"Promise: 2010" Initiative Launched to Raise at Least $30 Million to Propel MS Research and Care
To encourage innovative research into highly promising areas and to improve MS patient care, the National MS Society launched the Promise: 2010 Campaign. This nationwide effort fueled by local MS chapters will raise at least $30 million to fund four targeted areas that hold great potential in the fight against the devastating effects of MS, but which have so far been under-explored.
The Society will invest funds raised through PROMISE: 2010 into four target areas of research:
1. Nervous system repair and protection — In an effort to halt progression of MS symptoms and reverse the damage to the nervous system caused by MS, the Society is spurring the study of tissue repair and nerve protection by offering grants of up to $5.5 million to fund collaborative group research.
2. Care and treatment for children with MS — Though MS is rare in children, there are over 25,000 persons under the age of 18 who exhibit symptoms that mimic MS. Currently, there are tremendous gaps in medical knowledge on how to treat the special needs of children who develop symptoms associated with MS. To address this issue, funds are being devoted to establish at least four new pediatric MS treatment centers. These centers will provide an opportunity for families to see a variety of pediatric and MS specialists and will serve as a centralized educational and data collection resource.
3. Sonya Slifka Longitudinal MS Study — In order to understand how MS impacts people over time, this study is following more than 2,000 individuals with MS and their families to gather important ongoing data on how the disease affects them. Data from this study has already been used to drive essential advocacy for Medicare's prescription drug coverage of MS disease-modifying agents, for improved long-term care, and for disability rights that best reflect the interests of people living with MS.
4. The MS Lesion Project — The most extensive attempt ever made to track patterns of MS damage seen in the brain, this project seeks to associate these findings with actual clinical symptoms and responses to therapies. To date, the study has described four distinct types of lesions. Work is underway to correlate observed lesion patterns with MRI findings and, for the first time, with genes suspected of making people more susceptible to MS or vulnerable to specific types of tissue damage.
If you are interested in helping the Chapter meet this fundraising challenge, please contact Eddie Rauen at 513-769-400 or via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss how you can make a commitment to Promise: 2010. Donations can be restricted to the overall Promise: 2010 campaign or to a particular Promise: 2010 research project. With your help, we will come closer to achieving a world free of MS.
For more information about the Promise: 2010 initiative, including a video, stories, and progress reports, click here.