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By Bryan C. Hains

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27 4 Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis One of the most important theoretical physicists of all time, Stephen Hawking, is an immobile captive, unable to move his body as a result of motor neuron disease. He has been confined to a wheelchair, unable to communicate except through a custom-made computer. Despite his illness, Hawking has made perhaps the most important contributions to our understanding of space and time since those of Albert Einstein. Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), a disease that affects parts of the nervous system that control voluntary motor activity, is responsible for his impairment.

Sodium channels are proteins located on the outer membrane of neurons that open and close during firing, allowing sodium ions to enter the neuron and cause it to fire, termed depolarization. 2 This artwork was done by a person with epilepsy to demonstrate the altered visual perception she experiences during a seizure. characteristics of electrical discharges. Different channels can have different physiological characteristics, and can play different roles in the electrical properties of excitable cells.

These are the most frequently observed muscle jerks associated with seizure. A combination seizure known as tonic-clonic also exists. Tonic-clonic activity is associated with a combination of effects: loss of consciousness, stiffening of the body, and falling, followed by jerking movements of the arms and legs. These seizures were formerly known as grand mal seizures. After a few minutes of activity, the body returns to rest, and consciousness returns. Finally, atonic seizures involve the sudden and temporary loss of voluntary muscle tone.

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