HSSA Helps Stand Up New WSU Gleason Institute for Neuroscience

HSSA joined WSU Spokane, Team Gleason, St. Luke’s Rehabilitation Center and Avista on January 15 to announce the new Steve Gleason Institute for Neuroscience, located close to the new pedestrian and bicycle bridge at 325 East Sprague Avenue in the University District.

Steve Gleason is a local and national hero, former football player at WSU and for the New Orleans Saints in the NFL. A husband and father, Gleason was diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS, sometimes called Lou Gehrig’s disease) in 2011. He continues his valiant efforts on behalf of others suffering from neurological diseases including his successful efforts to achieve Medicare modifications in the Steven Gleason Act, an Act of Congress, and was recently was awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor for his many efforts. Other important partners in this venture are the City of Spokane, MultiCare Health, Providence Health.

This is an important investment in medical research for those who suffer from neurological diseases such as ALS, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s. HSSA was both "pleased and proud to support the Steven Gleason Institute for Neuroscience here in the University District for the important work it will do, and in recognition of one of Spokane's own sons," HSSA Board Chair Nancy Isserlis said at the launch of the institute. “This $250,000 of support was by a unanimous decision of our Board. "Isserlis went on to say that "More important, is the exciting opportunities for better treatment and care, and hopefully one day, even cures, for these debilitating diseases."

The goals of the Gleason Institute are expected to include:

  • The Clinical Research and Care Unit focusing in motor and cognitive therapy and supporting clinical trials of new medications or treatments;
  • The Assistive Technology and Smart Home Center for patient exposure, training ad the advancement of augmented reality, virtual reality, brain-machine interfaces and prosthetic devices;
  • The Discovery Research Unit with laboratories and shared facilities for scientists and support staff.