Monthly Archives: February 2015

Scientific Advisory Board Meeting – February 2015

researchThe core of the LuMind Foundation’s successful research program is our Scientific Advisory Board (SAB), comprised of the brightest minds in research across disciplines and from around the world. Lead by our Chief Scientific Officer, Dr. Michael Harpold, the SAB met in person in mid-February to guide the organization’s mission to fund the most promising lines of discovery.

“Thank you to all the members of the LuMind SAB for volunteering their time from their very full schedules to attend the SAB meeting,” said Dr. Harpold. “We value their thoughtful expert perspectives and contributions in reviewing the progress of the current LuMind-supported research and strategic research directions to further advance and accelerate progress.”

The SAB continues to be enthusiastically unified that the LuMind Foundation Research strategy, program, and grants continue to be remarkably successful and transformative for Down syndrome cognition research and its potential for creating significant and meaningful new opportunities for children and adults with Down syndrome.

The SAB meeting and discussions provide a foundation for the next steps in further assessing research projects and developing recommendations for the next new 2015-2016 LuMind Foundation Research Grants.

Truly heartfelt thanks and appreciation for each of the SAB members for their continued dedication to working with the LuMind Foundation to continue to advance critical, influential and game-changing new Down syndrome cognition research.

Members of the SAB are:

  • Michael M. Harpold, PhD, Chair – Scientific Advisory Board and Chief Scientific Officer
    LuMind Foundation
  • Ronald M. Evans, PhD, Professor and March of Dimes Chair in Molecular and Developmental Biology, Gene Expression Laboratory, Salk Institute for Biological Studies
  • Leslie Leinwand, PhD, Professor, Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology, University of Colorado
  • Lynn Nadel, PhD, Regents’ Professor of Psychology, University of Arizona
  • Roger Harper Reeves, PhD, Professor, Department of Physiology, Johns Hopkins University
  • André Strydom, MBChB, PhD, Senior Clinical Lecturer, Intellectual Disabilities and Mental Health Sciences Unit, University College London

You can read more about the SAB on our website, including more about our SAB members.

Dr. Harpold at the NIH Alzheimer’s Disease Research Summit 2015

We appreciate Dr. Michael Harpold for being such a road warrior on behalf of the Down syndrome community.

On February 9-10, 2015, Dr. Harpold, LuMind Foundation’s Chief Scientific Officer, attended the biennial NIH Alzheimer’s Disease Research Summit 2015, a major forum for the dynamic development of coordinated Alzheimer’s disease research efforts under the Congressionally-mandated National Alzheimer’s Plan.

As stated on the NIH website, the central goal of the AD Research Summit 2015 is to continue the development of an integrated multidisciplinary research agenda necessary to address critical knowledge gaps and accelerate the discovery and delivery of efficacious treatments for AD patients at all stages of disease.

Attending this conference provides an additional major forum to increase support and advocacy for greater inclusion of research on Alzheimer’s disease in individuals with Down syndrome and its contributions to a deeper understanding of Alzheimer’s disease and the development of effective new therapeutics, not only for individuals with Down syndrome, but everyone.

For more information about the summit including access to webcasts of the two-day event, please visit the NIH website.

Glitter and Glue: NYT Bestselling Author Kelly Corrigan at Down Syndrome Research Fundraising Event

By Nicole Gibbard, Event Organizer, Glitter and Glue, Chicago, February 28, 2015

Kelly Corrigan TravelLast year on Linkedin, one of my favorite authors, Kelly Corrigan, posted a personal challenge to raise $1M for charity as part of her 2015 Glitter and Glue paperback book tour.  I knew immediately she was speaking to me and I couldn’t wait to bring this beloved author to our community while also raising funds for children with Down syndrome.  I couldn’t imagine anything better.

Selecting LuMind Foundation to benefit from Corrigan’s appearance was an easy choice.  My five year-old niece, Mia Wuellner, has Down syndrome.  From the day she was born her loving parents, Sarah and Tom, have worked to give her the best life.  Early on they looked for organizations that would eventually help their daughter lead a more independent life full of every possibility.  This search lead them to the LuMind Foundation.  LuMind works with Stanford University, John Hopkins, Emory University, and others to fund research.  Historically, an underfunded area, there are breakthroughs on the horizon for children like Mia and LuMind is driving the issue. This research is helping to develop drugs to improve cognitive function in individuals with Down syndrome.  Medication that can address the cognitive and behavioral deficits in both adolescents and adults with Down syndrome is currently being explored.  This is music to the ears of Sarah and Tom.

Corrigan is the author of The Middle Place, Lift, and Glitter and Glue.  All three books weave the joy of family and the fragility of life in such a way to make us all laugh and cry – sometimes on the same page.  Her books remind us to pause and embrace the craziness that is life.  Glitter and Glue is a tribute to Corrigan’s complicated relationship with her own mother and best attempts at raising her daughters.  As Kelly’s prose in Glitter and Glue reminds us “time goes only one way, things end, affections wax and wane – I was the sole distributor of the strongest currency they would ever know: maternal love.”

Our family is in this life journey, rooting for Mia to live her life to the fullest. With LuMind’s research breakthroughs, Sarah and Tom’s love will take Mia’s potential even further.

kelly Corrigan Glitter and GlueKelly Corrigan will be appearing at the Glitter and Glue event on February 28, 2015 in St. Charles, Illinois. To purchase tickets, which include a copy of the book Glitter and Glue, visit the ticketing website.