Although it’s not a cure for ALS, an oral drug slowed patients’ rate of functional decline in a clinical trial that included five patients at UT Health San Antonio. If the finding is repeated in larger trials, the drug could give families more time with their loved ones who have ALS.
The New England Journal of Medicine published the results Sept. 3.
Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a neurodegenerative disease for which there is no cure. Many patients die within two to three years of the onset of symptoms. Study co-author Carlayne Jackson, MD, director of the National ALS Association Center of Excellence at UT Health San Antonio, said other than a couple of symptom-treatment studies, this clinical trial is “the first we’ve been involved with that has shown a statistically significant benefit for ALS patients.”