Recent advances in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis research: Perspectives for personalized clinical application

Chen Benkler, Daniel Offen, Eldad Melamed, Lana Kupershmidt, Tamar Amit, Silvia Mandel, Moussa B.H. Youdim, Orly Weinreb

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Treatment of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) has been fueled, in part, by frustration over the shortcomings of the symptomatic drugs available, since these do not impede the progression of this disease. Currently, over 150 different potential therapeutic agents or strategies have been tested in preclinical models of ALS. Unfortunately, therapeutic modifiers of murine ALS have failed to be successfully translated into strategies for patients, probably because of differences in pharmacokinetics of the therapeutic agents, route of delivery, inefficiency of the agents to affect the distinct pathologies of the disease or inherent limitations of the available animal models. Given the multiplicity of the pathological mechanisms implicated in ALS, new therapies should consider the simultaneous manipulation of multiple targets. Additionally, a better management of ALS therapy should include understanding the interactions between potential risk factors, biomarkers and heterogeneous clinical features of the patients, aiming to manage their adverse events or personalize the safety profile of these agents. This review will discuss novel pharmacological approaches concerning adjusted therapy for ALS patients: iron-binding brain permeable multimodal compounds, genetic manipulation and cell-based treatment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)343-361
Number of pages19
JournalEPMA Journal
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 2010


  • Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis
  • Genetic manipulation
  • Iron chelating-multifunctional drugs
  • Neurotrophic factors
  • Personalized medicine
  • Stem cells


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