Lou Gehrig’s Disease Studied by Veterinarians May Elucidate Understanding of Human Illness Dr. Ann Hohenhaus, a veterinarian, explains how “comparative medicine” studies engaging collaborative interdisciplinary cooperation (i.e. the “One Health approach”) may help medical health scientists better understand and identify important aspects of a serious human disease process using a dog model.  Lou Gehrig’s disease (ALS) is just one example of many! *Please read and  *Originally posted on, where veterinarians, trainers and pet experts share the most trusted, authoritative information on the web. “Veterinary medical researchers are studying a dog model of Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) using pet dogs with a naturally occurring disease similar to ALS, called degenerative myelopathy.  The strength of degenerative myelopathy (DM) as a model of ALS lies in the many corollaries between the human and canine diseases.  Both are rapidly progressive disorders of the adult, have a similar distribution within the nervous system and most recently a genetic mutation in the superoxide dismutase gene, SOD-1, important in ALS, has also been found and characterized in dogs with degenerative myelopathy.  Beyond those similarities, the pet dog as a disease model has some intrinsic features distinguishing it from in vitro and rodent ALS models. Because pet dogs have superior cognitive ability compared to rodents and because pet dogs are not laboratory animals, but share the human environment, information derived from the study of pet dogs with DM provides a complimentary, yet equally important insight into ALS than is gained from by laboratory studies of ALS.”   Ann E. Hohenhaus, DVM Diplomate ACVIM (Oncology & Small Animal Internal Medicine) Certified Veterinary Journalist The Animal Medical Center 510 East 62nd Street New York, NY 10065 (212) 329-8612  Dr. Hohenhaus is a One Health supporter/advocate  Also see: Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) Fact Sheet (U.S. National Institutes of Health) Loss of ALS-Related TDP-43 Protein Causes Disease in Animal Model (ALS Association)