Repurposing of malaria drug to halt ALS disease progression

Written by Frances Adlam

Researchers from the Hospital for Special Surgery (NY, USA) and other centres have discovered that pyrimethamine, a drug orignally used to treat malaria, lowers the levels of a biomarker linked to the inherited form of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). The results, recently published in Annals of Neurology, suggest pyrimethamine could be useful in treating ALS. ALS is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that over time leaves patients unable to initiate and control muscle movement. The cause of the disease is unknown; however, 3–23% of patients with the inherited form have a mutation in the SOD1 gene. Previous studies have demonstrated that...

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