global view constructed of white lines
November 10, 2022

Breaking Barriers for Brain Tumor Research

by Amelia Garrison

Board-certified and fellowship-trained neurosurgeon Garni Barhoudarian, MD, opened the American Brain Tumor Association’s BT5K walk and run event in Los Angeles on November 5th, 2022. The annual event promotes brain tumor awareness and support for patients and their families.

Neurosurgeon Garni Barkhoudarinan, MD after running a 5k
PNI’s expert neurosurgeon Garni Barkhoudarinan, MD.

Pacific Neuroscience Institute (PNI) was a proud sponsor of this special event for brain tumor patients and their loved ones on Saturday, November 5th, 2022, at Hahamonga Watershed Park in Pasadena, California. The event was one of many brain tumor 5K events planned throughout the year by the American Brain Tumor Association (ABTA), the oldest non-profit dedicated to the brain tumor community, with the aim of providing critical funding for brain tumor research and patient support services.

PNI neurosurgery expert Garni Barkhoudarian, MD, gave opening remarks at the event along with brain tumor community advocate and KTTV Los Angeles weather anchor Maria Quiban. Nearly 40 PNI medical experts and staff members from the Pacific Brain Tumor Center were in attendance, including brain tumor patients and their families. Expert neuro-oncologist Akanksha Sharma, MD, joined the team, as well as oncology nurse navigator Theresa Martello, BSN, CCRN, and neuroscience programs coordinator Selenia Claros, among others.

Supporting the brain tumor community

Breakthroughs for Brain tumors pennant flag

The ABTA is a champion of everyone engaged in the fight against brain tumors, whether they are patients, caregivers, healthcare providers, or researchers. Since 1976, the non-profit has raised more than 32 million dollars in brain tumor research award grants.

After gathering virtually due to the coronavirus over the past few years, the ABTA was thrilled to meet in person in Los Angeles County to support brain tumor education, support, and research.

Brain tumor support at Pacific Neuroscience Institute

Runners and walkers at the ABTA’s brain tumor 5K had the opportunity to learn about minimally invasive keyhole and endoscopic brain tumor removal, clinical trials and novel approaches to brain tumor treatment, as well as supportive care services offered at PNI’s Pacific Brain Tumor Center.

5K table display

One of the newest services offered at PNI is the virtual Brain Tumor Support Group for patients and families coming in December 2022. Facilitated by brain tumor leaders at PNI and Providence Saint Health Center in Santa Monica, the virtual support groups aim to connect with others who understand the unique experiences of those diagnosed with a brain tumor.

Leading experts in brain tumor care at Pacific Neuroscience Institute

Garni Barkhoudarian, MD, an expert neurosurgeon in skull base and minimally endoscopic surgery. At PNI Burbank and Santa Monica, Dr. Barkhoudarian specializes in pituitary and parasellar tumors, brain tumors, skull-base tumors, including meningiomas, craniopharyngiomas, chordomas and schwannomas, and intra-ventricular brain tumors, among others.

Akanksha Sharma, MD, and Maria Quiban.
Akanksha Sharma, MD, and Maria Quiban.

Akanksha Sharma, MD, board-certified neurologist, neuro-oncologist, and palliative medicine specialist, specializes in the treatment of primary/metastatic brain tumors, neurological complications of cancer, and disease-related burdens and symptoms. Dr. Sharma focuses on understanding and improving quality of life, how we best manage symptoms, the importance of prognostication, and caregiver support.

Useful Links:

About the Author

Amelia Garrison MPhil

Amelia Garrison

Amelia Garrison is the Marketing Specialist at Pacific Neuroscience Institute (PNI). Well versed in community outreach strategy and implementation, she leads the PNI blog, newsletter, and digital communications. Amelia oversees PNI's reputation management and community sponsorships.

Last updated: August 9th, 2023