Les Turner ALS Center at Northwestern Medicine

The mission of the Les Turner ALS Center at Northwestern Medicine is to strive for a future without ALS by accelerating leading-edge research while providing life-enhancing treatment to people living with ALS.


Nearly $1 Million in ALS Grants Awarded for 2022!

The Les Turner ALS Foundation is excited to announce nearly $1 million to be funded in 2022 for new research grants and clinic and endowment support to the Les Turner ALS Center at Northwestern Medicine!

For decades, the Les Turner ALS Foundation has supported ALS research at the Feinberg School of Medicine at Northwestern University. This research has played a key role in moving the field forward and getting us closer to therapeutic treatments. Without the support of generous donors, these advancements would not have been possible.  

Robert Kalb, MD, Director of the Les Turner ALS Center at Northwestern Medicine, provides examples of discoveries from our decades-long ALS research program: “Many important insights have come from Les Turner ALS Center laboratories including the identification of new ALS causing genes, an increased understanding of the pathological events that lead to loss of 'upper motor neurons,' insights into nuclear membrane biology, and motor neuron death.“

These discoveries would not have been made without research pilot grant funding, a program to fund novel investigations in ALS using innovative technologies for a one-to-three-year period. Prior to approval of the research pilot grants, each grant proposal goes through a rigorous process of evaluation, including review of the proposals by independent experts from around the world.  

With these grants, we welcome new members to the Les Turner ALS Center with fresh ideas in the ALS research space. Dr. Kalb says, “I am particularly excited that this year we are supporting investigators that are new to the ALS community." He adds, “The supported work will give us novel perspectives on: 1) the immune system’s contributions to disease; 2) the linkage between intermediary metabolism and ALS; 3) models of sporadic ALS using human cells; 4) genetic modifiers of disease; and 5) how electrical properties of neurons impact neuronal survival. In combination with our robust clinical research program, the results from the research labs will be well positioned to be translated into tangible new therapies for ALS.” 

We’re proud to congratulate the recipients of the 2022 basic research clinical research pilot grants. We can’t thank our generous donors enough in allowing us to increase funding for scientific research for the prevention, treatment, and cure of ALS. Please consider making a donation and help us continue to advance important research for ALS. A listing of our current basic research and clinical grants can be found here.

Basic Research to Provide Hope for Patients and Families

With the inspiring leadership of Dr. Robert G. Kalb, MD, the Joan and Paul Rubschlager Professor and Chief of the Division of Neuromuscular Medicine, the Les Turner ALS Center comprises more than 70 members working across Northwestern University's Chicago and Evanston campuses to generate new knowledge and meaningful research advances.

For decades, the Les Turner ALS Foundation has supported ALS research at the Feinberg School of Medicine at Northwestern University. This research has played a key role in moving the field forward and getting closer to therapeutic treatments. Without the support of generous donors, these advancements would not have been possible.

A listing of our current basic research and clinical grants can be found here.

Visit the Center Website

Jointly with Northwestern Medicine, the Les Turner ALS Foundation has embarked on a campaign to raise $10 million over the course of ten years to permanently endow the Les Turner ALS Center. Currently, we’ve raised over $5 million toward that endowment. Additionally, the Foundation has committed to funding at least $1 million annually to the Lois Insolia ALS Clinic and ALS research conducted across all disciplines of Northwestern's Feinberg School of Medicine. 

Donate

Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine is known the world over for groundbreaking ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis) research, and for providing exceptional care and support to patients and families living with this complex and devastating disease. 

The Les Turner ALS Center brings together all ALS research, the pre-eminent Lois Insolia ALS Clinic, and other ALS research, clinical, and educational activities at Northwestern, all under one comprehensive umbrella. It is a part of Ken and Ruth Davee Department of Neurology and operates within the Institute for Transatlantic Neuroscience at Northwestern Medicine. 



Share this Page



About the Center

Joan and Paul Rubschlager: A Transformational Gift to the Les Turner ALS Center at Northwestern Medicine

The Les Turner ALS Foundation is honored and grateful for the generosity of Joan and Paul Rubschlager who donated $3 million to the endowment at the Les Turner ALS Center at Northwestern Medicine. The Rubschlagers are native Chicagoans and have been married for more than 50 years.  For 100 years, the family operated the Rubschlager Baking Corporation founded in 1913. They have been active supporters of the Foundation since the 1980’s after Paul lost his father to ALS in 1975.

“When Paul’s father was diagnosed with ALS, there was nowhere to turn,” said Joan Rubschlager. “We want to make sure that no family ever feels that they have no one to help them. By supporting the Les Turner ALS Center, we are ensuring that there will always be hope and help for those who need it most.”

Pictured: Joan and Paul Rubschlager



Vickie and Loren Semler Research Fund

The Semler ALS Research Fund, dedicated to funding research until a treatment is found, was established by Vickie and Loren Semler. “If we can’t find a cure today, Vickie and I would like to know that this important research is still being done, even after we are gone. We hope our support will inspire others to do the same.”  Unfortunately, Vickie lost battle with ALS on June 28, 2016. Knowing scientists at Northwestern Medicine are working tirelessly to find a treatment gives the Semler family hope for others who are suffering with this disease.

Pictured: Vickie and Loren Semler

Care. Community. Cure.

We provide individualized care, local community support and hope through
scientific research.