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IN VITRO AND IN VIVO MODELS OF AMYOTROPHIC LATERAL SCLEROSIS: AN UPDATED OVERVIEW

Auderlan M Gois, Deise M F Mendonça, Marco Aurelio M Freire, Jose R Santos
Brain Research Bulletin 2020 April 2
32247802
Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) is a progressive, neurodegenerative disease characterized by loss of upper motor neurons (UMN) and lower motor neurons (LMN). Disease affects people all over the world and is more prevalent in men. Patients with ALS develop extensive muscle wasting, paralysis and ultimately death, with a median survival of usually fewer than five years after disease onset. ALS may be sporadic (sALS, 90%) or familial (fALS, 10%). The large majority of fALS cases are associated with genetic alterations, which are mainly related to the genes SOD1, TDP-43, FUS, and C9ORF72. In vitro and in vivo models have helped elucidate ALS etiology and pathogenesis, as well as its molecular, cellular, and physiological mechanisms. Many studies in cell cultures and animal models, such as Caenorhabditis elegans, Drosophila melanogaster, zebrafish, rodents, and non-human primates have been performed to clarify the relationship of these genes to ALS disease. However, there are inherent limitations to consider when using experimental models. In this review, we provide an updated overview of the most used in vitro and in vivo studies that have contributed to a better understanding of the different ALS pathogenic mechanisms.

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