Fund established in McFadden’s honor to further dementia research
Sam McFadden’s curiosity and passion for studying neurodegenerative diseases will live on through the recently established Samuel A. McFadden Aging and Neurodegenerative Disease Research Fund.
McFadden, the lab manager for the Smith Alzheimer’s Center Hascup Labs at SIU Medicine, has been battling a brain tumor for nearly a decade. In June 2023, he was diagnosed with glioblastoma, a fast-growing and aggressive brain tumor that currently does not have a cure.
The fund will support graduate student research in aging and neurodegenerative disease, an area dear to McFadden’s heart.
“I was very interested in this research as my grandfather passed due to Alzheimer’s,” he said. “I loved that I had a sense that I was advancing our knowledge of the disease every day I went to work.
“I also loved the team aspect of science, that people with different backgrounds can be part of a cohesive team just based on the love of a subject and understanding of the scientific process.”
Starting at SIU School of Medicine in 2015, McFadden joined Dr. Andrzej Bartke’s lab before transitioning to the Hascup Labs in 2019 to study Alzheimer’s and other neurodegenerative diseases. Working his way up to the title of Research Laboratory Coordinator of the Hascup Labs, McFadden has devoted nearly a decade toward exploring aging and degenerative diseases.
McFadden earned his Master’s in biology from Illinois State University, where he met his wife Jaclyn and has been married to for 7 years. They have three children (ages 5, 2, and 1 month).
A GoFundMe was established for those who would like to support the McFadden family as well.