CELEBRATING AN “OLYMPIC” ACHIEVEMENT AT THE WORLD PARKINSON CONGRESS

Screen Shot 2013-09-27 at 10.54.50 AMby Jo Rosen

The 3rd World Parkinson’s Congress was an extraordinary event that took place October 1 thru 4 in Montreal, Canada. Attending the World Parkinson Congress (WPC) was like participating in the Olympics. The Opening Ceremonies for the WPC were majestic. They highlighted the challenges that the Parkinson’s Community faces; while celebrating successes. As a special guest, addressing the audience of more than 3,300 was one such successes; winner of The Amazing Race Canada, Tim Hague, Sr age 48. Tim who was diagnosed with Parkinson’s about 3 years earlier and with his son, Tim, Jr., this year won the first season of The Amazing Race Canada stating, “It’s a big deal for me to say to the Parkinson’s community, ‘Don’t give up.’”

A bit of disenchantment was felt over a pessimism by some of the scientists who expressed that we might still be a long way away from finding a cure because it has been discovered (after spending billions of dollars) how complex the brain is and how the complexities of the progression of the disease are still not understood. I wanted to scream “Let me share the information about the SDBC with you.”

The other Olympic event, for me, was introducing Doctors Anna and Andrea to the Parkinson’s world as I stood with them in front of their poster “A Novel Blood-Brain Barrier Permeable PET Ligand for Parkinson’s disease.” Dr. Anna did a stellar job of explaining the poster and the science; “In this study, the specificity of α-syn-SM was evaluated in tissues derived from PD-like transgenic mouse model and human brains from PD patients. In addition the Blood-Brain-Barrier permeability of α-syn-SM was evaluated in our mouse model of PD. Our preliminary data demonstrate that in contrast to conventional antibodies, a low dose of α-syn-SM crosses the Blood-Brain-Barrier into the Central Nervous System and specifically binds to and detects α-syn aggregates in transgenic mice.” Visiting scientists’ jaws dropped in awe as they asked questions including “How do you know it is Blood Brain Barrier permeable?” The answer was easy; this has been validated by independent, world renown, third party pathologists. One poster session viewer remarked: “Those are unbelievable results!” and he took away a profound appreciation for the achievements and future directions of the SDBC within Parkinson’s Research.

Back to the atmosphere of the Congress, the organizers did an incredible job of rallying everyone in attendance to push forward harder to “Find the Cure” and to unite in “living” better with Parkinson’s. Their theme of uniting the Parkinson’s Community around a common goal was carried through in the name badges we were issued because they only listed each person’s name and country affiliation. Unlike other scientific, investor and vendor-sponsored conventions we felt that we were representing our country.

There were so many activities brought together under the theme of “Positively Living With Parkinson’s” honoring and highlighting the outstanding work and indomitable spirit of members of the Parkinson’s community in the area of creativity, performance, movement and life. There was the “quilt” project; the Performance and Film room with daily performances and documentary films, there were rooms for massage, meditation, and renewal, giving individuals’ tools to live a more productive and better quality of life. There were art and other exhibits.

But the over-all for me was that the SDBC team and I “BROUGHT HOME THE GOLD” during the poster presentation. The novel approach in the “Road to Cure” Parkinson’s disease based on the SDBC’s SMART(TM) Molecule Platform is awesome. The profound appreciation for the achievements and future directions of the SDBC within Parkinson’s Research is encouraging, inspiring, hopeful and supportive. We educated and we came away feeling blessed that we spread a GOOD WORD about the unique and proprietary Parkinson’s Research and Development Program we’ve been writing about for the last 19 months.

The next World Parkinson’s Congress is being planned for 2016 in Portland, Oregon.

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