The Muscular Dystrophy Association recently awarded 13 grants, totaling $3.5 million, to help accelerate the development of new treatments for muscular dystrophy, ALS, and related life-threatening diseases.

These 13 grants, in the MDA’s summer 2017 grants round, were awarded from a total of 244 applications.

Recipients include: Children’s Hospital in Pittsburgh, to help identify new drugs that can suppress ALS disease mechanisms; Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, to facilitate new gene discovery in neuromuscular diseases; and University of Nevada School of Medicine in Reno, to test a potential therapy for Duchenne muscular dystrophy.

Additional recipients include: Boston Children’s Hospital, to help search for drug targets in facioscapulohumeral muscular dystrophy; University of California, Davis, to optimize dosing for a drug to treat mitochondrial disease; and University of Michigan Medical School in Ann Arbor, to test a potential therapy for spinal-bulbar muscular atrophy.

“We have seen unprecedented progress in neuromuscular disease research in the past few years, with six new drugs — four with direct ties to MDA research dollars — having been approved by the FDA to treat diseases in our program,” says MDA Senior Vice President and Scientific Director Grace Pavlath, PhD, in a media release.

“With the addition of this latest round of grants, we’ve begun funding some incredibly exciting research projects that we hope will keep the momentum going and result in more treatment options for our community.”

[Source(s): Muscular Dystrophy Association, PR Newswire]