So now that I'm a lab rat, the researchers have asked me to recruit my own control subjects. You know...the rats that don't get any experimental drugs and don't contract the disease?
In the past, researchers have been able to identify culprit genes in the DNA of hereditary PD patients. What this study is about is comparing non-familial (non-inherited) PD DNA to non-PD DNA, to see if there's a common denominator among the non-fam PDs that is not shared by the non-PDs
What I'm supposed to do is try to find up to 4 people within 5-10 years of my age, female, who live nearby and don't have neurological problems. Then they will do the same things I do--family medical history, interview, neurological eval, and blood draw. Well, right out of the box, I've got my four! Enthusiastic, adventurous ladies, with as much curiousity as a boxful of kittens. And now they/we have decided to all go together for our research appointments. ROAD TRIP!! Woo hoo!!
Who are these modern Amelia Earharts, you ask? These intrepid explorers, expanding the frontiers of medical science, with only occasional stops at the fashion mall to resupply? Ladies and gentlemen, introducing the "Rat Pack" - M.G., T.B., G.O., and N.C.! Think you know? Ask them!
Now, don't you wish your friends were a bunch of rats?!