Avocational exposure associations with ALS risk, survival, and phenotype: A Michigan-based case-control study

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Affiliates Stephen A Goutman [1][2], Jonathan Boss [3], Dae-Gyu Jang [1][2], Caroline Piecuch [1], Hasan Farid [1], Madeline Batra [1], Bhramar Mukherjee [3], Eva L Feldman [1][2], Stuart Batterman [4]

 

1. Department of Neurology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI, USA
2. NeuroNetwork for Emerging Therapies, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI, USA
3. Department of Biostatistics, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI, USA
4. Department of Environmental Health Sciences, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI, USA

Journal Journal of the Neurological Sciences
Summary This study from the University of Michigan aimed to understand how hobbies and exercise contribute to amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) risk and phenotype. Participants with ALS and healthy controls from the University of Michigan completed surveys about their avocational activities. Risk factors for ALS included golfing, recreational dancing, gardening or yard work, personal or family participation in woodworking, and personal participation in hunting and shooting. However, no associations were found between hobbies/exercise and ALS survival or onset age. Those who reported swimming or weightlifting exercises five years prior to ALS onset had earlier onset ages. These findings suggest that hobbies and exercise could be important modifiable factors influencing ALS phenotype and should be considered in studies of the ALS exposome.
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