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BioMed Research International
Volume 2014 (2014), Article ID 925101, 12 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2014/925101
Review Article

Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis: A Focus on Disease Progression

1LAGENBIO-I3A, Veterinary Faculty of Zaragoza, Aragonese Institute of Health Sciences (IACS), University of Zaragoza, Miguel Servet 177, 50013 Zaragoza, Spain
2Laboratory of Neurobiology of Degenerative Diseases of the Nervous System, Biosciences Department, Federal University of Sergipe, Avenida Vereador Olimpio Grande, s/n, Centro, 49500-000 Itabaiana, SE, Brazil

Received 22 February 2014; Accepted 28 April 2014; Published 3 August 2014

Academic Editor: Pierre-François Pradat

Copyright © 2014 Ana C. Calvo et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Since amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) was discovered and described in 1869 as a neurodegenerative disease in which motor neuron death is induced, a wide range of biomarkers have been selected to identify therapeutic targets. ALS shares altered molecular pathways with other neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer’s, Huntington’s, and Parkinson’s diseases. However, the molecular targets that directly influence its aggressive nature remain unknown. What is the first link in the neurodegenerative chain of ALS that makes this disease so peculiar? In this review, we will discuss the progression of the disease from the viewpoint of the potential biomarkers described to date in human and animal model samples. Finally, we will consider potential therapeutic strategies for ALS treatment and future, innovative perspectives.