Join Lundbeck and the Hereditary Disease Foundation to Build Hope for Huntington’s Disease

<0> LundbeckKatie White, 847-282-1929 </0>

As part of its ongoing support of the Huntington’s disease (HD) community, Lundbeck launched its third donation campaign. The web-based initiative, conducted in conjunction with the Hereditary Disease Foundation (HDF), is aimed at raising awareness of HD and generating support for the Casa Hogar Amor y Fe (House of Love and Hope), a unique HD clinic in Venezuela. To learn more about HD and to trigger a $10 donation from Lundbeck (up to a maximum donation of $50,000), individuals can visit and click on the campaign icon before the end of September.

The Casa Hogar, located on the shores of Lake Maracaibo, Venezuela, provides treatment, food, integrated nursing home and respite care exclusively for people affected by HD in a community greatly impacted by the disease. Since 1980, HDF has given over $17 million to this community to provide free medicines, food, supplies and staff support. They worked with local Venezuelan authorities to build the Casa Hogar over a ten-year period, opening to the families in 1999.

“I recently visited the clinic and was once again humbled by the fact that these families, living in the most extreme circumstances of poverty and duress, helped create our knowledge of HD,” said Dr. Nancy Wexler, President of the Hereditary Disease Foundation and Higgins Professor of Neuropsychology, Columbia University. “The tireless cooperation of these families gave us the HD gene. With the help of these Venezuelan families, we were able to localize the HD gene in 1983, and isolate it a decade later, in 1993. They endured clinical examinations over many years, gave precious DNA and made it possible to find the HD gene despite skeptics who said it would take centuries to locate, if it could be done at all. These families’ contributions were well ahead of their time. Their great gift to humanity led to the discovery that launched the Human Genome Project. The fact that the same gene causes HD worldwide is exceptionally fortunate because the research regarding HD has the potential to help patients everywhere. The Casa Hogar is our way of expressing our thanks for these families’ invaluable contributions.”

For more than a decade, HDF has supported the costs associated with the clinic, including medical care, supplies, salaries and other expenses. In 2011, the clinic came close to ceasing operations due to lack of funding. Thankfully, funds including those raised through Lundbeck’s campaign, were provided to the Casa Hogar, allowing the clinic to continue to serve this unique community.

“The Casa Hogar plays a vital role in the community at large by providing food and support as well as disease management at no cost to untold numbers of locals with HD, many of whom have nowhere else to turn for medical care or even basic necessities,” noted Dra. Margot de Young, medical director of the Casa Hogar. “We currently care for over 65 people who reside at the clinic, and provide daily meals and treatment for hundreds more in the community. The funds raised through this year’s campaign will make it possible for us to continue providing crucial services to those impacted by HD.”

“HD has a devastating and lasting impact on the individual, family and community as a whole. Now in our third year supporting this worthy cause, we are proud to support the Casa Hogar and we remain inspired by this local HD community,” said Staffan Schüberg, president of Lundbeck in the United States. “During the last four years we’ve been involved with this degenerative neurological disease, we have come to appreciate the resilience of people affected by HD, which is what drives us to find meaningful ways to support their needs.”

To learn more about the clinic and how much each click matters, visit the Facebook page for updates on the campaign.

Huntington’s disease is a hereditary neurodegenerative disease characterized by a triad of behavioral, cognitive and motor symptoms. These symptoms vary from person to person. The survival time after the onset of symptoms can range from 10 to 30 years and currently there is no cure. The HD gene, whose mutation results in the disease, was localized in 1983 and isolated in 1993. For more information on HD, please visit the Hereditary Disease Foundation website ().

The Hereditary Disease Foundation aims to cure Huntington’s disease (HD) by supporting research aimed at developing new treatments and cures. The Hereditary Disease Foundation was started by Dr. Milton Wexler in 1968 when his wife was diagnosed with Huntington's disease. The Foundation uses a variety of strategies – workshops, grants, fellowships, and targeted research contracts – to solve the mysteries of genetic disease and develop new treatments and cures. The Hereditary Disease Foundation initiated the International-Venezuela Huntington’s Disease Collaborative Research Project and played a key role in the discovery of the HD gene, which was localized in 1983 and isolated in 1993. For more information, visit the Hereditary Disease Foundation website ().

Lundbeck in the U.S., headquartered in Deerfield, Illinois, is a wholly-owned subsidiary of H. Lundbeck A/S in Denmark. Lundbeck is dedicated to providing innovative specialty therapies that fulfill unmet medical needs of people with central nervous system (CNS) disorders, such as Huntington’s disease (HD). In 2010, Lundbeck initiated the HD Research Initiative to identify and ultimately commercialize therapies that may slow or halt the progression of HD. This research is driven by collaborations with academic institutions and companies with promising compounds in development. For more information, visit .

H. Lundbeck A/S (LUN.CO, LUN DC, HLUKY) is an international pharmaceutical company highly committed to improving the quality of life for people suffering from brain disorders. For this purpose, Lundbeck is engaged in the research, development, production, marketing and sale of pharmaceuticals across the world. The company's products are targeted at disorders such as depression and anxiety, schizophrenia, epilepsy, Huntington's, Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases. Lundbeck was founded in 1915 by Hans Lundbeck in Copenhagen, Denmark. Today Lundbeck employs approximately 6,000 people worldwide. Lundbeck is one of the world's leading pharmaceutical companies working with brain disorders. In 2011, the company's revenue was DKK 16 billion (approximately EUR 2.2 billion or USD 3.0 billion). For more information, please visit .


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