Searching for the odor of Parkinson's Disease.
In 2015, it was reported and verified by researchers that a former nurse in Scotland could smell an odor unique to Parkinson's Disease. Since a human can detect such an odor, it's no surprise that a dog can easily do the same.
PADs has been training dogs for detection of Parkinson's Disease since March, 2016.
Since the discovery of the woman in Scotland who could smell Parkinson's Disease, PADs has trained more than 20 dogs to successfully select Parkinson's samples from healthy human control samples with an accuracy rating of 90% or higher. The dogs attend training four days per week and are homed locally by their owner/handlers. The nonprofit program is staffed by a director of canine detection and a host of volunteers. In 2017, PADs became a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization with the mission to train dogs to detect Parkinson's Disease.
Since there is no definitive laboratory diagnosis of Parkinson’s Disease, the dogs may be able to provide an important contribution to the search for a cause or a cure. If the dogs can be proven to help with early detection of Parkinson’s Disease, this could lead to an extended active lifestyle for those afflicted with Parkinson’s, since detection prior to tremor stage provides the greatest hope for slowing progression of the disease.