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In ALS Study, Essential Protein Seen as Promising New Theurapeutic Target

Researchers have identified an essential protein, Pur-alpha, for motor neuron cells’ mechanisms of defense against external stress and degeneration and also as a potential new therapeutic target for the treatment of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS, or Lou Gehrig’s disease). The research paper, “Pur-alpha regulates cytoplasmic stress granule dynamics and ameliorates…

Key Players in Neuroinflammation Tied to ALS, Depression Highlighted

A recent review summarized the effects of immune system dysregulation and neuroinflammation in the regulation of critical pathways associated with depression and other brain disorders, including amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). The researchers specifically focused on extracellular vesicles (EVs) as potential biomarkers and drug delivery vehicles. The review, “Neuroinflammation and Depression: Microglia Activation, Extracellular Microvesicles…

ALS Severity, Duration May Be Linked to Glutamate Toxicity

The ratio of N-acetyl aspartate (NAA) to glutamate is related to disease duration in patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), a finding that supports the notion of glutamate toxicity as a contributing factor in ALS pathology. Earlier studies have indicated that the neurotransmitter glutamate is involved in ALS. People with sporadic ALS…

ALS Researchers Call for Development of ALS Biomarker Consortium

A panel of leading amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) researchers recently published a review study, supported by the ALS Association, detailing the state of disease biomarker development and calling for the formation of an ALS Biomarker Consortium to speed up research into more effective disease treatments. The review, titled “ALS biomarkers…

ALS Patients Show Increased Response to Specific Receptor in Spinal Cord

Motor neuron degeneration in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) patients is caused by several factors, including inflammation and oxidative stress. Uncovering the multiple pathways leading to ALS may suggest new ways to intervene therapeutically. University of Pittsburgh researchers found the Receptor for Advanced Glycation End Products (RAGE) and its ligands, or…

ALS Protein Dynamics May Hold Clues for Disease Progression

Researchers at the National University of Singapore have suggested there is a fine balance between amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS)-related protein TDP-43’s normal function and its potential to cause neurodegeneration. The degeneration seems to occur due to pathological factors that exaggerate the protein’s membrane association, resulting in the loss of its physiological functions as well as…