Woonsocket, RI (August 21, 2006) - CVS/pharmacy will present a $2.1 million check today to the ALS Therapy Alliance to support a series of ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis) research initiatives at medical centers in Boston and all over the world. CVS/pharmacy stores nationwide raised $2.1 million through a customer donation campaign held in stores from June 3 to June 24, 2006. Since the campaign's inception in 2002, CVS/pharmacy has raised nearly $8 million for ALS research.
The check presentation will take place on the field at Fenway Park prior to the first pitch of tonight's Red Sox vs. Yankees game. As part of the continued 5-year partnership between CVS/pharmacy and the Red Sox, the check presentation demonstrates a shared commitment to supporting those with disabilities.
Tom Ryan, Chairman, President and CEO of CVS/pharmacy, will present the check to Dr. Robert Brown Jr., MD, PhD, director of the Cecil B. Day Laboratory for Neuromuscular Research at the Massachusetts General Hospital Institute for Neurodegenerative Disease (MIND), a founding member of the ALS Therapy Alliance. The game's first pitch will be thrown out by Avichai Kremer, an ALS patient from Israel living in Cambridge, John Palow, store manager of the CVS/pharmacy location in Las Vegas, Nevada that raised the most money during the customer donation campaign, and Sarah Watkins, store manager of the CVS/pharmacy store in Portsmouth, New Hampshire that raised the most money per customer count during the customer donation campaign.
"CVS/pharmacy's fundraiser for ALS has become a multi-million dollar initiative that is funded by our customers $1 at a time," said Tom Ryan, Chairman, President and CEO of CVS/pharmacy. "We are thrilled that we were able to exceed our fundraising goal this year and look forward to repeating the success of this fundraiser in the years to come."
Continued support from CVS/pharmacy has been used to establish and run a laboratory specifically focused on ALS genetics at the MassGeneral Institute for Neurodegenerative Disease (MIND), as well as for an international ALS genetics initiative. MIND researchers have collaborated in several recent discoveries, including the location of gene that causes a form of ALS, as well as mutations in another gene that increases susceptibility to ALS.
"CVS/pharmacy is the largest corporate donor to the ALS Therapy Alliance, and their fundraising efforts have been pivotal in providing additional research support that can help find a cure for ALS and insight into potential treatments for other related diseases," said Dr. Robert Brown Jr., MD, PhD, director of the Cecil B. Day Laboratory for Neuromuscular Research at MGH.
The ALS Therapy Alliance's innovative initiative brings together ALS researchers from all over the world to take advantage of new technologies and information provided by the Human Genome Project. The ALS Therapy Alliance includes researchers from Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard University, Harvard Medical School, Boston University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Brigham & Women's Hospital and the University of Massachusetts and supports investigators from China, Germany, Britain, Turkey, Chile, India, Mexico, Australia, Israel and Belgium. Collectively, 30 ALS researchers are involved under the ALS Therapy Alliance umbrella using funding from CVS/pharmacy.