Metabolon Extends Biochemical Understanding of Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS)

RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Metabolon, Inc., a diagnostics and services company offering the industry’s leading biochemical profiling technology, announces the publication of “Biochemical Alterations Associated with ALS” in the journal Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis. The paper describes the use of global metabolomics to identify biochemical changes underlying ALS and was carried out as a collaboration by scientists in Dr. Merit Cudkowicz’s laboratory at Massachusetts General Hospital, Dr. Robert Bowser at the University of Pittsburgh and Metabolon scientists. The Northeastern ALS consortium (NEALS) provided samples for the study.

ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease, is a devastating and fatal neurodegenerative disorder characterized by motor neuron loss which results in progressive muscle wasting and weakness. A firm understanding of the cause of ALS remains elusive. Currently, diagnostic tests and reliable biomarkers of disease onset or progression are unavailable.

The objective of the study was to identify metabolic pathways affected by ALS which could become the basis for the identification of diagnostic biomarkers and targets for drug development. Using global metabolic profiling, metabolic signatures of ALS were observed in biochemical pathways previously associated with proposed disease mechanisms in ALS as well as in biochemical pathways suggestive of hepatic involvement. The reported results provide insight into the pathophysiology of ALS and suggest promising areas of focus for future studies.

“The ALS disease mechanisms identified in this work have the potential to lead to novel diagnostic biomarkers as well as for the development of biochemical targets for ALS therapies,” stated Dr. James Berry, the corresponding author of the report.

Copies of the paper can be accessed through the Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis link:

About Metabolon

Metabolon, Inc. has advanced the field of metabolomics by pioneering and patenting the industry’s leading biochemical biomarker discovery and profiling platform. It has developed the technology to quickly identify and measure all of the biochemicals in a biological sample through its proprietary global processing method. Through the generation and interpretation of data, this method provides a precise understanding of disease etiology and drug action, and advances personalized medicine beyond what genomics and other approaches can promise. Metabolon’s expertise is being embraced by a wide range of pharmaceutical, biotechnology, food and agricultural companies. Metabolytics, its biomarker discovery and analysis business, has completed over 320 client studies and processed over 30,000 samples for customers in 2010 alone. Building on its expertise in biochemistry understanding, Metabolon is also developing proprietary diagnostic tests to determine and track disease progression. For more information about Metabolon, please visit or contact Matt Zaske at [email protected] or 919-595-2200.


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