ALS research


Our Programs

The Live Like Lou Foundation focuses on developing partnerships to facilitate learning amongst ALS scientists and supporting innovative ALS research to find treatments or a cure.

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Emerging ALS Investigator

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ALS research grants

Career Development Award

This financial grant has an annual payout of up to $100,000 for up to two years. It is awarded to a junior ALS investigator (or team led by a junior ALS investigator) from an R1 institution (or its equivalent) focused on pre-clinical ALS research and featuring collaboration from distinct scientific disciplines with the goal of acquiring data needed for an NIH-level R01 grant proposal.

previous recipients
  • Dr. Stephanie Moon, University of Michigan, 2021

  • Dr. Aaron Hauesler, Thomas Jefferson University, 2020

  • Dr. Veronique Belzil, Mayo Clinic of Florida, and Dr. Manolis Kellis, MIT, 2018–19

The application is open for the Live Like Lou Career Development Award. Please review the Letter of Intent specifics before applying.

Letter of Intent due June 15

Postdoctoral Fellowship

This program is intended to expand the number of investigators conducting innovative neurodegenerative disease research to find treatments or cures for ALS. This grant supports emerging scientists with interest in ALS who are in the early stages of postdoctoral training at an R1-level institutional research laboratory or research environment. The fellowship covers direct costs of up to $75,000 per year for up to two years. Eligible applicants should have successfully completed no more than thirty-six months of postdoctoral research training at the time the award begins.

The inaugural recipient

The next application window for the Live Like Lou Postdoctoral Fellowship opens in the spring of 2024. Register with us to learn when award applications open.

Application Opens Spring 2024
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Emerging ALS Investigator Collaborative Learning Series

Sponsor or attend Live Like Lou’s scientific research forums.

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Working in partnership with the Live Like Lou Scientific Research Committee, the organization selects and partners with leading ALS scientists to nominate host institutions, presenters, and the invitation list for virtual and in-person research learning events.

Together we provide opportunities for collaboration, research partnerships, unique instruction, and grant opportunities not otherwise available to emerging ALS investigators.

Forum partner institutions
  • University of Pittsburgh, 2016

  • University of Pittsburgh, 2018

  • Barrow Neurological Institute, 2020

  • Barrow Neurological Institute, 2021

  • Barrow Neurological Institute, 2022

  • University of Michigan, 2023

Virtual Forums

The COVID-19 pandemic provided an opportunity for Live Like Lou to pivot and offer virtual programming in lieu of its biennial forum in the summer of 2020.

With the addition of virtual programming, more collaborative discussions and presentations have resulted. Live Like Lou now hosts at least two virtual forums each year in addition to its biennial in-person event.

Biennial In-Person Forum

In 2018, Live Like Lou began bringing together emerging ALS investigators every other year to collaborate, share research, discuss ideas, and network with one another at a two-day forum.

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ALS Research Partners

The pace of change in ALS research and our hope for future treatments and cures for ALS increase when communities come together. Live Like Lou is proud to have funded research at two world-class institutions to date:

The University of Pittsburgh

Funded during Live Like Lou’s grassroots days in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Neil and Suzanne Alexander were devoted to advancing ALS research upon Neil’s diagnosis with Lou Gehrig’s disease. With the funds raised from 2011–15, the Live Like Lou Center for ALS Research at the University of Pittsburgh Brain Institute was created. Its mission is to unlock the mysteries of normal and abnormal brain function and translate discoveries into new approaches for overcoming brain disorders. Since its inception, the brain institute has grown to include two primary investigators and leading laboratories of more than a dozen scientists. They have three patents pending and a spinoff therapeutics testing lab that went public in July 2022.

Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC)

Live Like Lou teamed up with VUMC for new ALS research in Middle Tennessee. The It’s a Whole New Ballgame for ALS Research campaign has raised nearly $3.5 million to fund new, pre-clinical, and innovative ALS science at this top-tier research institution. Learn more about the latest campaign news and fundraising success.

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Scientific Research Committee

Live Like Lou develops its research grants, programming for emerging ALS investigators, and strategy for research investments based upon the recommendations of a volunteer Scientific Research Committee comprised of experts in the field.

Scientific Research Committee

Suzanne Alexander
Co-founder and Trustee, the Live Like Lou Foundation

Sami Barmada, MD, PhD
Associate Professor of Neurology and Principal Investigator of the Barmada Laboratory, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor

Chris Donnelly, PhD
Assistant Professor of Neurobiology at the University of Pittsburgh and Scientific Director of the Live Like Lou Center for ALS Research

Gaylon Morris
Trustee, the Live Like Lou Foundation and Chairman of the Scientific Research Committee

Rita Sattler, MSc, PhD
Professor of Translational Neuroscience at the Barrow Neurological Institute and Principal Investigator of the Sattler Laboratory

Daniela Zarnescu, PhD
Professor of Molecular and Cellular Biology and Principal Investigator of the Zarnescu Lab, Pennsylvania State University

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