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The HEALEY ALS Platform Trial evaluates several treatments for ALS at the same time. It's the first clinical trial of its kind for ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. Led by Paul Twydell, DO, Spectrum Health is one of 54 sites to receive approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to proceed with administering several proposed drug regimens in the HEALEY ALS Platform Trial.
Dr. Twydell explained ALS in a recent radio interview on WGVU, “ALS is an unfortunate disease, caused by the degeneration of motor neurons in the brain and spinal cord. It causes painless progressive (muscle) weakness.” ALS is the most prevalent adult-onset progressive motor neuron disease, affecting approximately 30,000 people in the U.S. and an estimated 500,000 people worldwide.
Clinical research is the first step in exploring answers to the questions about medicine that we have today.
Spectrum Health is a regional leader in ALS care. Patients have access to a team of neurologists, social workers, nurses, rehabilitation specialists and researchers at the Spectrum Health ALS Clinic. The experimental treatments in the HEALEY ALS Platform Trial include Zilucoplan, a small macrocyclic peptide inhibitor of complement component 5 [C5], Verdiperstat, an oral myeloperoxidase inhibitor, and CNM-Au8 nanocrystalline gold, an intracellular nanocatalyst to support cellular bioenergetics.
The HEALEY ALS Platform Trial is a perpetual study that will continue to add interventions until we learn more about how to effectively treat ALS. This trial accelerates development of new therapies and gives ALS patients a greater chance of getting an experimental drug which might slow the progression of the disease.