“In 1999, when I was still Director of the ALS Clinic at the Vancouver General Hospital we were honored to host the Annual ALS Symposium organized through the International Alliance of ALS/MND Associations, which represents about 60 nations. During the meeting I chaired special 2-hour question/answer session, for ALS patients and their families. About a dozen world-wide ALS physician-scientists participated. The session was designed to push the "hope meter" up by several notches.
It is my firm belief that PROJECT HOPE will push the meter's dial into overdrive. It is true that meaningful ALS therapy has been elusive, as has been true for Parkinson's and Alzheimer's diseases, the other major neurodegenerations. But we are on the verge of a major game change. 21st century understanding of the mechanisms of neuronal cell death in neurodegenerations has opened windows to a spectrum of therapeutic options. Combination therapy is likely to prove most efficacious. Also, and equally Important is the search for early markers of disease. Because ALS begins many years and probably decades before it becomes clinically apparent, early pre-clinical detection with allow for rescue of sick cells that are not dead, and thereby prevent motor deficits that are characteristic of ALS.
PROJECT HOPE is ambitious, and its fruition will require major funding. I am delighted and deeply enthusiastic to be part of this unique venture that has created a "marriage" between a disease-oriented society (ALSBC) and a major university (UBC), in addition to the support of the Provincial Government”
Andrew Eisen is a ALS Physician Scientist and Founder of the ALS Society of British Columbia.
“The BC Liberals have sent a formal letter to Premier Horgan urge his government to continue providing support to the ALS Society of BC's transition into the second phase of Project Hope, which will enable clinical trials and further research into Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) here in British Columbia. "We all want a world without ALS, and the only way to get there is through investment in research and clinical trials like those that will be possible if Project Hope comes to fruition.”
“Today we have some hope, with the direction of the ALS Society to raise funds and in cooperation with the government we can dream of an optimum environment for ALS research and clinical care in BC. To make this dream a reality we are working with the ALS Society of BC and creating a fundraiser with 100% of funds going directly to PROJECT HOPE. This will provide a hopeful outlook for BC residents that are diagnosed with ALS.”
Jeff Derby, living with ALS
"PROJECT HOPE will give me access to the clinical trials that could eventually uncover an effective treatment or cure for my disease. Just as importantly, the project allows British Columbians the ability to conduct world-class research in the global fight against ALS. Together, we can make this happen for all of us in need."
Brad MacKenzie, ALS Society of BC Director
“This is a time of unprecedented hope for people living with ALS. Today there are more clinical trials either underway or upcoming than any other time in history. I’m very excited and proud to support the ALS Society of BC, UBC faculty of medicine, and the Government of BC in the creation of PROJECT HOPE...a clinic specifically created to connect ALS patients of British Columbia with the latest in care, treatments, and clinical trials. Please be a part of the cure and support PROJECT HOPE."
Bob Bryant, living with ALS
“I would like to see the treatment of ALS in British Columbia move from a passive approach of monitoring the rate of decline leading to death, to a more active approach of helping ALS patients increase their quality of life by allowing access to clinical trials. PROJECT HOPE is the first step in this process. Together, we can raise awareness and help fundraise to make this clinic a reality, giving ALS patients in British Columbia the quality care they deserve and also providing them with hope."
Click here to read the letter of endorsement from Minister Adrian Dix and the Province of British Columbia