Progress in Research

A Letter from the Reeve Foundation's, Chief Scientific Officer, Dr. Marco Baptista

Marco BaptistaThe Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation was founded in 1982 by families determined to find a cure for paralysis. At the time, it was not only an act of hope, but defiance: the idea that injuries could be treated was inconceivable.

Over the next four decades, the Reeve Foundation’s investment of more than $140 million in spinal cord injury research reinvigorated the field and redefined what was deemed possible. Now, labs around the world are pursuing an array of treatments to restore function and improve the health of people living with paralysis.

A glimpse at the innovative research currently underway hints at the transformative treatments to come — and the role Reeve will play in accelerating progress. In one recent study, neuroscientists at the École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne successfully built a digital bridge between the brain and spinal cord that allowed a man living with paralysis to walk for the first time in more than a decade. The potentially game-changing therapy involved spinal cord stimulation technology created by ONWARD, a Netherlands-based company funded in part by the Reeve Foundation.

Increasing collaboration across the field, along with strategic investments, will be central to Reeve’s efforts to advance the treatments finally within reach. In 2022, we launched the Reeve Foundation Spinal Cord Injury Advisory Board, comprised of leading scientists from across the country, to help identify results-driven research that will yield the greatest impact for community members. This summer, we co-hosted the first Reeve Foundation Symposium, linking scientists and academics with industry peers and investors.

It is an honor to lead the Reeve Foundation’s Research Program in what I believe will be an extraordinary period of discovery in spinal cord injury research. Our portfolio brims with initiatives that offer great promise, including an upcoming study of brain and spinal interface and bladder function. If you’re able, please donate to the foundation and help us harness the momentum of this moment — and stay tuned to this space for stories of progress that forty years ago would have been considered impossible. 

Read our Full Progress in Research here

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About the Author - Reeve Staff

This blog was written by the Reeve Foundation for educational purposes. For more information please reach out to

Reeve Staff

The opinions expressed in these blogs are the author's own and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation.