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Metabolic therapy with Deanna Protocol supplementation delays disease progression and extends survival in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) mouse model.

Authors
  • Ari, Csilla1
  • Poff, Angela M1
  • Held, Heather E1
  • Landon, Carol S1
  • Goldhagen, Craig R1
  • Mavromates, Nicholas1
  • D'Agostino, Dominic P1
  • 1 Department of Molecular Pharmacology and Physiology, Hyperbaric Biomedical Research Laboratory, Morsani College of Medicine, University of South Florida, Tampa, Florida, United States of America. , (United States)
Type
Published Article
Journal
PLoS ONE
Publisher
Public Library of Science
Publication Date
Jan 01, 2014
Volume
9
Issue
7
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0103526
PMID: 25061944
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig's disease, is a neurodegenerative disorder of motor neurons causing progressive muscle weakness, paralysis, and eventual death from respiratory failure. There is currently no cure or effective treatment for ALS. Besides motor neuron degeneration, ALS is associated with impaired energy metabolism, which is pathophysiologically linked to mitochondrial dysfunction and glutamate excitotoxicity. The Deanna Protocol (DP) is a metabolic therapy that has been reported to alleviate symptoms in patients with ALS. In this study we hypothesized that alternative fuels in the form of TCA cycle intermediates, specifically arginine-alpha-ketoglutarate (AAKG), the main ingredient of the DP, and the ketogenic diet (KD), would increase motor function and survival in a mouse model of ALS (SOD1-G93A). ALS mice were fed standard rodent diet (SD), KD, or either diets containing a metabolic therapy of the primary ingredients of the DP consisting of AAKG, gamma-aminobutyric acid, Coenzyme Q10, and medium chain triglyceride high in caprylic triglyceride. Assessment of ALS-like pathology was performed using a pre-defined criteria for neurological score, accelerated rotarod test, paw grip endurance test, and grip strength test. Blood glucose, blood beta-hydroxybutyrate, and body weight were also monitored. SD+DP-fed mice exhibited improved neurological score from age 116 to 136 days compared to control mice. KD-fed mice exhibited better motor performance on all motor function tests at 15 and 16 weeks of age compared to controls. SD+DP and KD+DP therapies significantly extended survival time of SOD1-G93A mice by 7.5% (p = 0.001) and 4.2% (p = 0.006), respectively. Sixty-three percent of mice in the KD+DP and 72.7% of the SD+DP group lived past 125 days, while only 9% of the control animals survived past that point. Targeting energy metabolism with metabolic therapy produces a therapeutic effect in ALS mice which may prolong survival and quality of life in ALS patients.

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