Michael J. Fox Foundation and Cynapsus team for wearable device study for Parkinson's

Cynapsus CMO Albert Agro

Wearable devices and big data are all the rage these days, and Cynapsus Therapeutics ($CYNA) is wise to the trend. The company is teaming up with The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research to incorporate wearable technology and patient-generated data into a study of its under-the-tongue treatment for Parkinson's, building on a previous relationship to glean new insights about the disease.

Cynapsus and MJFF will use a wearable device and smartphone app created by the foundation and Intel to track patient's movement and response to Cynapsus' sublingual drug candidate APL-130277, which treats "OFF" episodes, or impaired motor abilities, in individuals with Parkinson's disease. After the pair collects and deidentifies patient information, they will store it in a cloud platform, allowing researchers to access the information to spur new discoveries. The effort could help accelerate drug development, as the MJFF and Cynapsus build on the foundation's previous work with Intel to look at the med's performance in clinical trials, the company said in a statement.

"As our Phase 3 clinical trials progress and we move toward gaining FDA approval of APL-130277, we plan to work closely with Intel and The Michael J. Fox Foundation to use this technology to improve the lives of patients with Parkinson's Disease," Cynapsus CMO Albert Agro said in a statement.

The latest initiative builds on a partnership between Cynapsus and the MFJJ. Back in 2012, the foundation awarded the Toronto-based company almost $1 million to develop its Parkinson's treatment, which is delivered through a thin film strip to bypass subcutaneous injections.

Meanwhile, the MJFF is staying busy with research projects of its own. In 2010, the foundation launched the Parkinson's Progression Markers Initiative (PPMI) to provide publicly available deidentified data and biological samples on patients from its sponsored studies. In August 2014, the MJFF joined forces with Intel to collect data from Parkinson's patients through smartwatches to track the disease's progression.

- here's the statement