Researcher Update: March 2020

We hope you are staying safe and healthy during this time which is challenging due to the rapidly evolving nature of the COVID-19 pandemic. While professional events and conferences have been postponed or cancelled (see below), great research funding and career opportunities are still available. Please read on to learn about the Department of Defense CDMRP Epilepsy Research Program funding pre-announcement and the faculty positions available at the Rutgers University Department of Neurosurgery.

Epilepsy Conference and Meeting Updates

To meet World Health Organization guidelines and protect participants, the following conferences and meetings have been cancelled or postponed:

  • American Academy of Neurology Meeting: Cancelled
  • Curing the Epilepsies 2020: Postponed to January 4-6, 2021
  • 7th International Residential Course of Drug Resistant Epilepsies: Postponed to September 20-26, 2020
  • GRC on Mechanisms of Epilepsy and Neuronal Synchronization: Postponed to 2022
  • Neurotrauma 2020: Cancelled, next meeting July 11-14 in Austin, TX

We will continue to monitor upcoming events and provide updates when possible.

Funding from the Department of Defense Epilepsy Research Program (ERP)

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The pre-announcement for ERP funding, managed by the Department of Defense office of Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs (CDMRP), is now available. We encourage investigators whose projects aim to understand the causative links between traumatic brain injury (TBI) and epilepsy to check out this pre-announcement to plan and develop ideas for submission.

Faculty Positions: Rutgers University Department of Neurosurgery

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The Rutgers University Department of Neurosurgery at Robert Wood Johnson and New Jersey Medical Schools and Rutgers Brain Health Institute is hiring faculty to build their translational neuroscience research program. The university is hiring for Assistant, Associate, and Full Professor positions.

CURE Update: How to get involved on SUDEP Action Day, View the Real Talk Live Stream, Rallying behind #Giving Tuesday and more

In this month’s update, we have a very important question to ask: are you ready to take your shot at epilepsy?

This November enter our Epilepsy Awareness Month raffle to help support groundbreaking research and the chance to win a fantastic prize package including: tickets to the final Chicago Hamilton performance, meals at award winning Chicago restaurants, accommodations, and more. Stay tuned – we’ll announce more details in the coming weeks.

The exciting news doesn’t stop there! In this update, please also find information on:

SUDEP Action Day: Take #5forEpilepsySafety on October 23

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SUDEP Action Day is a global event whose purpose is to educate the epilepsy community and beyond about the risk of Sudden Unexpected Death in Epilepsy (SUDEP). Join the movement on Wednesday, October 23 and encourage your friends and family to take #5forEpilepsySafety – spend 5 minutes learning about SUDEP and preventative measures patients and families can take.

Rescue MedicationsWatch Real Talk: Speaking Up About Life with Epilepsy


This week, four young professionals joined us live to discuss navigating careers, dating, and friendships while living with epilepsy. You can catch the recording of this insightful discussion now on our website!

Seizing LifeYour Friends Can Fight for a Cure on #GivingTuesday

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On Tuesday, December 3, rally your Facebook friends to donate to cutting-edge epilepsy research that will push us closer to a cure. Setting up your own #GivingTuesday fundraiser is easy with Facebook! Follow these step-by-step instructions or click here to kick-off your campaign and let the world know how important funding research is to you.

Seizing LifeNew from Seizing Life, a CURE Podcast

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Dive into the latest episodes of Seizing Life, where we explore:

Seizing LifeSecure Your Tickets to the 2019 Annual Chicago Benefit!

Learn More | Sponsor | Tickets

Join us on Monday, November 18 as we honor children whose lives have been touched by epilepsy and the researchers who propel us toward a cure.

This year listen to performances by Nils Lofgren – Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee, Miguel Cervantes – star of Chicago’s Hamilton, and Musicality – renowned Chicago-based youth vocal group will make the evening soar.

Epilepsy Awareness Day at DisneylandExciting and Informative CURE Events at Epilepsy Awareness Day at Disneyland!

Learn More | Attend

Stop by the CURE booth at the Epilepsy Awareness Day at Disneyland expo to hear interesting interviews with researchers and physicians about the latest promising studies and therapies.

In addition, tell us how your life would change if there was a cure for epilepsy. Share your “When You Wish Upon a Cure” story and you’ll have the chance to be one of 10 individuals to be interviewed by Seizing Life podcast host, award-winning blogger, and advocate Kelly Cervantes!

Visit our website to learn more about the other exciting events we have planned.

Upcoming CURE Events

October 23: SUDEP Action Day – Online
November 3: The 2019 TCS New York City Marathon – New York, NY
November 4-6: Epilepsy Awareness Day at Disneyland – Anaheim, CA
November 9: Dressage for a Cause – Batavia OH
November 18: CURE 2019 Annual Chicago Benefit – Chicago, IL
December 3: #GivingTuesday – Online

View All Upcoming Events

CURE Update: September 2019

The CURE office is buzzing with excitement for all the upcoming events and educational opportunities on the horizon. It warms our hearts to see the epilepsy community coming together both on and offline to speak up in support of greater research funding and public education about epilepsy.

In this update, learn about our awareness-building Facebook Live Stream, a recent video we created focusing on how you can help change the conversation around epilepsy, what’s new from our Seizing Life podcast, details on the CURE 2019 Annual Chicago Benefit, and the exciting California events Day of Science: Epilepsy Conversations and Epilepsy Awareness Day at Disneyland.

Event and Facebook Live Stream – Real Talk: Speaking Up About Life with Epilepsy

Learn More | Tickets

Rescue MedicationsWhile 3.4 million Americans are currently impacted by epilepsy, the everyday experience of living with this condition remains largely in the shadows. To shed light on this “invisible” condition, a panel of individuals with epilepsy will speak to building careers, relationships, and more. Moderated by CURE Board Member and activist Kelly Cervantes, this discussion promises to be a unique, stigma-busting event!

If you’re in Chicago, please join us for the live filming and post-panel reception. Otherwise, catch the action on our Facebook page.

Video: Change the Conversation Around Epilepsy

Watch | Speak Up

CURE Epilepsy Research AppThe stigma associated with epilepsy can lead those affected to face challenges with employment, education, and even medical care.

Watch and share this important information to help change the conversation around epilepsy, educate the general public, and break down the stigma.

New from Seizing Life, a CURE Podcast

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Seizing LifeDive into the latest episodes of Seizing Life, where we explore:

Save the Date for the CURE 2019 Annual Chicago Benefit!

Learn More | Sponsor | Tickets

Seizing LifeMark your calendars: this year’s spectacular CURE 2019 Annual Chicago Benefit is on Monday, November 18!

We’re celebrating the innovative epilepsy researchers whose careers CURE has helped launch for over 20 years. These are the groundbreaking scientists who are helping break open new avenues of investigation in the field of epilepsy research, giving hope to those impacted by the condition, and pushing us closer to a cure.

Our amazing performers for this year’s benefit are Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Nils Lofgren, star of Chicago’s Hamilton Miguel Cervantes, and renowned Chicago-based vocal group Musicality.

California Events: CURE’s Day of Science: Epilepsy Conversations and Epilepsy Awareness Day at Disneyland

Attend Day of Science: Epilepsy Conversations

Broadway Sings for CUREOn Saturday, September 21, people with epilepsy and their caregivers have the opportunity to ask a panel of doctors and researchers their questions during Day of Science: Epilepsy Conversations at the Children’s Hospital of Orange County. At this free event, leading experts will address attendees’ questions on the latest research as it relates to new epilepsy treatment options, surgery, genetics, and more. Also, enjoy small-group discussions with the panelists over lunch.

Day of Science: Epilepsy Conversations is made possible thanks to the generous support of the BAND Foundation, Eisai, and Greenwich Biosciences. This event is also hosted in partnership with the Epilepsy Support Network of Orange County.

Attend Epilepsy Awareness Day at Disneyland

Broadway Sings for CUREPaint the park purple at Epilepsy Awareness Day at Disneyland! On November 4 and 5, join us at the expo to access epilepsy resources while learning about new treatment options and devices. Then head to Disneyland Park on November 6 to enjoy the rides, build lasting friendships, and spread epilepsy awareness.

We’ll announce our fun booth activities soon, so stay tuned!

Upcoming CURE Events

September 21: Day of Science: Epilepsy Conversations – Orange, CA
September 29: Chicago Half Marathon/5K – Chicago, IL
October 7: Real Talk: Speaking Up About Life with Epilepsy – Chicago, IL and Online
November 3: The 2019 TCS New York City Marathon – New York, NY
November 4-6: Epilepsy Awareness Day at Disneyland – Anaheim, CA
November 9: Dressage for a Cause – Batavia, OH
November 18: CURE 2019 Annual Chicago Benefit – Chicago, IL
December 3: #GivingTuesday – Online

View All Upcoming Events

Webinars: Two-Part Series on Rescue Medications

Seizures can be both unpredictable and unrelenting. When a seizure becomes an emergency, rescue medications provide immediate relief and help prevent the need for emergency care. While existing therapies do stop these epilepsy emergencies in many patients, some are still searching for an option that works for them.

In this two-part webinar series, you will gain insight on the different epilepsy emergencies, existing rescue medications,  promising research in this space, and what rescue therapies are currently in the pipeline. These webinars will feature leading experts in the field who have recently participated in rescue medication research trials.

In our first webinar on August 13, Dr. Kamil Detyniecki of the University of Miami will provide an overview of the different types of seizure emergencies, while also discussing the currently available rescue medications.

Our second webinar on September 10 features Dr. Nathan Fountain of the University of Virginia, who will explore the latest research on rescue medications. His presentation will include a look at the rescue medication pipeline and the new delivery methods which may become available to patients.

During a live Q&A at the end of each webinar, these leading experts will answer your questions such as:

  • What makes different delivery methods more or less effective for some patients?
  • Are rescue medications only for individuals who experience seizure clusters?
  • What are the potential risks associated with using rescue medications?

The first webinar will feature Dr. Kamil Detyniecki, Assistant Professor of the Clinical Neurology Epilepsy Division, at the University of Miami.  The second webinar will be presented by Dr. Nathan Fountain, Professor of Neurology and the Director of the Comprehensive Epilepsy Program at the University of Virginia.

CURE Update: Get Involved! Join Our Next Webinar and Host an Event This Summer

Greetings! It’s been an inspirational month here at CURE between our Broadway Sings for CURE benefit in New York and awarding our Educational Enrichment Fund scholarships to 10 amazing students.

In this update, we hope to inspire you to continue your involvement with the CURE community throughout the summer. Click on the links below to learn more about CURE happenings!

Epilepsy SurgeryWebinar and Live Q&A on Epilepsy Surgery: Advancements, Options, & Considerations

Learn More | Register Now

Discover when to consider epilepsy surgery and what recent advances have been made in this field in our upcoming free webinar, Wednesday, July 10. Dr. Kate Davis from the University of Pennsylvania will address these topics and share how to approach your doctor about surgery.

This webinar is supported by the generosity of the BAND Foundation.

CURE ChampionBecome a CURE Champion This Summer

Start Your Summer Fundraiser

Have fun in the sun while raising vital funding for epilepsy research by hosting a CURE Champion event! From lemonade stands to block parties, you can use your creativity and skills to spread awareness about the desperate need for a cure for epilepsy.

Not sure where to start? Our Outreach Team is here to help! Send them an email at to kick off your summer fundraising event.

The CURE Champions program is supported in part by Greenwich Biosciences.

Broadway Sings for CUREBecome a Monthly Donor to Impact Epilepsy Research All Year!

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Support groundbreaking epilepsy research throughout the year by becoming a monthly donor! Your donations build-up over time, which means any recurring donation can make a big impact, helping to transform lives.

Set up your monthly donation through our website by checking the “Recurring Gift” box when you donate.

Seizing LifeNew from Seizing Life, a CURE Podcast

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Dive into the latest episodes of Seizing Life, where we explore:

Webinar: Epilepsy Surgery: Advancements, Options, & Considerations

For some people with uncontrolled epilepsy, surgery is an effective and important option to consider. This webinar will help patients and caregivers approach this difficult and sometimes confusing conversation with their doctors.

Dr. Kate Davis will explore recent advances in epilepsy surgery which have increased not only the types of surgeries available to patients but expanded who is an appropriate candidate for surgery. Dr. Davis will also discuss the different tests performed as part of an epilepsy surgical evaluation and review current surgical options including resective surgery, laser ablation, and implantable devices.

During a live Q&A at the end of this webinar, you may ask Dr. Davis questions such as:

  • What are the potential risks to consider when contemplating brain surgery?
  • What resources are available for patients and their family members who might be considering surgery?
  • What role does an assessment of your cognition and behavior (language skills, memory, problem solving, etc.) play in determining the potential benefit and risks of surgery?

This webinar will be presented by Dr. Kate Davis, Medical Director of the Epilepsy Surgical Program and Epilepsy Monitoring Unit at the University of Pennsylvania.

Webinar on Epilepsy and Dietary Therapies: How What You Eat May Control Seizures

For individuals with epilepsy – particularly if their seizures are not controlled by available medications alone – dietary therapies have the potential to help. Join us for a free webinar on these therapies Thursday, June 14 at 1:00PM CT.

The presenters Dr. Jong Rho from the University of Calgary and Dr. Eric Kosoff of Johns Hopkins will discuss the ketogenic diet and other evidence-based dietary options. These neurologists will examine the research supporting dietary epilepsy therapies as well as how patients and caregivers can work with their doctors to determine if these therapies are right for them.

Register to attend.

This webinar is supported by the generosity of the BAND Foundation.

Woman sitting at a laptop participating in a CURE webinar.

Webinar: Transitioning from Pediatric to Adult Epilepsy Care

Transitioning from pediatric to adult care is a major milestone for individuals with epilepsy and their families. Unfortunately, this process can be delayed due to the multitude of health and comorbid conditions which can accompany epilepsy, as well as the personal bond between the family and their pediatric care team.

This webinar discusses how epilepsy patients, their families, and pediatric neurologists can develop a plan to prepare for the transition of care. The presenter, Dr. Joseph Sirven, explores what factors to consider when transitioning care, established research guidelines for transitioning care, and the resources available to assist everyone involved.

During the webinar, you may ask your questions such as:

  • Is the transition of care plan dependent upon a patient’s epilepsy type?
  • Do treatment options change when a patient begins seeing an adult neurologist?
  • What research has been done into the effects of transition care on a patient’s lifestyle?

This webinar is conducted by Dr. Joseph Sirven, Professor of Neurology and Chair Emeritus in the Department of Neurology and Director of the Epilepsy Program at the Mayo Clinic’s Arizona Campus. Dr. Sirven serves as editor-in-chief at

NeurologyLive™ Launches “Epilepsy: Current Trends and Treatments for Focal Seizures”

A digital and print multimedia platform dedicated to providing health care professionals treating neurological diseases direct access to expert, practice-changing news and insights in neurology, presents its most recent “Peer Exchange” panel discussion, “Epilepsy: Current Trends and Treatments for Focal Seizures.” The video series welcomes several experts in the treatment and management of epilepsy who provide peer-to-peer dialogue, authoritative insights, opinions and perspectives on current trends and available treatments for focal seizures.

This NeurologyLive™ “Peer Exchange” panel features four distinguished experts: Michael R. Sperling, M.D., Baldwin Keyes professor of neurology, director of the Jefferson Comprehensive Epilepsy Center and Clinical Neurophysiology Laboratory at Thomas Jefferson University, as the moderator; Kathryn A. Davis, M.D., M.S, FAES, assistant professor of neurology at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania and medical director of the Epilepsy Monitoring Unit and Epilepsy Surgical Program at the University of Pennsylvania; Trevor J. Resnick, M.D., pediatric neurologist in the department of neurology at Nicklaus Children’s Hospital-Brain Institute of the Miami Children’s Health System and a clinical professor in the department of neurology at Herbert Wertheim College of Medicine; and Jesus E. Pina-Garza, M.D., director of pediatric epilepsy at TriStar Medical Group Children’s Specialists.

Union Students Host CURE Fundraiser

Proceeds from this event will be donated to Citizens United for Research in Epilepsy

Union College students are hosting the second annual Skate For Alex fundraiser at Frank Messa Rink in Schenectady, NY on Sunday from 2 to 4 p.m.

The fundraiser is held in remembrance of Alex Askenazy, a Union student who died at the school in October 2017 of sudden unexplained death in epilepsy. Friends of Askenazy and the Eta Gamma chapter of Alpha Phi Omega are hosting the fundraiser.

The group, which started the annual fundraiser last year, plans to donate the proceeds to Citizens United for Research in Epilepsy, which funds research into epilepsy and the rare occurrence of sudden unexplained death in epilepsy.