Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes

Investigational ALS drug generates promising clinical trial results

An experimental medication slows the progression of the neurodegenerative disease called Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), or Lou Gehrig's disease, according to recently released results from a clinical trial run by investigators ...

Genetics

'Jumping' DNA regulates human neurons

The human genome contains over 4.5 million sequences of DNA called "transposable elements," virus-like entities that "jump" around and help regulate gene expression. They do this by binding transcription factors, which are ...

Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes

Protein study may be key to treating fibrotic diseases

A protein linked to amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), a progressive neurological disease that causes muscle weakness, may be a key to treating fibrotic disease of the kidneys and other organs, researchers at Vanderbilt ...

Neuroscience

Restoring nerve-muscle communication in ALS

Patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig's disease, lose muscle control as nerve cells or neurons in the brain and spinal cord degenerate and can no longer send signals to muscles. Previous ...

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Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), also referred to as Lou Gehrig's disease in American English and Motor Neurone Disease in British English, is a form of Motor Neuron Disease caused by the degeneration of upper and lower neurons, located in the ventral horn of the spinal cord and the cortical neurons that provide their efferent input. The condition is often called Lou Gehrig's disease in North America, after the New York Yankees baseball player who was diagnosed with the disease in 1939. The disorder is characterized by rapidly progressive weakness, muscle atrophy and fasciculations, spasticity, dysarthria, dysphagia, and respiratory compromise. Sensory function generally is spared, as is autonomic and oculomotor activity. ALS is a progressive, fatal, neurodegenerative disease with most affected patients dying of respiratory compromise and pneumonia after 2 to 3 years; although some perish within a year from the onset of symptoms, and occasional individuals have a more indolent course and survive for many years.

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