Dr. J. WilliamLangston is the founder, CEO, and Scientific Director of the Parkinson's Institute. He is a graduate of the University of Missouri School of Medicine and chairman of neurology at Santa Clara Valley Medical Center in San Jose, California. Dr. Langston has authored or co-authored over 250 professional publications in the field of neurology, most of which are on Parkinson's disease and related disorders. Dr. Langston gained national and international recognition in 1982 for the discovery of the link between a "synthetic h…" contaminant and parkinsonism. This contaminant, known as MPTP (which sometimes taints MPPP, an effective synthetic opioid), is selectively toxic to the same nerve cells in the brain which die in Parkinson's disease, the Substantia nigra. The discovery of the biologic effects of this compound led to a renaissance of the basic and clinical research in Parkinson's disease. MPTP allowed the first animal representation of Parkinson's disease.