A so-called 'wonderdrug' that is currently undergoing trials as a treatment for neurological diseases such as Parkinson's and Alzheimer's could also be used to treat much less common conditions.
Colgane, manufactured by Phytopharm, is in the clinical trials stage of assessing its effectiveness as a treatment for neurodegenerative diseases, but the company now believe that it could also be used to treat Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS).
Also known as Lou Gherig's disease, ALS is a devastating motor neurone disease that currently affects around 400,000 people across the world.
Phytopharm has completed initial evaluations on the use of colgane as a treatment for ALS and because there are less than 200,000 people with the disease in the US, the drug has been granted 'orphan' status.
This is reserved for drugs aimed at rare diseases and means that Phytopharm will receive financial assistance in the UK and the US.