This is the season when I annually reflect on our achievements during the past year and the challenges we are facing in the future. I am pleased to highlight some of the accomplishments and progress we have made over the past year.
- This year is particularly special as it marks the 30th anniversary of the Parkinson Disease Center and Movement Disorders Clinic. Since its foundation, the PDCMDC has become world renowned for its patient care, research and training of physicians, many of whom have become internationally recognized leaders in movement disorders. To honor this important milestone and the impressive record of accomplishments, an evening of celebration is planned for Thursday, November 8, 2007 at the InterContinental Hotel. This evening of celebration will bring together former and current fellows, professional colleagues, representatives of national and local patient support and research organizations, and other friends and supporters of the PDCMDC. While not necessarily intended as a fund raiser, donations to support the Parkinson Research Endowment Fund (PREF) or operating research and educational funds of the PDCMDC will be acknowledged.
- During his 30-year tenure, Dr. Jankovic, the director and founder of the PDCMDC, has authored over 700 articles and chapters, and published over 35 books, including three landmark textbooks published in 2007: 1) Neurology in Clinical Practice, 5th Edition, 2) Parkinson's Disease and Movement Disorders, 5th edition, and 3) Principles and Practice of Movement Disorders.
- Adding to his many awards, Dr. Jankovic has been selected the 2007 recipient of the American Academy of Neurology Movement Disorders Research Award, which “recognizes an individual for outstanding work in the field of Parkinson's disease or other movement disorders for either a single, outstanding contribution or for lifetime achievement” He presented the award lecture during the 59th Annual Meeting of the AAN in Boston.
- This year, Dr. Jankovic has been again invited as a visiting professor in many medical schools, including Thomas Jefferson University, Barrow Neurological Institute, JFK Neuroscience Institute, Seton Hall University, UCLA, Brown Medical School, Columbia University, Boston University, and Cape Town, South Africa.
- This February, The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson Research chose Houston to hold their first annual meeting outside of New York. Dr. Jankovic participated in a Research Roundtable on translational research for Parkinson’s therapies hosted by the MJFF
- Media Coverage: The January 14, 2007 issue of US News & World Report featured Dr. Jankovic as “the pioneer of botulinum toxin therapy” Also, the Houston Chronicle featured a story on Dr. Jankovic’s research with the rotigotine patch, approved this year for the treatment of Parkinson disease. Dr. Jankovic also made appearances in TV news segments and has been interviewed about movement disorders on a national satellite radio program.
- During 2006/2007 Dr. Ondo published more than 35 original scientific papers and his first book “Restless Legs Syndrome.” He completed his service on the Restless Legs Syndrome Study Group Executive Committee and accepted a position with the International Essential Tremor Foundation medical advisory board and the Baylor College of Medicine Institutional Review Board. Dr. Ondo lectured extensively throughout the United States, Canada, and Europe.
- Dr. Jimenez-Shahed has recently presented the results of patients with severe Tourette syndrome who experienced marked improvement with deep brain stimulation. She has also been studying factors associated with impulse control disorders in patients with Parkinson’s disease, a project that is partially funded by the National Parkinson Foundation. Aside from her PDCMDC clinical activities, she provides care to indigent patients with movement disorders at Ben Taub General Hospital, where she also actively participates in the training of BCM students and Neurology residents in the recognition and treatment of movement disorders.
- Dr. Jimenez-Shahed directed the American Academy of Neurology’s regional Dystonia/Spasticity Workshop held in Houston on Aug. 11, 2007, attended by residents and fellows from across the country. Drs. Jankovic and Ondo were also members of the faculty for this workshop.
- Dr. Jankovic and his associates, Drs. Ondo and Jimenez-Shahed, and four movement disorders fellows are currently conducting over 75 clinical studies designed to uncover the mysteries and to discover new and innovative treatments for Parkinson disease and related neurodegenerative disorders, tremors, dystonia, Tourette syndrome, Huntington disease, restless legs syndrome, and other movement disorders. The results of some of the studies were presented during various national and international meetings, including the 11th International Congress of Parkinson’s Disease and Movement Disorders, Istanbul, Turkey, where the 16 abstracts presented by the PDCMDC researchers, was the most of any group in the world.
- All three PDCMDC physicians, Drs. Jankovic, Jimenez-Shahed, and Ondo, were included this year among the recipients of the Roy H. Cullen Quality of Life Award, Houston Area Parkinson Society.
- Baylor National Parkinson Foundation Center of Excellence will be part of the Community Partners for Parkinson Care program, research and outreach grant awards.
- Baylor College of Medicine also garnished many accolades this past year. BCM is ranked number 10 among the top research medical schools in the country for the second consecutive year. In the category of Primary Care Medical Schools, BCM also maintained its ranking of number 11. The BCM Graduate School placed in the top 10 percent of the 400 schools that award at least five doctoral degrees according to the National Science Foundation list of "Science and Engineering Doctorate Awards." U.S. News also conducted a new survey of Physician Assistant programs and the BCM program ranked number 9 among all programs in the country.
Your investment in research at the PDCMDC will hasten the day when Parkinson’s disease and related movement disorders will be effectively ameliorated or even cured.
With warm appreciation,
Joseph Jankovic, M.D.