Today, The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research (MJFF) and The Michael Stern Parkinson's Research Foundation (MSPRF) announced the merging of their organizations. The partnership will advance cutting-edge research focused on the underlying cause, diagnosis and treatment of Parkinson’s disease and forms the Michael Stern Discovery Grants in Parkinson’s Science.
The merger, effective June 30, will include the transition of MSPRF’s daily operations to MJFF. It will continue MSPRF’s critical work through grants funding neurological research with strong potential to develop novel disease-modifying and symptomatic targets, including high-risk discovery work as the backbone of drug development. The first Michael Stern Discovery Grants in Parkinson’s Science are currently planned for fall 2015.
The Michael Stern Parkinson's Research Foundation was founded by the late Rome- and New York-based journalist, filmmaker and philanthropist Michael Stern. He began learning about neurological conditions and the need for research after a family friend was diagnosed with Huntington’s disease. He also founded the Fisher Center for Alzheimer’s Disease Research Foundation in honor of a friend’s wife. After his death, Mr. Stern’s vision of uncovering the cause and improving treatments for PD was continued by his daughter, Margaret, who served as chair of the Stern Foundation. From its inception in 2001, MSPRF supported more than $46 million in research.
“For nearly 15 years, The Michael Stern Parkinson's Research Foundation championed a strategic approach to advancing PD research on behalf of those living with the disease,” said Todd Sherer, PhD, CEO of The Michael J. Fox Foundation. “We share Margaret Stern’s dedication to progress and to ensuring the most promising research gets the right support from critical early stages. We deeply value the trust she has placed in us to honor her father’s legacy through the Michael Stern Discovery Grants in Parkinson’s Science.”