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This Author: Eric Kandel
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ALS, SMA, and the Brain by Eric Kandel

ALS, SMA, and the Brain

by Eric Kandel

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53 Min.
This episode of the Brain Series focuses on two motor disorders: Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) and Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA). ALS is more commonly known as Lou Gehrig's disease in the United States. Baseball player Lou Gehrig developed this neurodegenerative disease at the height of his career, which forced him to retire at age 36 and led to his death a year later. On the Charlie Rose panel is another baseball player who has ALS, and he describes his experiences with the disease. Also on the panel is a boy who suffers from Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA), which is another disease that affects motor neurons and usually has its onset in the very early years of life. SMA is passed on through genes, while the causes of ALS are primarily unknown. Strides have been made in understanding and managing these diseases, but there are currently no known cures.


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