Man doing a breathing test sat at a desk with a female reseacher.

MND-SMART Clinical Trial

MND-SMART Clinical Trial

A pioneering clinical trial that will allow hundreds of people across the UK to take part in tests of potential treatments for MND.

Launched in January 2020, MND-SMART is a innovative form of drugs trial designed to speed up the time it takes to find medicines that slow, stop or reverse progression of MND.

Most clinical trials focus on a single drug or treatment. People receiving a drug are compared with those who receive a dummy drug, called a placebo. Usually half of those taking part will receive the active treatment and half will receive the placebo. With MND-SMART, several drugs will be tested at the same time.  Patients taking different treatments will be compared with a single group who receive the placebo. This means that participants in MND-SMART are more likely to receive an active treatment.

The trial is also designed to be adaptive so that researchers can change the drugs being tested according to emerging results. New drugs can be added once the trial has already started, while medicines that do not appear to be effective can be dropped.

This approach to clinical trials has not been used in MND before anywhere in the world. 

As well as new medications, researchers will be able to test drugs that are already licensed for use in other conditions, to check if they offer any benefit for people with MND. Repurposing drugs in this way can avoid some of the lengthy approvals processes needed for new medicines and could cut years off the time it takes for treatments to become more widely available.

MND-SMART is a long-term study from the Euan MacDonald Centre for Motor Neuron Disease Research. Unlike most clinical trials that last for a set number of years, MND-SMART is designed to run continuously so that new medicines can be tested for many years to come.

We hope to find treatments that make a positive difference for people living with MND and their families. 

Find out more at (external website)