Cell recycling study raises possibility of new approach to treating ALS

How cells recycle waste, an essential process to cellular health known to go astray in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and other diseases, is more complex and interrelated than previously thought, researchers at the Neuromed Institute in Italy report.

Their study, “The Autophagoproteasome a Novel Cell Clearing Organelle in Baseline and Stimulated Conditions,” published in frontiers in Neuroanatomy, provides a better understand of the cellular recycling process and potential insights into how cellular dysfunctions in ALS and other diseases work.

Researchers found that what was thought to be two cellular separate processes is really two parts of one process, converging in what is known as an organelle. This small difference may be crucial. A normal, everyday cell process called autophagy is a cleaning mechanism by which the dysfunctional or no longer necessary components of a cell are removed. When this mechanism fails, it can lead to a number of pathologies, especially neurodegenerative diseases that result from the accumulation and non-clearance of harmful abnormal proteins, cancer and cardiovascular disease.

excerpt © 2016 ALS News Today