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Mississauga, Canada

Pandya R.S.,Harvard University | Mao L.L.J.,Pharma Medica Research Inc | Zhou E.W.,Harvard University | Bowser R.,Barrow Neurological Institute | And 3 more authors.
Central Nervous System Agents in Medicinal Chemistry | Year: 2012

Various molecular mechanisms including apoptosis, inflammation, oxidative stress, mitochondrial dysfunction and excitotoxicity have been implicated in the pathogenesis of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), though the exact mechanisms have yet to be specified. Furthermore, the underlying restorative molecular mechanisms resulting in neuronal and/or non-neuronal regeneration have to be yet elucidated. Therapeutic agents targeting one or more of these mechanisms to combat either initiation or progression of the disease are under research. Novel treatments including stem cell therapy, growth factors, and gene therapy might prolong survival and delay progression of symptoms. Harnessing the regenerative potential of the central nervous system would be a novel approach for the treatment of motor neuron death resulting from ALS. Endogenous neural replacement, if augmented with administration of exogenous growth factors or with pharmaceuticals that increase the rate of neural progenitor formation, neural migration, and neural maturation could slow the rate of cell loss enough to result in clinical improvement. In this review, we discuss the impact of therapeutic treatment involving stem cell therapy, growth factors, gene therapy, and combination therapy on disease onset and progression of ALS. In addition, we summarize human clinical trials of stem cell therapy, growth factor therapy, and gene therapy in individuals with ALS. © 2012 Bentham Science Publishers. Source

Pandya R.S.,Harvard University | Mao L.,Pharma Medica Research Inc | Zhou H.,Harvard University | Zhou H.,University of Sichuan | And 4 more authors.
Central Nervous System Agents in Medicinal Chemistry | Year: 2011

Stroke is the third leading cause of mortality and disability in the United States. Ischemic stroke constitutes 85% of all stroke cases. However, no effective treatment has been found to prevent damage to the brain in such cases except tissue plasminogen activator with narrow therapeutic window, and there is an unmet need to develop therapeutics for neuroprotection from ischemic stroke. Studies have shown that mechanisms including apoptosis, necrosis, inflammation, immune modulation, and oxidative stress and mediators such as excitatory amino acids, nitric oxide, inflammatory mediators, neurotransmitters, reactive oxygen species, and withdrawal of trophic factors may lead to the development of the ischemic cascade. Hence, it is essential to develop neuroprotective agents targeting either the mechanisms or the mediators leading to development of ischemic stroke. This review focuses on central nervous system agents targeting these biochemical pathways and mediators of ischemic stroke, mainly those that counteract apoptosis, inflammation, and oxidation, and well as glutamate inhibitors which have been shown to provide neuroprotection in experimental animals. All these agents have been shown to improve neurological outcome after ischemic insult in experimental animals in vivo, organotypic brain slice/acute slice ex vivo, and cell cultures in vitro and may therefore aid in preventing long-term morbidity and mortality associated with ischemic stroke. © 2011 Bentham Science Publishers Ltd. Source

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