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Biogen Idec (Nasdaq: BIIB) and its partner Knopp Biosciences have launched a Phase 3 trial for their potential treatment for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. In connection with the launch, Biogen will pay a $10 million milestone payment to Knopp.

If successful, researchers said the experimental drug could be a significant step forward in the treatment of the neurogenerative disease because there is only one currently approved therapy, and it extends patients’ lives for only two or three months.

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