Way back last month, I wrote about a protein known as Dystrophin that was lacking in those with Duchenne and how researchers had found a way to produce more of this protein to help those with the disease. Well, even more good news is occurring as researchers have now identified a protein known as Biglycan. This protein stabilizes synapses at the neuromuscular junction between muscle and bone. This helps us control movement as well as ensure the health of motor neurons and muscles alike.
The way this relates to Dystrophin is that Biglycan promotes Utrophin which takes over for Dystrophin. Therefore, both promoting Dystrophin and also Utrophin can be a double pronged attack that could someday lead to the end of Duchenne and other types of muscular dystrophy.
Another role of Biglycan is that it binds and targets an receptor enzyme known as MuSK that regulates the building and stability of the neuromuscular junction.
This should lead to testing on animal models in the near future; a necessary precursor to human trials.
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