Parkinson's Disease

New Research Funding featured in The Advertiser

Pick up a copy of today's Advertiser (August 10 2020) and read all about the latest research focusing on the link between Traumatic Brain Injury and Parkinson's disease!
The new $1.9m research project at The University of Adelaide is a result of seed funding provided by the
NRF and the James and Diana Ramsay Foundation in 2019.
Here in South Australia, the study will be led by A/Professor Lyndsey Collins-Praino, Head of the Cognition, Ageing and Neurodegenerative Disease Laboratory (CANDL) at the University of Adelaide.
The project involves a large team of researchers from the University of Adelaide, CSIRO Health & Biosecurity,
SAHMRI & Dr Jones & Partners Medical Imaging (Clinical & Research Imaging Centre), RAH and community partner Parkinson's SA.

Jillian's Story

The NRF recently spoke with Jillian about her Parkinson’s diagnosis at Parkinson's SA.
Jillian enjoys attending the Parkinson’s SA art class every week – it is something that she has enjoyed since she was diagnosed five years ago.
“I was diagnosed five years ago with Parkinson’s and I have been coming to Parkinson’s SA ever since. I have a husband, two daughters, two grandson’s and four cats – two of them are pet therapy cats. One works at the Mary Potter Hospice and one works at an aged care facility.
“I have been retired for 24 years but I had a career as a Commemorations Officer at the University of Adelaide. I used to organise graduation ceremonies in South Australia and overseas in Kuala Lumpur, Singapore and Hong Kong.”
“I come to art classes here each Wednesday – it is wonderful. As soon as I picked up the Parkinson’s SA booklet and saw there was a free art class – I thought – I am going to do that! I love meeting people with the same condition, everyone’s experience is different, and I love hearing about people’s journeys,” Jillian said.
Find out more about our Parkinson's research: https://www.nrf.com.au/current-neurodegeneration-research

April 11 - World Parkinson's Day

Do you know what the cause of Parkinson's is?
Currently there is no known cause of Parkinson’s or understanding of why some people develop Parkinson’s and not others.
This is the reason Parkinson’s is often referred to as “Idiopathic (cause unknown) Parkinson’s”.
There are many theories as to the causes of Parkinson’s and it is generally thought that multiple factors are responsible.
Through research, our understanding of the possible causes of Parkinson’s is increasing all of the time. Areas of current research include: ageing, genes, environmental factors, chemical exposure and virus like structures called prions.
Please give generously if you can to help fund our NRF Parkinson's Disease research.

John's Story

John's Story
“I have been coming to Parkinson's SA art classes for two years and I was diagnosed around three years ago. The challenge I find is in identifying my situation.
"So, when I saw the brochure about the art class – which said ‘absolute beginners welcome’ – I thought that is me! I really value the support I get here – they are genuine people and it is amazing what you can do in this art class – and see the development of your skills.
“I have four grandchildren and I have their adoring support – they are always asking me, ‘Poppy what are you making next?’ They love to see what I have made.
“I also do boxing training twice a week – my friend calls me the ‘Renaissance Man’ as I am into literature, sport, and art. It is interesting to hear other people’s stories – you really discover that everyone with Parkinson’s has a unique experience.
“I feel like I have a team around me – my family, my neurologist, my neuro-physiotherapist. I feel a calmness coming here,” John said.
Discover more about our Parkinson's research.

Carmel's Story

Carmel was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease six and a half years ago – hear she talks to the NRF about how her diagnosis has impacted her life.
“I was diagnosed around six and a half years ago and I found it quite devastating at the time. I was just over 60 years of age. I was able to keep working for a few years with the medication as I really enjoyed my job as Library Assistant at the Gawler Library. However, we had moved further away from work, so the drive proved to be a bit difficult.
“I found it quite difficult to tell my friends and work colleagues about it. In fact, I have just told them recently. I wanted to travel once I had retired but I need to mindful about managing my energy levels. I can’t overdo it. So, I have just had to adapt my lifestyle.
“I have been coming to the art class here at Parkinson's SA
for the last two – three years. I just enjoy switching off, the concentration and you don’t need to pretend. It is a very caring environment. I feel comfortable here. I enjoy learning new things, it is interesting.
"I prefer the hands-on work with the clay compared to the watercolour painting.
“At home I enjoy sewing – I have taken up patchwork quilting. I enjoy the design process and matching the colours of the fabrics. I also go to the gym – exercise is great for Parkinson’s as you build new neural pathways and connections. I try to help myself as much as possible and keep brain fit,” Carmel said.
To donate to our Parkinson's Disease appeal please visit:

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