NEW YORK, Dec. 13 /PRNewswire/ -- Three-time NFL Pro Bowler and TODAY
correspondent Tiki Barber spoke publicly for the first time today about his
son A.J.'s epilepsy. "Epilepsy affects such a wide range of people in
different circumstances and it's something that awareness needs to be
raised about," he told Meredith Vieira this morning on TODAY.
Susan Axelrod, Citizens United for Research in Epilepsy (CURE) founding
member and president, also appeared on TODAY to discuss the need to
increase awareness and research for epilepsy. Over one-third of epilepsy
patients have seizures that cannot be controlled with medication. Over 3
million people suffer from epilepsy in the United States -- more than
multiple sclerosis, cerebral palsy, muscular dystrophy, and Parkinson's
disease combined. Yet public and private funding of epilepsy research pales
in comparison to funding for other neurological diseases, many of which
affect far fewer patients.
"What's exciting is that we've changed the dialogue in the epilepsy
research community. Scientists are starting to look at what are the root
causes, what are the mechanisms, who's at risk, and could we even maybe
prevent epilepsy," said Axelrod.
Axelrod and two other mothers of children with epilepsy launched CURE
in 1998 to increase awareness of and research for epilepsy. Axelrod was
motivated by her daughter, Lauren's struggle with intractable epilepsy. Her
efforts have helped CURE raise more than $8 million to fund research and
other initiatives that will lead the way to a cure.
TODAY also showed clips of videos produced by CURE which document, with
personal stories, the devastating effects epilepsy has on children and
their families. These videos educate and raise awareness about the
struggles of people with uncontrolled seizures.
The TODAY Show is broadcast live on NBC stations from 7-10 am EST. It
is America's most watched morning show. To watch TODAY's segment on
epilepsy, go to http://today.msnbc.msn.com, and scroll through the "Video
from TODAY" section. Click on "Understanding Epilepsy."
For additional information on CURE, contact Michelle Marciniak or visit