Posts by Merit Ester Cudkowicz, MD, MSc
ALS Therapy Research and Development: Insights from Merit Cudkowicz, MD, MSc
Clinical trials of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) therapeutic strategies coordinated through Massachusetts General Hospital are prolonging patient life.
Tofersen Lowers Disease Markers, Slowing Progression for SOD1-Mutated ALS in Phase 3 Trial
Merit E. Cudkowicz, MD, MSc, and colleagues report that in a phase 3 randomized trial, patients with faster-progressing SOD1-mutated amyotrophic lateral sclerosis who received tofersen showed greater reductions in SOD1 than the placebo group, but the primary endpoint of change in ALS-related function was not met.
Healey Platform ALS Trial Expected to Expedite U.S. Approval of New Treatments
The Healey Platform ALS Trial, headquartered at Massachusetts General Hospital, launched in July 2020 and is expected to bring new treatments to patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis more quickly and at lower cost than randomized, controlled trials of single agents.
Accelerating Diagnoses to Identify Treatments for ALS
Merit E. Cudkowicz, MD, MSc, of the Department of Neurology and the Sean M. Healey & AMG Center for ALS, discusses the importance of accelerating diagnoses for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and the new advances in therapeutic development to treat this disease.
Accelerating Treatments with the Healey Center ALS Platform Trial
Merit E. Cudkowicz, MD, MSc, chief of the Department Neurology and director of the Sean M. Healey & AMG Center for ALS at Massachusetts General Hospital, discusses the Healey ALS Platform Trial, which aims to accelerate the discovery of new drug therapies for people with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).
Sodium Phenylbutyrate–Taurursodiol Slows Functional Decline in Patients with ALS
Treatment with co-formulated, fixed-dose sodium phenylbutyrate–taurursodiol had a modest effect in slowing the decline in total score on the Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis Functional Rating Scale–Revised, a measure of function in daily activities.
Tofersen for ALS Clears Phase 1/2 Trial, Now in Phase 3
Tofersen, an investigational therapy for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis caused by SOD1 mutations, was safe and generally well tolerated over 12 weeks and lowered SOD1 protein levels in cerebrospinal fluid.
High-Dose Tamoxifen "Wins" Selection Trial in ALS
In a selection trial—a randomized trial in which multiple experimental treatments were compared simultaneously—tamoxifen 80 mg/day was numerically superior to tamoxifen 40 mg/day and creatine 30 g/day on the primary endpoint of functional decline.
Review: The First Seven Years of NeuroNEXT
NeuroNEXT, a clinical trials network sponsored by the National Institutes of Health, has demonstrated that innovative procedures and experienced trial staff can facilitate grant funding, speed trial start-up and accelerate enrollment.
Cromolyn Sodium Provides Neuroprotection in Animal Model of ALS
Building on similar research in Alzheimer's disease, researchers at Massachusetts General Hospital demonstrated that treatment with cromolyn sodium delayed disease onset and was neuroprotective in a mouse model of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis by decreasing the inflammatory response.
Sean M. Healey & AMG Center for ALS to Evaluate Five Promising Treatments in First ALS Platform Trial
The Sean M. Healey & AMG Center for ALS at Massachusetts General Hospital will launch a platform trial to evaluate and develop treatments for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). The trial may significantly reduce the time to find an effective treatment and decrease costs by a third or more.
Healey Center Speeds ALS Research for Patient Therapies
The Healey Center at Massachusetts General Hospital is a worldwide leader in ALS research that speeds new therapies to patients.
Ibudilast Slows Progression of Brain Atrophy in Multiple Sclerosis
In the SPRINT-MS phase 2 trial that involved patients with progressive multiple sclerosis, NeuroNEXT investigators found that progression of brain atrophy was significantly slower with the small molecule ibudilast than with placebo.
Infusions of Regulatory T Cells Slowed ALS Progression in First-in-Humans Trial
A phase 1 trial has demonstrated the safety of autologous infusions of regulatory T cells into patients with ALS, with potential benefit in terms of slowing disease progression.
Biomarkers to Accelerate ALS Therapy Development
In this video, Dr. Merit Cudkowicz, MD, MSc, chief of Neurology, discusses biomarkers that can help to diagnose patients quicker and target individualized treatments to patients.
Innovations in ALS Clinical Trials
Merit Cudkowicz, MD, MSc, chief of Neurology at Massachusetts General Hospital, discusses innovations in ALS clinical trials since she started in the field in 1994.
Innovations in Care for Patients with ALS
In this video, Merit Cudkowicz, MD, MSc, chief of Neurology, discusses innovations in care for patients with ALS, such as the House Call Program and TeleNeurology at Massachusetts General Hospital.
Dr. Merit Cudkowicz is the Julieanne Dorn Professor of Neurology at Harvard Medical School, Chief of Neurology Service at Massachusetts General Hospital. Dr. Cudkowicz’s research and clinical activities are dedicated to the study and treatment of people with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS). Dr. Cudkowicz directs the MGH ALS Program and the MGH Neurological Clinical Research Institute. She is one of the founders and former co-directors of the Northeast ALS Consortium (NEALS), a group of over 100 clinical sites in the United States, Canada, Europe and the Middle East dedicated to performing collaborative academic led clinical trials and research studies in ALS. In conjunction with the NEALS consortium, she planned and completed over 15 multi-center clinical research studies s in ALS. She is Principal Investigator of the Clinical Coordination Center for the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke’s Neurology Network of Excellence in Clinical Trials (NeuroNEXT). The NeuroNEXT network is an efficient phase II network to develop innovative and new treatments for people with neurological disorders.
Dr. Cudkowicz received the American Academy of Neurology 2009 Sheila Essay ALS award. She is a pioneer in promoting and developing more efficient methods of developing new therapies for people with ALS. A dedicated educator, Dr. Cudkowicz mentors many young neurologists in clinical investigation of ALS and related neurodegenerative disorders. Dr. Cudkowicz completed her undergraduate degree in chemical engineering at Massachusetts Institute of Technology and obtained a medical degree in the Health Science and Technology program of Harvard Medical School. She served her internship at Beth Israel Hospital in New York and her neurology residency and fellowship at MGH. She also obtained a master’s degree in Clinical Epidemiology from the Harvard School of Public Health.