2 Headlines Editor Danelle Clayton Contributors Thorne Snow Mackenzie Kiernan Design The Design Cellar Ltd ISSN 0114-9768 CONTACTUS Neurological Foundation, PO Box 110022 Auckland Hospital, Auckland 1148 Phone: 09 309 7749 Free call: 0508 BRAINS (0508 272 467) Email: Website : If you’re moving, please let us know your new address so that you don’t miss the next issue of Headlines. If you are not a current subscriber and would like to receive this free publication four times a year, please send your details to DONOR RELATIONS CONTACTS Upper North Island: Theresa Liebenberg – 027 233 0710 Lower North Island: Margie Carter – 021 042 8114 South Island: Kim Maunder – 021 642 485 Headlines is printed on paper from responsible resources Kia ora koutou, By now you’ll be familiar with the statistic that 1 in 5 Kiwis are affected by a neurological condition. However, new data shows it is actually closer to 1 in 3. That’s a sobering thought. It makes your support of world-class research more critical than ever, and we are immensely grateful for your generosity. Our most recent research grant round has seen $2.4 million awarded to the neurological research community. You can read about their exciting research initiatives in this issue of Headlines . One of the cruellest neurological conditions is motor neuron disease (MND). It’s more prevalent in New Zealand than anywhere else in the world and it’s not clear why. Research is vital to improve our understanding of MND and offer a pathway to hope. Thanks to your generous support, we are funding an extension of Dr Emma Scotter’s work studying the genetics of MND here in New Zealand. Like you, I am interested to learn about how this will help solve the genetic puzzle. Take a look at pages 12 & 13 to discover more. Meanwhile, Dr Alan Stanley is leading New Zealand’s participation in an international drug trial – the first time that people living with all types of MND in New Zealand have been able to join a clinical trial of a potential therapy. You can read about it on pages 14 & 15. With your help, we are also supporting Dr Molly Swanson (page 14), whose work aims to slow the progression of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), the most common form of motor neuron disease (MND). In the world of research, collaboration is key and it’s something that I’m especially passionate about. Collaborating with Motor Neurone Disease New Zealand ensures the research amplifies the benefits for those living with this condition. New studies into Huntington’s disease, Parkinson’s disease and multiple sclerosis are just some of the other leading research projects we are proud to support. You’ll find so much more fascinating information about this work on the following pages. Once again, thank you so much. Your continued support offers the greatest gift of all. Hope. Mā te wā, Rich Easton Message from our Chief Executive Brain Awareness Month 2023 1 in 3 Kiwis will be affected by a neurological condition $2.4m awarded for neurological research Spotlight on motor neuron disease (MND) • Genetic studies may yield answers for Kiwis with MND • Young MND researcher Molly Swanson • MND patients join trial of new drug Craig's Story Stewart Motorsport continues rally legend's legacy Aphasia – it’s a thing Around the globe Contents 4-5 6-7 8-11 12-15 16 16 17 18-19