In the June 29 Neurology, researchers report results of the Phase II clinical trial in ALS of NSI-566, human spinal cord-derived neural stem cells developed by Neuralstem, Inc. (see March 2015 news). In an open-label, dose-escalation study of 15 patients who received bilateral cervical spinal cord injections, including a subset who also received lumbar spinal cord injections, the treatment appeared safe and well-tolerated, with adverse events mostly linked to the surgery and immunosupressant medications. Although the rate of disease progression did not differ between the small group of treated patients and historical controls, larger studies will be needed to evaluate efficacy of the treatment in ALS.
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Glass JD, Hertzberg VS, Boulis NM, Riley J, Polak M, Bordeau J, Fournier C, Johe K, Hazel T, Cudkowicz M, Atassi N, Borges LF, Rutkove SB, Duell J, Patil PG, Goutman SA, Feldman EL. Transplantation of spinal cord-derived neural stem cells for ALS: Analysis of phase 1 and 2 trials. Neurology. 2016 Jun 29. [Pubmed].