Ice bucket challenge

If you got annoyed with the countless Ice Bucket Challenge videos two summers ago, just know that the social media clogging actually produced results.

The onslaught of videos helped raise more than $100 million for the ALS Association. That group then sent $1 million to Project MinE, an independent research group. This group has since identified a gene that is commonly found in people with ALS.

“The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge enabled us to secure funding from new sources in new parts of the world,” said Bernard Muller, an entrepreneur who suffers from the progressive disease and helped start the research project. “This transatlantic collaboration supports our global gene hunt to identify the genetic drivers of ALS. I’m incredibly pleased with the discovery of the NEK1 gene adding another step towards our ultimate goal, eradicating this disease from the face of the earth.”

The findings of this research were recently published by Nature Genetics. With these results, scientists and doctors can now use this information to help come up with proper therapies and better understand this disease.

Just in case you forgot, the Ice Bucket Challenge became a sensation in the summer of 2014. People around the world dumped buckets of water on themselves in an effort to help raise money for ALS research. The list of people is endless and included celebrities such as Will Smith.

Who would’ve thought that ice dumping would’ve resulted in such groundbreaking work? Not me. But it’s great to see everyone’s efforts paying off.


About Ryan Williamson

Ryan is a recent graduate of the University of Missouri and has recently returned to his Minnesota roots. He previously has worked for the Columbia Missourian, KFAN radio in Minneapolis and Feel free to email me at rwilliamson29 AT Gmail dot com.