. Marek will provide more direct counsel to MJFF, using his strategic research planning abilities to advise on-staff researchers, project managers and clinician on clinical imaging and research, as well as on how the MJFF engages with industry.

Dr. Marek cofounded and is the president and senior scientist at the Institute for Neurodegenerative Disorders. His major research interests include identification of in vivo imaging biomarkers for neurodegenerative disorders including Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease. He will continue to serve as principal investigator of the Parkinson’s Progression Markers Initiative (PPMI) study, sponsored by the MJFF and following over 1,500 participants. Andrew Siderowf, MD, director of the Parkinson's Disease and Movement Disorders Center and chief of the Movement Disorders Division at the University of Pennsylvania, has been named coprincipal investigator of PPMI, working with Dr. Marek to lead the study.

Dr. Marek is a recipient of the Robert A. Pritzker Prize for Leadership in Parkinson’s Research and also principal investigator of the Parkinson Associated Risk Syndrome (PARS). He is a founding member of the scientific advisory board of MJFF and has served leadership roles in the Huntington study group and the Parkinson’s study group. The MJFF is the world’s largest nonprofit funder of Parkinson's research, dedicated to accelerating a cure for Parkinson's disease and improving therapies for those living with the condition. The Foundation pursues its goals through an aggressively funded, highly targeted research program coupled with active global engagement of scientists, Parkinson's patients, business leaders, clinical trial participants, donors and volunteers.

Trained at Yale University and Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, Dr. Marek also cofounded a clinical neuroimaging research service company, Molecular NeuroImaging, LLC (MNI) and serves in a leadership role in invicro LLC, which acquired MNI in 2016.

"Ken brings a wealth of vision, passion and scientific acumen to The Michael J. Fox Foundation. His research expertise in brain imaging and clinical research has been critical in our work for more than a decade, and we are fortunate for his involvement in key Foundation initiatives over the years," said Todd Sherer, PhD, chief executive officer of MJFF. "The expertise and experience he brings are tremendous assets to our mission to deliver breakthrough treatments faster to the millions living with Parkinson's disease." 

"The Michael J. Fox Foundation has been a dynamic and visionary leader in Parkinson's research since its inception," said Marek. "I look forward to building on my longstanding partnership with the Foundation and continuing to contribute to its efforts to improve understanding, establish more sensitive assessment tools and develop more effective treatments for people with Parkinson's and in those at risk for developing Parkinson's."

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