The MND Association has over 30 years of experience in funding the most promising research into MND. We are a leader in the identification and funding of cutting-edge research both within the UK and across the world. Explore our achievements and research highlights since our first awarded research grant in 1980 until the most recent advances using the timeline below.
Read the latest news on the Association's research achievements on our MND Research blog.
10,000 FOLLOWERS ON TWITTER
Our MND Research Twitter account (@mndresearch) reaches 10,000 followers
TUDCA-ALS TRIAL REACHED 50% RECRUITMENT TARGET
TUDCA-ALS, a phase 3 clinical trial to determine whether TUDCA (tauroursodeoxycholic acid) in combination with riluzole can slow progression of MND, has recruited 220 out of the 440 participants. The consortium is committed to ensure that the full target is met as originally planned, despite the pandemic.
FIRST VIRTUAL SYMPOSIUM
As a result of the coronavirus pandemic, we transformed the traditional International Symposium on ALS/MND into a virtual event for the first time in it’s 31-year history. This was a huge undertaking – with the programme being completely rewritten to suit an online platform and ensuring the vital networking could..Read More
UK BIOBANK OF THE YEAR
The UK MND Collections won the coveted title of UK Biobank of the Year for 2019. This award recognises the invaluable resource of biological samples that the MND Collections are able to provide to researchers around the world to help find the causes of MND and potentially a cure.
MND REGISTER RECRUITS ITS 1,000th PARTICIPANT
It is thought that MND affects around 5,000 people in the UK at any one time, but the true figure is not known. The MND Register of England, Wales and Northern Ireland aims to capture this information and it is on track with its 1,000th recruited participant.
KIF5A GENE IDENTIFIED
Project MinE joined with over 100 ALS research groups spread across Europe and the US to identify KIF5A as a new gene for ALS. KIF5A carries biological cargo molecules along cellular railroads, called microtubules, making sure that the raw materials that the cell needs reach where they are needed most.
ALS-RAP PLATFORM LAUNCHES
ALS-RAP is an international collaboration between a group of universities, the ALS Association (USA), ALS Canada and the MND Association with the aim to create the best “gold-standard” antibodies for researchers to use.
TRIAL OF TALKING THERAPY (COMMEND) BEGINS
This study will adapt Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), a psychological intervention based on mindfulness, for people with MND to help them learn how to live with difficult emotions, thoughts and bodily sensations.
LITHIUM EFFECTIVE IN UNC13A
Re-analyses of the effects of lithium carbonate on MND showed slower disease progression in people with a variation in the UNC13A gene.
MIROCALS – FIRST PARTICIPANT RECRUITED
The MIROCALS (Modifying Immune Response and Outcomes in ALS) clinical trial, jointly funded by the MND Association and the European Union Horizon 2020, has recruited its first participant at Hospices Civils de Lyon, France.
ANXA11 GENE IDENTIFIED
Researchers from King’s College London found that mutations in ANXA11 gene are associated with the development of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).
MARIE CURIE PARTNERSHIP
First year of jointly funding palliative and end of life care research projects. Read the blog.
AMBRoSIA INITIATES SEARCH FOR BIOMARKERS
Our biggest-ever research project, AMBRoSIA, initiates its search for MND biomarkers. Nested in three world-class research centres, it will be led by three of the UK’s top MND researchers – Prof Martin Turner (Oxford), Dr Andrea Malaspina (London) and Prof Dame Pamela Shaw (Sheffield).
NEK1 & C21ORF2 GENES REVEALED
Project MinE reveals C21ORF2 and NEK1 genes contribute to development of sporadic and inherited MND, respectively.
FULL NICE GUIDELINE PUBLISHED
After 6 years of campaigning, NICE (the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence) published guidelines to help professionals provide the best possible treatment and care for patients. The guidelines are evidence-based recommendations for healthcare in England and are hugely influential on the future for those living with MND.
NON-CLINICAL FELLOWSHIP GRANTS ANNOUNCED
The Association announces the creation of non-clinical research fellowships. These fellowships are aimed at early career researchers across a range of disciplines, allowing them to take the reins of their very own research project.
TBK1 GENE IDENTIFIED
Researchers identify the TBK1 gene as a cause of inherited MND and FTD.
NEUROFILAMENTS AS A POTENTIAL BIOMARKER
Association’s biomarker research highlights neurofilament light chains (NfL) as a potential blood-based biomarker.
SIX-STAGE MODEL OF MND
Mathematical model developed in conjunction with Association-funded researchers showed that development of MND is a six-step process.
TUBA4A GENE IDENTIFIED
International team of researchers, led by MND Association-funded researchers based at King’s College London, have identified mistakes in the TUBA4A gene as a new cause of the rare inherited form of MND.