The ALS Association has announced its new Translational Research Advancing Therapy for ALS (TREAT ALS) Drug Development Contract grant program, which will fund research for the development of new treatments for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).
According to a press release, the program will support research from early target identification to preclinical studies and early pilot clinical trials. Successful grants with the best and most advanced development plan will receive up to $500,000 in investment funds for a maximum of two years.
The ALS Association is a national nonprofit that fights ALS in a comprehensive way, supporting research, providing assistance for ALS patients through a national network of chapters, and coordinating care and government partnerships.
The TREAT ALS Drug Development Contract program only provides support for preclinical assessments of ALS therapies, but not for the clinical trials. This program’s goal is to ensure the agent or data generated from these grants moves into clinical development stages to accelerate new therapeutics for ALS.
Applications that focus on developing compounds directed at the most important ALS targets that have significant supportive data and clear relevance of the target chosen will be given priority. Preclinical drug development processes might need additional resources that go beyond what a single organization can offer, so collaborations that specifically focus on testing and developing lead agents for ALS treatment are encouraged, particularly if they include biotech or pharmaceutical companies.
The program interests for the grant proposals should be limited to the following research areas:
- Development of pharmacologic agents to the Investigational New Drug (IND) stage;
- Design and implementation of full-scale, pilot, current Good Manufacturing Practice (cGMP) production of therapeutics or delivery systems;
- Development of pharmacologic agents;
- Testing of compounds in ALS mouse models.
Those with proposals should send their letters of intent by March 21. If approved, full proposals for the most promising studies will be requested by April 12, and they will be due on May 16. Successful applicants will be announced in July this year.