(WZZM) - Work in Michigan on a possible cure for a debilitiating disease has been approved to enter the next phase.
The research involves stem cells injected directly into the spinal cords of patients with ALS or Lou Gehrig's disease.
In 2011, WZZM visited the stem cell lab at the University of Michigan where they were doing the research.
At that time, neurologist Eva Feldman felt the research would lead to a cure in less than 10 years.
Now after two years of phase one clinical trials, the FDA gave approval to move forward into phase two.
"In this trial, we will be injecting stem cells into the upper part of the spinal cord of patients with ALS," said Dr. Feldman. "Our goal is to continue to show that this approach is safe and we will begin to look at whether this approach offers some benefit to our patients."
The University of Michigan is now looking for approval to hold phase two trials here in Michigan.
Fifteen patients were part of the first phase of testing at Emory University in Georgia. Each received injections of up to 400,000 stem cells.
You can find out more information on the trials by clicking here. To learn more about Lou Gehrig's Disease, click here.