Remember the 'Ice Bucket Challenge?' It just funded an ALS breakthrough

Posted at 4:37 AM, Jul 27, 2016
and last updated 2016-07-27 14:44:43-04

Remember the Ice Bucket Challenge?

Videos of the challenge went viral during the summer of 2014, with the purpose of the videos to raise awareness and money for ALS research. The campaign raised more than $100 million dollars in just a month, and was used to fund a number of research projects.

That money has just funded it's first breakthrough.

Project MinE, an initiative funded by the ALS through ice bucket challenge donations, have announced they've identified a new gene associated with the disease.

That gene, NEK1, is present in 3% of cases, but both sporadic and familial ALS. Researchers say this gives scientists a new target for drug development.

$1 million from the Ice Bucket Challenge was contributed to Project MinE, which looks to sequence the genomes of 15,000 people living with ALS. Funding for the project also came from the Greater New York Chapter of the ALS Association, as well as the Georgia chapter and New Amsterdam City Swim.

There is currently no cure for ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig's Disease.