The International Spinal Research Trust (ISRT) and the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation (Reeve Foundation) announce a joint approach to their research strategies with a focus on accelerating the progress of therapies and their delivery to people living with paralysis.

For many years, ISRT and the Reeve Foundation have shared a commitment to bringing therapeutics that restore function and independence to the spinal cord injury (SCI) community. This new alliance, inspired by the speed at which solutions for COVID-19 are being delivered, seeks to take a coordinated, global approach to accelerating the processes of bringing meaningful therapeutics to those living with SCI, a media release from Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation notes.

“We have seen major advances in our understanding of spinal cord biology, including improvements in diagnostics, acute treatment and rehabilitation. Building on these medical advances, we are now seeking to accelerate processes which can bring restorative treatments to those living with SCI. Given the complexity and scale of the challenge, we see a unified approach as critical to success.”

— Harvey Sihota, ISRT chief executive

A Collaborative Blueprint

At the core of this alliance is a collaborative blueprint to accelerate the development and delivery of meaningful therapeutics. This will establish a framework for decision-making, planning and governance to advance the most promising therapies from the preclinical stage through clinical trials and into medical practice.

The alliance is focusing on combinatorial interventions, innovative protocols and broader stakeholder engagement for fast-tracking these interventions through the translation stage.

“This collaborative strategy will address critical systemic issues — including preclinical testing, optimised clinical trial design, regulatory considerations, intellectual property and the feasibility of commercialisation – that are key to bringing novel therapies to market and ensuring access for the paralysis community.”

— Jay Shepard, Chairman of the Reeve Foundation Board of Directors

New Translational Award

To mark this new alliance, the two foundations have agreed to co-fund a newly created translational award, totaling £1,000,000 ($1.3 million), focused on restoring function in chronic SCI through novel circuit formation, the release continues.

“We are thrilled to be joining together to participate in this innovative effort to address one of the most complex and daunting challenges in the medical world. Our two organizations share very similar research ambitions and have grown closer in recent years. It is our privilege to get this important initiative underway, and we look forward to welcoming others into a growing coalition for action.”

— Dr David Allan, Chairman of ISRT

[Source(s): Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation, PR Newswire]

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