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A Scent-Sational Breakthrough: How A Woman Identified Parkinson's Disease Through Smell Will Be Explored At Maynooth University Tonight

Joy Milne

Tickets are limited.

A talk will be held tonight at Maynooth University about a groundbreaking discovery of Parkinsons’ Disease (PD) being identified through scent.

Hosted by Prof Perdita Barran, it will discuss the story of Joy Milne, a woman who brought this to their attention.

Milne’s discovery, inspired by her late husband’s battle with PD, led to the identification of unique scent compounds associated with the disease.

Speaking on Kildare today, Prof Perdita Barran, said: “You just would not think of a disease having a smell and that being useful.”

Joy could identify, from the smell, the difference between someone with PD and someone without.

From Perth in Scotland, Milne has hereditary hyperosmia or a heightened sensitivity to smells and noticed that her late husband developed a different, more “musky” odour over a decade before he was diagnosed with PD.

She worked with the team in Manchester, which used mass spectrometry to investigate the biomarkers of PD and found that the smell is strong on patients’ upper backs, where sebum, an oily substance produced by the skin, tends to amass.

Event tickets are free but limited. Book here.

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