We are pleased to announce that the first results from the Oxford Study for Biomarkers in MND/ALS (known as BioMOx) study have been published in the prestigious journal Neurology.
From this study, a common signature of nerve damage has been identified in the brains of people living with MND using an advanced MRI technique.
The findings demonstrate the importance of MRI in the development of a new biomarker for MND as well as being a significant stepping stone forwards toward two of our research goals – to identify disease markers, and to develop the research workforce.
Identifying disease markers
One of our research aims (set out in our research strategy 2010-2015) that we are working towards is that through our funding, we will have contributed to the identification of disease markers. By funding the BioMOx project (which is ongoing), we are already moving towards this aim.
Developing the research workforce
The BioMOx project is led by Dr Martin Turner from the University of Oxford who was awarded with the Medical Research Council (MRC)/ MND Association Lady Edith Wolfson Clinical Research Fellowship in 2008. This project is ongoing and means that we are not only funding cutting edge research, but we are also aiding Dr Martin Turner to develop his career as an MND clinician and a researcher.
As research is only as good as the researcher, it is important for us to continue to develop the UK basic research capacity by encouraging young clinicians into MND research. We currently fund four fellowships – our most recent of which was announced last month to Dr Pietro Fratta from the University of Sheffield.