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Prize4Life launched the DREAM-Phil Bowen ALS Prediction Prize4Life (ALS Prediction Prize) on July 11, 2012 in partnership with The DREAM Project (Dialogue for Reverse Engineering Assessments and Methods), which is sponsored by IBM, Columbia University, NIH Roadmap Initiative, and The New York Academy of Sciences.

In our on-going efforts to accelerate breakthroughs, we partnered with the Northeast ALS Consortium (NEALS) and the ALS Therapy Alliance (ATA) to develop the Pooled Resource Open-Access ALS Clinical Trials (PRO-ACT) data base, the largest database of clinical data from ALS patients ever created. The database was made openly available for research purposes starting in December 2012, after serving as the data source for teams aiming to win the ALS Prediction Prize.

More than 1000 participants were involved in the challenge, which was crowdsourced via Innocentive's global network. As a result, the prize challenge drew 37 potential solutions from teams and individuals around the globe.

Ultimately, two teams secured first prize, a duo from Stanford University, former postdoctoral candidate and now assistant professor of statistics Lester Mackey, PhD and recent JD and Master's Degree recipient Lilly Fang; and the team of Liuxia Want, PhD Principal Scientist, and her colleague Guang Li, Quantitative Modeler at Washington, DC-based Scientific Marketing company Sentrana.

In addition, Torsten Hothorn, PhD, a distinguished statistics professor from Germany, was awarded a second-place prize for his unique solution, which included an alternative approach to assessing disease progression to that specified in the Challenge criteria.

Following the announcement of the winners of the DREAM-Phil Bowen ALS Prediction Prize4Life, we opened PRO-ACT up to the world, offering researchers, data scientists, and clinicians the opportunity to access an unprecedented amount of ALS clinical trials data to help crack the code of ALS.