MDA/ALS Newsmagazine Vol. 14, No. 1

January 2009

Cover Story

Look Ma! No hands!
Hand and arm weakness can make it fatiguing and frustrating to use a computer’s conventional keyboard and mouse. So, why not try using your head? For some with ALS, a head mouse, or head tracker, provides an effective way to maintain communication and computer access. These devices typically are...

Features

On Nov. 17, the Research Advisory Committee on Gulf War Veterans’ Illnesses released a 454-page report linking exposure to nervous-system toxins with the development of illness in Gulf War veterans. Gulf War illness, or syndrome, which this report describes as a collection of symptoms typically incl...
A tense caregiving relationship can be difficult for everyone involved. Although the focus often is on the person with ALS, sometimes caregivers also need help dealing with their feelings and learning new skills, including how to ask for help from others, says Elizabeth Etigson, a licensed pr...

Research Roundup

Stem cells injected into spinal cord slow ALS progression in rats Nicholas Maragakis led a research team that found transplantation into the spinal cord of cells called glial-restricted precursors increased survival time and slowed disease progression in ALS rats. Scientists at Johns Hopkins...
Genes encased in adeno-associated virus (AAV) delivery vehicles are injected into muscle. From there they can travel through the nerve fiber to the nervous system. In a recently completed clinical trial for insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF1) in ALS, (see “Third IGF1 trial” ), investigators...

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