NEW YORK, May 8, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Michael J. Fox Foundation (MJFF) is today announcing the launch of three new funding programs focused on driving research toward transformative treatments and a cure for Parkinson's disease (PD). Two programs will promote critical work on the promising therapeutic targets LRRK2 and Parkin. A third program allows researchers to propose developing biomarkers of cognitive impairment in PD. The new funding opportunities are open to both academic and industry researchers. In addition to these new programs, five other programs are currently open and accepting applications. Check out the complete list and apply for funding at https://www.michaeljfox.org/research/apply-for-grant.html. Brief descriptions of the three launching programs follow. LRRK2 Role in Idiopathic Parkinson's Disease 2013 MJFF invites proposals that can establish whether pathological mechanisms linked to LRRK2-associated parkinsonism underlie the more common idiopathic forms of PD. A clear answer to this question would provide additional insight into underlying causes of PD and greatly energize efforts to develop and test LRRK2-targeted therapeutics beyond those populations with established LRRK2 genetic parkinsonism. Informational Conference Call: May 30, 2013, 12:00 p.m. ETPre-Proposals Due: June 19, 2013, 6:00 p.m. ET To participate in the call and receive call-in details, please RSVP via email to email@example.com.Parkin Biology & Therapeutic Development 2013 MJFF invites proposals that promote understanding of the biological function and therapeutic potential of Parkin. Mutations in the Parkin gene explain a large proportion of PD cases occurring before the age of 40 and could represent a promising therapeutic agent to alter the course of PD. Informational Conference Call: June 6, 2013, 12:00 p.m. ETPre-proposals Due: June 19, 2013, 6:00 p.m. ET To participate in the call and receive call-in details, please RSVP via email to firstname.lastname@example.org.Cognition Biomarkers RFA 2013 MJFF invites proposals aimed at developing biomarkers of cognitive impairment in PD useful for future clinical trials. Particular emphasis will be on projects designed to develop biomarkers that identify transition between normal and impaired cognition, as well as between cognitive impairment and dementia.