In the online version of Neurotherapeutics, the official journal of the American Society for Experimental NeuroTherapeutics, published today, Origent scientists Dr. Dave Ennist and Dr. Albert Taylor together with their colleagues at Massachusetts General Hospital, Prize4Life in Tel Aviv, Helmholtz Zentrum in Munich, and Biogen Idec, reviewed the potential uses of the PRO-ACT ALS patient database for furthering our understanding of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).  A link to the publication is available here.

Composed of the clinical records of over 8,600 ALS patients and over 8 million data points, the PRO-ACT (Pooled Resources Open Access Clinical Trial) database is the largest ALS clinical trials database ever established. With such a large collection of patient records, the community of ALS patients, caregivers, physicians and researchers will be able to mine the information in order to develop tools and protocols to improve clinical trial recruitment, model ALS clinical trials, discover new disease mechanisms and improve the standard of care for ALS patients.

A general benefit of such a large database is that it enables the application of the quantitative techniques that Origent’s scientists are expert at applying. The performance of Origent’s ALS disease predictive model is highlighted in Figure 2 of the article and shows a close agreement between the actual ALSFRS-R scores (revised ALS Functional Rating Scale) and the scores predicted for every individual patient using Origent’s algorithm.

Additional open research questions amenable to exploration using the PRO-ACT database posed by the article include:

  • Modeling clinical trials
  • Understanding the symptom profile of ALS patients
  • Stratifying fast and slow progressing patients

Origent wishes to express its sincere gratitude and congratulations to Dr. Neta Zach at Prize4Life and to all of the co-authors on this excellent publication.

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