Parkinson’s Life 2017 highlights


Author: Parkinson's Life editorsPublished: 22 December 2017

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Jimmy Choi American Ninja Warrior lead

It’s been another fascinating year, with stories from the global Parkinson’s community covering everything from taboo-breaking therapists, hilarious comedians, world-famous artists and a campaign that touched millions worldwide. Here are the highlights, as selected by the Parkinson’s Life editorial team


How I got Damien Hirst to make art for Parkinson’s

We spoke to The Cure Parkinson’s Trust founder Tom Isaacs about the Cure3 exhibition, a Parkinson’s fundraiser which included work from Damien Hirst, Grayson Perry and Sarah Lucas.


VIDEO: Watch Parkinson’s patient walk again after hearing favourite song

In the touching four-minute clip, physiotherapist Anicea Renee Gunlock showed the power of music – recording the transformation in 73 year-old Larry Jennings movement when he heard his favourite song.


11 landmark moments in the history of Parkinson’s disease

From the birth of James Parkinson to Muhammad Ali lighting the Olympic torch, we looked back at the most significant moments in Parkinson’s history.


Australian Prime Minister backs #UniteForParkinsons as campaign goes viral

In April the #UniteForParkinsons campaign, launched by Parkinson’s UK and the EPDA, went viral. The campaign – of which Parkinson’s Life were the official media partner – reached 12 million people and received support from politicians across the globe.


Why women need to talk about sex and Parkinson’s

Our guest writer, Sharon Krischer, shared “what happens when a sex therapist visits a women-only Parkinson’s support group”.


Move to the beat: meet the Parkinson’s physio behind award-winning mobility app

Founder of Beats Medical Ciara Clancy spoke passionately about her award-winning Parkinson’s mobility app, and why she felt compelled to join the fight against the condition.


Michael J Fox records special message for “inspirational” Parkinson’s athlete

The powerful message was played as Jimmy Choi, an athlete living with Parkinson’s, entered the difficult assault course on the TV show ‘American Ninja Warrior’.


Giant leap for research as NASA launches Parkinson’s protein into space

In August Parkinson’s research took to the skies as the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket, which carried a significant protein sample, was launched into space. The event was streamed live on YouTube.


Diana Levine: taking photos for a cure

Professional photographer Diana Levine, who has snapped the likes of One Direction and Barack Obama, spoke candidly about her mother’s Parkinson’s and how she has raised US$44,000 for the Michael J Fox Foundation.


Sexuality and Parkinson’s: the needs of caregivers

As part of our series focusing on sexuality and Parkinson’s, sex therapist Gila Bronner and Orna Moore offered tips to caregivers on maintaining intimacy.


Alexander Reed: “people with Parkinson’s are not sick”

Last month we interviewed Alexander Reed, who was diagnosed with Parkinson’s nine years ago, about the European Parkinson Therapy Centre and why he does not define himself as “sick”. The story also prompted a stimulating debate – with two follow-up reports covering the social media responses on both sides.


Comedian Rob Deering on raising nearly £100,000 for Parkinson’s UK

Comedian Rob Deering shared with us his reasons for raising money for Parkinson’s UK, and also touched on the relationship between Parkinson’s and comedy.

Read more: 12 Parkinson’s Life highlights from 2016

Parkinson’s Life highlights: our favourite stories of 2015

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