Dear Anon …..You recently asked a question about whether Team G had thought about alpha-Lipoic Acid (ALA) as a treatment for progressive MS..
Although we could look at the nerve saving potential in animal models, given this extensive literature the value of repeating such a study is within the laws of diminishing returns . We would find it difficult to publish as the reviewers response would be what’s new. Lack of originality is a good way to reject scientific publications.
The effective animal dose is about more than 50mg/kg which would be about 3-4g for humans. This is without the mouse metabolism factor, which normally increases the dose required for human activity about 12 times, because of the high metabolism of a mouse. However it is claimed that the 50mg/kg dose is actually equivalent to a 1.2g human dose, which is surprising but lets take that as read on face value.
However ,another reason for giving this a wide berth is that someone else is doing the work and they are apparently doing clinical studies (we can’t do every thing). There has already been some preliminary work in MSers and you may be interested to know that there are two clinical trials that appear to be recruiting at the moment in Portland Oregon, USA
Lipoic Acid as a Treatment for Acute Optic Neuritis
ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT01294176
Estimated Enrollment: 54
Study Start Date: January 2011
Estimated Study Completion Date: March 2013
Lipoic Acid for Secondary Progressive Multiple Sclerosis (MS)
ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT01188811
Estimated Enrollment: 56
Study Start Date: October 2010
Estimated Study Completion Date: October 2015
However, the fact that other people are investing time and energy into to doing things you have found by your research shows that MSers can have great ideas too.
However, logic says let’s see what these guys show. It would take us ages to get anything going even if we had the motivation to do it.. However I think with 56 participants, the study will be hopelessly underpowered (too few people to show a meaningful effect) such that if anything comes from this you may see a trend that will demand further studies. This is sort of why we need pharma on board to do studies that are powered to give a yes or no-go answer without wasting years doing little trials and repeating them.
Maybe one could think of mixing a nutricuetical with a pharmaceutical drug, but in the current climate pharma, is not receptive to this idea of multi-drug combinations. We are sure that in the future best practise will mean a cocktail of drugs.
The above post is an actual question posed……..we thought, deliberated, researched and responded...it may be slow it may be quick and it may lead to new avenues of research for us.