Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, more commonly known as ALS, is a progressive neurodegenerative disease in the central nervous system that impacts the brain and spinal cord, resulting in a loss of muscle control.
It is colloquially referred to as Lou Gehrig’s Disease, after the famous baseball player who battled it in the late 1930s, and does not yet have a cure. To better understand the language of ALS, the ALS Glossary below provides definitions for research terms commonly used by our Innovation Ecosystem and the extended ALS community.
Temporary paralysis of facial muscles that causes one side of the face to droop. Occurs after a condition (usually a virus) causes inflammation and swelling of the nerve that controls facial muscles. Most people with Bell's palsy recover without treatment.
A substance, biological structure, or biological process that can be measured in the body that informs and/or predicts the incidence and/or outcome of disease. It may also inform on whether a therapy is working. Three types of biomarkers: diagnostic, prognostic, and pharmacodynamic. Current ALS research–including that funded by Target ALS–is focused on biomarker discovery.
Quicker or above-average responses to tendon reflex tests.
bulbar onset ALS
ALS cases in which the initial symptoms involve difficulty in speaking or swallowing.