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Participant recruitment is a major challenge in many research studies involving human subjects. Recruitment involves a number of activities, including identifying eligible participants, adequately explaining the study to the potential participants, recruiting an adequate sample based on study goals and design, obtaining informed consent and maintaining ethical standards, and retaining participants until study completion.

Below is a list of current studies requiring volunteers:

Health Mentors Program (University of British Columbia)

The UBC Health Mentors Program is a 9-month volunteer program in which adult mentors and/or caregivers meet 6 times with a small team of UBC students. Health Mentors are experts in their health, and want to share their experiences living with a chronic condition. Students are new healthcare professionals who learn about patient-centred care and how providers can better support people with chronic conditions.

By being a Health Mentor, you will be part of a pioneering program that is contributing to the education of the health professionals of tomorrow. Health Mentors should live in the Metro Vancouver area, and be comfortable talking about their health condition.

For more information, and to apply to be a health mentor, please visit: bit.ly/ubchealthmentors, or refer to this document. Questions can be directed to Program Coordinator, Jen MacDonald, at jen.macdonald@ubc.ca.

Somatotopy in Parkinson's disease (Djavad Mowafaghian Centre for Brain Health)

Researchers from the University of British Columbia are recruiting individuals between ages 50 to 85 who have been recently diagnosed with early stage Parkinson’s disease (less than 5 years duration), as well as healthy individuals between ages 50 to 85 to participate in a study at the Djavad Mowafaghian Centre for Brain Health.

PET/MRI imaging will be used to investigate changes in the brain in Parkinson’s disease, by comparing patterns of altered connections in people with Parkinson’s disease versus healthy controls. If you choose to join, you will be asked to commit up to 14 hours; a single visit of two hours for screening and assessments and two visits of approximately 6 hours each to scan. These visits can be conducted on either consecutive or non-consecutive days.

If you are interested in becoming involved, please contact 604-827-1353 at the Pacific Parkinson’s Research Centre for more information.

Tele-Yoga in Adults with Symptoms of Anxiety (Rutgers University)

The Motor Behavior Lab of Rutgers University is inviting people to participate in a research study evaluating the role of yoga in the lives of individuals with Parkinson's disease or symptoms of anxiety. 

Who is eligible for this study? 

  • Individuals with Parkinson's disease 
  • Individuals with symptoms of anxiety - such as feelings of nervousness, racing heart, & muscle tension
  • Individuals between 18-80 years old (male or female)
  • Proficient English speakers

You must not: 

  • Have an injury or condition that affects your ability to particpate in physical activity
  • Have cognitive impairments that could prevent you from communicating or understanding directions
  • Be pregnant

What is involved? 
You will be asked to participate in four 1.5-hour videoconferencing sessions to answer questionnaires, followed by a 6-week waiting period (no action required). You will then participate in 12 or more yoga sessions in your home via a live video chat with a yoga teacher. The total time commitment is 12 weeks.   

To learn more, contact the principal investigator: 
Dr. Jean-Francois Daneault, PhD | 973.972.8482 | Email: jf.daneault@rutgers.edu

Animal Assisted Interventions Study (University of Groningen)

Volunteers needed for a questionnaire study on service dogs for Parkinson's disease. Individuals may be diagnosed with Parkinson's, Lewy body dementia, or be caregivers of individuals with these diagnoses. Participation is confidential and individual responses will remain anonymous.

Participants do not need to have a service dog to complete the survey. 

Study Information

Service dogs may be of great assistance to those with Parkinson's disease or Lewy body dementia. Thus far, research on this topic has been extremely scarce. However, these highly trained animals may assist in areas including retrieving hard to reach items, finding help for owners in distress, providing balance support, encouraging exercise, and reducing loneliness. 

Researcher Information

Lisa Skandali, M.Sc. | liz.skandali@gmail.com

University of Groningen

To take the survey, click here

Apathy and Young Onset Parkinson's Disease: The Mitigating Role of Employment (University of North Texas)

Despite the continual growth of people diagnosed with young onset Parkinson’s disease (YOPD), research examining the burdensome non-motor features remains scarce. We hope to identify potential relationships between apathy and other variables that might lead to new and innovative treatments.

To be eligible to participate in this study, participants need to have a clinical diagnosis of YOPD (prior to the age of 50) and be at least 18 years old. Participation in this study will require about 25-minutes of time and will not include any compensation.

Thank you in advance for your consideration. Should you have any questions or concerns, contact Bradley McDaniels, PhD, CRC, Assistant Professor, Department of Rehabilitation and Health Services, University of North Texas, at 469-551-3785 or Bradley.mcdaniels@unt.edu

Click here for the survey.

Parkinson's Tremor Management Study

The Wearable Biomechatronics Laboratory from the University of Western Ontario is looking for volunteers to complete an online survey that explores the current state of Parkinson’s tremor management. In order to participate you must be fluent in English, be receiving treatment(s) for parkinsonian tremor, and be capable of completing an online survey.

If you agree to participate, you would be asked to complete an online survey consisting of multiple sections and short answers. Your participation would involve one online session of no longer than 10 minutes in duration.

Click here for the survey.

For more information about this study, please contact: Devin Box, Faculty of Health Sciences, Western University at dbox@uwo.ca

Driving Self-Management Program (University of British Columbia)

Have you or someone you know retired from driving or is thinking about retiring from driving? Researchers from the University of British Columbia are conducting a survey to determine the needs of developing a future driving self-management program for individuals with neurological conditions. This survey will take approximately 20 minutes and will help inform researchers about the content and format people with neuroloigcal conditions and their carepartners believe would be beneficial in a driving self-management program.

If you are an individual with a neurological condition or a carepartner, learn more and take the survey here.

If you have any further questions, please contact researchers Ariel Hung and Iris Xie at ubcdrivingselfmanagement@gmail.com or 778-990-6179. 

Time Perception in Parkinson's Disease (University of Oxford)

Parkinson’s disease is known to affect parts of the brain that are thought to be involved in perceiving the passage of time, but the nature and degree of any actual time perception problems that result is not well understood. The aim of this research is to determine whether time perception is altered in Parkinson’s disease (PD) and whether this can be accurately quantified. If so, measures of changes in time perception could be potentially used in future as a test that could help diagnose PD and address symptoms.

The research is conducted completely online. There is a very brief questionnaire collecting information including participant age, gender, whether you have PD and what other conditions/medications you may have. 

You will then complete a task that consists of two parts. Firstly, you will be shown two images in sequence, one of which appears on screen for slightly longer than the other and asked to say which was there the longest. This is repeated multiple times. Then the same thing is done again, but instead of images, using two audio tones of slightly different duration played in sequence. This whole task should take 20-30 minutes. 

The study is being conducted by the NeuroMetrology group in the Nuffield Department of Clinical Neurosciences at the University of Oxford. If you have any questions, contact zi.su@ndcn.ox.ac.uk

Take the survey here.

Parkinson's Disease Self-Management Strategies (University of Oulu & Collaborators)

A collaboration of international researchers is seeking individuals to participate in an online study collecting information about Parkinson's disease self-management strategies. The study is conducted fully online, the participants are asked to fill in a questionnaire, submit their best practices of self-care, and assess the ones submitted by others via pre-set criteria. We do not collect any sensitive personal information. The participants can sign to an email list (hosted on different server), for receiving further information about the proceeding of the project and for joining a raffle of an Amazon gift card. 

Take the survey at ab3000.net/campaigns/pd/.

Hypomimia (Masked Facies) Online Study (Leeds Beckett University)

Are you a person with Parkinson's disease who experiences hypomimia, otherwise known as masked facies or loss of facial expression? If so, a research study is being conducted exploring the effects of daily exercises on hypomimia. The project is entirely virtual, and consists of an initial assessment of your facial expressions, followed by 6 weeks of daily facial expression exercises to be completed. After 6 weeks, you will repeat the inital assessment tasks to evaluate any improvement. 

All personal information will be kept confidential, including names and contact telephone numbers. Once interview data has been transcribed and inputted, it will be destroyed. The only people to view the raw information will be the researcher, their project supervisor, and the examiner. You can withdraw from the study at any time. 

For more information, contact Paniz Ghalehvand at P.Ghalehvand8766@student.leedsbeckett.ac.uk.

Treating Anxiety in Parkinson's Disease With a Multi-Strain Probiotic (University of British Columbia)

Do you have Parkinson's disease and experience anxiety? University of British Columbia (UBC) researchers are now recruiting for a clinical trial examining the effects of a multi-strain probiotic on anxiety in Parkinson's disease. 

What and Who is Involved?:

  • Blind and randomized clinical trial led by UBC neurologist Dr. Silke Appel-Cresswell
  • Two study visits conducted remotely and in-person at UBC (~6-8 hours each) 
  • Visits include clinical assessments, questionnaires, blood samples, and collection of fecal samples at home
  • 3 months of taking the probiotic or placebo twice a day 

Who Can Participate? 

  • Those between the ages of 40-80
  • Those with mild to moderate Parkinson's disease 
  • Those with mild to moderate anxiety 
  • Those who do not have other neurological disorders, such as Alzheimer's disease
  • Those who have not had Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) and are not on Duodopa 
  • Those who are not currently receiveing psychotherapy

Click here to read the full study record. If you are interested in learning more or participating, please email Petra.Uzelman@ubc.ca or call (604)-827-0576.

Prototype Website & Caregivers Study (University of British Columbia)

Researchers from the University of British Columbia are looking for volunteers to participate in a study to refine the prototype of a website for recruiting paid care workers for people with disabilities and their caregivers.

They are looking for individuals who:

  • are 19 years of age or older;

  • have a disability or chronic illness and receive help from a family member OR are a past or current family caregiver

  • can read, write, and speak English fluently

  • can attend a scheduled focus group session via Zoom/Skype, or a telephone interview

Depending on your availability, you will attend a focus group OR an individual interview (either will be 90 minutes) via Zoom/Skype/telephone.

You will learn about the prototype of a website for recruiting paid care workers for people with disabilities and their caregivers and asked to discuss its potential benefits as well as share any concerns. You will also help refine the existing prototype by sharing your opinion about its layout and usability. We will also collect some basic information about you, such as age, sex, annual household income, and your caregiver/care recipient background.

Focus group participants will be given a $25 gift card.

For more information, please contact Brianna Tang at brianna.tang@ubc.ca.

Camera Study – Pacific Parkinson's Research Centre

People with Parkinson's disease (PD) are needed for a study with the Pacific Parkinson's Research Centre that is developing a novel, privacy compliant monitoring tool for people with PD.

The study is specifically looking for participants who: 

  • Have a confirmed diagnosis of idiopathic PD
  • Are capable of providing informed consent 
  • People with more advanced disease are encouraged to participate (only simple tasks like finger-tapping and walking will be requested) 

Regular monitoring of body movement, mood, and other disease symptoms in this population is important to assess disease progression and inform treatment decisions – however, assessments of symptoms are typically only performed once a year due to economic constraints.

The aim of their study is to ultimately develop a smart camera system that preserves your privacy, yet can still measure body movement and mood (without the need for wearable sensors) in a home setting. This information may provide healthcare providers with a more comprehensive insight into a patients disease status. 

Please contact Ravneet Mahal at 604-822-7763 or ravneet.mahal@ubc.ca if you are interested in participating or would like more information.

PDCareBox (University of Oulu)

Are you looking for new ways of managing Parkinson's disease (PD)? PDCareBox is a collaborative, community-based platform with a collection of techniques to help you live well with PD. PDCareBox helps you find self-care techniques to deal with Parkinson’s in your daily life. The techniques have been contributed by PD patients and their caretakers all over the world.

Inside PDCareBox user can find techniques by using four criteria: sociality, affordability, effectiveness, and community familiarity. You can also see what other participants think the technique is good for. After people test PDCareBox, we will ask you for your opinion of the tool and the techniques via an online questionnaire.

This project is an international research collaboration between University of Oulu, Aalborg University, Fraunhofer University, ULisboa, the University of Melbourne, the University of Pittsburgh, and University of Glasgow.

Visit https://pdcarebox.com/ to learn more and discover over 30,000 unique perspectives.