The Foundation

The Max Brault SMA Foundation is a registered charity that exists to help those suffering from Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA) and their families. The foundation was created by long time sufferer, Max who felt like there wasn't enough information or resources available for people and families struggling with this disorder.

Our Mission…


We bring awareness to a disease which affects 1 in every 8,000 people.


We are focussed on educating people around the world about Spinal Muscular Atrophy.


We are developing initiatives to help those who are suffering from SMA.


There are many Frequently Asked Questions regarding Spinal Muscular Atrophy and all of its complications. We will address a few of the main one’s here, but we encourage you to follow your investigation to other parts of the Internet where you will find answers to many technical inquiries. If you would like to speak with a professional, please contact your doctor. They can help you find the answers that are important to you. In the meantime if you have a question, then use our contact page t leave a message and we will back to you, ASAP.

What is Spinal Muscular Atrophy?

Spinal Muscular Atrophy is a genetic disorder which all around you. As a result of the disorder, the nerve tissues in the spinal cord are not able to carry signals from the brain to other organs of the body. This results in loss of muscle movement causing problems in breathing and swallowing. Typically, suffers are unable to walk on their own. Unfortunately, there is no known cure for Spinal Muscular Atrophy and many people suffer from the disorder throughout their entire lives. However, treatments can be used in order to ensure that patients are able to lead long and healthy lives.

Where Does SMA Come From?

SThe genetic disorder Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA) is a rare condition which can be handed down through generations. One faulty gene comes from the mother, and another takes its form as part of father’s DNA blueprint for offspring to inherit. Carriers don’t develop SMA, but there is a 1 in 4 chance that two carriers will have a child with SMA. It is due to defects in the SMN1 gene, which codes for a protein called Survival Motor Neuron. SMA affects approximatley 1 in 8000 births, and it comes in different forms depending on age of onset and severity.

What Does Atrophy Mean?

When our muscles become weak or atrophied over time, they are no longer able to support the spine properly. This eventually affects all of your body’s other muscle groups as they try compensate for this problem. This often leads to more damage. SMA is progressive, and the more muscle groups that are affected, the more significant your symptoms can become.

Are There Different Types of SMA?

Type 1 (severe): Werdnig-Hoffman disease, or SMA type 1, affects about 60% of people with SMA. Symptoms typically present themselves either at birth or within the first six months after an infant is born.

Type 2 (intermediate): The initial indicators of type 2 SMA (Dubowitz disease) usually show up when a child is between half a year to 18 months old.

Type 3 (mild): The symptoms of type 3 SMA (otherwise known as Kugelbert-Welander or juvenile-onset SMA) will present themselves after a child reaches 18 months old.

Type 4 (adult): The uncommon form of SMA that appears in adults generally presents in the mid-30s.

Is SMA preventable?

SMA is a serious and complex disease that can affect people of all ages. It is a genetic condition that is caused by mutations in certain genes, making it an inherited disease. If you or your partner carry one of these mutated genes, there is an increased risk that your child could also have SMA. But because there is often a long gap between when parents carry the mutated gene and when their child develops SMA, it can be difficult to predict who will develop the disease.

Is There a Cure?

Although there are many advances in research and science around SMA, the numbers of affected people worldwide are too few to get the resources and research that are required to prevent and treat this disease. But work does continue slowly, and gene and disease modifying therapies continue to give hope. And you can be a part of that. Through the Max Brault SMA Foundation, you can help to support research and new and emerging treatments.

We would like to thnk all of the people who are wroking didigently in the background of this Foundation to help us realize our goals.
Max Brault

Max Brault


Max has focused on employment equity and workplace accessibility
for people with disabilities.

Dean Emerick Headshot

Dean Emerick

Digital Strategist

He is an expert in digital communications, organic SEO and all facets of online marketing.

Get in Touch

Because we really want to hear from you....

Find us (Not Quite) at the office

You will find us working diligently from remote locations across the National Capital Region of Ottawa, ON. But do send a message. We would love to hear from you. 

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