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Northwestern Receives Distinguished Edmond J. Safra Fellowship in Movement Disorders to Train New Movement Disorder Clinician-Researcher

April 28, 2022 

Northwestern University has been chosen by The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research (MJFF) as one of eight international academic centers to train a new movement disorder clinician-scientist — a neurologist with additional training and expertise in diagnosing and treating Parkinson’s and related diseases — as part of the Edmond J. Safra Fellowship in Movement Disorders Class of 2025.

Launched in 2014, the Edmond J. Safra Fellowship in Movement Disorders, a partnership between MJFF and the Edmond J. Safra Foundation, annually provides funding for esteemed academic centers around the world to, over two years, train a new movement disorder specialist. With additional support from the Edmond J. Safra Foundation — due to the program’s tremendous success in helping to build a global network of Parkinson’s doctors — the fellowship has expanded from five to eight centers awarded each year.

With the fellowship award, the Neurology Department will be recruiting a fellow for the Class of 2025 Edmond J. Safra Fellowship in Movement Disorders. The candidate will begin their two-year training on or before July 2023.

“We are honored to be selected by The Michael J. Fox Foundation to train the next generation of movement disorder clinician-scientists through the distinguished Edmond J. Safra Fellowship in Movement Disorders,” said Tanya Simuni, MD, chief of the Movement Disorders Division in the Ken & Ruth Davee Department of Neurology at Northwestern. “These rising Parkinson’s experts will stand at the intersection of patient care and research and be uniquely positioned to drive the field forward.”

The Edmond J. Safra Fellowship in Movement Disorders is growing a global base of dedicated movement disorder specialists who can make significant contributions by delivering high-quality patient care, leading scientific advances toward better understanding and treatment of movement disorders and engaging their local or underrepresented communities. The fellowship now extends across 28 world-renowned academic institutions in eight countries and is on track to graduate 72 new specialists by the year 2028.

An external review committee of movement disorder specialists, assembled by MJFF, selected the eight centers from a highly competitive group of applicants. Selection of awardees was based on several criteria, including previous history training successful movement disorder clinician-scientists; the breadth and depth of clinical care and research education and opportunities; departmental support for the fellow; and programs and opportunities for fellows to advance equitable access and diversity across clinical care, research, education and community outreach.

“This growing global network of expertly trained movement disorder specialists will help ensure that people and families living with Parkinson’s receive comprehensive and compassionate care and that critical research moves forward to meet their most pressing needs,” said Mrs. Lily Safra, chairwoman of the Edmond J. Safra Foundation. “I’m deeply proud of The Edmond J. Safra Fellowship’s significant impact on Parkinson’s care and research.”

In addition to Northwestern, the Class of 2025 awardees are: Charité University Hospital in Berlin, Germany; University of Calgary in Alberta, Canada; University of Rochester in Rochester, New York; University of Southern California Keck School of Medicine in Los Angeles, California; University of Sydney and Westmead Hospital in Sydney, Australia; University of Texas Health Science Center in Houston, Texas; and University of Tϋbingen in Tϋbingen, Germany.

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