Accelerated Cure Project for Multiple Sclerosis Continuing to Grow

For Immediate Release
 
For more information contact:
Trish Gannon
Feinstein Kean Healthcare
617-761-6774
 
Accelerated Cure Project for Multiple Sclerosis continuing to grow.
 
After collecting blood samples/data from over 1,400 MS patients and controls across U.S., nonprofit poised to grow central database/collect samples at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, MA
 
(Waltham, MA March 6, 2009) -- Accelerated Cure Project for Multiple Sclerosis, a national nonprofit organization, today announced that they have finalized plans with R. Philip Kinkel, MD, FAAN and the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) in Boston, to begin the collection there of blood and data samples, to continue building the largest openly accessible, multi-disciplinary repository ever assembled for use in Multiple Sclerosis (MS) research.
 
"This is something that Accelerated Cure Project has been working on since we started the repository in 2006, says Carolyn Cronin, CEO of Accelerated Cure Project. "Having the ability to collect samples from a larger population through accessibility to our sites results in faster and more conclusive MS research. Our repository provides researchers with immediate access to a far greater number of samples than most scientists could collect themselves."
 
The opening of this collection site in Boston was made possible by the generosity of Paul and Joanne Egerman and the matching program created through the Water Cove Charitable Foundation. Through these donors, the BIDMC collection site will be funded through 2011. The first sample collection will take place Tuesday, March 10, 2009. Linda Kanner, Accelerated Cure Project Board of Directors, is excited to have the honor of being the first subject enrolled by her own neurologist, Dr. Rip Kinkel.
 
The repository provides a common population of samples useful for a wide variety of studies, that enables results from different research perspectives to be easily combined and correlated. The repository contains various types of samples and data that can support scientists working in many fields - genetics, nutrition, virology, and more. Researchers gaining access to the repository must return their results to the database to be shared with other researchers; this allows for cross-correlation of their results with all other studies performed using the same samples.
 
Subjects enrolled in the repository are followed over time to allow new samples to be taken and to record important changes in clinical status. Studying the same sample population over time, and pooling knowledge in a central database, is a major step toward understanding what causes MS, thereby accelerating a cure.
 
Additionally, samples and data are collected from a number of other similar diseases including Transverse Myelitis, Neuromyelitis Optica, Acute Disseminated Encephalomyelitis, and Optic Neuritis to enable studies of these rare neurological disorders and to provide controls for MS studies.
 
Other Collection Sites:
 
Contributing to the success of the project thus far is an impressive list of research centers across the country that have joined Accelerated Cure Project as collection sites for the repository. These include Johns Hopkins Medical Center (Baltimore, MD), University of Massachusetts Memorial Medical Center (Worcester, MA), University of Texas Southwestern (Dallas, TX), Multiple Sclerosis Research Center of New York (New York, NY), Barrow Neurological Institute (Phoenix, AZ), The Ohio State University Medical Center (Columbus, OH) and the Shepherd Center (Atlanta, GA).
 
The Accelerated Cure Project intends to continue collecting samples from as many as 10,000 subjects for its MS Repository. If you have MS (or another demyelinating disease) or are related to someone with MS and would like to participate in the project, please call 781/487-0008, visit www.acceleratedcure.org/repository, or send an email to info-web1207acceleratedcure.org.
 
About Accelerated Cure Project
 
Accelerated Cure Project for MS (ACP) is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to accelerate efforts toward a cure for multiple sclerosis (MS) by rapidly advancing research that determines its causes and mechanisms. We provide biomedical researchers with resources that catalyze open scientific collaboration and enable them to explore their novel research ideas rapidly and cost-efficiently. ACP’s strategic initiatives include the Multiple Sclerosis Discovery Forum and the ACP Repository, a large-scale collection of highly-characterized biosamples available to scientists at any organization conducting research that contributes to our mission. All results generated through analysis of Repository samples and data are contributed back to the ACP Repository Database, resulting in an increasingly valuable and comprehensive information resource that can be analyzed to reveal new insights about MS. To date, ACP has enrolled almost 3,000 participants into the Repository through a network of 10 MS clinical centers across the United States. The samples provided by people with MS and related disorders have supported more than 60 research studies worldwide and generated more than 150 million returned data points.
 
For more information about the Accelerated Cure Project or to make a corporate or individual donation, visit http://wwww.acceleratedcure.org, or send an email to info@acceleratedcure.org.
 
About Multiple Sclerosis
 
Multiple Sclerosis is a chronic demyelinating disorder of the central nervous system that often results in severe disability including the inability to walk, blindness, cognitive dysfunction, extreme fatigue, and other serious symptoms. MS affects more than 400,000 people in the US and two million individuals worldwide. The disorder occurs twice as often in women as in men. What causes MS is undetermined and no cure has yet been developed.