PEOPLE with Parkinson’s disease or rheumatoid arthritis are being called upon to take part in blood research at Thurgoona’s Charles Sturt University.
A PhD student with CSU’s school of community health, Di Hughes, hopes the research will improve diagnosis procedures and help with monitoring and treatment of the diseases.
“One of the big problems with Parkinson’s disease is that it’s within the brain, so it’s hard to monitor patients without it being very invasive,” she said.
“This may be an easier way to do that in the future.”
The research will involve investigating the role of red blood cells in neutralising free radicals.
Ms Hughes said she had a long-standing interest in Parkinson’s, with family and friends among those affected.
“It’s a fairly common disease, particularly as the population gets older, so there’s a lot of people affected by it.
“I will be looking at the shape and biochemistry of red blood cells, which are critical for delivering oxygen to the body.
“We want to study the levels of antioxidants, free radicals and resulting inflammation in people with these diseases.
“Ultimately, this research could help understand the role of oxidative stress and antioxidants in Parkinson’s disease and rheumatoid arthritis.”
About 120 people are needed, including healthy people aged over 50 for a control group. Those interested can phone Ms Hughes on 0417 695 297.