Scientists have revealed they are a step closer to being able to reverse the damage caused by motor neurone disease (MND).
The former Scotland international, whose charity the My Name’5 Doddie Foundation has raised more than £5m for MND research, described it as “a very exciting breakthrough”.
University of Edinburgh experts have found a problem with MND patients’ nerve cells which could be repaired by repurposing drugs approved for other diseases.
“When we did that, we found that all of the issues significantly reversed back to normal,” said Dr Arpan Mehta, who led the research for his PhD.
More than 1,500 people are diagnosed with the degenerative condition in the UK every year.
Motor neurone disease (MND) sees muscles waste away after a loss of nerve cells that control movement, speech and breathing.
The study was funded by the Medical Research Council, Motor Neurone Disease Association, Euan MacDonald Centre for MND Research, My Name’5 Doddie Foundation, UK Dementia Research Institute and the Anne Rowling Regenerative Neurology Clinic.
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LIST | 8 Great Doddie Weir moments: An absolute LEGEND
Doddie Weir was a giant in the world of Scottish rugby, in more ways than one.
Here are eight of our favourite Doddie moments from down the years:
1. Hard as nails
We will start off by heading back to 1999. The Scotland lock, was representing the Barbarians against Leicester Tigers at Twickenham, took a huge punch to the chin from rugby hard man Martin Johnson.
Of course, he didn’t go down!
2. His only Championship try
Weir scored just once in the Five Nations – this try against Ireland in the course of a powerful Scotland victory in Edinburgh in 1997 – and he beat four would-be Irish tacklers in doing so!