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Milan 2013 symposium catch-up

Reading Time: 5 minutes The 24th International Symposium on ALS/MND was the most successful to date with over 950 clinicians, healthcare professionals and scientists attending the meeting in Milan. Twitter There was a ‘hive’ of activity on social media this year with over twenty researchers ‘tweeting’ during the event and fourteen of them reporting on our peer-to-peer blog ReCCoB. We…

Celebrating posters

Reading Time: 5 minutes If you followed the reporting about the symposium last weekend, I’m willing to bet (but I haven’t checked!) that most it will have been about the talks that people attended or liked. When actually, a large proportion of the research presented at the International Symposium on ALS/MND is in the form of a poster. A…

The cell that never grew up

Reading Time: 4 minutes With Pantomime season kicking off back home in the UK, delegates in Milan were introduced to one of the newest cellular villains in the MND story – oligodendrocytes. Although oligodendrocytes were first identified in the 1920s and are known to be affected in multiple sclerosis, they were generally considered as ‘bit part’ players in MND…

Physical activity and MND – is there a link?

Reading Time: 5 minutes The results of new research investigating a link between physical activity and MND was presented by the University of Sheffield research group in the late-breaking news session on the last day of the 24th International Symposium on ALS/MND. Under the leadership of Prof Pam Shaw, along with Dr Chris McDermott, MND Association-funded researcher Dr Ceryl Harwood presented…

Neuroimaging – can we see more clearly?

Reading Time: 4 minutes Plenary speaker Dr Massimo Filippi put this question to delegates on the second day of the 24th International Symposium on ALS/MND. Opening the session on neuroimaging, Dr Filippi gave an excellent review on what we currently know about this area of research, and ultimately answering whether or not we can see more clearly in MND?…

Tilting the scales

Reading Time: 3 minutes We know that in the 5-10% of cases where there is a strong family history of MND, there is likely to be a genetic cause at work, acting like a weight to push the scales in favour of the disease occurring.  These gene mutations are hidden somewhere within the 15 billion or so letters of…

Unravelling TDP43 toxicity

Reading Time: 4 minutes Background to TDP43 A characteristic sign of motor neurones affected by motor neurone disease is the clumps of protein visible down a microscope. Although these proteins have been observed in motor neurones from people affected by MND since the earliest descriptions in the 1870s, a key discovery was made when the identity of a protein,…