Recap of Illinois Convention

by Steve Clingerman, Ph.D.

From the Spring 2004 issue of Hopes & Dreams, newsletter of the Illinois Chapter, Huntington's Disease Society of America.

The 6th Annual Illinois Chapter Convention took place March 6th at the Northbrook
Hilton. There were a total of 103 attendees for the day of education, fellowship, and
sharing. Dr. Peter Como, Co-director of the University of Rochester Center of
Excellence, gave an outstanding keynote address on managing the psychiatric and
behavioral issues in HD.

Dr. Richard Morimoto, Northwestern University, discussed his lab's HD research as
part of the Coalition for the Cure, and he talked about changes in the format of the
Coalition. Dr. Morimoto's superb presentation was able to make complicated cellular
and molecular processes readily understandable.

An excellent panel discussion followed, and included a person with HD and a caregiver
bringing to light the issues from the perspectives of those who live with the disease and
the persons who care for them.

Dr. Emily Wang presented important information on speech and swallowing, and she
and her 4 students provided a great service by conducting clinical swallow studies during

Dr. Como also enlightened us on the purpose and status of the groundbreaking
PREDICT research study during the last part of lunch. Elizabeth Penzinger, from the
University of Iowa PREDICT study, was on hand all day to answer questions about

Breakout sessions took place in the afternoon for persons with HD, at-risk persons, and
caregivers, respectively. Our thanks to Dr. Peter Como, Dr. Kathleen Shannon, Ms.
Becky Burr, Dr. Mia Bergman, Mr. Dave Hodgson, and Ms. Susie Lech for facilitating
these groups.

Dr. Kathleen Shannon, Rush University Medical Center, provided an excellent review
of all the new clinical research advances in HD, and the day concluded with the
Professional Panel providing a "Q and A Session."

The overall program was very well received and on behalf of the board and all the
attendees, we extend thanks to all participants, especially Dr. Como and Dr. Shannon
who stayed all day and led multiple sessions. If you missed this year's conference, be
sure to attend the next one. Also, the national conference is closer than ever: St. Louis,
June 11-13. See you there!

Clingerman, Ph.D.


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Created: June 20, 2004
Last updated: Nov. 15, 2010