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Around & About the Community

What's the latest in the Parkinson's community?  Browse the stories from this issue of News & Review:

PDF Raises the Stakes for Research

On November 11, 2009, more than 300 people joined the Parkinson’s Disease Foundation (PDF) for “Raising the Stakes” at New York City’s Capitale.  Through a little friendly competition, the event raised both awareness of Parkinson’s and funds to support PDF’s efforts to find the causes of and a cure for the disease.

Honorary Chair Annie Duke, poker icon and runner-up on NBC’s hit show Celebrity Apprentice, started the night off with a rousing speech dedicated to the nearly one million people in the US living with Parkinson’s.  Guests enjoyed dancing, dinner, cocktails, casino games and prizes. 
PDF Executive Director Robin Elliott remarked, “PDF has been reminded time and time again by our community of the urgency to raise funds for the best research and the most promising scientists.  Tonight, we ‘Raised the Stakes’ to ensure that this important work continues.” 

PDF thanks event co-chairs Jose Cruz, Peter Dorn and Doug Stern and the host committee for their hard work in making this event a success.

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Make Plans to Attend the 2nd World Parkinson Congress in September 2010

From Tuesday, September 28 to Friday, October 1, 2010, people from all reaches of the Parkinson’s disease (PD) community — scientists, physicians, people with PD, nurses, caregivers, allied health professionals and representatives of nonprofit and academic institutions — will gather in Glasgow, Scotland for the second World Parkinson Congress (WPC).  

The four-day program will offer educational sessions covering a wide range of topics, including the latest in Parkinson’s research, education and training and issues regarding care and quality of life.  Presentations will be conducted by leading Parkinson’s disease researchers and advocates, including WPC 2010 Co-Chair and PDF Scientific Director, Stanley Fahn, M.D., and PDF Executive Director, Robin Elliott.

What will the program offer people living with Parkinson’s?  In addition to the scientific sessions, WPC 2010 will include a full day devoted to exploring the ‘Fundamentals of PD.’  This course is for people with PD and other health care professionals who are interested in the clinical aspects of PD.  The WPC is also inviting abstracts from people living with PD and other non-medical contributors for a special category entitled, “Living with Parkinson’s.”  Organizers are seeking contributions on program initiatives that have already, or could, make a positive difference to people living with PD.  Another unique feature of the WPC will be the Parkinson’s Quilt Project.  Led by PDF, this will be the first quilt project designed to focus the world’s attention on those living with PD.

To learn more about WPC 2010, please visit, or call (800) 457-6676.  PDF is a leading supporter, joining 125 organizational partners from 35 countries.

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Young Onset PD Conference: A Unique Experience

By Israel Robledo

From October 24-25, 2009, the first in a series of Young Onset Parkinson Conferences, co-sponsored by the American Parkinson Disease Association (APDA) and the National Parkinson Foundation (NPF), was held in Dallas, Texas.  I joined 200 other people in Texas for the live event, while more than 700 people watched via webcast. 

While I had never attended a young onset event before, friends and colleagues predicted that the event would be very different than other PD conferences.  Those predictions proved to be true.  

From the beginning, the atmosphere of the conference was full of energy and optimism.  Here was a place where people whose lives had been interrupted by young onset Parkinson’s disease could share their hopes and frustrations and form lasting friendships.  Although we all had unique stories, we could relate to each other’s common experiences of having been diagnosed at a young age. 

This was clear from the educational sessions, which covered a range of topics, from Medicare and disability issues to the positive effects of exercise to advice for managing medications.  Participants were able to exchange useful tips with each other more effectively because of our shared experiences and concerns.

Please make plans to attend the next conference on Friday and Saturday, March 12–13, 2010 in Sacramento, California, or watch online at or  

Mr. Robledo is a graduate of PDF’s 2008 Clinical Research Learning Institute.  He resides in Midland, TX.