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On Saturday 15 April 2023, a team of researchers from the Oxford Parkinson's Disease Centre (OPDC) joined members of the Parkinson’s UK Oxford Branch to support ‘The Big Cream Tea’, which was organised to help raise awareness and funds for Parkinson’s UK.

Photo from left to right: Dr Gizem Önal, Ajantha Abey, Victoria Lievens, Dr Hugo Fernandes, Johanna Hoffmann, Dr Brent Ryan, Lorraine Dyson, Iona Thomas-Wright, Dr Nancy Ahuja, Professor Richard Wade-Martins. Missing from photo: Professor Michele Hu, Akansha Mehta

The event was held at Seacourt Hall, Botley, Oxford as part of April’s Parkinson’s Awareness month. Members of the Wade-Martins Research Group along with Professor Michele Hu spent time chatting to the Parkinson’s community over a cup of tea, fresh scones and a selection of delicious cakes.

The afternoon provided an excellent opportunity for members of the OPDC to network amongst people who are affected by Parkinson’s and to talk about the important research currently taking place in the Wade-Martins Group and in the clinical area led by Professor Michele Hu. Amongst the attendees were three of the contributors to the podcast called Movers and Shakers that has recently been launched to raise awareness of the condition and discusses the challenges and positives of living with Parkinson’s.

The branch also linked up online with groups from across the country who were participating in their own organised event.

One project that is currently jointly funded by Parkinson’s UK and the Rosetrees Trust is led by Departmental Research Lecturer Dr Charmaine Lang. With her award, Dr Lang will develop complex new induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) models that target the interaction between dopamine neurons and astrocytes in the brain and how these fail in the context of Parkinson's.

The afternoon was a huge success and organisers were delighted with the turnout, which raised over £500 for Parkinson’s UK from cake and hot drink sales and a raffle.

Cakes at Parkinson's Big Cream Tea