Thursday, February 3, 2011

Accelerating Scientific Research For Down Syndrome

As a mom of two, I am heavily invested in my children's futures. I want both of them to be independent, productive contributors to society.

As a mom of a child with Down syndrome, I want just as many opportunities available to Matthew in his future as there would naturally be for Elizabeth. I want Matthew to be accepted and respected. And I want Matthew to have greater options in life than he might have otherwise.

I am always interested in new scientific research about Down syndrome. Three groups that actively Down syndrome medical and cognitive research are:
- Down Syndrome Research and Treatment Foundation (DSRTF)
- Global Down Syndrome Foundation
- Research Down Syndrome

The DSRTF has an ongoing campaign called plus15.

For every dollar donated to plus15 before midnight tonight, a donor will match 3 to 1. The plus15 campaign funds research at major research centers, including Johns Hopkins Medical Center, Stanford University, University of San Diego, and University of Arizona, into how to improve the memory, learning, and speech of people with Down syndrome by 15 percent.

Down Syndrome AchievesDown Syndrome Achieves is another organization that is spearheading the drive for more Down syndrome research work and legislative action. Lisa at Living in the Light blogged about Down Syndrome Achieves in her entry "A New Era in Advocacy for Down Syndrome".

I listened to their eye-opening and very interesting web conference this evening. It was shocking (and very sad) to see the disparity in government funding for Down syndrome and other diagnoses. Basically, more funding for Down syndrome means a possible acceleration of scientific research and treatments to improve learning, cognition and communication. I'll share more details about it in a separate blog entry. Another web conference is scheduled on February 17, 2011.

It all sounds promising. I am hopeful. If the research translates to good options for improving learning, cognition, and communication, which in turn can lead to better opportunities and independence, then I am for it. Are you?


Jill said...

Absolutely. Yes!
Great post, Ria :)
Good for you...I'm glad you're on our team! Thank you from bringing awareness to these organizations. I will be checking them out myself!

Looking Up said...

I read Lisa's post this AM, but unfortunately missed the conference due to a late night at work. I too, think that we could....should be doing more for our kids. Definitely going to see what these organizations are all about.

Molly said...

Dear Ria,
Thank you so much for highlighting DSRTF on your blog. All of us working on the plus15 hope to help Matthew, and all other children and adults with Down syndrome, have a more fulfilling future. We appreciate your support and please keep up with the plus15 campaign to stay up to date on the most recent cognitive research.
Molly, a plus15 team member

Ilisa Ailts said...

Thank you for this post Ria. I am dying to dive it and learn as much as I can about the past, current and future research surrounding our sons diagnosis of Down syndrome.