Walking with Anthony Launches National Campaign to Raise Awareness

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE MEDIA CONTACT: RFPR, INC. R.J. Rousso / Carl Larsen 323.933.4646 rj@ rf-pr.com / carl@ rf-pr.com Walking with Anthony Launches National Campaign to Raise Awareness About Revolutionary Advancements in Healing Spinal Cord Injuries

Charity Raises Funds for The CST Regeneration Project that Specializes in Pioneering Spinal Cord Injury Research and Potential Cures Los Angeles, CA. (February 8, 2012) – In hopes to find a cure for better and faster healing and to raise awareness of spinal cord injuries, Walking With Anthony (www.walkingwithanthony.org) is starting an intensive campaign to raise money for The CST Regeneration Project. Led by the esteemed team of Dr. Oswald Steward from the Reeve-Irvine Research Center and Harvard University’s Associate Professor of Neurology Zhigang He, The CST Regeneration Project provides groundbreaking findings and hope for those who are paralyzed due to injury to the spinal cord by focusing on axon and nerve renewal.

The University of California, Irvine’s Reeve-Irvine Research Center headed by prestigious Dr. Oswald Steward, in collaboration with Harvard University’s Associate Professor of Neurology Zhigang He, has fundamentally changed the history of curing paralysis from spinal cord injury (SCI). Through a revolutionary discovery involving the PTEN gene, researchers have regenerated nerves in the damaged spinal cord of mice responsible for movement and sensation in the body. The two doctors believe that these results can be duplicated on the human body. Walking With Anthony is inspired by Anthony Purcell, who was paralyzed after a diving accident in 2010, but can now stand with the help of a walker.

With about 12,000 people falling victim to SCI each year, it is the organization’s hope to increase SCI research and provide financial assistance to SCI victims.. “Having seen the effects of spinal cord injury first-hand, I know how much this research and potential results would mean to the approximately 1.5 million people in the United States who are confined to a wheelchair,” said Walking With Anthony Founder Micki Purcell. “We want to raise the money needed for this research to move forward at a faster pace so that people can start taking advantage of its findings.” “Dr. He and I are convinced that a major threshold has been crossed in our goal of regenerating connections in the injured spinal cord. We are working hard to translate the discoveries into a therapy that could restore motor function to people who have suffered spinal cord injuries.

On behalf of the entire CST Regeneration Project team, we greatly appreciate the support from Walking with Anthony,” said Dr. Oswald Steward, Director of the Reeve-Irvine Research Center. Walking With Anthony, an organization dedicated to spinal cord injury rehabilitation, is proud to raise funds that will not only help fuel The CST Regeneration Project and its results, but will also provide a larger purpose to the charity’s overarching goals. About Walking With Anthony On February 6, 2010 Anthony Purcell dived into a shallow wave, causing critical damage that left his neck broken and spinal cord bruised. Doctors concluded that he, like countless other Spinal Cord Injury (SCI) victims, had little to no chances of walking again. Anthony, determined to beat the odds that had been set against him, began rehabilitation in May 2010.

This successful treatment has slowly helped Anthony regain his strength and every day, he comes closer to being able to walk again. As a result of his experience, Anthony and his mother, Micki Purcell, created the Walking With Anthony organization with a mission to give others with SCI the same chance at recovery. Walking With Anthony is a non-profit organization raising awareness of the impact of SCI, and is dedicated to raising funds to provide financial assistance for SCI victims, expand rehabilitation centers, and support research relating to SCI rehabilitation. For more information or to make a donation, please visit www.walkingwithanthony.org. About The Reeve-Irvine Research Center The Reeve-Irvine Research Center is THE premier research center in the world for studies of spinal cord injuries.

In addition to being a site for cutting edge biomedical research, the Center works to promote collaborations with experts throughout the world so as to develop effective treatments for injuries and other disorders that affect the spinal cord. Each year thousands of people suffer a spinal cord injury in the U.S. alone, and hundreds of thousands of individuals and their families are dealing with the daily challenges resulting from spinal cord injury of dysfunction. Anyone can suffer a spinal cord injury at any time. Suddenly your life changes and you must depend on others to help you with even the simplest daily activities.

The hope for new therapies and cures lies in research, and the Reeve-Irvine Research Center is making progress. Recent developments in neuroscience research have created medical solutions that demonstrate that the goal of finding new effective treatments is achievable. Scientific research is extremely costly and lack of sufficient funding limits our ability to explore new leads in a timely way and maintain critical long-term research projects involving chronic spinal cord injuries. Private contributions make the key difference, and we hope to increase awareness for this need. For more information on the Reeve-Irvine Research Center please visit www.reeve.uci.edu

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