Target ALS is a privately funded consortium of researchers from academic and biotech/pharma laboratories entirely focused on finding a treatment for patients living with ALS. We fund research consortia, Springboard Fellowships for emerging research leaders, and nationwide core facilities. Here are some questions we are often asked:
What is the immediate goal of Target ALS?
To increase the number and quality of ALS drug development programs pursued by the biotech/pharma industry. We do this by supporting and coordinating the best academic research, by providing core facilities that remove critical bottlenecks and by catalyzing and funding direct collaborations between academia and biotech/pharma.
Who provides funding for Target ALS research?
Our founding donors, Dan Doctoroff, David Rubenstein and Bloomberg Philanthropies provided 3-year funding of $25M, which has been supplemented by more than $1M from other anonymous donors. Increasingly, members of the public have expressed their wish to support this unique effort.
Who receives Target ALS funding?
A total of 52 academic laboratories, an increasing number of industry partners, as well as independent cutting-edge contract research organizations who execute the work of the core facilities.
Who administers Target ALS funding?
Target ALS funds are administered following due process by Target ALS Foundation, a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization.
Who decides what Target ALS funds will be spent on?
All funding decisions are reviewed and prioritized by an Independent Review Committee (IRC), composed of experts from academia and industry who – like the Target ALS chief advisor and president - are not themselves eligible for Target ALS funding (see How We’re Organized )
What makes Target ALS special?
Our collaborative structure and strategy for industry involvement are unique in several ways, as described more fully in Our Approach
Is Target ALS linked to the Ice Bucket Challenge?
This exciting initiative had an important role in raising public awareness of ALS, but was formally linked to no particular foundation. Nevertheless, we collaborate at many levels with the ALS Association, one of the principal beneficiaries of last summer’s fundraising as well as with many other foundations and institutions and we support relaunch of this challenge in 2015.
Does industry involvement create a conflict of interest?
Without active involvement of for-profit partners, there can be no real progress toward putting new ALS drug development programs in place. To ensure that all decisions are fairly made and that no competitive advantage is unduly gained, we have established a strict conflict of interest (COI) policy, an independent COI committee to monitor Target ALS operations, and confidentiality agreements to protect data submitted by investigators, whether they be from academic or for-profit institutions.