All that science-y gobbly guck basically means that researchers have found what’s going bad in ALS. They’ve flipped through the genes of a family that has ALS and also frontotemporal dementia (which sometimes accompanies ALS) and have found that they have a genetic mutation. This mutation causes a build-up of bad proteins in nerve cells that go to muscles; this effectively kills the neurons, With the frontotemporal dementia, this bad protein also builds up in particular area of the brain– the frontal and temporal lobes– killing nerves in the brain.
This is remarkably similar to the pathophysiology involved in Alzheimer’s as well….
Although this finding is fascinating, it doesn’t mean a thing realistically at the moment. BUT it could mean new avenues for researchers to explore in finding treatments and cures for ALS, frontotemporal dementia or maybe Alzheimer’s too. Or maybe the work they’ve already done in these avenues regarding Alzheimer’s might be able to be applied to ALS and frontotemporal dementia?
It’s a whole new research world out there!