A team of researchers have been able to identify the gene associated with ALS, and they're crediting funds from the 'Ice Bucket Challenge' for supporting the research that led to the discovery.
Two years ago, the Ice Bucket Challenge became a viral hit, and one of the most successful forms of fundraising ever devised. The campaign was created by Pete Frates, a former Boston College baseball player who was himself diagnosed with ALS. Frates' conception ultimately drew participation from globally recognized athletes like LeBron James and Ronda Rousey.
In total, the campaign -- which required participants nominated by friends to either douse themselves in ice water, or make a donation to The ALS Association -- generated more than $100 million in donations. One million dollars were then distributed to the Project MinE research project, which focused on genetic research regarding ALS.
— The ALS Association (@alsassociation) July 27, 2016
The resulting research identified the exact gene that causes ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig's disease. The findings of the research will be published this week in Nature Genetics.
While the discovery isn't a cure in and of itself, it will dramatically improve understanding of the disease, clear a path to better treatments of the condition, and potentially moves researchers closer to finding a cure for ALS.
More Ice Bucket Challenge:
-- 'Ice Bucket Challenge' Inventor Gets Jersey Retired At Boston College
-- Boston Red Sox Give Honorary Contract To Inventor Of ALS Ice Bucket Challenge
-- Cristiano Ronaldo Does ALS Ice Bucket Challenge In His New Line Of Underwear