Come Join The SoCal IOCDF & USC on October 4th, 2014

In support of OCD Awareness Week, The Southern California IOCDF is pleased to partner with the University of Southern California to provide a presentation on “Genetics and OCD”. This presentation will be held on October 4, 2014 at 11:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. at the Neighborhood Community Center in Costa Mesa, 1845 Park Ave, Costa Mesa, CA 92627.

Dr. Michele Pato, Professor and Co-Director of the OCD Research Program at USC Keck School of Medicine will lead the discussion on how specific genes may play a contributing role in the development of OCD, Dr. Pato’s current research studies blood samples of over 5,000 participants who suffer from OCD. Attendees at this presentation who have OCD will also have a unique opportunity to participate in this important study on a voluntary basis after the presentation.

Event Details:


Michele Pato, MD is Professor and Associate Chair for Education, Della Martin Chair in Psychiatry and Associate Dean for Academic Scholarship at the Keck School of Medicine, Department of Psychiatry at the University of Southern California (USC). She is the Principal Investigator of the Genomic Psychiatry Cohort, developed clinical trials in pharmacologic and cognitive behavioral treatments of psychiatric illnesses, and teaches students and colleagues how to teach research and clinical skills. Dr. Pato is internationally known for her genetic research, OCD clinical research and teaching. She is the Co-Director of the OCD Treatment and Research Program at Keck School of Medicine, USC.

Genetic Testing on OCD

Research has shown that genes can make some people more likely than others to develop Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD). Teams of researchers at the University of Southern California and other collaborating research sites are trying to find these genes. Once these genes are identified, new and improved treatments may be developed. OCD is characterized by obsessions which are unwanted thoughts, images and impulses that “pop” into a person’s mind, generate anxiety and lead to compulsions, or neutralizing actions aimed to reduce the distress generated by the obsessions.

You may be eligible to take part in this study if you:

* have symptoms or a diagnosis of OCD

If eligible, you will be asked to participate in an interview and to give a small blood sample. You will be paid for your participation. To learn more, please go to the following website or if you have specific questions please contact us at or 323.863.3995. All inquiries are confidential. Research funded by the National Institute of Mental Health. Approved under USC HSC-IRB protocols HS-10-00299 & HS-09-00159

Please “register” by September 26th, 2014 to attend this event.

If you have any questions about the event or OCD treatment, please contact The SoCal IOCDF at (714) 549-1030 or “register” by emailing us at

We look forward to seeing you there!

Since 1993, the Annual OCD Conference has been the only national meeting focused solely on Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and related disorders. The unique event allows people with OCD and their loved ones to learn about the latest OCD treatment and information alongside the mental health professionals who care for them.

The conference features more than 100 presentations, workshops, and seminars as well as nearly two-dozen support groups and various evening events. Our presenters include some of the most experienced and knowledgeable clinicians and researchers in the field, as well as people with OCD and family members sharing their stories about life with OCD.

This year is our 21st Annual OCD Conference — we hope that you will join us to make this our best conference yet!

Learn more here.

On Saturday, June 14, 2014, The Gateway Institute is hosting an Open House Mixer for the Southern California Affiliate of the International OCD Foundation (IOCDF) from 1:00 – 4:00 p.m. in our newly expanded offices in Costa Mesa, California. Please join us for this exciting event!

Jim Sterner, Director of Gateway Institute and President of the Southern California Affiliate of the International OCD Foundation (IOCDF) is committed to the mission of increasing awareness and understanding of OCD throughout Southern California by sponsoring this event and other educational programs offering support and a sense of community with other OCD sufferers and their families.

We are pleased to welcome to our mixer, guest speaker, Sarosh J. Motivala, Ph.D., Director of Training for UCLA’s OCD Treatment Program. Dr. Motivala will address details of Exposure Therapy and its importance in the treatment protocol of managing OCD. In addition, Chris Trondsen, distinguished speaker on OCD, will join us to share his personal journey and miraculous recovery from OCD. We will also hear from Chris’ mother as she shares her first-hand account from a family member’s perspective.

We encourage you to attend with friends and family who are interested in learning more about OCD, the IOCDF Southern California Affiliate and the International OCD Foundation conference in Los Angeles July 16-18, 2014. You will also have the opportunity to meet others with OCD and their families, as well as local doctors and therapists.

Light snacks and beverages will be served. Please RSVP by June 10th to

We look forward to seeing you there!

Dr. Sarosh Motivala, Director of Training at the UCLA OCD Intensive Treatment Program,  will present an overview of OCD and its treatment as part of NAMI’s lecture series. The presentation will from 7-8:30 pm at the Westside Mental Health Center.  Contact NAMI at 310-889-7200 or email them at for more info.

We are looking forward to continuing to build the SoCal team so that we can offer more local programs and be the best resource possible for Southern California. If you’d like be a part of this growing team and you live in any of the six SoCal counties (Los Angeles, Orange, San Diego, San Bernardino, Riverside or Imperial counties), please contact us at  Opportunities to get involved will include facilitating schools outreach programs (including hoarding assistance training for community service credits for High Schoolers), facilitating media outreach, helping with fund raising and event planning, writing for the online newsletter, coordinating support groups and membership drives.

If you happen to be in the Sacramento area on Saturday May 10, or you know people interested in our cause, check out the OCD awareness walk in Sacramento. It will be the first walkathon held on the west coast to bring attention to OCD.  The first ever walkathon was held in Boston last year and was a rousing success. You can get more info on the walk at the OCD Sacramento Affiliate’s  Walkathon Facebook page.