Drug that stops ALS progression found using iPS cells from patients - (The Japan Times via NewsPoints Desk)

  • Researchers at Kyoto University said a drug discovered through a method using iPS cells from people with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) was effective in stopping the progression of the disease in five out of nine patients, The Japan Times reported.

  • According to the research team, this is the first time that a chronic myeloid leukemia drug known as bosutinib has been found to stop the progression of ALS.

  • Haruhisa Inoue, who led the team, said larger clinical trials will be needed to determine if the drug can be put to practical use.

  • The drug was administered for about three months to nine patients who were in the early stages of the disease and showing signs of deterioration. Progression of the disease stopped in five patients, while four patients continued to deteriorate at the same pace as before.

  • A comparison of blood samples from both sets of patients showed they had differing amounts of a protein unique to nerve cells before the therapy was administered. 

  • The researchers plan to conduct clinical trials with larger groups while adjusting the dosage and other conditions in the future.

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