Originally published on July 9, 2014.

Cure SMA is pleased to announce that we are accepting grant applications for funding of research projects, under a competitive review by our Scientific Advisory Board.  Up to to $700,000 will be committed to new research projects in this round of funding, with other rounds of funding to be announced later this year.

Program Overview:

The deadline for submission is September 5, 2014. Applications will be accepted for one or two years of funding with a maximun award level of $150,000.

Scientific Priorities:

Cure SMA would like to encourage applications on novel research that will enhance our understanding of SMA disease pathology at the molecular, cellular, and biochemical level; generate key reagents and tools to facilitate drug development and clinical trials; and identify new therapeutic strategies for SMA.

Cure SMA Funding Strategy:

Cure SMA invests in four areas of research: Basic Research, Drug Discovery, Clinical Research, and Care Research. Cure SMA has invested over $55 Million in SMA research since our inception in 1984, with $35 Million in funding in the past decade alone.

In Basic Research, Cure SMA has awarded 79 basic research grants to 53 different principal investigators at 38 different institutions for almost $10 Million in funding in the past decade. Cure SMA basic research funding has contributed to many critical SMA breakthroughs, including:
•    Mapping and cloning of the SMA gene, SMN1
•    Identification of roles of SMN protein in the cell
•    Discovery of the back-up SMA gene, called SMN2
•    Development of animal models for SMA
•    Identification of the nucleic acid sequence used in the ISIS ASO drug

Cure SMA is proud to announce that we will be committing $1.8 million to new research funding over the coming year.

Fifteen years ago, we had just one potential drug in the beginning stages of preclinical discovery. Today we have over a dozen, including five now in clinical trials. Though there’s great promise in the research landscape, there’s also a pressing need for continued and growing investment.

In response to this need, we’re increasing our funding for all areas of research—basic research to understand SMA, drug discovery to make practical therapies, and clinical care research to improve the quality of life for those with SMA. With the size of our community and the strength of our connections, we’re able to direct research at unparalleled scale and efficiency.