Evaluation of orally active anti-inflammatory C5a receptor antagonists in a transgenic rat motor neurone disease model (2007–2009)

Motor neurone disease is a rapidly progressive and incurable disease, usually ending in death within 3-5 years of diagnosis. The disease usually arrives without warning, and results in a progressive loss of muscle control. There is no effective treatment, and available drugs increase life span by a few weeks at best. There is evidence that the disease involves an inflammatory component, but available anti-inflammatory drugs are ineffective. We have developed a new class of anti-inflammatory drugs, known as C5a antagonists, and in preliminary experiments have shown they are therapeutically effective in a transgenic rat model of motor neurone disease. We propose to investigate in more detail how these drugs work in the rat model, and demonstrate that a specific inflammatory pathway, which we can now block, is responsible for some of the disease's progression. This work may lead to an entirely new class of drugs being used to treat patients with this drastic disease.
Grant type:
NHMRC Project Grant
Funded by:
National Health and Medical Research Council