Peripheral neuropathy describes damage to the peripheral nervous system, which transmits information from the brain and spinal cord to every other part of the body.
More than 100 types of peripheral neuropathy have been identified, each with its own characteristic set of symptoms, pattern of development, and prognosis. Impaired function and symptoms depend on the type of nerves -- motor, sensory, or autonomic -- that are damaged. Some people may experience temporary numbness, tingling, and pricking sensations, sensitivity to touch, or muscle weakness. Others may suffer more extreme symptoms, including burning pain (especially at night), muscle wasting, paralysis, or organ or gland dysfunction. Peripheral neuropathy may be either inherited or acquired. Causes of acquired peripheral neuropathy include physical injury (trauma) to a nerve, tumors, toxins, autoimmune responses, nutritional deficiencies, alcoholism, and vascular and metabolic disorders. Acquired peripheral neuropathies are caused by systemic disease, trauma from external agents, or infections or autoimmune disorders affecting nerve tissue. Inherited forms of peripheral neuropathy are caused by inborn mistakes in the genetic code or by new genetic mutations.
Researchers at IRB Barcelona, the University of Barcelona (UB), VIMM, and the University of Padua unveil the key role of Mitofusin 2 cellular makeup in interconnecting organelles within cells.
A genetic mutation in the SPTSSA gene is identified as the cause of Hereditary Spastic Paraplegia, a rare disease that causes progressive weakness, stiffness and spasticity in the lower extremities, according to a study, "SPTSSA variants alter sphingolipid synthesis and cause a complex hereditary spastic paraplegia," published in Brain on on Jan. 30.