Press Release


AAN Honors Columbia University Researcher for ALS Research

Christopher E. Henderson, PhD, Receives Sheila Essey Award

ST. PAUL, Minn – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Media Contacts: AAN Press Room HCC 203 (April 28 – May 4), (617) 954-3126 The American Academy of Neurology (AAN) is awarding the 2007 Sheila Essey Award for ALS Research to Christopher E. Henderson, PhD, with the Center for Motor Neuron Biology and Disease at Columbia University, for his work in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). Henderson will receive the award during the American Academy of Neurology’s 59th Annual Meeting in Boston, held April 28 – May 5, 2007. The Sheila Essey Award recognizes an individual who has made significant research contributions in the search for the cause, prevention of, and cure for ALS. The $25,000 prize is to be used toward continuing ALS research. ALS is a motor neuron disease which is characterized by the gradual degeneration and death of motor neurons. Both the upper motor neurons and the lower motor neurons are affected in ALS. Henderson’s work focused on identifying events that lead to motor neuron degeneration. The research successfully used purified motor neurons in culture to screen for novel neuroprotective drug candidates and also discovered new mechanisms that play key roles in motor neuron survival and death, during development and in animal models of disease. “Being honored with this award for ALS research will help us continue to explore motor neurons and outcomes that should provide benefit to patients,” Henderson said. Sponsored by the American Academy of Neurology and the ALS Association, this award is supported through the philanthropy of the Essey family. The 59th Annual Meeting takes place in Boston’s Hynes Convention Center. It is the world’s largest annual gathering of neurologists. For more information about the American Academy of Neurology, visit –end–

The American Academy of Neurology, an association of more than 20,000 neurologists and neuroscience professionals, is dedicated to improving patient care through education and research. A neurologist is a doctor with specialized training in diagnosing, treating and managing disorders of the brain and nervous system such as Alzheimer’s disease, epilepsy, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, and stroke.

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