Masitinib may slow progression of ALS by reducing inflammation. A KIT tyrosine kinase inhibitor, masitinib appears to block mast cell-mediated degranulation, the release of cytotoxic substances that may further damage the motor nerves. Masitinib is also being evaluated to treat a wide-range of inflammatory diseases including multiple sclerosis. Mastinib is currently being used to treat certain cancers in dogs.
Originally introduced to control blood sugar levels in type 2 diabetics, metformin in more recent years grabbed ALS researchers’ attention due to its ability to combat inflammation. Metformin is also being developed as a treatment for Huntington’s disease and multiple sclerosis.
Mexiletine may help slow ALS by reducing the overactivity of motor neuronal sodium channels- a potential early step in the disease. An FDA approved heart medicine, mexiletine is currently being used to treat certain muscle diseases known as myotonias.
MoNuDin may protect motor neurons from dying by boosting their supplies of the neuroprotectant vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF). A lentiviral-based vector, MoNuDin delays disease onset and slows progression in mouse models of disease.
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