2 posts tagged “Parkinson’s research”

PatientsLikeMe’s Paul Wicks Is a TED2013 Fellow

Posted November 14th, 2012 by

PatientsLikeMe Research & Development Director Paul Wicks, PhD

We are thrilled to announce that PatientsLikeMe Research & Development Director Dr. Paul Wicks, PhD, has been named a TED2013 Fellow.  He is one of 20 individuals to be selected from more than 1,200 candidates to attend the TED2013 conference in Long Beach, California, participate in a preconference bootcamp and receive mentoring from the TED community.

If you’re not familiar with it, TED is a nonprofit devoted to Ideas Worth Spreading.  It started out as a conference designed to bring together people from Technology, Entertainment and Design (T-E-D) and has since evolved into a global movement for sharing big ideas.  In addition to annual conferences in the US and UK (TEDGlobal), which bring together movers and shakers for inspiring talks of 18 minutes or less, TED sponsors local events (TEDx) and shares many of its videotaped talks via TEDTalks and TEDxTalks. (Among them: a 2009 talk by PatientsLikeMe Co-Founder Jamie Heywood, a 2010 talk by Paul Wicks and a 2011 talk by PatientsLikeMe Co-Founder Ben Heywood.)

Click Here to Read About the 20 Individuals Selected as TED2013 Fellows

The theme for the TED2013 conference is “The Young. The Wise.  The Undiscovered.”  Accordingly, this year’s class of TED Fellows represents “young innovators from around the globe, all with insightful, bold ideas that have the potential to influence our world.”  Paul is a perfect fit for this mission, having already been named one of the best young innovators under the age of 35 by MIT’s Technology Review as well as their “Humanitarian of the Year” in 2011.  We know he won’t stay “undiscovered” for long!

A big thanks goes to TEDGlobal 2012 Fellow Max Little, who nominated Paul for this prestigious opportunity.  An applied mathematician who is currently a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at MIT, Max is working on a breakthrough technique to monitor – and potentially screen for – Parkinson’s disease through simple voice recordings.  Learn more about Max’s ingenious idea in his June 2012 TEDTalk below and stay tuned for more coverage of this trailblazing researcher in the coming weeks.


Six Days Until the Parkinson’s Unity Walk

Posted April 23rd, 2012 by

Parkinson's Unity Walk Is Saturday, April 28, 2012

Parkinson’s Awareness Month isn’t over yet!  This month-long effort is capped off by the Parkinson’s Unity Walk, which takes place Saturday, April 28th, in New York City’s Central Park.

The largest grassroots awareness event for Parkinson’s disease (PD), the Unity Walk is anticipated to attract more than 10,000 participants.  If you’ve never attended something of that size, it’s quite a lot of people.  Beyond the sheer scope of the event, there’s another noteworthy fact:  100% of all donations go towards research supported by the seven major US Parkinson’s foundations.*  In 2011, that came to more than $1.5 million!

The 2009 Unity Walk in Progress

Now in its 18th year, the Unity Walk is an opportunity for solidarity amongst the different PD organizations.  Admirably, these groups have shown there’s no need to compete for funds when you can come together as one.  “This event truly unifies the whole Parkinson’s community behind a common mission—supporting the best, cutting-edge research,” says Joyce Oberdorf, President and CEO of the National Parkinson Foundation.  “It is like no other.”

A PatientsLikeMe Member and Her Family at the 2009 Unity Walk Start Gate

What’s new for 2012?  First, there’s a new 1.4 mile walk route in Central Park – slightly longer than 2011 but shorter than in previous years.  (It is wheelchair accessible.)  There will be free coffee served this year, and there will also be four food trucks on hand.  Another fun feature is the Team Photo Booth.  Get a printed copy of your photo right away and then download a digital copy later from the vendor website.  Learn about other new aspects here.

Over the years, PatientsLikeMe has sponsored a number of Unity Walk teams through our PatientsLikeMeInMotion program, which provides bright blue T-shirts, a monetary donation and more.  We’ve also attended the Unity Walk and interviewed some of the PatientsLikeMe members present.  Check out the short one-minute video below featuring four members of Team PatientsLikeMe at the 2010 Unity Walk.  (Find other Unity Walk interviews on our YouTube channel.)

*All Unity Walk donations are split evenly among these seven US organizations:  American Parkinson Disease Association, The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research, National Parkinson Foundation, Parkinson’s Action Network, The Parkinson Alliance, Parkinson’s Disease Foundation and The Parkinson’s Institute and Clinical Center.