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National Parkinson Foundation Awards $3.7 Million in Grants
Date:8/5/2008

MIAMI, Aug. 5 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The National Parkinson Foundation (NPF) announced it will fund $3.7 million in grant programs dedicated to Parkinson's disease research, care and outreach worldwide. Grants were awarded to institutions in the Foundation's network of 44 centers of excellence, 10 comprehensive care centers, and 10 outreach centers. Through centers alone, NPF reaches more than 50,000 patients with Parkinson's disease and almost 70,000 patients with movement disorders.

"This year we received novel projects from a record number of centers and investigators worldwide," said Michael S. Okun, MD, National Medical Director of NPF. "The NPF funding continues to catalyze important discoveries and advances that make a difference for patients and families suffering today with this disease. As a result, dollars donated to NPF have an immediate and measurable impact."

Centers Grants

NPF dedicated approximately $1 million (24 percent) to research, more than $640,000 (19 percent) to comprehensive care, and more than $1.5 million (57 percent) to outreach for the 2008-2009 fiscal year.

Research funded is largely clinical and included studies of genetics, potential treatment, cognition and depression, and fall prevention. Programs funded in comprehensive care were diverse and included grants focusing on advanced-stage Parkinson's disease and continuity of care. Of the 36 outreach grants, 28 sought to reach underserved and culturally diverse populations.

This program was supported, in part, by generous grants from the Parkinson's Unity Walk and The Parkinson Alliance.

Small Research Grants

NPF awarded seven grants totaling $350,000 for studies piloting novel research ideas.

Researchers who received grants include:

-- Stephen Traynelis, PhD, Emory University;

-- Eugene Mosharov, PhD, Columbia University;

-- Esti Yeger-Lotem, PhD, Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research, MIT;

-- Yvonne Schmitz, PhD, Columbia University;

-- Christophe Lo Bianco, PhD, Wallenburg Neuroscience Center at Lund University;

-- Andrea Giuffrida, PhD, University of Texas Health Science Center; and

-- Claudio Hetz, PhD, University of Chile.

About The National Parkinson Foundation

Founded in 1957 and headquartered in Miami, the National Parkinson Foundation is the oldest Parkinson's organization, with the most extensive grassroots network of centers, chapters and support groups in the U.S., Canada, and internationally. Since 1984, NPF has invested over $130 million in disease-related programs and is committed to increasing the quality of care for Parkinson's patients through research, education, care support and outreach services. For more information about NPF and allocation of grants please visit http://www.parkinson.org or call 800-327-4545.

CONTACT: Jamie Schwartzberg of National Parkinson Foundation,

+1-305-243-8165, jschwartzberg@parkinson.org


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SOURCE National Parkinson Foundation
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