Breakthrough in ALS Research Made Possible by the Ice Bucket Challenge

August 1, 2016

French Braid cover webRemember the Ice Bucket Challenge? It was quite possibly one of the weirdest things to ever go viral, but it raised a TON of money in support of ALS research. Which was awesome, because ALS, better known as Lou Gehrig’s disease, had been flying well below most people’s radar.

Last week news broke that money from the Ice Bucket Challenge had led to an actual breakthrough in ALS science – the discovery of genes that increase the risk of developing ALS. 

As my YA book Gene Therapy explains, there’s a long road between discovering a gene and discovering a cure. But thanks to everyone that participated in the Ice Bucket Challenge, we now know which continent that road is on. It’s a start. And it’s why I still have hope for humanity – small efforts, if made by enough people, really can change the world.

For health reasons (I have cold urticaria, which means I’m medically allergic to cold), I couldn’t participate in the Ice Bucket Challenge. Instead, I wrote “French Braid,” a contemporary YA short story about a family affected by ALS. It’s a PDF download, available exclusively through this site, and 50% of the proceeds go to ALS Canada in support of further research. Check it out.

UPDATE: French Braid is now available to read for free!

Did you take part in the Ice Bucket Challenge? What’s your favourite way to make the world a better place?

4 Comments on ‘Breakthrough in ALS Research Made Possible by the Ice Bucket Challenge’

  1. I initially thought this was just another dumb challenge that most people on my page did for the views. Thanks for bringing perspective to this very important topic (ALS Research)!

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    1. You’re not wrong – I’m sure a lot of people did it for the views! But unlike most clickbait, it actually achieved a bigger purpose. Which is awesome.

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  2. This is SO COOL! Thanks for the update and the good news about this breakthrough.

    Reply | 

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