ALS ice bucket challenge helped get closer to cure than ever before

ALS ice bucket challenge helped get closer to cure than ever before

Nine years after the viral challenge began, researchers and scientists have said that it actually did help in a very major way.

ALS ice bucket challenge helped get closer to cure than ever before

Many. of us took part in or at least remember the super iconic ice bucket challenge from 2014.

READ: Children's maths problem is leaving people outraged

In an attempt to raise funds for ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis) research, people started dumping buckets of ice water on their heads and would challenge friends, family, colleagues, and even celebrities to do the same.

These days, TikTok dance trends or challenges tend to pop up and reach millions within days, whereas the ice bucket challenge really was part of a turning point in social media.

READ: Study shows those with blue eyes have higher risk of alcoholism

But at the time, most people were wondering whether or not taking part in this seemingly childish challenge could truly have an effect on the research into ALS or if it would help save any lives at all. And rightfully so.

As it turns out, it did have a lasting positive effect and has helped scientists, researchers, and doctors get closer to a cure for the disease than ever before.

READ: Bag the size of a crumb sold for R1.2-million

According to National Geographic, 17-million people uploaded their challenge videos on Facebook and it resulted in $115-million being raised for the cause in only six weeks, while also creating a massive amount of awareness for a disease which at that point had few treatment options and no cure.

READ: Seven phobia tests that will leave you terrified or satisfied

The challenge has accelerated the fight against this disease by funding work that has identified five new genes that are linked to ALS, novel drug therapies, and even more importantly, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved two new treatments for ALS.

This has all been accomplished thanks to the originators of the challenge: golfer Chris Kennedy, Kennedy's family member with ALS, Anthony Senerchia, and his wife who took part in the challenge, as well as Pat Quinn and Pete Frates.

And just in case you wanted to go on a journey back in time, here are some of the most iconic and hilarious ice bucket challenges:

Tune in to 'The Drive with Rob & Roz', on weekdays from 16:00 - 19:00. Stream the show live here or download our mobile app here.

Follow us on social media:

Main image courtesy of @QldBrainInst/Twitter

More on Jacaranda FM

Show's Stories