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The Ice Bucket Challenge helped fund a breakthrough in ALS research

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It looks like dumping ice water on your head has paid off.

A study funded by the ALS Association through donations from the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge has identified a new gene that will give scientists another potential target for therapy development, a news release says.

The gene – NEK1 – ranks among the most common genes that contribute to the disease.

The study, which was published Tuesday in "Nature," was the largest-ever study of inherited ALS, and was done by Project MinE, which included doctors at the University of Massachusetts Medical Center and the University Medical Center Utrecht.

"The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge enabled The ALS Association to invest in Project MinE’s work ...," Lucie Bruijn, Ph.D., M.B.A., said in the release.

For more on the research and how it could help ALS, click here.

The Ice Bucket Challenge

The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge started in 2014 to raise awareness about the progressive neurodegenerative disease, commonly known as Lou Gehrig's Disease.

It quickly became a viral sensation as people filmed themselves dumping buckets of ice water over their heads, and challenging others to do the same.

The campaign challenge raised more than $100 million for the ALS Association that year.

The hope is that every August people will participate in the challenge to continue to raise awareness and money towards finding a cure.

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