Can we stop MS and ALS? | Michael C. Levin | TEDxUniversityofSaskatchewan | Summary and Q&A

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March 5, 2024
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Can we stop MS and ALS? | Michael C. Levin | TEDxUniversityofSaskatchewan

TL;DR

Nerve cells in people with MS and ALS become sick and injured due to the malfunction of protein A1. Medications can prevent nerve cell loss and promote regeneration, potentially leading to improved symptoms.

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Questions & Answers

Q: How do nerve cells work in the body?

Nerve cells send signals from the brain to different parts of the body, allowing for movement. In people with MS, nerve cells become sick, leading to difficulties in movement.

Q: Can MS be cured?

While MS cannot be cured, medications that target the malfunctioning protein A1 in nerve cells can prevent further damage and promote nerve cell regeneration, potentially improving symptoms.

Q: What are the symptoms of MS?

Symptoms of MS include blurred vision, numbness or paralysis in the legs, acute bouts of pain, decreased quality of life, trouble with employment, difficulty with intimacy, and mobility issues.

Q: How do the medications developed for MS work?

The medications target the abnormality of protein A1 in nerve cells. By restoring its function to the nucleus, these medications can prevent nerve cell loss and promote nerve cell regeneration, potentially improving symptoms.

Summary & Key Takeaways

  • Nerve cells in the brain send signals to the spinal cord and other parts of the body, allowing for movement. In people with multiple sclerosis (MS), these nerve cells become sick and it becomes difficult to perform basic movements like wiggling toes.

  • The discovery of protein A1 and its abnormality in people with MS led to the development of medications that can restore normal function to nerve cells and promote nerve cell regeneration.

  • The same medications may also be effective in treating other neurologic diseases like ALS, where A1 is also abnormal.

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