This past weekend I attended the annual Accelerated Cure Project symposium and recognition dinner. Accelerated Cure Project has made huge strides this past year.
For those of you not familiar with ACP, the mission is to accelerate research that leads to curing MS. ACP provides a uniquely valuable biobank that drives new advances in MS, tools to promote scientific collaboration, and leadership aimed at addressing the most critical challenges facing people with MS.
As of August 2010 ACP has enrolled 2,259 participants into the repository. 1,760 of the participants have MS or another demyelinating disease. 499 participants are control subjects. Each participant's blood sample is divided into small research quantities which can be used in 100 or more research studies.
The importance of building a large-scale repository is that researchers accessing the samples are able to conduct experiments far larger and more statistically meaningful than the average MS research experiment.
ACP has now established 10 collection sites. This is a huge undertaking requiring funding, application, staffing and legal issues. The sites are:
Johns Hopkins Medical School
University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center
Multiple Sclerosis Research Center of New York
Shepherd Center (Atlanta)
Univ. of Massachusetts Medical Center
Barrow Neurological Institute
Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center
Ohio State University
University of Colorado
The samples have been sent to 35 scientific teams thus far with more shipments in preparation. ACP has provided samples and data to 17 new research projects and is collecting results back from two research studies. Institutions conducting research using samples and data from ACP include:
Harvard School of Public Health
Johns Hopkins Univ.
Scripps Research Institute
and many others that I don't have time to type!
This is just some information that Accelerated Cure Project is doing. Go to their website at www.acceleratedcure.org
for much more information.
I came away this weekend with renewed hope and a firm belief that there truly are many people who care and want to not only find answers but to actually find a cure.
If you can help either financially or with donating blood samples I promise you it is well worth it.
If you have any questions please ask me. I will get an answer for you if I don't know it myself.