Huntington’s disease research news. In plain language. Written by scientists. For the global HD community.

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Sorry folks, the PRIDE-HD trial did NOT show that Pridopidine slows the progression of Huntington's disease

Sorry folks, the PRIDE-HD trial did NOT show that Pridopidine slows the progression of Huntington's disease

Dr Jeff Carroll on September 30, 2016

A recent press release from Teva Pharmaceuticals has the HD community excited, claiming "Pridopidine Demonstrates Slowing of Progression of Huntington Disease in PRIDE-HD Study". What's pridopidine, and what can we really say about HD progression in patients treated with it?

Latest news

EuroBuzz 2016: The Euro-HD Network Meeting in The Hague

EuroBuzz 2016: The Euro-HD Network Meeting in The Hague

Dr Jeff Carroll on September 23, 2016

Here's our roundup of all the science presented at the 2016 European Huntington's Disease Network biennial meeting - one of the biggest meetings of Huntingtons Disease families, scientists and care professionals.

Ultra-rare mutations highlight the importance of the HD gene in brain development

Ultra-rare mutations highlight the importance of the HD gene in brain development

Megan Krench on August 29, 2016

A relatively new technology called exome sequencing has identified a few families with novel mutations in their HD genes. These are different than the mutation that causes HD, but allow researchers to better understand the normal role of the HD gene.

Deutetrabenazine for Huntington's disease: a positive trial but the FDA says no? Not exactly...

Deutetrabenazine for Huntington's disease: a positive trial but the FDA says no? Not exactly...

Dr Peter McColgan on August 17, 2016

A scientific paper declares positive results for a trial of deutetrabenazine in Huntington's disease, but the headlines report the FDA has rejected the drug. Confusing stuff! The reality is positive overall for this new way of treating uncontrollable movements in HD, but patience will be needed to see where it all ends up.

A support system gone wrong - glial cells contribute to HD symptoms

A support system gone wrong - glial cells contribute to HD symptoms

Dr Jackie Johnson on August 02, 2016

A new piece of research has implicated a type of brain cells called glia in the development of HD symptoms. Regular mice injected with glial cells carrying the mutant huntingtin gene in the study developed symptoms associated with HD. Interestingly, this influence appears to work both ways — a mild reduction in disease symptoms was seen when HD mice were treated with normal glial cells.

Slightly long CAG repeats are more common than we thought

Slightly long CAG repeats are more common than we thought

Dr Jeff Carroll on July 05, 2016

Everyone with Huntington's disease has inherited the same type of mutation from their mother or father, an extra-long repetitive stretch of the sequence C-A-G in their HD gene. But the length of the mutation varies between individuals, and longer repeats are associated with earlier onset of symptoms. A huge new international study reveals that slightly longer-than-normal CAG stretches are much more common than we thought. Surprisingly, this turns out to be good news.

Early exposure to the HD protein may cause life-long symptoms

Early exposure to the HD protein may cause life-long symptoms

Mr. Shawn Minnig on June 28, 2016

When the ‘healthy’ HD gene functions as it should, one of its many jobs is in the development of normal embryos. Researchers have long assumed that the ‘mutant’ HD gene inherited by people with HD is still able to do this job, since HD patients develop normally and don’t show signs until later in life. A surprising new finding suggests we may have to think carefully about this assumption!

Electron beam snaps best images yet of Huntington's disease protein

Electron beam snaps best images yet of Huntington's disease protein

Tom Peskett on June 21, 2016

Figuring out the shape of a protein can help scientists understand how it works and what goes wrong in disease. Huntingtin, the protein that causes Huntington's disease, has been an elusive target. A recent study using electron microscopes offers a striking glimpse of huntingtin, paving the way for future work.

Planting trees together: The 2016 Huntington's Disease Society of America Convention

Planting trees together: The 2016 Huntington's Disease Society of America Convention

Dr Jeff Carroll on June 13, 2016

Nearly a thousand HD family members converged on Baltimore, Maryland for the 2016 Huntington’s Disease Society of America’s Annual Convention. We normally don’t write reports from patient and family conferences, but there was something special about the atmosphere of this year’s Convention that compelled us to pen a brief update.

Huntingtin takes a trip: harmful proteins pass between brain cells

Huntingtin takes a trip: harmful proteins pass between brain cells

Leora Fox on June 06, 2016

Clumps of mutant huntingtin protein in brain cells are a hallmark of HD, and they build up slowly, occupying more and more cells over time. Recent research in mice shows that the harmful proteins can travel between neurons, setting off a chain reaction that leads to more sick cells and the development of symptoms.