Foundations join forces to finance research for Canavan disease

ST. PAUL, MN (July 18, 2003) The Canavan Foundation and the American Academy of Neurology Foundation today announced the sponsorship of a new $100,000 Clinical Research Training Fellowship to support research towards the cause, treatment or cure of Canavan disease. Fellowship applications are due October 1, 2003.

This joint investment in research offers new hope for the patients and families of those affected by Canavan disease, a rare and fatal genetic disorder that affects the myelin sheath that insulates and protects nerves and the brain.

Children with Canavan disease cannot crawl or walk, may suffer from seizures or mental retardation and cannot perform activities of daily living. A relentlessly progressive disease, Canavan disease generally results in death by 10 years of age. It is believed that research advances may lead to treatments or even a cure.

The new joint Clinical Research Training Fellowship provides a fresh opportunity to recruit the brightest young investigators in the neurosciences today to join the team dedicated to solving this puzzle. Under the auspices of the AAN Foundation, proposals are being solicited from across the country and around the world.

Preference will be given to clinicians with an interest in a long-term career in clinical research who are able to demonstrate the support of a mentor and sponsor institution to conduct the proposed investigation. PhD candidates conducting clinically-oriented research will also be considered.

"We believe this is a prime opportunity to make research dollars do double or even triple duty," said AAN Foundation Chair Kenneth Viste, MD. "We hope that this fellowship makes a significant contribution to our understanding of Canavan disease and at the same time, supports and nurtures a promising young investigator who will continue to work in this area for years to come."

More information about the fellowship and application forms can be obtained from th

Contact: Kathy Stone
American Academy of Neurology

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