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New gene therapy targeting C9orf72-ALS begins Phase 1 clinical trial in the UK

New gene therapy targeting C9orf72-ALS begins Phase 1 clinical trial in the UK

Reading Time: 2 minutes This article was written by Dr Keith Mayl and Dr Ahmad Al Khleifat of King’s College London. Researchers at King’s College Hospital, led by Professor Christopher Shaw, have embarked on the first gene therapy clinical trial for patients affected by a specific genetic form of ALS, the most common type of MND. ALS is a…

More information for families affected by inherited MND available online

Reading Time: 4 minutes In April this year MND clinician-researchers Professors Martin Turner and Kevin Talbot at the University of Oxford organised an information day about the rare, inherited form of MND called ‘Families for the Treatment of Hereditary MND’ (FATHoM). The day was filmed and podcasts of the talks have recently become available. This article gives an overview…

Using surface EMG to see if fasciculations can be used as a biomarker for MND

Reading Time: 2 minutes What are fasciculations? When motor neurones in the spinal cord become damaged this makes them electrically unstable, meaning they spontaneously discharge electrical impulses that cause small groups of muscles to contract. These contractions, known as fasciculations, are a common symptom of MND. Research suggests that they might be a good marker of motor neurone health.…

Using DNA Bank samples to create iPSC models of MND

Reading Time: 2 minutes Induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) technology has enabled researchers to create and study living human motor neurones in the lab, derived originally from patient skin cells. This project (our reference 80-970-797) is a collaboration between the labs of Professors Chris Shaw and Jack Price at King’s College in London and Siddharthan Chandran in Edinburgh. It…

The UK Whole Genome Sequencing project

Reading Time: 4 minutes Dr Samantha Price is the Research Information Co-ordinator at the MND Association. As well as organising the ‘blog a day’ during MND Awareness Month she also communicates the latest news about MND research. Here she blogs about the MND Association’s announcement of the UK Whole Genome Sequencing project. It’s been a brilliant Awareness Month with…

Clinical trials in a dish?

Reading Time: 2 minutes A packed room at the 24th International Symposium on ALS/MND was given a fascinating whistle stop tour covering stem cells, robots and cellular garbage clearing, by Dr Steve Finkbeiner of the University of California, as well as a glimpse into the future of developing ‘disease in a dish’ models of MND. Dr Finkbeiner outlined how…

Degenerating Brains

Reading Time: 2 minutes “One in six of over-80 year olds will get a neurodegenerative disease. We’ve got to find ways to slow, stop or reverse these conditions” was the distinctly political message at the opening of this public symposia on “Degenerating Brains: new research into Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and Motor Neurone Disease”, run jointly by the Wellcome Trust and…

Brain Awareness week

Reading Time: 3 minutes Every March, Brain Awareness Week (11 – 17 March 2013) unites people of all ages worldwide to raise awareness of brain research. There are 45 free events across the UK, including seminars and school visits. On the evening of the 11 March Belinda attended the free award ceremony for the winner of the Europe PubMed…