UMass Medical School - Newsmaker: Gov. Cellucci announces endowment for ALS research

By Jim Fessenden

UMass Medical School Communications

May 19, 2011

Photo by John Gillooly, Professional Event Images

Breaking his public silence about his battle with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), former Gov. Paul Cellucci announced on Chronicle, WCVB-TV and in the Boston Globe that he’s raising money for an endowment at UMass Medical School that will fund ALS research. Gov. Cellucci revealed in January that he had ALS, a progressive, neurodegenerative disorder affecting the motor neurons in the central nervous system, also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. The disease destroys the brain’s ability to send signals to the body’s muscles, leading to the loss of voluntary muscle movement, paralysis and eventually death from respiratory failure. 

Gov. Cellucci will be raising money to support research by Robert H. Brown Jr., DPhil, MD, chair of neurology. An internationally known researcher and physician leading the quest to cure neurodegenerative and neuromuscular diseases like ALS, Dr. Brown discovered the first gene linked to the inherited form of ALS, called SOD1. Collaborating with some of the world’s leading RNA biologists at UMMS, Brown believes RNA interference, with its ability to create and regulate the complex patterns of gene expression, holds immense potential as a therapeutic for neurodegenerative diseases such as ALS.

Visit the UMass ALS Champion Fund website for more information and to contribute to the fund. 


'I'm Living My Life,' Says Ex-Gov. Battling Deadly Disease 
WCVB-TV—May 18, 2011

Cellucci aims to raise funds for ALS research at UMass 
Worcester Telegram and Gazette–May 18, 2011

Former governor Paul Cellucci talks about ALS diagnosis 
MetroWest Daily News–May 18, 2011

UMass Could Get Millions For ALS Fight 
Worcester Business Journal—May 19, 2011 

Making a pitch for ALS research
Telegram & Gazette – May 20, 2011

Brown: ALS fund is key to aggressive research
Boston Globe – May 20, 2011

Ex-gov. with ALS raises money for disease – May 20, 2011

Cellucci helping raise money for ALS research – May 20, 2011