Current Research Program
Dr. Larson works on projects related to the development of novel neuromodulation techniques for the treatment of Parkinson's disease and other disorders. Dr. Larson and Dr. Philip Starr
are both involved in an experimental protocol at UCSF to utilize real-time intraoperative MRI in the placement of deep brain stimulators. This represents a completely different technique for performing this procedure, and they believe it will lead to greater accuracy and safety for patients. Drs. Larson and Starr are also investigators in two of only three clinical trials done worldwide studying the use of gene therapy in patients with Parkinson's disease. The first, in conjunction with Dr. Krys Bankiewicz
, uses an AAV vector to transfer a gene for amino acid decarboxylase into the putamen. The second trial uses an AAV vector to transfer a gene for a growth factor, Neurturin. Other trials studying the use of DBS in major depression and Tourette's syndrome are in development.