HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Penn study finds signs folic acid and Vitamin B12 may lessen some ill effects of SMA

NOTE: The text of this release was revised on 23 MAY 2001 at 12:00 ET US.

Scientist says clinical trials should test findings

Scientists have found evidence suggesting that the severity of spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) may be ameliorated by common vitamins.

The findings by researchers at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, which are to be published Thursday in the journal Molecular Cell, suggest that folic acid and Vitamins B12 may limit the severity of symptoms that afflict SMA patients.

"We are not suggesting that this is a cure. But it may help," said Gideon Dreyfuss, PhD, Isaac Norris Professor of Biochemistry and a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator at Penn, and principal author of the study. SMA afflicts one of every 6,000-to-10,000 people and is the leading genetic killer of children under the age of two. But its symptoms-muscle weakness and wasting-differ in severity from person to person across a range of debilitation that scientists still cannot explain fully.

Most SMA patients die in their infancy, but some SMA patients do not become wheel-chair bound before the age of 20, and still others can live relatively normally until late in life. Until now, this variability has been attributed to "genetic modifiers" but the present study raises the possibility that it is influenced, perhaps to a significant extent, by nutritional factors.

Individuals afflicted with SMA have a genetic deficiency in a protein called SMN (survival of motor neurons), which is a "housekeeping" protein required by all cells -- especially motor neurons, the nerve cells that control the activity of muscles. When the levels of the SMN protein are too low, motor neurons are the first cells to degenerate, in turn leaving the major muscle groups without the stimulation they need to be viable.

To perform its function, SMN interacts with numerous proteins in the cell, helping them create som
'"/>

Contact: Ellen O'Brien
ellen.obrien@uphs.upenn.edu
215-349-5659
University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine
24-May-2001


Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Student science contest participation influences study, career choices, alumni say
2. New study shows hope for treating inhalant abuse
3. International study findings link acne-like rash to effectiveness of new targeted cancer treatment
4. Cigarette smoke causes breaks in DNA and defects to a cells chromosomes, Pitt study finds
5. New study indicates arsenic could be suitable as first-line treatment in type of leukaemia
6. Phase II trials of second-generation antisense cancer drug planned following successful early study
7. Preclinical safety study shows adipose-derived stem cells improve heart function after heart attack
8. Indiana University, EPA to study airborne PCBs
9. K-State, other universities to study how climate affects plant evolution
10. USC study links historical increases in life span to lower childhood exposure to infection
11. Washington University in St. Louis leads group studying aging process

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
TAG: Penn study finds signs folic acid and Vitamin may lessen some ill effects SMA

(Date:10/17/2014)... . To date, ... overdoses, doctors are often limited to supportive therapy such as ... combination of drugs involved. So what can be done if ... ETH professor Jean-Christophe Leroux from the Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences ... question. "The task was to develop an agent that could ...
(Date:10/16/2014)... efficiently, they are anything but sustainable: environmental damage ... is becoming increasingly evident. Despite their disadvantages, however, ... regarded as the sole possibility of achieving higher ... Bernhard Schmid, an ecology professor at the University ... agriculture and forestry. After all, a new study ...
(Date:10/15/2014)... As our ability to assess the pandemic risk from ... developments, we must not allow ourselves to become complacent ... an international consortium of scientists. , Influenza pandemics arise ... have yet to develop widespread immunity – spreads in ... in the past 100 years, the worst of which ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):Emergency aid for overdoses 2Emergency aid for overdoses 3Plant communities produce greater yield than monocultures 2Plant communities produce greater yield than monocultures 3Scientists 'must not become complacent' when assessing pandemic threat from flu viruses 2
(Date:10/22/2014)... Involution Studios , a healthcare software ... infographic, Understanding Ebola . The goal of ... to follow informative tool for anyone wanting to know ... prevention. , "As the news has spread in all ... represents not only a healthcare crisis with global impact, ...
(Date:10/22/2014)... According to new market research report ... Integration, Deployment & Support), by Service Model (SaaS, ... Others (Hybrid & Community)) - Global Forecast to ... Cloud Professional Services Market into various sub-segments with ... also identifies the drivers and restraints for this ...
(Date:10/22/2014)... SAN DIEGO and HONG KONG ... an innovative rare disease therapeutics enterprise, announced today that ... joined the company as vice president, research. Dr. McKew ... research, including key leadership positions at the National Institutes ... to its acquisition by Wyeth). Dr. McKew will lead aTyr,s ...
(Date:10/20/2014)... , Oct. 20, 2014 /PRNewswire/ - BIOREM Inc. (TSXV: BRM) ("Biorem" ... which brings Q3 orders to $5.8 million and provides a good ... in North America and one in the ... bid new projects at record levels," said Peter Bruijns , ... at the end of Q3 than they have been for any ...
Breaking Biology Technology:Involution Studios' Ebola Infographic Provides Key Disease Information and Statistics at a Glance 2Cloud Professional Services Market by Public, Private, Hybrid & Community Expected to Reach $34.41 Billion by 2019 - New Report by MarketsandMarkets 2Cloud Professional Services Market by Public, Private, Hybrid & Community Expected to Reach $34.41 Billion by 2019 - New Report by MarketsandMarkets 3Cloud Professional Services Market by Public, Private, Hybrid & Community Expected to Reach $34.41 Billion by 2019 - New Report by MarketsandMarkets 4Cloud Professional Services Market by Public, Private, Hybrid & Community Expected to Reach $34.41 Billion by 2019 - New Report by MarketsandMarkets 5aTyr Pharma Appoints John C. McKew, Ph.D., as Vice President, Research 2aTyr Pharma Appoints John C. McKew, Ph.D., as Vice President, Research 3
Cached News: