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Re-evaluating clinical trial guidelines for MND

Reading Time: 3 minutes To mark International Clinical Trials Day (20 May) we reflect on the ALS Clinical Trials Guidelines workshop that took place in March. The MND Association co-sponsored this successful meeting, held at Airlie House in Virginia USA. Approximately 140 delegates from across the world attended, including 11 MND researchers and doctors from the UK. Why was…

MIROCALS: Episode MND

Reading Time: 5 minutes A clinical trial of Jedi proportions… The MND Association is backing a new clinical trial in MND, known as MIROCALS. This will be a joint clinical trial between France and the UK that will aim to dampen the overactive immune system by increasing the amount of interleukin-2. It is important to stress that planning for this MND…

On the eighth day of Christmas MND research gave to me: Eight members of the Research Development team

Reading Time: 3 minutes “On the eighth day of Christmas MND research gives to you… EIGHT members of the Research Development team” We would like to wish all our blog readers Happy New Year! Looking forward, like many others, we have made our New Year’s resolutions of what we’d like to achieve in 2015: Brian Dickie (Director of Research…

AGM Question

Reading Time: 5 minutes A question was submitted to the Association’s AGM last weekend, which could only be answered in brief at the time, due to the number of issues raised, some of which are of a technical nature. Below is a more detailed response from the Association’s Director of Research (in bold italics) to each point raised.

Decisions, Decisions…

Reading Time: 4 minutes The day finally arrived on 11 April 2014 for our biannual Biomedical Research Advisory Panel (BRAP) Meeting. This important date in our research calendar is when grant funding decisions are discussed before being put forward to our Board of Trustees for approval. But before we get to the meeting, there is a lot of preparation…

Understanding Spinal Muscular Atrophy: could plant derived compounds hold the key?

Reading Time: 4 minutes On 3 March 2014, researchers based at the University of Edinburgh published a research paper that extends our understanding of the childhood disease – Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA). Although this is not MND so-to-speak, the disease does affect the motor neurones. Plus, the results were so interesting; I couldn’t resist writing a blog post about them.…

Same disease.. two very different mice!

Reading Time: 4 minutes The exact course, duration and rate of progression of MND often varies greatly from person to person; even when there is a known family history of the disease caused by a specific MND-causing gene (eg SOD1). This same variability also occurs in mice. Researchers, funded by the MND Association, took two mice with the same SOD1…

Researchers in Australia identify how blue-green algae may cause some cases of MND

Reading Time: 4 minutes A toxin known as β-N-methylamino-l-alanine (BMAA), which is found in blue-green algae, has been shown to cause proteins inside cells to clump together and cause cell death. This finding suggests that BMAA may be a cause of neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s and MND and could lead to the development of new treatments. What is BMAA? BMAA is…