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Study Examines ALS Incidence Among American Indians, Alaska Natives

JAMA Neurology Study Highlights

A study by Paul H. Gordon, M.D., Ph.D., of the Indian Health Service, and colleagues analyzed electronic records for and Alaska natives (AI/ANs) with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis () and separately from 2002-2009 to estimate the of the diseases. (Online First)

A total of 71 AI/ANs were diagnosed with ALS, yielding an average annual of 0.63 cases per 100,000 and age-adjusted incidence of 0.92 per 100,000. The crude and age-adjusted incidence rates for motor neuron disease were 1.08 and 1.50 per 100,000, respectively, according to the results.

“The incidence of ALS among AI/ANs appears to be lower than that reported for white populations, a finding congruent with reports of other minority populations. Community-based studies are important to confirm these findings and to examine reasons for the low rate of ALS among AI/ANs,” the study concludes.


JAMA Neurol. Published online , 2013. doi:10.1001/.jamaneurol.2013.929.