ANXA11 – another gene closer to understanding ALS

A new research paper has been published today in the Science Translational Medicine journal, describing a new gene implicated in developing MND. What is this gene and why is it important for our fight against MND?

Although they are not the sole cause of MND, genes play a big role in someone’s probability of developing the disease. A number of such genes that make a person susceptible to developing MND have already been identified, with most of them causing the rarer, inherited form of the disease.

A new addition to a list of genes that are related to development of ALS, the most common form of MND, has been discovered by researchers from King’s College London. Dr Bradley Smith and colleagues screened genetic data of an unusually high number of people of European origin: 751 with inherited – familial – ALS (fALS) and 180 with non-inherited – sporadic – ALS (sALS). Detailed analysis of this data found that specific mutations in the ANXA11 gene are associated with around 1% of all fALS and 1.7% of all sALS cases. Continue reading

Three new projects, three steps closer to a world free of MND

Next month will see the start of three new Association-funded research projects that will each move us closer to achieving some of the key targets set out in our research strategy. They involve recently discovered genetic causes of MND, new disease models and a novel way of measuring the progress of the disease – all very exciting stuff! You can read more about the projects here.

The three research teams involved are embarking on their new investigations just as Marion and Natasha are busy preparing for next month’s Research Advisory Panel meeting, where more applications for funding will be assessed. The MND research machine never sleeps!