A member asked:

What is lou gehrig disease caused by?

2 doctors weighed in across 2 answers

Most are sporadic: While most cases of lou gehrigs disease do not have a known cause ("sporadic als"), approximately 5% of cases do run in families ("familial als"). There have been many proposed risk factors for developing sporadic als, but no clear smoking gun has been found to date.

Answered 8/13/2012

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Do not know cause: A small percentage of cases are genetic or associated with frontotemporal dementias. Sporadic ALS is a disease associated with a misfolded protein, cooper/zinc superoxide dysmutase, but not fully clear why this happens, the drug Riluzole may be a clue, as it affects glutamate, and maybe here is one possible pathway for investigation.

Answered 9/28/2016

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