Healthy volunteers needed for ALS study

Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center’s Claire Flaherty-Craig, Ph.D., is studying whether people with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and frontotemporal lobar degeneration (FTLD), and people with FTLD without ALS have similar abilities to recognize facial expressions of emotion. Healthy participants between the ages of 40 and 80 are needed for this study.

FTLD represents a class of degenerative disorders that cause changes in individuals' thinking. There are three recognized subtypes of FTLD: a behavioral subtype called frontotemporal dementia and two language subtypes, called progressive nonfluent aphasia and semantic dementia.

ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease, is a rapidly progressing neurodegenerative disease. Some people with ALS may demonstrate changes in thinking that are similar to the three subtype of FTLD.

Eligible participants for this study will be 40 to 80 years old without a psychiatric history, neurological disease, learning disability, or cardiac condition.

Participants will complete four assessments that examine mood, facial emotional recognition, and visuospatial perception, and answer a brief demographic questionnaire. One visit is required to the General Clinical Research Center at Penn State Hershey.

For more information, call Christina Savage, at 717-531-1804.

This research study, IRB 32957, has been approved by the Institutional Review Board, under federal regulations at Penn State Hershey Medical Center, Penn State College of Medicine.

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Last Updated April 22, 2010