April is Parkinson’s Awareness Month

The goal is knowing more about PD – and why I want to help 

The brain is one of the most complex and fascinating organs in the human body, but it’s also one that leaves us with a ton of mystery. When your brain is firing on all cylinders, talking and communicating effectively to the rest of your body, it’s great! But what happens when something is “misfiring”? Those unanswered questions are what researchers in the pharmaceutical and biotech industry are desperate to uncover, hence the popularity of neurology and neurodegenerative positions within Medical Affairs. 

Although we at PharmaFinders have experience placing numerous MSLs within the neurodegenerative space, it’s a favorite therapeutic space of mine for more personal reasons. I’ve had two close family members touched by Parkinson’s Disease. My grandfather was the first – a man who never for a second during his neurodegenerative course lost his intelligence, whit or caring guidance. Now my mom, who is out there trying her best to remain resilient as a Pharmacist, giving 100+ COVID vaccines daily, despite the “off” periods she deals with. 

At one point throughout my grandfather’s PD treatment plan many years ago, he let me know how upset he was that his Neurologist wouldn’t let him participate in a Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) study on the brain in PD patients. Now I should mention he was over 80 years old at the time….but he was so dedicated to finding a cure for himself and for those to come after him. His pure passion for finding a cure and my mom’s continued fight against PD are the reasons why I am so commitment to giving back to the Parkinson’s community. I am excited to help celebrate April as Parkinson’s Awareness Month! 

This year’s theme is #KnowMorePD. I want to take this time to highlight some exciting smaller pharmaceutical and biotech companies that I’m watching in Parkinson’s Disease, and that I think you should too:

  1. Prevail Therapeutics (Now a subsidiary of Eli Lilly) 
  2. Denali Therapeutics
  3. NeuroPore Therapies 
  4. Prothena/Roche 
  5. Sio Gene Therapies 

Parkinson’s is one of those diseases that touches many. I always love networking and sharing stories on becoming a PD advocate while also giving back to research. I’d love to hear your stories if you’re willing to share!

As the Michael J. Fox Foundation would say, “We are here until Parkinson’s isn’t”.

– Heather

Looking to get more involved in the PD community? Check out the Parkinson’s Foundation and the Michael J. Fox Foundation