Turning to research for hope and cures

Karen Lawrence

‘Inspired by research’ is The Ottawa Hospital’s motto because the future of health care – the improvements in treatment and the discovery of cures for diseases and injuries – are results of research.

Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a debilitating neuromuscular disease that we are investigating. Over 10,000 people in our region are affected by neuromuscular disorders, which impair the functioning of the muscles, causing them to weaken and waste away. The Ottawa Hospital has 53 researchers who are excelling at neuromuscular lab-based research, but we need a clinic to test their discoveries. That is why we are establishing a Neuromuscular Clinical Research Centre at the Civic Campus.

For Karen Lawrence, such a research centre can’t come too soon. She has lost 14 members of her family to ALS, including her father. She also carries the gene of this devastating disease.Donate Now

“The race is on to raise money to fund research to find a cure for this disease, or a way to prevent its onset before my three beautiful boys are faced with the same agonizing decision that I had to make about whether or not I wanted to know if I would test positive,” said Karen.

Karen is part of a research study in Miami, but once the Neuromuscular Clinical Research Centre opens next year, she can have the required tests done here instead.

Our research and ability to provide the latest techniques and technologies is also helping patients today.