Back to Basics: New Drug for Dyskinesias in Clinical Trials

research_vernaleo_beth_100x1001.jpgDo you or a loved one experience dyskinesias as part of Parkinson’s disease (PD)? The Parkinson’s Disease Foundation (PDF) has exciting news that may affect those of you who experience levodopa-induced dyskinesias (LIDs), the twisting and writhing movements that occur when people take levodopa.

A few months ago, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) granted orphan drug status to an experimental PD medication called eltoprazine, which is designed to ease LIDs. This status acknowledges that the drug fills an important unmet need (if approved, it would be the first drug available to treat LIDs) and may allow the drug to become available more quickly.

Not only that, the drug was identified for treatment of LIDs in Parkinson’s because of basic science funded by PDF 10 years ago. In this installment of Back to Basics (see installment one here), we give you the story on this drug — how basic science from 2006 might help the PD community in 2016.

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April Awareness x2: Parkinson’s and Occupational Therapy

Occupational therapist Linda Tickle-Degnen, Ph.D., OTR/L, FAOTA, pictured here at the PDF booth at the AOTA meeting.

Most of us know that April is Parkinson’s Awareness Month. But did you know that April is also National Occupational Therapy Month?

At PDF, we are excited to see these two awareness months coincide. We have been working alongside occupational therapists (OTs) in recent years to raise awareness of the ways in which OT can improve the lives of people with Parkinson’s.

For example, PDF added a webinar and fact sheet to our library of educational materials, both of which discuss benefits of occupational therapy for people with Parkinson’s and practical tips for working with an OT. We also launched a new online course, Occupational Therapy: Across the Parkinson’s Disease Continuum, designed to help occupational therapists keep up with the latest in Parkinson’s.

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Meet the PDF Team at the Parkinson’s Unity Walk in NYC!

PDF_UnityWalk_KarenSmithWill you be joining the PDF team at the 22nd Parkinson’s Unity Walk on Saturday, April 23 in Central Park in New York City?

Each year, thousands of individuals in the Parkinson’s community unite for this one-mile walk to raise awareness and funds. All proceeds support research for major US Parkinson’s foundations, including PDF. Not only that, the walk provides a fun and festive day for the Parkinson’s community.

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Meet Lea, Age 13, Designer of the 2016 Parkinson’s Awareness T-Shirt

Lea DempseyLea Dempsey, 13, of Princeton, NJ, has a knack for drawing, which she credits to her late grandfather, an avid painter who lived with Parkinson’s disease for more than a decade.

When the seventh grader stumbled upon PDF’s Kids Only T-Shirt Design Contest a few months back, she knew it was the perfect way to honor his memory.  Earlier this month, the public voted her design, “Join the Team Ending Parkinson’s,” to be printed on PDF’s 2016 Awareness T-shirts that will be worn by hundreds of people across the country.

What’s the story behind Lea’s design? PDF recently interviewed Lea and her family to find out.

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National Nutrition Month: Why it Matters to People with PD

nlwinter16_fruitbasket_b&wWhat should you know about nutrition in Parkinson’s disease (PD)? It is important for all of us to maintain a healthy diet to feel our best and stay energized. This is especially true for people living with PD.

As March is National Nutrition Month, our team wanted to shed light on the importance of nutrition in PD. According to Heather Zwickey, Ph.D., who recently led PDF’s webinar on, “Nutrition and PD,” developing good nutritional habits can help people to live better with the disease. How?

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