Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


New gene found to be involved in ALS

A gene that is involved in communication between nerve cells is strongly associated with non-hereditary (sporadic) ALS. This is shown by the ALS research team at Umeå University in Sweden in an article in a coming issue of the journal The Lancet Neurology.

To try to identify the pathogenic genes involved in ALS, the Umeå scientists, in collaboration with Dutch and Belgian researchers, compared DNA samples from 1,337 patients with non-hereditary ALS (sporadic ALS, SALS) with DNA samples from 1,356 healthy individuals.

It is the world’s most comprehensive study in the field thus far. The researchers looked for DNA variants that only occur in patients and not in control subjects. After extremely extensive analyses, they discovered that such a variant in the gene Inositol 1,4,5-triphosphate receptor 2 (ITPR2) is strongly associated with SALS.

The ITPR2 gene codes for a protein that is important to the regulation of calcium levels in nerve cells. The protein is also involved in neurotransmission (communication between nerve cells) and so-called programmed cell death. Blood analyses revealed that the gene’s activities are higher in ALS patients than in healthy subjects.

Taken together, this indicates that changes in the ITPR2 gene are a strong candidate to be seen as a risk factor in developing ALS. The research team is now busy looking for disease-related mutations in the gene. It is completely unknown just how mutations in the ITPR2 can lead to ALS. At present it is not possible to determine whether the discovery will lead to any new treatment of ALS.

The Swedish part of the study was performed by Associate Professor and Chief Physician Peter M. Andersen, molecular geneticist Anna Birve, and research engineer Ann-Charloth Nilsson, all at the Department of Pharmacology and Clinical Neuroscience, Umeå University.

The discovery will be published in The Lancet Neurology in October. The Lancet Neurology is the leading international journal on diseases of the brain.

Reference: Michael A van Es, Paul W Van Vught, Hylke M Blauw, Lude Franke, Christiaan G Saris, Peter M Andersen, Ludo Van Den Bosch, Sonja W de Jong, Ruben van t Slot, Anna Birve, Robin Lemmens, Vianney de Jong, Frank Baas, Helenius J Schelhaas, Kristel Sleegers, Christine Van Broeckhoven, John H Wokke, Cisca Wijmenga, Wim Robberecht, Jan H Veldink, Roel A Ophoff, Leonard H van den Berg: ITPR2 as a susceptibility gene in sporadic amyotrophic lateral sclerosis: a genome-wide association study.

Bertil Born | alfa
Further information:

Further reports about: DNA ITPR2 Neurology Umeå University in Sweden sporadic

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht First time-lapse footage of cell activity during limb regeneration
25.10.2016 | eLife

nachricht Phenotype at the push of a button
25.10.2016 | Institut für Pflanzenbiochemie

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Light-driven atomic rotations excite magnetic waves

Terahertz excitation of selected crystal vibrations leads to an effective magnetic field that drives coherent spin motion

Controlling functional properties by light is one of the grand goals in modern condensed matter physics and materials science. A new study now demonstrates how...

Im Focus: New 3-D wiring technique brings scalable quantum computers closer to reality

Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.

"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...

Im Focus: Scientists develop a semiconductor nanocomposite material that moves in response to light

In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.

A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...

Im Focus: Diamonds aren't forever: Sandia, Harvard team create first quantum computer bridge

By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.

"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...

Im Focus: New Products - Highlights of COMPAMED 2016

COMPAMED has become the leading international marketplace for suppliers of medical manufacturing. The trade fair, which takes place every November and is co-located to MEDICA in Dusseldorf, has been steadily growing over the past years and shows that medical technology remains a rapidly growing market.

In 2016, the joint pavilion by the IVAM Microtechnology Network, the Product Market “High-tech for Medical Devices”, will be located in Hall 8a again and will...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

Agricultural Trade Developments and Potentials in Central Asia and the South Caucasus

14.10.2016 | Event News

World Health Summit – Day Three: A Call to Action

12.10.2016 | Event News

Latest News

Enormous dome in central Andes driven by huge magma body beneath it

25.10.2016 | Earth Sciences

First time-lapse footage of cell activity during limb regeneration

25.10.2016 | Life Sciences

Deep down fracking wells, microbial communities thrive

25.10.2016 | Earth Sciences

More VideoLinks >>>