I joined the RSN a couple of years ago and this forum in July. Due to my work commitments I cannot attend most of the events that I get emails about and so only just went to my first Project Visit last week. It was really interesting to visit a lab and listen to the researchers talk about their work. As someone whose volunteering role is basically computer based, reviewing policies and grant applications it was good to be with other RSN members and talking with people! It was a real eye-opener seeing their lab and their enthusiasm for their work was easy to see. The afternoon tea was good too!
I am looking forward to going to another event in 3 weeks time - but before that I am going to the RSN conference in Birmingham. All of these will help me be a more informed grant reviewer and increase what I know about PD and the current research.
I have the same reason for not getting to lab visits. Which one did you visit and what did you see?
Was the Birmingham conference good?
I went to UCL to visit the project looking at the protein PGC-1a and what affect it has on PD. They are using fruit flies that have had PD introduced...and then they measure amongst other things movement of the fly when the PGC-1a has been increased. We saw how they do that by injecting the fly and measuring the twitch it the muscle that would make the fly take off!! AMAZING how they can do that on something as tiny as a fruit fly. It was interesting seeing the labs and the room FULL of little bottles with fruit flies maturing.
The researchers were all very keen to talk to the small group of us and, we were able to look down a microscope and observe a fly and the movement measuring method.
It was really interesting and the afternoon tea they gave us was good too!
Next week I am going to the lecture at the royal college of surgeons - as it is in the evening!! PD and genetics unlocking the next generation of treatments...
the Birmingham conference was very good, interesting inspiring talks, a really good lunch and it was nice to meet other RSN people and talk to the PUK staff in person! Worth the long train journey!
hows your gdnf going keld
sorry gus only just read this - not been on the forum for AGES.........(busy with my charity fundraiser book to raise funds for PUK see my An Odd Ode post on the Daily life thread...)
You have me muddled with someone else I am not on gdnf - I am on research as a control but not on the gdnf trial!!
I've not been on the forum for ages....family difficulties and life in general! But I have been busy doing my bit through the RSN network and volunteering for everything I can support.
Sales of my book have gone well - raised over £1500 for PUK to date.
My latest project visit was one to the PUK Brain Bank....it was inspiring to meet the researchers -who were all very passionate about their work - and mostly had a direct connection with Parkinson's themselves with friends or family members with the condition. Watching a dissection of a brain was awe inspiring - especially when it was respectfully announced that the donor 100% had the correct diagnosis of Parkinson's - as the substantia nigra was not black at all. I hadn't grasped before, so significantly, that the waste product of functioning dopamine is black and is deposited in the substania nigra (Black substance) seeing the pale coloured area of the brain was a significant moment in my learning about Parkinson's and the work the Brain Bank do.