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By Emilie Burditt


FITCHBURG, Wis. - About 200 people walked and ran Sunday in a 5K for a disease that affects 30,000 Americans and has no cure.

The 5K was hosted by Team Hope, which raised funds with the help of sponsors for the prevention of Huntington's disease. Upward of $50,000 was raised. The money is donated to the Huntington's Disease Society of America, which will use the donations to support research initiatives to find a cure. 

"Huntington's is such a low-profile disease that not a lot of people are aware of it and don't understand it," said 5K participant Pat Luther. "When we were trying to raise money for it at Walgreens, a lot of people had never even heard of the disease." 

Although there are drugs to slow down the debilitating effects of Huntington's disease, there is no cure for the genetic disorder that deteriorates a person's physical and mental abilities. Huntington's disease is fatal. 

Professional athlete Shana Verstegen lost her mom to the disease in 2013, 30 years after being diagnosed with it.

"These teams [and] these families work hard [to fight Huntington's disease]," Verstegen said. 

The next Team Hope walk will take place Aug. 25 at Fox Brooke Park in Brookfield. For people with questions on the disease or for those looking to find a support group, Verstegen recommends visiting the HDSA website

She said that for anyone wanting to financially support Huntington's research initiatives, the HDSA website is still collecting donations. 

"We are so close to a cure for this disease," Verstegen said.