MDA ALS Division

April 2013

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MDA's Fight Against ALS

Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease, is a multisystem neurodegenerative disorder that primarily affects motor neurons, the nerve cells that control voluntary muscle movement. The loss of motor neurons causes the muscles they control to become weak and then paralyzed. ALS is a serious disease, and MDA is serious in the fight against it. That’s why MDA leads an unparalleled program of support, research, advocacy and education.

Eleanor Gehrig
Eleanor Gehrig

MDA’s involvement with ALS began in the early 1950s when Eleanor Gehrig, widow of beloved Yankees first baseman Lou Gehrig, was searching for a way to fight the disease that had taken her husband’s life. Mrs. Gehrig served more than a decade as MDA National Campaign Chairman.

Since inception, MDA has dedicated $324 million to ALS research, services and information programs.