TRANSLATE

Welcome to Our Parkinson's Place


I copy news articles pertaining to research, news and information for Parkinson's disease, Dementia, the Brain, Depression and Parkinson's with Dystonia. I also post about Fundraising for Parkinson's disease and events. I try to be up-to-date as possible. I have Parkinson's
diseases as well and thought it would be nice to have a place where
updated news is in one place. That is why I began this blog.
I am not responsible for it's contents, I am just a copier of information searched on the computer. Please understand the copies are just that, copies and at times, I am unable to enlarge the wording or keep it uniformed as I wish. This is for you to read and to always keep an open mind.
Please discuss this with your doctor, should you have any questions, or concerns. Never do anything without talking to your doctor. I do not make any money from this website. I volunteer my time to help all of us to be informed. Please no advertisers. This is a free site for all.
Thank you.


Saturday, November 1, 2014

Class helps participants tackle Parkinson's

New Israeli Technology Helps Treat Parkinson's Disease



By Staff Editor
Oct 30, 2014 - 12:46:47 PM

(HealthNewsDigest.com) - New research dealing with monitoring and treatment of Parkinson's Disease will be presented at a conference at Samaria' Ariel University.

Intel's applied research for this project was done in collaboration with the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research, the largest private funder of Parkinson's research in the world.
The wearable technological device is something like a watch that patients wear on their wrist. This device allows for symptoms to be continuously monitored and recorded, making up to 300 observations per second on every patient, thereby providing a more accurate picture of the effects of the disease.
With the new technology, this device can record such things as pulse, slowness of movement, tremors and sleep quality.
Constant monitoring also alleviates the burden of both doctors and patients, since until now data could only be collected for brief periods during visits to doctor's offices.
According to developers, one of the key advantages, in addition to the large amounts of data that can be recorded, is that the information is totally objective. Doctors previously were forced to rely on their patients reports which makes for very subjective data, and can cause strain in the doctor/patient relationship.
There are also huge variances in the way people suffer Parkinson's disease. The fact that the symptoms vary so greatly made it difficult for doctors to monitor alone.
Researchers and developers hope that access to new and large amounts of data will significantly aid research and care for patients with Parkinson's disease - with the objective of soon identifying a cure.
"This will allow researchers to better understand how Parkinson's disease works and what the exact symptoms are," Dr. Cohen explained. "Until now many aspects of the disease where virtually unknown because of the need for in depth monitoring of patients, now researchers will be able to get a much clearer picture of how the disease is affecting patients." Dr. Cohen said.
Clinical trials have been carried out in both Israel and the United States. A large amount of data has been collected and further experiments are planned soon.
For more information about the new technology and statements from patients and researchers: 


The conference was organized by Dr. Inon Zuckerman, Department of Industrial Engineering and Management, Ariel University. Artificial intelligence experts and researchers from around the world will come together to witness the presentation of the breakthrough research.

http://health.einnews.com/article/232004382

High prevalence of vitamin D deficiency across the board in neuromuscular disease


October 31, 2014

Source: American Association of Neuromuscular and 
Electrodiagnostic Medicine (AANEM)

More credence has been added to a growing awareness of 
the high prevalence of vitamin D deficiency in neuromuscular disease by newly presented research. Vitamin D supplementation has been suggested to improve function in frail elderly patients at risk for falls, as well as individuals with myasthenia gravis and Parkinson's.


The impact of vitamin D deficiency and supplementation on function in other neurologic conditions has yet to be explored.


A study presented at the annual meeting of the American 
Association of Neuromuscular & Electrodiagnostic Medicine 
(AANEM) adds more credence to a growing awareness of the 
high prevalence of vitamin D deficiency in neuromuscular 
disease.

"Previous work has shown vitamin D deficiency to be quite 
common in other neurological disorders such as multiple 
sclerosis, myasthenia gravis, and Parkinson's disease. This 
study suggests this concern may be more prevalent in other 
neuromuscular conditions as well," said Ileana Howard, MD,
 AANEM News Science Editorial Board member.

Vitamin D supplementation has been suggested to improve 
function in frail elderly patients at risk for falls, as well as
 individuals with myasthenia gravis and Parkinson's. The
 impact of vitamin D deficiency and supplementation on 
function in other neurologic conditions has yet to be explored.

"While the connection between vitamin D deficiency and 
neurologic disease is likely complex and not yet fully understood,
this study may prompt physicians to consider checking vitamin D
levels in their patients with neurologic conditions and supplementing 
when necessary," said Dr. Howard.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Association of Neuromuscular and Electrodiagnostic Medicine (AANEM)Note: Materials may be edited for content and length

Stem cell patent to reach Supreme Court


Jeanne Loring holds a petri dish with induced pluripotent stem cells from a Parkinson’s patient. — Howard Lipin
The U.S. Supreme Court will be asked to intervene over a controversial embryonic stem cell patent, opponents of the patent said Thursday.
Jeanne Loring, a stem cell scientist at The Scripps Research Institute, said the court will be asked Friday to overturn a lower court decision and allow the opponents to seek cancellation of the patent held by the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation, or WARF.

Loring and two public interest groups, Consumer Watchdog and the Public Patent Foundation, have been trying to get that patent overturned since 2006. Another patent giving rights over induced pluripotent stem cells has been waived by WARF.
Loring, who is researching the use of induced pluripotent stem cells to treat Parkinson's disease, said the remaining patent impedes development of embryonic stem cell therapies. 
Embryonic stem cell therapies are reaching the clinical stage, such as San Diego's ViaCyte, which recently began trials of its therapy for Type 1 diabetes, derived from human embryonic stem cells.
"We think that now embryonic stem cells really are showing their worth in clinical studies, it's very important to just wipe this thing off the books, so nobody can either shut down trials or require huge licensing fees for successful efforts," Loring said.
The foundation got the patent for work by James Thomson of the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He was the first to derive human embryonic stem cells, in 1998.
Opponents say Thomson's feat, while significant, was not a patent-worthy technological advance. Loring has said other qualified scientists could have isolated the cells with methods used for finding animal embryonic stem cells, so the advance was obvious.
Moreover, embryonic stem cells are a product of nature and therefore not patentable according to a 2012 Supreme Court ruling, they say.
In the petition to be filed Friday, Consumer Watchdog, represented by the Public Patent Foundation, asked the high court to overturn a ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit that blocked the challenge. The opponents had asked the court of appeals to overturn WARF’s patent 7,029,913 last year, closely following a Supreme Court ruling that natural gene sequences can't be patented.
The appeals court said Consumer Watchdog lacked legal standing to challenge the patent, because it was not directly harmed. The group says a law explicitly allows such challenges.
The group's petition for certiorari can be downloaded here: http://www.consumerwatchdog.org/resources/consumer_watchdog_petition103114.pdf
“The Court of Appeals’ refusal to allow Consumer Watchdog to appeal the PTO’s faulty decision to uphold a patent on human embryonic stem cells is a clear violation of the express language of statutes passed by Congress and signed by the President,” Dan Ravicher, executive director of the Public Patent Foundation, and Consumer Watchdog's counsel in the case, said in a statement. “It also conflicts with the clear intent of Congress and the President to empower the public to seek revocation of invalid patents.”
WARF has maintained that it doesn't seek to thwart research, but it is entitled to compensation for the commercial use of technology it spent money and time developing.
http://www.utsandiego.com/news/2014/oct/30/warf-stem-cell-patent-supreme-court/

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Nurses Specializing in Parkinson's Disease

As a nurse who has spent her career specializing in Parkinson’s, I am excited to tell you about the expansion of The Edmond J. Safra Visiting Nurse Faculty Program at PDF. This collaboration is designed to prepare the next generation of nurses to fight the disease on the front lines.
Parkinson's Disease Foundation LogoPD Helpline (800) 457-6676
PAIR Logo
2015 Calendar Cover 1
2015 Calendar Cover 1
http://www.pdf.org/edmondjsafranursingDear Friend of PDF:
Has a nurse made a difference in your life or the lives of those you know who are touched by Parkinson’s disease? As a nurse who has spent my career working with people with Parkinson’s and their families, I know the critical role that we can play. But, as a nursing educator, I found that not much had changed from my own undergraduate days, when my textbook included exactly one sentence on Parkinson’s disease.
But now, we can be hopeful for a different kind of future for nursing care in PD. Today, the Parkinson’s Disease Foundation and the Edmond J. Safra Foundation announced their collaboration on expanding and enhancing The Edmond J. Safra Visiting Nurse Faculty Program to improve care for the nearly one million people in the United States living with Parkinson’s.
The Edmond J. Safra Visiting Nurse Faculty Program allows nurses like me, who have spent our careers specializing in Parkinson’s, to share our knowledge with nursing faculty, who can in turn teach their students to meet the needs of this community.  And in the upcoming year, we’re offering up to eight trainings around the US for nurse faculty (see below).
Established by the Edmond J. Safra Foundation in 2009, the program offers faculty members from undergraduate nursing programs a 40-hour curriculum that includes:
  • academic instruction
  • hands-on experience with people with Parkinson’s disease
  • independent study, and
  • mentorship from nurse specialists at nationally recognized movement disorder centers.
More than 120 nurse faculty have completed the program, returning to their classrooms better able to train the next generation. They have gone on to become local and national leaders in PD care and nursing education.
I am thrilled that the program is now housed at PDF, as part of the organization’s commitment to training health care professionals. Keep in mind that PDF offers free patient education materials and continuing education opportunities for other professionals.
I hope you’ll visit our website to learn more about The Edmond J. Safra Visiting Nurse Faculty Program at PDF.
Sincerely,
Gwyn Vernon
Gwyn Vernon, M.S.N., R.N., C.R.N.P.
Co-Founder and National Director of The Edmond J. Safra Visiting Nurse Faculty Program at the Parkinson’s Disease Foundation & Nurse Practitioner in the Department of Neurology/Parkinson’s Disease and Movement Disorders Center of the University of Pennsylvania at the Pennsylvania Hospital, Philadelphia, PA
http://www.pdf.org/edmondjsafranursing

Improved Levodopa Delivery Trial Approved for Phase III


Posted by  Maggie McGuire, October 30, 2014
The Accordian Pill™ consists of levodopa/carbidopa in layers of thin film, folded into a capsule. Image via Intec Pharma
The Accordian Pill™ consists of levodopa/carbidopa in layers of thin film, folded into a capsule. Image via Intec Pharma


A study testing a new formulation of levodopa/carbidopa recently cleared another hurdle to regulatory approval.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved Israeli company Intec Pharma Ltd. to carry out a Phase III trial of the Accordion Pill™ for the treatment of Parkinson’s disease. The trial is expected to begin in the second half of 2015.
“The clinical effect obtained to date, together with the high safety profile demonstrated in all the trials, indicate the potential of Accordion Pill Levodopa to become a leading treatment for Parkinson's,” Intec chairman Zvi Joseph told Israeli publication Globes.
Improved Levodopa Delivery Would Ease Symptoms
The gold standard treatment for Parkinson’s motor symptoms, levodopa offers some patients short windows of efficacy. Prescribing more medication is not always the answer because overuse is associated with troubling side effects such as dyskinesia.
Levodopa is a dopamine replacement therapy; the brain converts this compound into dopamine, replacing what is lost as dopamine neurons degenerate with Parkinson’s disease. One of the challenges of levodopa therapy is that the drug is absorbed into the blood stream (where it travels to the brain) only through a small portion of the gastrointestinal tract.
Between swallowing the currently available pill and its absorption in the intestine, there are many chances for the compound to break down, leaving little left for the brain. Carbidopa works to protect against this erosion, but is not entirely successful.
Accordion Formulation Shows Improved Therapeutic Effect
The Accordion Pill is a unique approach to maintaining levodopa levels and offering a steady stream to the brain. The drug is formulated into a multi-layer structure folded to resemble, well, an accordion, and placed in a capsule. The capsule dissolves in the stomach and the layers of levodopa release the drug over time, straight to the area where the drug is absorbed.
phase II study compared the Accordion Pill Levodopa to the standard available treatment of levodopa/carbidopa. Intec Pharma found that those who took the Accordion Pill experienced an increase of more than two hours of therapeutic benefit.
Before allowing the trial to progress to Phase III, the FDA required another toxicity study in pre-clinical models. The Michael J. Fox Foundation funded that work, and the company reported positive results in June 2014.
With FDA approval to proceed, Intec is now planning the last step before applying for regulatory approval. The clinical sites for this trial have not yet been announced, but they will be listed on Fox Trial Finder when the study begins recruiting.

https://www.michaeljfox.org/foundation/news-detail.php?improved-levodopa-delivery-trial-approved-for-phase-iii

Class helps participants tackle Parkinson's

10/30/2014 8:09 AM 
 10/30/2014 8:09 AM

Some reach for door handles with trembling hands. Others shuffle in with the aid of a cane, or lean over walkers, taking gentle, small steps. A few walk with a limp.
Some can't move much at all, needing assistance to remove a cardigan and a scarf. One man is legally blind. Almost everyone is in their 70s.
It is incredible to watch them assemble here and prepare for their Monday afternoon River Shores YMCA exercise class - but that's not the half of it.
They are all battling Parkinson's disease.
The symptoms are harsh: tremors, often in the hand and fingers; slowed movement; rigid muscles; impaired posture and balance; or loss of automatic movements such as blinking, smiling or swinging the arms while walking.
IIt affects them in different ways and to varying degrees; no two have exactly the same condition. But today, right now, in this gym, Parkinson's does not define them, and so together, they begin at the same starting line.
They get on their treadmills.
And they start walking.
"This is not the worst thing that can happen in your life, to have Parkinson's. You just deal with it - like you deal with anything - as best you can," said 71-year-old Anna Zwygart as she walked backward on her treadmill.
Parkinson's is the progressive disorder of the nervous system that affects movement. It is caused when nerve cells in the brain gradually break down or die, according to the Mayo Clinic website. Many of the symptoms are due to loss of neurons that produce dopamine. When dopamine levels decrease, it can cause abnormal brain activity that leads to signs of Parkinson's.
Medication and physical therapy are the most common forms of treatment. Terry Steffen, a physical therapist who has worked with Parkinson's patients her whole career, wanted something more. She believed there should also be an exercise class that became a regular routine for people with Parkinson's.
"Exercise is known to improve functional mobility and quality of life for people with many neurological conditions," she wrote in a research paper she co-authored for the Journal of Geriatric Physical Therapy.
No such class existed. So she started one about 15 years ago, then at the Rite-Hite YMCA in Milwaukee. It's now held at 14 locations throughout Wisconsin. She hired physical therapists who were educated and trained in Parkinson's and created classes at regular gyms like the YMCA to make them accessible and affordable.
"One of our issues in physical therapy is to get what we do out into the community and have it supported by the community," Steffen said. "This is not going to go away."
The classes are designed specifically to help those with Parkinson's.
Walking on a treadmill promotes symmetry and balance. Floor exercises help with strength, mobility and flexibility. Participants do bridges and leg extensions while they do verbal exercises to practice speaking loudly and clearly, since Parkinson's can take that away, too.
Most importantly, Steffen said, it is a group exercise class, which has proved to be very beneficial. Pain, she said, is not the biggest issue with Parkinson's patients.
"It's motivation," she said. "They have to take some of the responsibility for their movement - not their spouse, not their PT - but them. Group stuff always works better. 'How do I keep myself motivated? How do I push myself?' In class, they're shown how."
Tom Bittner, 76, was one of the first to sign up for this class at the River Shores Y seven years ago. He's a retired middle school teacher who cared for his father who also had Parkinson's. He said the class has helped him straighten his posture.
"I watched my father go through the stages and I recall them as I go through the same stages," Bittner said. "We're all going through the same thing. We have fun together. We give each other support. It encourages you to go above and beyond."
That's why Dick Boppre is here. He's seen what Parkinson's has done to his friends, one in particular, who is nearly immobile. It saddens and angers him at the same time.
Before classes a year ago, he was taking short steps. Now, he's taking longer strides. The neurologist even noticed that after a couple of weeks, Boppre was walking better. A former employee of a printing company, Boppre stays active with this class twice a week and goes to the Y three or four more times a week at 6 a.m. for his own workout in the heated pool.
"This keeps your body limber," said Boppre, 74. "It keeps you going."
It also might help with depression. The debilitating affects of Parkinson's are very sobering. In this class there are clients who cannot roll over on their own from their front to their back on the ab mat. They need trainer Stephen Mayorga to roll them. Others are restricted to whatever exercises they can do in a chair.
And yet - they're here. They're trying. They're doing what they can.
Margaret Nielsen is 92. She's smiling almost the entire time on her walk on the treadmill.
Zwygart has already seen improvement since coming to class. She used to have resting tremors and a "frozen shoulder."
"My balance was not good, my walking was not good," she said. "It was hard to do something, like go shopping with my family, and keep up. I figured it was older age.
"I am so thankful I have this group. I know others who have this disease; it really limits their life. There are days you don't feel like coming - but if it weren't for this group, maybe I'd be in a chair.
"I'm going to be the best that I can, so I can do things."
Adam Gerbert, with arms still muscular and ropy from his Georgia football days, is a cancer survivor - and still a competitor. He pushes the incline to 6 on the treadmill. The medication he takes for tremors makes his mouth dry, but he loves this class because it keeps him fit - and it shifts the focus from what can't be done to what he can still do.
They're all guided, nurtured, pushed and protected by Anne Langenfeld Smith, a physical therapist from the Aurora Sports Institute in West Bend. She directs Thomas Koch, who is legally blind, back to the hand rails of the treadmill. She knows how to look for any respiratory issues in case someone isn't feeling well. She challenges the class to count up by threes: "3, 6, 9, 12 ..." until they've counted to at least 24, loudly.
She loves the personalities of everyone here and appreciates their sense of humor, because without it, Parkinson's might be too much.
"Parkinson's is like diabetes: every single, solitary day, you need to do something to combat it," Langenfeld Smith said. "They need to own it. They need to be ambassadors for it. There are a lot of things that this class can combat that drugs won't. This helps their strength, their posture, their mobility."
On her best day? What happens?
She brightens with a smile.
"They leave here feeling taller than when they came in," Langenfeld Smith said.

Re

Some reach for door handles with trembling hands. Others shuffle in with the aid of a cane, or lean over walkers, taking gentle, small steps. A few walk with a limp.
Some can't move much at all, needing assistance to remove a cardigan and a scarf. One man is legally blind. Almost everyone is in their 70s.
It is incredible to watch them assemble here and prepare for their Monday afternoon River Shores YMCA exercise class - but that's not the half of it.
They are all battling Parkinson's disease.
The symptoms are harsh: tremors, often in the hand and fingers; slowed movement; rigid muscles; impaired posture and balance; or loss of automatic movements such as blinking, smiling or swinging the arms while walking.
IIt affects them in different ways and to varying degrees; no two have exactly the same condition. But today, right now, in this gym, Parkinson's does not define them, and so together, they begin at the same starting line.
They get on their treadmills.
And they start walking.
"This is not the worst thing that can happen in your life, to have Parkinson's. You just deal with it - like you deal with anything - as best you can," said 71-year-old Anna Zwygart as she walked backward on her treadmill.
Parkinson's is the progressive disorder of the nervous system that affects movement. It is caused when nerve cells in the brain gradually break down or die, according to the Mayo Clinic website. Many of the symptoms are due to loss of neurons that produce dopamine. When dopamine levels decrease, it can cause abnormal brain activity that leads to signs of Parkinson's.
Medication and physical therapy are the most common forms of treatment. Terry Steffen, a physical therapist who has worked with Parkinson's patients her whole career, wanted something more. She believed there should also be an exercise class that became a regular routine for people with Parkinson's.
"Exercise is known to improve functional mobility and quality of life for people with many neurological conditions," she wrote in a research paper she co-authored for the Journal of Geriatric Physical Therapy.
No such class existed. So she started one about 15 years ago, then at the Rite-Hite YMCA in Milwaukee. It's now held at 14 locations throughout Wisconsin. She hired physical therapists who were educated and trained in Parkinson's and created classes at regular gyms like the YMCA to make them accessible and affordable.
"One of our issues in physical therapy is to get what we do out into the community and have it supported by the community," Steffen said. "This is not going to go away."
The classes are designed specifically to help those with Parkinson's.
Walking on a treadmill promotes symmetry and balance. Floor exercises help with strength, mobility and flexibility. Participants do bridges and leg extensions while they do verbal exercises to practice speaking loudly and clearly, since Parkinson's can take that away, too.
Most importantly, Steffen said, it is a group exercise class, which has proved to be very beneficial. Pain, she said, is not the biggest issue with Parkinson's patients.
"It's motivation," she said. "They have to take some of the responsibility for their movement - not their spouse, not their PT - but them. Group stuff always works better. 'How do I keep myself motivated? How do I push myself?' In class, they're shown how."
Tom Bittner, 76, was one of the first to sign up for this class at the River Shores Y seven years ago. He's a retired middle school teacher who cared for his father who also had Parkinson's. He said the class has helped him straighten his posture.
"I watched my father go through the stages and I recall them as I go through the same stages," Bittner said. "We're all going through the same thing. We have fun together. We give each other support. It encourages you to go above and beyond."
That's why Dick Boppre is here. He's seen what Parkinson's has done to his friends, one in particular, who is nearly immobile. It saddens and angers him at the same time.
Before classes a year ago, he was taking short steps. Now, he's taking longer strides. The neurologist even noticed that after a couple of weeks, Boppre was walking better. A former employee of a printing company, Boppre stays active with this class twice a week and goes to the Y three or four more times a week at 6 a.m. for his own workout in the heated pool.
"This keeps your body limber," said Boppre, 74. "It keeps you going."
It also might help with depression. The debilitating affects of Parkinson's are very sobering. In this class there are clients who cannot roll over on their own from their front to their back on the ab mat. They need trainer Stephen Mayorga to roll them. Others are restricted to whatever exercises they can do in a chair.
And yet - they're here. They're trying. They're doing what they can.
Margaret Nielsen is 92. She's smiling almost the entire time on her walk on the treadmill.
Zwygart has already seen improvement since coming to class. She used to have resting tremors and a "frozen shoulder."
"My balance was not good, my walking was not good," she said. "It was hard to do something, like go shopping with my family, and keep up. I figured it was older age.
"I am so thankful I have this group. I know others who have this disease; it really limits their life. There are days you don't feel like coming - but if it weren't for this group, maybe I'd be in a chair.
"I'm going to be the best that I can, so I can do things."
Adam Gerbert, with arms still muscular and ropy from his Georgia football days, is a cancer survivor - and still a competitor. He pushes the incline to 6 on the treadmill. The medication he takes for tremors makes his mouth dry, but he loves this class because it keeps him fit - and it shifts the focus from what can't be done to what he can still do.
They're all guided, nurtured, pushed and protected by Anne Langenfeld Smith, a physical therapist from the Aurora Sports Institute in West Bend. She directs Thomas Koch, who is legally blind, back to the hand rails of the treadmill. She knows how to look for any respiratory issues in case someone isn't feeling well. She challenges the class to count up by threes: "3, 6, 9, 12 ..." until they've counted to at least 24, loudly.
She loves the personalities of everyone here and appreciates their sense of humor, because without it, Parkinson's might be too much.
"Parkinson's is like diabetes: every single, solitary day, you need to do something to combat it," Langenfeld Smith said. "They need to own it. They need to be ambassadors for it. There are a lot of things that this class can combat that drugs won't. This helps their strength, their posture, their mobility."
On her best day? What happens?
She brightens with a smile.
"They leave here feeling taller than when they came in," Langenfeld Smith said.

http://www.jsonline.com/blogs/sports/280235062.html

Read more here: http://www.miamiherald.com/sports/outdoors/article3465873.html#storylink=cpy