Frederick Arnold, PhD

Project Title: “Alternative polyadenylation in the etiology and pathogenesis of ALS”

ALS is a fatal neurodegenerative disorder caused by progressive loss of motor neurons in the cortex, brainstem, and spinal cord. Most ALS cases (~90%) are “sporadic” (SALS), which means that they are caused by complex, ill-defined interactions between genetic and environmental risk factors. There are still no effective treatments for SALS.

Dr. Arnold’s research will identify new genetic risk factors for ALS, which is crucial information needed to develop effective treatments for SALS. The ultimate goal of ALS therapy development is to slow the progression of the disease, and the most promising ALS clinical trials to date are those that target specific genetic forms of ALS, utilizing gene therapies. By identifying new genetic risk factors for ALS, researchers may be able to rapidly expand the number of ALS patients for whom disease-modifying treatments will be available.

Dr. Arnold is a postdoctoral scholar at the University of California, Irvine.

This research is funded by The ALS Association and American Brain Foundation, in collaboration with the American Academy of Neurology.