EFFECT ON WEAKNESS AND SPASTICITY IN AMYOTROPHIC LATERAL SCLEROSIS OF THYROTROPIN-RELEASING HORMONE

W. King Engel*, Teepu Siddique, JohnT Nicoloff

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

155 Scopus citations

Abstract

Very high intravenous doses (2-19 mg/min) of thyrotropin-releasing hormone (TRH, L-pyroglutamyl-L-histidyl-L-prolinamide) given to 12 patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) produced a moderate to marked improvement of functions caused by deficiency of lower motor neurons (weakness) and upper motor neurons (spasticity). The improvement was sustained throughout the infusion and for about 1 h thereafter; sometimes a slight improvement was evident 20 h after infusion. At a given dose benefits and side-effects were more evident in men than in women. Whether TRH is replacing an ALS-associated deficiency or is simply a symptomatic treatment is unknown. The results of this study raise the possibility of a treatment for ALS, and may provide new insight into its pathogenesis. The potential response to TRH of spasticity and/or lower motor neuron involvement of other causes is proposed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)73-75
Number of pages3
JournalThe Lancet
Volume322
Issue number8341
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 9 1983

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

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