LDN Research Funding
The LDN for MS Research FundOrganized by Art Mellor, Rob Lester, and SammyJo Wilkinson
We are very pleased to announce that The LDN for MS Research Fund has achieved its goal of raising significant funds to encourage academic research into the effectiveness of LDN for Multiple Sclerosis. Further donations are no longer being sought at this time. A total of $25,000 was awarded to the University of California San Francisco MS Research Center, which funded half the study expenses.
The study was implemented in early 2007 by neurological researcher Bruce Cree, MD, and colleagues. Some 80 patients with MS are involved in this double-blind, “Randomized, Placebo-Controlled, Crossover-Design Study of the Effects of Low Dose Naltrexone on Quality of Life as Measured by the Multiple Sclerosis Quality of Life Inventory.”
Each subject will receive either LDN or a placebo for 8 weeks, followed by one week without either, and then a further 8 weeks on the alternate capsule. See also the UCSF website that describes the study.
> A Message from Bernard Bihari, MD
"I wish to offer my endorsement to the research plan, to move the research effort forward in the US on LDN for multiple sclerosis. I have come to know these organizers, some personally, over the past several years. I am confident that they will successfully manage the first research fund in the US for LDN specifically targeting MS."
> About the LDN for MS Research Fund
Following the First Annual LDN Conference in June 2005, several of those who attended decided to begin a fundraising effort in the US to further research into the effectiveness of LDN for MS. LDN is not a cure for MS, but it shows promise for slowing progression and symptom relief, while the search for a cure continues.
Those who contributed to the Fund came from the grass roots LDN community that has sprung up over the last decade — those who have already benefited from it, but want to know how it works. Research is the only way to determine why LDN has garnered so many positive anecdotal reports, to find ways to improve its use, and perhaps benefit even more people with MS.
A press release and photos of the fund raising benefits that were staged around the country are available here.
It is anticipated that the study will complete by 1st quarter 2008 and serve as preliminary data for submission to the NIH. It is anticipated that the NIH will bear the costs of a larger trial/study should the initial work prove promising.
The Accelerated Cure Project for MS, a nonprofit organization, managed the donations to the fund to allow contributions to be tax-deductible.
> About the Organizers
Art Mellor is an MIT engineer and entrepreneur by background. Art left the technology world and co-founded the Boston Cure Project in 2001 with his neurologist, Dr. Tim Vartanian of the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. The organization has since expanded nationally and is known as the Accelerated Cure Project (ACP). ACP is developing a "Cure Map," a systematic plan of research into the causes of MS, and it is implementing a large-scale MS repository to accelerate the search for environmental and genetic factors in MS.
Rob Lester is a volunteer with the Accelerated Cure Project. He interviewed Dr. Yash Agrawal, author of the first published hypothesis in a medical journal that explores the possibility of treating MS with LDN (the interview is available in the Downloads section of the ACP website, by clicking here). An MIT graduate, Rob was a participant in the first annual LDN conference held in June in New York City.
SammyJo Wilkinson is an LDN advocate who started LDN February 2004 and has enjoyed an impressive recovery from 10 years of secondary progressive MS. She presented her story at the initial LDN Conference, and survey data she collected from 400 other LDN users that report low relapse rates and symptom relief, available at www.LDNers.org.