28th June – International PKU Day
Every year the 28th of June is a special day for the PKU Community worldwide when everyone joins together to celebrate International PKU Day. It’s a time when families, patients, healthcare professionals and companies manufacturing special low protein products and supplements join together to raise awareness of Phenylketonuria.
At the ESPKU Delegates Meeting 2013 in Antwerp it was decided to initiate the International PKU Day, taking place annually on June 28th. This is quite a special day because, not only is it nicely in the middle of the year but also, it is the birthday of two stalwarts of PKU, Robert Guthrie (1916-1995) and Horst Bickel (1918-2000). Robert Guthrie, born 28th June 1916, developed the first new-born screening test, and Horst Bickel, Born 28th June 1918, was the first to develop a low protein diet for PKU infants in 1951.
The biggest purpose of the day is to raise awareness of PKU. Many people within the PKU community take part in fund raising activities and events, share their personal PKU experiences and spread the word about the condition in the world. PKU is such a rare metabolic disorder, so this is a great chance to make PKU known to the rest of the world.
Anybody born with PKU genuinely owes their quality of life to Guthrie and Bickel, and their mutual birthday is a perfect opportunity to celebrate PKU as a successful and life changing discovery which the whole community is indescribably grateful for.
Thank you for raising awareness for PKU!
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