The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research (MJFF) will host its first Clinical Trials Fair in Chicago Sept. 7 to raise awareness and understanding of local Parkinson's research opportunities among patients, their families and friends and other volunteers.
Claudia Revilla, Parkinson's patient and trials fair panelist, said, "There are so many opportunities to get involved right here in our own backyard and the event will feature many opportunities to play a critical role in research which will benefit the rest of the Parkinson's community and future generations."
Clinical trials are a critical step in bringing new treatments to the patients who need them, yet 85% are delayed and 30% never get off the ground due to a lack of participation, stalling the progress of potential therapies. Though 60% of people with Parkinson's disease say they are willing to participate in a clinical trial, fewer than 10% ever do.
In 2012, MJFF launched Fox Trial Finder, an online platform that connects volunteers with and without Parkinson's to clinical trials in their area—increasing the efficiency of the enrollment process and empowering patients to get more involved in the discovery of new therapies.
At the Chicago Clinical Trials Fair, MJFF chief executive officer Todd Sherer, Ph.D., will discuss the critical role that patients and their loved ones play in accelerating new therapies by participating in clinical research. Representatives from research centers in the surrounding area will also be present to provide information on 23 clinical trials recruiting locally. MJFF staff members and local Fox Trial Finder volunteers will be on site to answer questions about the Fox Trial Finder tool.
"We hope attendees will gain further knowledge about what it means to be a research trial participant and feel empowered to put knowledge into action. Anyone who attends will have the opportunity to be able to connect with a trial that day or register on Fox Trial Finder to volunteer for other or future trial opportunities," said Claire Meunier, director of clinical trial strategies of MJFF.