On November 10th, 2008 the J. Thomas May Center for ALS Research and Translational Medicine was formally dedicated. For those attending the ceremony and those who have so generously donated your energies and resources to the Center, we extend our most sincere appreciation. Our primary mission, to find an ALS treatment based on drug cocktails, began in earnest almost three years ago.
The concept of therapeutic drug cocktails based on several different agents, each acting differently to produce a combined additive effect has been used routinely in other disease conditions (e.g., HIV-AIDS, cancer chemotherapy, and bacterial infections) for many years. The May Center is employing a similar strategy to find a treatment for ALS. By using combinations of FDA-approved drugs, together with nutraceuticals derived from foodstuffs (e.g., resveratrol, creatine) and regarded as safe by the FDA, we're seeking to identify an effective and innovative treatment that can be implemented immediately, without the long delay and huge costs associated with development and approval of new experimental agents, never given to humans previously.
With donations and pledges from over 225 individuals/organizations throughout Arkansas, we have expanded the scale and scope of our efforts to an unprecedented level. Nearly 100 new agents and combinations have been tested, and we are currently testing as many as 15 new agents/combinations every 12-14 weeks. In terms of sheer numbers of agents tested in a given time period, the May Center ranks among the top 5 ALS Research Centers in the world. However, in terms of our innovative approach to testing and therapeutics development, we know of no equal anywhere, and that is BECAUSE OF YOU, OUR DONORS AND SUPPORTERS!
In the most profound way, persons with ALS (PALS) are the victims of a terrible disease. Like so many other members of the worldwide ALS community, we at the J. Thomas May Center for ALS Research, see ourselves as crusaders against this tragic affliction, and we value your continued support.
For more development information on the therapeutics initiative, as well as goals/mission of the J. Thomas May Center for ALS Research and Translational Medicine, click here.
Dr. Nancy Rusch (Chair of Pharmacology and Toxicology), Mr. J. Thomas May, and Chancellor I. Dodd Wilson, M.D. attend dedication ceremony (above right photo).
Our best regards to all PALS, families, friends, supporters, and concerned citizens.
John P. Crow, Ph.D., Director,
J. Thomas May Center for ALS Research,
Focusing on Translational Medicine
Professor of Pharmacology and Toxicology,
UAMS College of Medicine
Members of J. Thomas May Center for ALS Research