A cocktail reception to benefit the UMass ALS Champion Fund and the groundbreaking research of Robert H. Brown Jr., DPhil, MD, the Leo P. and Theresa M. LaChance Chair in Medical Research and chair and professor of neurology, and the Neurotherapeutics Institute at UMass Medical School will be held on Wednesday, Nov.14, from 6 to 8 p.m.
Special guests will include former Gov. Paul Cellucci and Chancellor Michael F. Collins, who will be joined by Dr. Brown at the event in the Blais Pavilion of the Lazare Research Building on the Medical School’s Worcester campus.
The honorary co-chairs for the evening are Lt. Gov. Tim Murray, U.S. Rep. James McGovern and Worcester County Sheriff Lewis Evangelidis; theevent co-chairs are David Forsberg and Karyn Polito.
Cellucci announced in May of 2011 that he is raising money for an endowment at UMMS that will fund research into the causes of and treatments for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease, a progressive neurodegenerative disorder affecting the motor neurons in the central nervous system. 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.
In March 2012, Biogen Idec donated $500,000 to the research fund, which now tops more than a million dollars. The UMass ALS Champion Fund was created to drive awareness of and funding for the neuroscience breakthroughs happening at UMMS and in the laboratory of Brown, one of the world’s leading ALS researchers.
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