Parkinson's Disease Foundation Invites Community to Join Research Advocates In Speeding New Treatments

PDF Training Prepares New 27 New Research Advocates from Western Region

NEW YORK, July 26, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Parkinson's Disease Foundation® (PDF®) welcomes 27 new members to its national network, Parkinson's Advocates in Research, and invites you to join the movement at  Last week, the newest PDF Research Advocates completed an intensive three-day training outside of Los Angeles, CA.  They call upon their communities in the Western region of the United States to collaborate with them in advancing research and speeding new treatments for Parkinson's disease.


After being chosen through a competitive application process, the PDF Research Advocates took part in sessions on the science of Parkinson's disease and the development of treatments.  The sessions were led by experts in the field such as Jay Nutt, M.D., Director of the Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU) Parkinson Center of Oregon and Movement Disorders Program and Co-Director of the Portland VAMC Parkinson's Disease Research, Education and Clinical Center. 

The training prepared Research Advocates to take on leadership activities such as joining Parkinson's disease research advisory boards, collaborating with scientists, and educating their communities about research studies.  PDF Research Advocates Dan and Pat Baker, of Portland, OR, are partnering with Dr. Nutt to inform their communities about local Parkinson's disease research studies.  The former educators, who have been married for 42 years and touched by Parkinson's disease since Dan's diagnosis in 2002, said of their new role, "We are eager to share our new knowledge with the Parkinson's disease community.  We hope that our collaboration with Dr. Nutt and his team is just the beginning of an era in which the community is involved in every step of research and treatment development for Parkinson's disease."

Dr. Nutt added, "It will be invaluable for OHSU to have knowledgeable community members, such as the Bakers, join our team of researchers, doctors and other professionals, in order to prioritize Parkinson's disease research and improve studies.  The presence of the Bakers and their 180 colleague Research Advocates across the country is certainly a crucial step in our goal of finding new treatments for people living with Parkinson's disease."

PDF Executive Director Robin Elliott also commented, "PDF invites people who are touched by Parkinson's disease – including our collaborators in industry, government and voluntary health organizations – to complete our online research advocacy course at  The course offers a succinct and practical view of the clinical research process in Parkinson's disease and will also provide participants with a clear picture of the important agenda that PDF's Research Advocates are prepared to take on."

To speak with PDF about partnering with a PDF Research Advocate at your institution or support group or apply to PDF's upcoming Midwestern regional training taking place in October in Oak Brook, IL, please call (800) 457-6676, email [email protected] or visit  To register for PDF's online course today, visit

About Parkinson's Disease

Parkinson's disease is a progressive neurological disorder that affects nearly one million people in the US.  Although promising research is being conducted, there is currently no cure for Parkinson's disease.

About Parkinson's Advocates in Research

Parkinson's Advocates in Research (PAIR) is a signature program of the Parkinson's Disease Foundation (PDF).  It offers in-person trainings and an online course to provide people touched by Parkinson's disease with scientific knowledge and leadership skills needed to become stakeholders in research alongside scientists and health professionals.  The cornerstone of the program is a national network of 180 Research Advocates touched by Parkinson's disease from 38 states who are actively advancing research and speeding new treatments.

About Parkinson's Disease Foundation

The Parkinson's Disease Foundation® (PDF®) is a leading national presence in Parkinson's disease research, education and public advocacy.  PDF is working for the nearly one million people in the US who live with Parkinson's disease by funding promising scientific research while supporting people living with Parkinson's through educational programs and services.  Since its founding in 1957, PDF has dedicated over $96 million to fund the work of leading scientists throughout the world and over $40 million to support national education and advocacy programs.

SOURCE Parkinson's Disease Foundation