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Discovery May Help Young People With Parkinsonís Disease


(Springfield, GA)óRecent research from the Boston University School of Medicine (BUSM) has identified genes that contribute to the early onset of Parkinsonís disease and might help to identify techniques capable of delaying symptoms.

Parkinsonís disease is a progressive neurological disorder that generally affects people over age fifty. However, according to medical experts, one in ten patients diagnosed with PD is under the age of fifty.

ďI was diagnosed with Parkinsonís when I was only thirty-four,Ē says Kay Mixson Jenkins, author of the new childrenís book Who Is Pee Dee? ďIt was devastating since I was young and in the prime of my life, working and raising my children.Ē

In order to help her children to understand this devastating disease that befell their mother, Ms. Jenkins decided to write this book. The story teaches children as well as their families about Parkinsonís disease through the adventures of a young boy named Colt and his toy panda bear, Pee Dee.

The Parkinsonís symptoms that Ms. Jenkins felt her children would find most distressful include:
ē Slow and impaired movements
ē Difficulty with walking and maintaining balance
ē Shaking, often in a hand, arm or leg
ē Stiff and aching muscles

The BUSM study provides clues into the structure and processes of Parkinsonís disease, which might lead to new treatments and medicines.
ďResearchers and pharmaceutical companies like UCB, Inc. give us a lot of hope that PD can be controlled and maybe even prevented one day,Ē says Ms. Jenkins.
In addition to creating Who Is Pee Dee?, Ms. Jenkins is a leader in a nationwide effort to raise awareness about PD. As the founder of Parkinsonís in the Park, an affiliated chapter of the National Parkinson Foundation, Ms. Jenkins has created an outreach program that encourages families and friends to participate in the treatment of PD patients.

Kay Mixson Jenkins is the Georgia state co-coordinator for the Parkinsonís Action Network, leads the Effingham County Parkinsonís support group and was selected as a Parkinsonís patient advocate for UCB, Inc.

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 Parkinsonís Disease
 Michael J. Fox
 Parkinsonís study
 PD patients

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