Race for research next Saturday, research on the childhood disease Progeria.
The tenth annual event, which is held each year in conjunction with the International Festival, raises funds to support the (PRF), run by Peabody attorney Audrey Gordon.
After seeing the effects of the premature aging disease (officially known as Hutchinson-Gilford Progeria Syndrome) firsthand on her not even two-year-old nephew, Sam, 13 years ago, Gordon set out to find a cure, along with Sam's parents, Drs. Leslie Gordon and Scott Berns.
They discovered there was a great lack of medical knowledge on the disease and nowhere to go for help. Working together with friends and colleagues, they established the non-profit foundation in 1999, the only one of its kind exclusively devoted to Progeria research, and which has become the leading source of information and treatment for Progeria.
In 2003, PRF and the National Institutes of Health announced they had discovered the cause of the disease, a mutation in the LMNA gene.
Gordon serves as the president and executive director of PRF, while her sister is the organization's medical director and chief investigator into research programs.
A main fundraiser for the foundation is the annual 5K road race and fun run/walk through downtown Peabody.
Runners are encouraged to find sponsors for themselves for race day; the entry fee is $20 per person and $15 for the fun run/walk. Prizes are awarded to the top finishers and all kids receive a special award.
You can find more information on the event on the PRF website, as well as a registration form to download, or just show up on Sept. 10 at City Hall. Registration begins at 8 a.m. The 5K race starts at 9 a.m., followed right after by the fun run/walk.