READ STORY HERE: Man accused of crashing car into house charged with murder
(Susan Berger, Special to the Tribune / November 5, 2013 )
Lake County State's Attorney Mike Nerheim speaks to the media about the grisly double murder in Antioch. He is joined by George Filenko, head of the Lake County Major Crimes Task Force.
I can't stand hearing this Ted Cruz go on and on about how Obamacare is not working. Not working? It's not in effect yet. He can't stand the fact that Barack Obama achieved this health care plan that EVERY PRESIDENT SINCE ROOSEVELT has tried to pass.
Sorry, but there has never been a law challenged like this -- a law that passed the House and the Senate, the signature of his presidential election -- and he was elected and oh, it was upheld by the Supreme Court.
And the Republicans can't stop trying. They have tried 47 times to repeal this law.
Here is what I hope comes of all this. That people pay attention in the next election. And stop electing people who do not care about what is good for ALL THE PEOPLE. Which included about 55 MILLION uninsured Americans.
So for all those who are wealthy and who say these people just need to get a job -- I hope they come back in their next life uninsured, with preexisting conditions and see what this is like. Where is the compassion?
These people are a disgrace. Let's vote them out of office next time.
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Paul Ruby, general manager of the Herrington Inn in Geneva,
suffers from Parkinson’s disease and founded the Paul Ruby Foundation for
Parkinson’s Research. In light of the new study, it’s important to rethink
research funding, he says. (James C. Svehla, Chicago Tribune / August 29, 2013)
By Susan Berger, Special to the Tribune
September 4, 2013
A recent study questions long-held assumptions about the way a brain protein
affects the progression of Parkinson's disease.
Researchers in 1997 linked Parkinson's with the protein alpha-synuclein. They began looking
for ways to block it to slow the progression of the disease, which is
characterized by such symptoms as tremors, rigidity, trouble walking and
slowness of movement and affects more than a million Americans.
Demetrius Maraganore, a neurologist at NorthShore University HealthSystem in Evanston, has
been working with Mayo Clinic researchers to study that brain protein, focusing
on its relationship to two key effects of Parkinson's disease: motor and cognitive impairment and dementia.
Maraganore said the recently released study of 1,098 Mayo patients over 15 years suggests
that lowering alpha-synuclein may have the opposite effect of what doctors have
long thought. Rather than help, that treatment may increase the risk of
Parkinson's patients becoming physically incapacitated and demented, he said.
The study found that patients with a lower amount of alpha-synuclein had a 23
percent greater risk of becoming wheelchair dependent or developing dementia,
Maraganore said. The finding runs counter to a clinical trial underway in Vienna
that's designed to reduce alpha synuclein in Parkinson's patients.
Maraganore said it appears that alpha-synuclein has a dual and opposite effect. His study
suggests that before a person develops Parkinson's, less alpha-synuclein is good
and reduces the risk for developing the disease. But it seems that once the
disease is contracted, less of the protein is bad, posing a greater risk for motor impairment or dementia, he said.
Katerina Markopoulou, a neurologist at NorthShore and an author of the study, said this
is the first time they observed that more alpha-synuclein increased the risk for
developing Parkinson's disease and less alpha-synuclein resulted in worse motor and cognitive skills.
"This raises concerns about the efficacy and safety of therapies designed to reduce
alpha-synuclein expression in Parkinson's disease," Markopoulou said.
Todd Sherer, a doctor and CEO of The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's
research, said that although this study may be an important contribution in the
field, it does not change his view of the importance of the Vienna clinical trial.
The Vienna study "hasn't changed our view of the importance of targeting
alpha-synuclein as a therapeutic strategy," Sherer said. "There are studies that
show the opposite of what Dr. Maraganore is showing. The jury is out. This is a
scientific process playing out, and we are really excited by this area of
research around alpha-synuclein for developing treatment. We hope to learn a lot from it and move forward with alpha-synuclein as a strategy."
Parkinson's is a degenerative disease of the nervous system. Approximately 20 percent of
people who have it will develop Parkinson's disease dementia. There are an
estimated 7 million to 10 million people with the disease worldwide, and about
60,000 are diagnosed each year. There is no cure, although medications can treat symptoms.
Maraganore has discussed the new study with colleagues, learning that they have anecdotal
evidence from their patients that support his findings.
"This is the first large genetic association study of alpha-synuclein and longitudinal
outcomes in Parkinson's disease," said Eric Ahlskog, a Mayo author on the study.
"If replicated, this research may change the treatment paradigm focused on alpha-synuclein reduction for Parkinson's disease."
Maraganore thinks more trials and observational studies are needed, as they can provide
information for much longer periods of follow up than clinical trials, at a fraction of the cost.
Paul Ruby, of Geneva, was diagnosed with early-onset Parkinson's disease in 2006 and
is the founder of the Paul Ruby Foundation for Parkinson's Research. Since its inception, the foundation has raised more than $500,000.
Ruby remains optimistic about finding a cure, saying that even small grants for
research make a difference. His foundation funded a project at Northwestern
University's Parkinson's Disease and Movement Disorders Center having to do with sleep and Parkinson's disease.
But Ruby cautions about where to direct research funding in light of what this new study found.
"It's critical they don't spend time, money or energy on therapies that may not be
working," Ruby said. "Especially if there is more anecdotal evidence; it's counterproductive."
Anne Cohn Donnelly, 68, of Winnetka, was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease more than
two years ago. Donnelly, a doctor of public health, said her handwriting became
tiny, her voice got quiet and her toes curled. A visit to her regular doctor
suggested she have further tests.
Donnelly is frustrated that there is no proven way of slowing or preventing the disease.
"There is a lot of money put into finding what is wrong, but there are still no
definitive answers," she said.
Funding agencies have invested hundreds of millions of dollars on research studies of
alpha-synuclein, Maraganore said. By January 2012, The Michael J. Fox Foundation
had invested more than $47 million in projects targeting
"In my 20 years, if this finding proves to be correct, it is the single most
important contribution that I have made in my career. It would rank up there
with the 1997 discovery of the importance of alpha-synuclein," Maraganore said.
"It is telling us, yes, this protein is at the heart of this disease. However,
we don't understand its role well enough yet to safely move forward with
treatment, and we need to explore a completely new
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