Granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (G-CSF) induces a transient mobilization of hematopoietic progenitor cells from bone marrow to peripheral blood. Our aim was to evaluate safety of repeated courses of G-CSF in patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), assessing disease progression and changes in chemokine and cytokine levels in serum and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). Twenty-four ALS patients entered an open-label, multicenter trial in which four courses of G-CSF and mannitol were administered at 3-month intervals. Levels of G-CSF were increased after treatment in the serum and CSF. Few and transitory adverse events were observed. No significant reduction of the mean monthly decrease in ALSFRS-R score and forced vital capacity was observed. A significant reduction in CSF levels of monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 (MCP-1) and interleukin-17 (IL-17) was observed. G-CSF treatment was safe and feasible in a multicenter series of ALS patients. A decrease in the CSF levels of proinflammatory cytokines MCP-1 and IL-17 was found, indicating a G-CSF-induced central anti-inflammatory response.
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