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O.J. Brigance Named Honorary Chair of May 3 Race to Cure ALS, Confirms His Diagnosis by The Robert Packard Center for ALS Research at Johns Hopkins
Date:3/3/2008

rd Center for ALS Research is the only one of its kind dedicated solely to finding new therapies to slow or cure ALS. Although the Center operates within the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine in Baltimore, its scope is international. Membership is by invitation only, and it's a very elite group of international scientists working in non-traditional ways. They collaborate, rather than compete. And that's for the good of all."

According to Dr. Rothstein, "O.J. demonstrated a fighting spirit on the gridiron and he's tackling ALS the same way, with courage and a display of faith and character that are lessons to us all. We are fortunate to have him on our side and know he will use his football fame in ways that will have far- reaching effects."

Dr. Rothstein says encouraging reports about a new treatment modality pairing the bi-polar drug lithium with riluzole has come from Italian scientists who found in a 15-month clinical trial that the combination appears to slow ALS and improve breathing functions. Riluzole was developed at Johns Hopkins and is the only drug to receive FDA approval for ALS treatment.

"ALS falls into the same family of diseases as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's. It's entirely possible that funds directed to ALS research may also benefit other disease states, much in the same way that space research has yielded other discoveries, such as the creation of lightweight, heat - retaining fabrics or new food items for the home table," Dr. Rothstein says.

For more information call Emily Ehehalt a 410-516-6731 or visit http://www.alscenter.org.

Media Contacts:

Liz Chuday, 410-464-1100 or

Christen Brownlee, 410-955-7832 or cbrownlee@jhmi.edu


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SOURCE The Robert Packard Center for ALS Research at JohnsHopkins
Copyright©2008 PR Newswire.
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