Israeli scientists have discovered for the first time the biological mechanism that causes the destruction of nerves in the neurodegenerative disease ALS (ALS).
This was reported by the press service of the Israeli Foreign Ministry with reference to the results of the study of the Faculty of Medicine. Sackler and the School of Neurobiology. Sagola at Tel Aviv University.
Scientists have come to the conclusion that the course of the disease can be delayed and even reversed in the early stages.
“To this day, it’s unclear what causes the disease. In only about 10% of patients, it can be explained by known genetic mutations, but the remaining 90% are a mystery. Paralysis caused by disease occurs as a result of damage to motor neurons, which leads to degeneration of nerve endings and loss of muscle innervation. This, in turn, leads to nerve degeneration and death of motor neurons in the spinal cord, but until now we could not understand the main biological mechanism causing this catastrophic avalanche. neuronal death & quot ;, & ndash; noted Professor Eran Perlson.
Researchers at Tel Aviv University have noticed a protein called TDP-43, which accumulates in unusual quantities and is localized in the brain of approximately 95% of all ALS patients. Scientists have established a new biological link between protein accumulation and degeneration of synapses between the endings of motor neurons and muscles, which convert neural commands into physical movements.
The accumulation of protein in the neuromuscular junction suppresses the ability to locally synthesize proteins that are required for mitochondrial activity, which provides fundamental cellular processes. A decrease in mitochondrial activity in nerve endings leads to disruption of neuromuscular connections and death of motor neurons.
Researchers used an experimental molecule and proved that it is capable of eliminating TDP-43 condensates in the cells of ALS patients, improving the ability the body to produce important proteins, increasing mitochondrial activity and preventing the degeneration of neuromuscular junctions.
'' This discovery could lead to the development of new treatments for ALS that can either dissolve TDP-43 protein condensates or increase production proteins necessary for mitochondrial function, and thus heal nerve cells before irreversible damage occurs. in the spinal cord & quot ;, & ndash; Perlson emphasized.