Synergistic use of Coffee Components to Reduce Risk of Parkinson & other Neurodegenerative Diseases | Rutgers University Innovation Ventures

Synergistic use of Coffee Components to Reduce Risk of Parkinson & other Neurodegenerative Diseases

Synergistic neuroprotection by two coffee components (EHT/Caffeine) to slow down progression of Parkinson’s Disease and Dementia with Lewy Bodies

Invention Summary:

Parkinson's disease (PD) is the second most common neurodegenerative disorder, and Dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB) is the second most common type of dementia after Alzheimer’s disease. Both these disorders are progressive, debilitating, and currently incurable. The protein alpha-Synuclein (α-Syn) aggregates as fibrils in Lewy-bodies and Lewy-neurites in the brain in both conditions.

Scientists at Rutgers and Princeton University have shown in mouse models that two unrelated components of coffee (eicosanoyl-5-hydroxytryptamide (EHT) and caffeine) have synergistic effects on the brain when administered at sub-therapeutic levels. These two components together protect the brain against α-synuclein-mediated toxicity through maintaining PP2A (a phosphatase that dephosphorylates α-synuclein) in an active state. Studies were carried out in two mouse models involving α-Syn, both demonstrating that the combination treatment prevents abnormal accumulation of the pathogenic protein in critical brain regions. The subtherapeutic doses of EHT and caffiene together also prevented the spread of disease pathology, neuronal damage, and neuroinflammation. All these pathologic features of neuroprotection were also reflected in better behavioral performance on motor and memory tasks.

Market Applications:

  • Supplement
  • Nutraceutical
  • Caffeinated drinks fortified with EHT


  • Safe to use; sub-therapeutic levels needed for each compound.
  • Found in natural botanicals.

Intellectual Property & Development Status:

Patent pending. Available for licensing and/or research collaboration.

Relevant Publication:

Yan, R. et al. (2018).  PNAS, 115(51):12053-62. Synergistic neuroprotection by coffee components eicosanoyl-5-hydroxytryptamide and caffeine in models of Parkinson’s disease and DLB.

Patent Information: