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The Michael J. Fox Foundation Announces Five Academic Centers Chosen to Train the Class of 2022 Edmond J. Safra Fellowship in Movement Disorders

  • Five international academic centers each awarded funding to train a new movement disorder clinician-researcher over two years
  • Fifth round of fellowship awards marks total of 18 academic medical centers around the world granted funding
  • Fellowship is building a global network of movement disorder specialists to deliver high-quality patient care and advance critical research
  • Program on track to graduate 26 new movement disorder specialists by the year 2022

NEW YORK (April 2, 2019) -- The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research (MJFF), in collaboration with longtime supporter and partner the Edmond J. Safra Foundation, has chosen five academic centers across the United States, Canada and England to host the fifth class of The Edmond J. Safra Fellowship in Movement Disorders. Launched in 2014, the Fellowship annually funds five top-tier academic centers around the world to each train one new movement disorder specialist -- a neurologist with additional training in diagnosing and managing Parkinson's disease (PD) and other movement disorders -- over two years.

"Increasing the number of movement disorder specialists who can care for patients and lead research studies benefits not only individual patients and families, but also the entire Parkinson's community," said Lily Safra, chairwoman of the Edmond J. Safra Foundation. "The growth and success of The Edmond J. Safra Fellowship in Movement Disorders is a testament to the ongoing and rising need for Parkinson's specialists around the world."

The centers selected to train the Class of 2022:

  • Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas
  • Toronto Western Hospital in Ontario, Canada
  • UAB (University of Alabama at Birmingham) in Birmingham, Alabama
  • UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology in London, England
  • University of Florida in Gainesville, Florida

An advisory committee ranked applicants on several criteria, including the depth and breadth of clinical education and the range of potential research opportunities. Each of the selected institutions will now identify a qualified neurologist to begin fellowship in July 2020.

A Direct Link between Patient Care and Research Studies 
The Edmond J. Safra Fellowship in Movement Disorders prepares trainees for dual roles as doctors and researchers so that in addition to delivering high-quality care, trainees are ready to lead research that can answer questions and meet unmet patient needs. As doctors, they gain insights directly from patients and their experiences to inform research. As researchers, they drive toward disease understandings and new and improved Parkinson's therapies. They can achieve results their patients need, and while doing so, keep their patients updated on and engaged in the latest research.

"Connecting patients to research and care is fundamental to The Michael J. Fox Foundation's mission," said Todd Sherer, PhD, CEO of The Michael J. Fox Foundation. "The Edmond J. Safra Fellowship in Movement Disorders is uniquely structured to build, class by class and year by year, a global network of movement disorder specialists who can meet patients' research and care needs."

A Steadfast Commitment to Parkinson's Research and Care
Late banker and philanthropist Edmond J. Safra's namesake Foundation has long made Parkinson's disease care and research top priorities. Mrs. Safra, chairwoman of the Edmond J. Safra Foundation, has been an MJFF Board member since 2001.

In addition to generous gifts to centers and programs providing direct care to people with Parkinson's disease, Lily Safra and her Foundation have driven vital scientific investigation into new treatments. The Fellowship is the latest of many partnerships between the Edmond J. Safra Foundation and MJFF, including the Edmond J. Safra Core Programs for PD Research, one of MJFF's central grantmaking avenues to support high-impact Parkinson's research projects.

Applications for the Class of 2023 Now Open 
The Michael J. Fox Foundation is accepting applications from academic centers worldwide to train the Class of 2023 Edmond J. Safra Fellows. Deadline is December 13, 2019. Learn more and apply.


About The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research
As the world's largest nonprofit funder of Parkinson's research, The Michael J. Fox Foundation is dedicated to accelerating a cure for Parkinson's disease and improved therapies for those living with the condition today. The Foundation pursues its goals through an aggressively funded, highly targeted research program coupled with active global engagement of scientists, Parkinson's patients, business leaders, clinical trial participants, donors and volunteers. In addition to funding more than $800 million in research to date, the Foundation has fundamentally altered the trajectory of progress toward a cure. Operating at the hub of worldwide Parkinson's research, the Foundation forges groundbreaking collaborations with industry leaders, academic scientists and government research funders; increases the flow of participants into Parkinson's disease clinical trials with its online tool, Fox Trial Finder; promotes Parkinson's awareness through high-profile advocacy, events and outreach; and coordinates the grassroots involvement of thousands of Team Fox members around the world.

For more information, visit us on the Web, FacebookTwitter, and LinkedIn.

About the Edmond J. Safra Foundation
Edmond J. Safra, one of the 20th century's most accomplished bankers and a devoted philanthropist, established a major philanthropic foundation to ensure that individuals and organizations would continue to receive his assistance and encouragement for many years to come. Under the chairmanship of his beloved wife Lily, the Edmond J. Safra Philanthropic Foundation draws continuing inspiration from its founder's life and values, and supports hundreds of organizations in more than 40 countries around the world. Its work encompasses four areas: Education; Science and Medicine; Religion; and Humanitarian Assistance, Culture and Social Welfare. The Foundation has provided significant funding for Parkinson's disease research and patient care at dozens of hospitals and institutes in places as varied as Natal (Brazil), Toronto, New York, Grenoble, Paris, London and Jerusalem.

For more information, visit

Media Contact:
Allison Boiles

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