Newswise — ST. PAUL, Minn. – With one in six people in the United States now affected by brain disease such as dementia, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy, the American Academy of Neurology Foundation is marking its 20th anniversary with the launch of a new public service announcement (PSA) to raise awareness about the need for more research to cure brain disease.

“There is vast research potential for finding new treatments for brain disease, but limited funding to support it,” said John Mazziotta, MD, PhD, Chair of the American Academy of Neurology Foundation’s Board of Trustees and Professor and Chair of UCLA’s Brain Mapping Center in Los Angeles. “It is essential that people join us now in our fight to find a cure for brain disease by supporting the Foundation.”

The American Academy of Neurology Foundation has raised more than $16 million dollars for research into finding cures for brain disease, including stroke, which is the third leading cause of death in the United States, and Alzheimer’s disease, which is the sixth leading cause of death in the nation.

“Brain disease is in the news every day, and it is nearly impossible to find someone who has not had a family member or friend affected by one of the many forms of brain disease that attack the brain and nervous system,” said Mazziotta, who is also a Fellow of the American Academy of Neurology. “People are also concerned they, or their family members, will become affected by brain disease directly.”

The video PSA, which can be shared via its posting on YouTube, was created using videos from some of the more than 100 accepted entries into the 2011 Neuro Film Festival, the annual contest hosted by the Foundation in which people affected by brain disease share their stories about why more research is needed. People may submit short videos for the 2012 Neuro Film Festival at

The American Academy of Neurology Foundation supports vital research into finding cures for brain disease. The Foundation is committed to improving patient care, quality of life and public understanding of brain disease. Donations can be made at

The American Academy of Neurology, an association of 24,000 neurologists and neuroscience professionals, is dedicated to promoting the highest quality patient-centered neurologic care. A neurologist is a doctor with specialized training in diagnosing, treating and managing disorders of the brain and nervous system such as Alzheimer’s disease, stroke, migraine, multiple sclerosis, brain injury, Parkinson’s disease and epilepsy.

For more information about the Foundation, visit

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