Ozone therapy has possible mechanisms for treating ALS. A preclinical study in very small numbers of mTDP43 mice (which has yet to be peerreviewed) suggested benefits on motor function and survival (21,22); however, these benefits were not seen in mSOD1 mice (20). One verified “ALS reversal” occurred on a cocktail of alternative therapies including ozone (24); an association such as this does not prove causality. There have been no trials of ozone therapy in PALS. There may be potentially serious side effects associated with ozone therapy, depending on the dose (31). Based on all this, we support further investigation of ozone therapy in ALS cell or animal models, but we cannot yet recommend it as an ALS treatment.
Risks (harms that occurred on this treatment)
There is a theorized association between MAP and ALS, and two published case reports described improvements in ALS-like conditions (both with atypical features) after treatment with antimycobacterial antibiotics. Based on these, we believe it would be reasonable to perform chest imaging in PALS who have features of their history or exam that are atypical for ALS such as pain, fevers, or eye movement abnormalities. If the chest imaging is abnormal, more specific testing for mycobacteria may be indicated. Until there is more clear evidence of an association between MAP and ALS, we cannot endorse the widespread use of potentially toxic antimycobacterial antibiotics for PALS.
Ketogenic diets have plausible mechanisms for treating ALS. One flawed preclinical study and two PatientsLikeMe participants reported benefits; these were not independently verified. Two other PatientsLikeMe participants and one patient under
the care of an ALSUntangled investigator did not show benefits. A trial of a ketogenic diet was only able to enroll a single patient and their experience cannot be interpreted due to the lack of any control group. We hope to see another trial of a ketogenic diet in people with ALS. Until then, given the frequent side effects, we do not advise such diets for the treatment of ALS
Tamoxifen is reasonably safe, has plausible mechanisms for treating ALS, and has at least one positive preclinical study. One case report and 2 small human trials suggested an association between tamoxifen (at higher doses) and slower ALS progression but this is not enough evidence to recommend this medication as an ALS treatment. Moving forward, we would like to see a larger human ALS clinical trial of tamoxifen at 80mg daily. Interestingly, one study suggests that tamoxifen may decrease a person’s risk for getting ALS. We hope to see this independently replicated.
As an immunosuppressant drug, AZA has a plausible mechanism for slowing the progression of ALS. However, there is no pre-clinical data to support its use and two clinical trials did not support efficacy. There are 2 published cases in which
ALS reversals occurred on AZA, but it is not clear to us that the AZA actually contributed to the ALS improvements. One of these patients also had myasthenia gravis, which is known to cause reversible weakness and therefore complicates the measurement of ALS. The other patient was taking many different medications and supplements along with AZA. AZA has very serious, potentially fatal, both short and long-term risks associated with its use and requires medical monitoring. Based on the
available data, we do not advise the use of AZA as an ALS treatment
Many ingredients contained within LEAP2BFIT could, at least in theory, be beneficial in ALS. Some of these ingredients have supporting animal or human studies. However, it is unknown if these ingredients are being provided in therapeutic quantities since the dosages are not disclosed. Furthermore, it is impossible to know the net positive or negative effect of so many ingredients without carefully testing the combination. Based on the above discussions, we do not currently recommend LEAP2BFIT as a way to slow, stop, or reverse ALS.
Vinpocetine has several plausible mechanisms by which it could slow ALS progression. There are two PALS online who reported improved motor functions on supplement cocktails containing Vinpocetine, but many other PALS have had no
benefits. Serious side effects from Vinpocetine are rare and it is inexpensive. We support further study of Vinpocetine in ALS, but our group was split on what the next step should be; some were in favor of a study in a pre-clinical ALS model and others were in favor of a small human trial to confirm its benefit on cramps (7) and to explore whether it is safe, tolerable and might slow disease progression.
In our opinion, there is no convincing evidence that GABA overload plays a role in ALS progression. PNG/HC has other theoretical mechanisms by which it could slow ALS progression, but previous human trials involving steroids and a trial of a b lactam with more potent effects on glutamate did not help. We have not been able to confirm the diagnoses, nor the improvements described in the case series of 3 PALS taking PNG/HC; however, even if these treatment effects were real, these improvements were transient and quickly became unresponsive to treatment. Unless the ongoing placebo-controlled trial shows objective and sustained clinical improvements, we do not recommend that PALS take this expensive and risky combination of penicillin G and hydrocortisone.
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