CART stands for Coins for Alzheimer’s Research Trust. The CART fund participants are 13 Rotary districts in NC, SC, GA, TN and VA. Last year the fund participants raised close to $400,000. The CART fund was able to award a $250,000 research grant to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles and $150,000 grant was given to University of Washington at Seattle. The Fund gives grants for research that would not ordinarily get funded. This past year there were 84 research institutions in the process and in May 2013 new recipients will be announced. The Fund is well respected in the research and grant community; and 100% of the gifts go towards the grants. The CART Fund has continually been recognized by the SC Attorney General as the number 1 charity in use of the gifts for its intended purpose.
The purpose of the Coins for Alzheimers Research Trust Fund (CART) is to provide funding for research for the prevention and cure of the Alzheimer’s Disease.
In October 1995, the Sumter, S. C. Rotary Club, led by Roger Ackerman and Dr. Jack Bevan, initiated the effort to prove that Rotarians voluntarily emptying their pockets of change for a good cause could produce significant levels of funds to support Alzheimer’s disease research. The CART Fund (Coins for Alzheimer’s Research Trust) was the name given to the project, which proved to be highly successful during an 8-month testing period.
In May 1996. The CART Fund was introduced at the Rotary District 7770 Conference and was enthusiastically received. The District leaders agreed to adopt CART as a project, if a committee made up of Sumter Rotarians could obtain the support of the individual clubs in the District. During the 1996-97 Rotary year, CART programs were presented in 62 of the 68 clubs in D-7770. The response was overwhelmingly in support of this grassroots project and the district officially adopted CART as a district-wide program in 1997.
Since then, additional Rotary Districts throughout the southeastern United States have joined in the effort to raise funds and support significant work in the Alzheimer’s research field to discover the cause and eventually a cure for the disease. Rotary clubs are encouraged to pass the blue buckets at meetings, encourage sponsorships and dedicate memorials to the CART Fund.
Coins for Alzheimer’s Research Trust is governed by a Board of Trustees whose primary membership comes from representatives from the Rotary Districts that support the program. It is a 501 C 3 organization, Federal ID # 31-1466051. The Fund is chartered as a non-profit organization under the laws of the State of South Carolina.
All administrative expenses for the Fund have been derived through earned interest from contributions. One hundred percent (100%) of Donated Funds go to cutting edge AD Research as required by our CART by-laws.
The following are two videos put together by other Alzheimer's organizations. Click to watch.
The following are recent grants given out by CART:
Dr. Gary Landreth of Case Western Reserve University received a grant in 2001 to support work on a then-novel class of drugs. Dr. Landreth stated, “The CART funds were absolutely critical to our success, as they allowed us to pursue experiments investigating the mechanism of drug action for which we had no other means of support.” He further advised that this research has led to three phases of testing involving expenditures in excess of $200 million dollars. (another example of how CART “seed funds” may lead to major research grants from the National Institute of Health and other groups).
Drs. Allan Levey and Jim Lau of Emory University: Dr. Lau, commenting on the discovery of the SORL 1 gene and its connection to CART. “The connection is simple. Our work (funded by CART) led to the first association of the SORL 1 protein (also called LR 11) with AD. That sparked interest and led directly to the study of SOTL 1 and other related genes by a very large consortium of genetics researchers.”
Dr. David Sweatt of the University of Alabama at Birmingham: “CART funding will be critical for my laboratory to be able to aggressively pursue a new drug development opportunity that we have, that hopefully will lead to a new type of treatment for Alzheimer’s disease.”
Dr. Todd Golde, Mayo Clinic, Jacksonville: “Through funding provided by the CART award we will evaluate how several different types of compounds that modulate production of the amyloid beta protein work to modulate amyloid beta protein deposition in the brain of an Alzheimer’s disease mouse model.” In a follow up two years after the CART grant was made, Dr. Golde commented: “… CART funding was vital in our getting an NIH grant renewed that has been awarded to both Eddie Koo and myself and is for $2.5 million dollars over 5 years.”