Monday, October 17, 2011

Epilepsy hits close to home for President Obama's campaign advisor David Axelrod & wife Susan

While David Axelrod is off running President Obama's re-election bid, his wife is waging a campaign of her own: She wants to find a cure for epilepsy. "Each seizure has the potential to end a life or have serious brain damage," said Susan Axelrod who founded Citizens United for Research in Epilepsy in 1998, a charity inspired by her daughter's lifelong battle with the disease. Lauren Axelrod, 30, began having seizures as a baby, episodes that left her developmentally disabled. Countless medications, surgery and special diets failed to quell them until she tried a new anti-convulsant drug 11 years ago. The Axelrods don't expect to find a cure for their daughter, but the charity funds research they hope will lead to one for future generations. "When I get calls from parents of kids traveling down the same path as Lauren, it breaks my heart," Susan told the Daily News. CURE, which is holding a fundraiser in New York on Monday, has raised $18 million and is behind 116 trials, many by young researchers who weren't established enough to qualify for government funding. "Once I got engaged, I realized this is a major public health problem and research was poorly funded and it remains poorly funded," she said. "There has never been a focus on a cure, just treatment." Read more:

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