Dr. Laura Ranum is currently the Founding Director of the Center for NeuroGenetics and Professor of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology at the University of Florida. Over the past 25 years, her laboratory has identified the mutations for a number of neurological disorders including spinocerebellar ataxia types 5 and 8 (SCA5, SCA8), and myotonic dystrophy type 2 (DM2). Her laboratory has developed and uses mouse models to understand how these and other mutations cause disease. Most recently, the Ranum lab created a mouse model of the C9orf72 ALS/dementia mutation that has generated wide interest in the scientific community studying ALS. Dr’s. Ranum and Plowman hold a current R01 grant from the National Institute of Neurologic Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) titled “Molecular Characterization of ALS/FTD in a Novel C9ORF72 BAC Mouse Model” and an internal Moonshoot pilot grant to examine the therapeutic potential of an FDA-approved drug metformin for C9orf72 ALS.