In amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, abnormal clumps containing the TDP43 protein may originate in one part of brain or spinal cord and spread to other parts
- A study of brain and spinal cord tissues taken from people with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) suggests that the disease may spread through interconnected regions of the brain and spinal cord in a sequential pattern the investigators divided into four stages.
- Affected areas are marked by the presence of protein clumps containing toxic TDP43 protein.
- Spread of the toxic TDP43 protein from one region to another appears to occur by cell-to-cell transmission via nerve-cell fibers (axons).
- If confirmed, the findings may point toward new strategies for treatments aimed at halting the spread of the disease.