Monday, February 25, 2013

Why, Again, Am I Doing This??

March 6:  Seven months to go!  And it's going fast.  There's so much coming up, not the least of which is training.  April 6 is the kickoff for the Summit4StemCell Everest Training Hikes.

It will be a big event -- we hope to have some member of the press present so we can kickoff with style and get the word out about Summit4StemCell.  And best of all..BALLOONS!!!!  Here are the details:

What:  Summit4stemcell official Kick Off Training hike for base camp of Everest
When:  April 6th, 2013
Time: 8:30
Where: Poway Lake Recreation Area near San Diego, California
Why:  To raise awareness and begin training for the second Summit4stemcell hike ...base camp of Mt Everest, October 2013

A brief reminder about one of the reasons I'm doing the Everest Base Camp trek.  I'm raising money for Summit4StemCell, a non-profit group formed to help fund some amazing non-embryonic Parkinson's research being done at the Loring Lab, Center for Regenerative Medicine, Scripps Clinc in La Jolla, California.

What they do is take a sample of the patient's own skin and extract the skin cells.  Then through a series of very complicated steps, the skin cells are grown into stem cells.  A PERFECT match, and the stem cells come directly from the patient!  What they do next is unreal.

I've probably told you that dopamine is a substance missing in certain brain cells of PD patients.  Dopamine helps the brain cells communicate with each other. When the communication breaks down things just don't work right neurologically.

What these wonderful researchers are doing is "boosting" the new stem cells with dopamine.  The stem cells will then be implanted in the patient's brain, replacing the cells that are missing dopamine.  HOW COOL IS THAT????? It's not a cure, but rather a viable long-term treatment.  The research is currently a pilot project; assuming the results are good the project will go the the FDA for approval to begin clinical trials.  I'll be first in line!!!!

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