ALS one of the most common fatal neurodegenerative diseases to date among the adult population. Symptoms of ALS lead to the atrophy neuromuscular junctions, deterioration of upper and lower motor neurons in the nervous system, neuronal death, and eventually respiratory failure. Main genes discussed that are known to lead to ALS when mutated or disrupted include SOD-1, TARDBP, FUS, C9orf72. Glutamate excitotoxicity has also been linked to overstimulation of neurotransmitters in the brain causing complications that result in ALS. There are only two FDA approved drugs in the U.S. to treat symptoms ALS, one of them being the drug Riluzole. Since Riluzole did not go through all phases of clinical testing, due to its imminent need, there are still many unknowns about what effects it may have. Our experiment is testing for any effects of fatigue on mice by assessing their coordination and endurance after being administered a low (1mg/kg), moderate (5mg/kg), or high (10mg/kg) dose of Riluzole. Spatial memory, directional memory, recollection, and stereotypy-like movements were evaluated between males and females at control, low, moderate, and high dosages of Riluzole after i.p. injection using the Rotorod, wooden maze, and activity box apparatuses. Our hypothesis predicted that a higher dose of riluzole will produce more problems with spatial memory and recollection. When evaluating for stereotypy we predicted that females would conduct more time conducting repetitive movements. On the Rotorod apparatus, after our initial pilot study, we hypothesized that the higher dosage of Riluzole would cause the mice to have less coordination and therefore not run as long on the Rotorod.


ALS, Riluzole, SOD-1, Spatial Memory, Directional Memory, Fatigue

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Grace Rossi