20 July 2021 News

photo of Doddie Weir and the lifeArc logo

A fund established by the Motor Neurone Disease Association and LifeArc to co-fund research aimed at realising effective motor neurone disease (MND) treatments more quickly has been given a £½million boost by My Name’5 Doddie Foundation.

As a result, the Translational Research Fund has now topped £1.5 million – money that will support MND research projects focused on developing new therapies or repurposing drugs already approved for other conditions. Each charity has contributed £½ million to the fund.

It is hoped that this cash injection will deliver promising results that can secure follow-on funding and progress to clinical trials for those living with MND.

Dr Brian Dickie, Director of Research Development at the MND Association, said:

“Our understanding of the causes of MND has improved dramatically over the last two decades but the biggest challenge remains: to turn this knowledge into effective treatments. We believe MND is not incurable, but it is underfunded, so we are delighted that through the three charities teaming up, we are able to ensure our own £½ million contribution, raised by Kevin Sinfield during his ‘7 in 7 Challenge’ inspired by his team-mate and friend, Rob Burrow, will be used to maximum effect.”

My Name’5 Doddie Foundation is committed to investing in the translational research space and providing the tools for scientists to bring meaningful treatments to patients as soon as possible. This partnership with the MND Association and LifeArc, an independent medical research charity, brings combined expertise, experience and funding to make a greater impact for the MND community.

Doddie Weir, Founder of My Name’5 Doddie Foundation, said:

“This fund gives hope that something can be found soon for those living with MND like myself. Researchers in the UK and Ireland are already making good progress, but urgently need funding to take the science out of the labs and into clinical trials. We are excited to be teaming up with LifeArc and the MND Association who share our vision, and hope this £1.5m fund will make a real difference.”

Dr Melanie Lee CBE, LifeArc’s Chief Executive Officer, said:

“The expanded fund will help to bridge the gap between fundamental research into MND disease mechanisms and the search for practical treatments. It means we can support more research grant applications of the highest quality with the greatest potential to make a difference to the lives of those living with MND.”

Find out more information on the fund