In 2014 the ALS Ice bucket challenge took the world by storm. It seemed as if, all of a sudden, people were dumping buckets of ice water over themselves. And they were challenging you to do it too, as well as donate money to ALS.
The ALS ice bucket challenge encourages nominated participants to be filmed having a bucket of ice water poured on their heads and then nominating others to do the same. A common stipulation is that nominated participants have 24 hours to comply or forfeit by way of a charitable financial donation.
As your friends, family and neighbours began taking the ALS ice bucket challenge, Hollywood, sports stars and politicians got in on the action also. Soon the ice bucket challenge became viral on social media across both Canada and the United States.
The ALS ice bucket challenge brought awareness to ALS; a disease with no cure and no effective treatment. It also brought in well over $100million USD for ALS research and awareness.
Specifically because of the ALS ice bucket challenge, there has been a new promising therapy for ALS patients called Tofersen. It is a treatment for patients with a specific genetic form of ALS called SOD1. The treatment has shown to reduce the production of the mutant gene (SOD1) which in turn has shown to reduce muscle decline.
Today there are more ALS researchers around the world and this can be directly attributed to the ALS ice bucket challenge. In Toronto, Dr. Lorne Zinman (Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre) and Dr. Janice Robertson (University of Toronto) are at the forefront of training new ALS scientists and clinicians. ALS Double Play is proud to fund ALS research at the University of Toronto.
Lastly, directly due to the funding that ALS Double Play provides to the University of Toronto through the Christopher Chiu Fellowship for ALS Research, the lab has identified new compounds that are being tested for potential therapeutics for sporadic ALS (the most common form of ALS).
Each August, members and friends of ALS Double Play continue to take the ALS Ice Bucket challenge to remind people that while a lot of awareness has been raised for ALS, there is still no cure. ALS patients continue to fight and ALS Double Play fights along side them by continuing to raise awareness and funds for vitally needed research.
Join us on Saturday, August 17 at Van Spall’s No Frills (9305 Markham Road, Markham Road and 16th Avenue) in Markham as we get members of the public to join us to take the ALS Ice Bucket challenge once again!
Make a donation: http://bit.ly/2019bucket