Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS)

ALS Researcher Elected to Institute of Medicine

Don Cleveland, a longtime MDA research grantee studying amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), has been elected to the Institute of Medicine (IOM). Election to the IOM is one of the highest honors in the fields of health and medicine, and recognizes individuals who have demonstrated outstanding professional achievement and commitment to science.

Neural Stem Cell Trial in ALS ‘Very Successful’ So Far

Results from a completed phase 1 trial of neural stem cells in people with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) show that the stem cells and the surgical method used to transplant them were safe and well-tolerated. In addition, the experimental therapy appears to have "interrupted the progression of the disease" in some trial participants.

ALS, SMA Share a Biochemical Pathway

New evidence links the motor neuron diseases ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis) and spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), an international team of scientists has reported. The researchers say the findings could lead to the identification of therapeutic targets common to both disorders.

ALS-FTD Research Briefs: P62 Gene’s Role and Screening Tool for ALS-FTD

The most visible symptom in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is progressive weakness and loss of muscle control due to the loss of nerve cells called motor neurons. But approximately half of all people with ALS also exhibit some symptoms of cognitive impairment and associated behavioral symptoms (frontotemporal dementia, or FTD) at some stage of their disease.

New Phase 2b Trial of Tirasemtiv (CK-2017357) in ALS

Update (Oct. 29, 2012): This article has been updated to reflect the fact that the trial is now open to recruitment.

ALS Risk Elevated in Some Retired NFL Players

Update (Nov. 6, 2012):This story was updated to reflect the availability of an abstract of the scientific paper (online and print) on which the story is based, as well as information about an upcoming webinar on this subject.

ALS and SMA: Less EPHA4 Means More Motor Neurons Survive

Decreased activity of the EPHA4 receptor, which is encoded by the EPHA4 gene, increases life span in people with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), a team of scientists has reported.

The receptor, which was found to modify disease in zebrafish, mice, rats and humans, works together with a gene recently associated with ALS — profilin 1 (PFN1).  

Chemical 'Signature' May Be Used to Track ALS

A "pro-inflammatory" chemical signature displayed by monocytes (a type of white blood cell) appears to signal the presence of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) even before symptoms begin, a team of scientists has reported. If verified, the blood biomarker may make it possible for physicians to monitor disease progression using a simple blood test.

MDA Commits $10.7 Million to Neuromuscular Disease Research

The Muscular Dystrophy Association has awarded 33 new grants totaling $10,684,481 to fund research projects focused on uncovering the causes of, and developing therapies for, neuromuscular disease.

MDA's Board of Directors reviewed and approved the new grants based on recommendations from the Association's Scientific and Medical Advisory Committees, and the grants took effect Aug. 1.

ALS: New MDA Grants Focus on Multisystem Aspects of the Disease

Three new MDA grants totaling $891,156 have been awarded to research projects aimed at uncovering some of the many complex processes that underlie ALS.