Genetic Mutation Could Worsen Heart Function in Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy Patients

DALLAS – Nov. 4, 2020 – A mutation in the gene that causes cystic fibrosis may accelerate heart function decline in those with Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), a new study by UT Southwestern researchers suggests. The findings, published online recently in the Journal of the American Heart Association, could help doctors develop new strategies to preserve heart function in this population, potentially extending patients’ lives.

Read more

Harrington Discovery Institute Announces Award Recipients in New UK Rare Disease Program

Announcement of the 2021 Harrington UK Rare Disease Scholar Award recipients, their organizations and fields of research:

Pietro Fratta, MD, PhD – University College London
Gene Therapy for Kennedy’s Disease, a rare neuromuscular disease

Angela Russell, DPhil – University of Oxford
New Drugs for the Treatment of Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy

Helen Waller-Evans, DPhil – Cardiff University
Novel Inhibitors to Treat Multiple Lysomal Storage Disorders, causes of widespread organ damage

Wyatt Yue, PhD – University of Oxford
Inhibitors of Primary Hyperoxaluria, a cause of kidney failure

Haiyan Zhou, MD, PhD – University College London
Novel Therapy for SPTLC1-Related Hereditary Sensory Neuropathy, a cause of shooting pain

Read more

Scientists uncover a novel approach to treating Duchenne muscular dystrophy

Scientists at Sanford Burnham Prebys, Fondazione Santa Lucia IRCCS, and Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore in Rome have shown that pharmacological (drug) correction of the content of extracellular vesicles released within dystrophic muscles can restore their ability to regenerate muscle and prevent muscle scarring. The study, published in EMBO Reports, reveals a promising new therapeutic approach for Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), an incurable muscle-wasting condition.

Read more

Encouraging First Report of Systemic Delivery of Micro-dystrophin Gene Therapy in Children with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy

Researchers from Nationwide Children’s Hospital have published in JAMA Neurology results from the first four patients treated in the first clinical trial of systemic delivery of micro-dystrophin gene therapy in children with Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) – and initial findings suggest that the therapy can provide functional improvement that is greater than that observed under the standard of care.

Read more

Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy Diagnosis Improved by Simple Accelerometers

Testing for Duchenne muscular dystrophy can require specialized equipment, invasive procedures and high expense, but measuring changes in muscle function and identifying compensatory walking gait could lead to earlier detection. This week in Chaos, researchers present a relative coupling coefficient, which can be used to quantify the factors involved in the human gait and more accurately screen for the disorder. They measured movements of different parts of the body in test subjects, viewing the body as a kinematic chain.

Read more