The T.J. Atchison Foundation has made a gift of $20,000 to the University of Alabama at Birmingham’s Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. The gift will fund ongoing research into spinal cord injuries at the UAB T.J. Atchison Spinal Cord Injury Research Program. The program is named for T.J. Atchison of Chatom, Ala., who was paralyzed in a motor vehicle crash in 2010. Atchison has since become a champion of increased funding for spinal cord injury research. On Sept. 7, 2012, Gov. Robert Bentley signed legislation creating the T.J. Atchison Spinal Cord Injury Research Program at UAB. The bill will provide funding to UAB for spinal cord research with a focus on discovering a cure for paralysis caused by spinal cord injuries.
The program is administered by Candace Floyd, Ph.D., associate professor and director of research for the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation.
The National Spinal Cord Injury Statistical Center, housed at UAB, estimates that there are 270,000 people living with spinal cord injury in the United States, with about 12,000 new cases each year.