by Marcia Goodrich
Researcher discovers genes linked to Lou Gehrig's disease
He had amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), commonly known as Lou Gehrig's disease. It would creep though his body, the doctors said, slowly destroying the nerves in his brain and spinal cord that control voluntary movement. Eventually he would become paralyzed, unable to move or speak.
Faced with such a sentence, Zhang did not try to fill his remaining able-bodied days with skydiving, safaris, or a visit to the pyramids. The one item on his bucket list was his work. He resolved to enlist his intellect in the war against ALS.
Zhang is a statistical geneticist and the Henes Chair Professor in Mathematical Sciences. Along with his wife, Qiuying Sha, an assistant professor of mathematical sciences, and other members of his research team . . .