Research participant's arm in a machine designed for motor impairment study

Motor Impairment

RESEARCH CENTRE

Motor Impairment is a major cause of physical disability and includes muscle weakness and fatigue, impaired sensation and poor balance, and muscle contracture and spasticity – all of which need to work if we are to undertake the usual range of daily activities.

The goals of our five-year (2014-2018), NHMRC-funded Motor Impairment Program are to better understand the pathophysiology of motor impairment, to implement interventions and to drive enhanced clinical practice.

 

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FEEL THE BUZZ IN THE AIR? US TOO.

‘Progressive. Incurable. Terminal. Nothing matters… I am going to die.’

‘There are days that I just cry like a baby. I’m meant to be the provider, the strong one. No son should have to change the underwear of their 57 year old father.’ Shin Liu is a man you want to know... kind, articulate and with love in his heart. At 57 years old however, Shin has planned his funeral. Two years ago, Shin was diagnosed with motor neurone disease (MND). Unlike many cancers or heart disease, there is not a single thing the medical profession can do to stop MND. This excruciating disease twists and contorts the human body in the most horrific way, and it quickly destroys the ability to move, speak, swallow and breathe. Life expectancy post diagnosis is 2.5 years. But NeuRA researchers are making exciting progress toward it's defeat. After years of meticulous research, we've learnt that in more than 90% of MND cases a protein called TDP-43 is responsible for the changes in motor neurones. In pre-clinical (non-human) trials, we have found that this protein can be controlled by a specially engineered peptide sequence (i.e. medication) which has the potential to stop MND in its tracks. But here is the most exciting development… we are observing improvements in movement, behaviour and memory upon administering this medication! This is innovative, ground-breaking research and we need your help to accelerate this research, which will in time enable clinical trials in people living with MND. Will you support or research today?
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