We Shape and Fund Quality of Life Research
We proudly support and fund research projects that address quality of life for people living with Parkinson’s. While we all hope a cure will be found, our research focuses on therapies and strategies to help people live well TODAY.
The Foundation has a comprehensive plan and program for pursuing research that identifies therapies that impact daily quality of life for people with Parkinson’s. Each year, our Science Advisory Board reviews and helps shape research proposals selected for funding. We have supported more than 29 research studies since 2004, supporting clinical work in diverse areas, including: exercise, nutrition, speech, deep brain stimulation, telemedicine and therapies affecting motor and non-motor symptoms. This effort continues today with several important ongoing projects.
If you would like to help support our Quality of Life Research Fund, visit our Research Fund page or contact us to learn how you can become involved.
Now Accepting Letters of Intent for 2020 Research Project Funding
Priority will be given to applications that address the unique needs of historically underrepresented and/or underserved populations, and applications that investigate the benefits and effectiveness of innovations designed to help people with Parkinson’s live well. The Foundation will also consider other promising submissions outside of the stated funding priorities if the reviewers find the submission to have high potential to promote quality of life for people with Parkinson’s.
The Foundation is accepting Letters of Intent (LOI) from researchers and program directors through August 31, 2020. Full submission details can be found here. For any questions, please email Mel Dizon at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In this 12-month project, Dr. Mark Haub of Kansas State University and his team will be examining the impact of probiotic supplementation, paired with vitamin B3 (a precursor for dopamine production in the brain), on motor and non-motor function, constipation, quality of life, gut microbiome and blood levels of...Read More
Elizabeth Cuadrado and her team will be partnering with bioengineers to refine and test an alternative to an existing high-cost product to boost tongue strength, which is integral in our ability to swallow. The team at UCD has already prototyped the Colorado Oral Strengthening Device, which is made from...Read More
Dr. Angela Ridgel of Kent State University will develop and test SMART (Speed Manipulated Adaptive Rehabilitation Therapy) cycling. Her team will develop a computerized model for use in a SMART controller that can be mounted on the chassis of a stationary motorized bike. This controller will use biomechanical data from the rider to automatically adjust bike...Read More
Dr. Anson Rosenfeldt and Dr. Jay Alberts will examine if Pedaling for Parkinson’s (an existing, low-cost program hosted by YMCAs) can slow Parkinson’s progression. This team will follow 50 participants and track their motor symptoms, non-motor symptoms, number of classes attended and quality of life over a 12-month period. This project also aims to identify which individuals...Read More
Fatigue in adults with Parkinson’s disease: The contribution of visual, vestibular, and oculomotor system deficits. Margaret Schenkman, PT, PhD, FAPTA will conduct a study of how visual and balance-related sensory systems contribute to fatigue in Parkinson’s. Her study will explore the effectiveness of a therapy program to reduce fatigue in...Read More
Dr. Olga Klepitskaya from the University of Colorado will study the impact of vocal fold augmentation on quality of voice in people with Parkinson’s. This involves a study of vocal folds augmentation injection treatments to treat voice and speech impairments in Parkinson’s. Both short-acting and long-acting gel will be studied as...Read More
The dual task intervention study used a virtual reality assessment to improve motor and non-motor function in individuals with Parkinson’s. This study aimed to characterize Parkinson’s dual task deficits and develop effective interventions targeting these declines. The research study utilized the three-demential, state of the art CAREN system for...Read More
Tai Chi integrates elements of balance, flexibility, and coordination (motor function) with focused mental attention and multi-tasking (cognitive function). Conducted at Harvard Medical School & Brigham and Women’s Hospital, the study will use two types of fMRI-based neuroimaging to understand the impact of Tai Chi on the cognitive and motor performance of...Read More
This multi-center observational study allowed participants with Parkinson’s living in New York, Maryland, Delaware, California and Florida to have a one-time visit with a movement disorder specialist through video conferencing. This study assessed the feasibility, impact and acceptability of using telemedicine to remove barriers to care in Parkinson’s disease....Read More
This study examined the effects of exercise on cognitive and motor functioning in a group of newly diagnosed individuals with Parkinson’s. The overall goal of this study was to assess whether exercise had potential to slow Parkinson’s progression in individuals who had not yet been treated with anti-Parkinson’s medications....Read More