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:


(Date:5/3/2016)... , May 3, 2016  Neurotechnology, a ... the MegaMatcher Automated Biometric Identification System (ABIS) ... large-scale multi-biometric projects. MegaMatcher ABIS can process multiple ... using any combination of fingerprint, face or iris ... MegaMatcher SDK and MegaMatcher Accelerator , ...
(Date:4/28/2016)... April 28, 2016 First quarter 2016:   ... 966% compared with the first quarter of 2015 The ... 589.1 M (loss: 18.8) and the operating margin was 40% (-13) ... Cash flow from operations was SEK 249.9 M (21.2) ... guidance is unchanged, SEK 7,000-8,500 M. The operating margin ...
(Date:4/26/2016)... Research and Markets has announced ... 2016-2020"  report to their offering.  , ,     (Logo: ... analysts forecast the global multimodal biometrics market to ... period 2016-2020.  Multimodal biometrics is being ... the healthcare, BFSI, transportation, automotive, and government for ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/27/2016)... June 27, 2016  Liquid Biotech ... funding of a Sponsored Research Agreement with The ... cells (CTCs) from cancer patients.  The funding will ... levels correlate with clinical outcomes in cancer patients ... will then be employed to support the design ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... , ... While the majority of commercial spectrophotometers and fluorometers use the z-dimension ... are higher end machines that use the more unconventional z-dimension of 20mm. Z-dimension ... bottom of the cuvette holder. , FireflySci has developed several Agilent flow cell ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 23, 2016   Boston Biomedical , an ... designed to target cancer stemness pathways, announced that ... Orphan Drug Designation from the U.S. Food and ... cancer, including gastroesophageal junction (GEJ) cancer. Napabucasin is ... inhibit cancer stemness pathways by targeting STAT3, and ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... ... June 23, 2016 , ... ... (Yeast and Mold) microbial test has received AOAC Research Institute approval 061601. , ... tests introduced last year,” stated Bob Salter, Vice President of Regulatory and Industrial ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: