It’s not fair to blame the scientists entirely for this failure. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) paid for much of this research, and funding was stretched so thin that scientists said they didn’t get as much as they needed to do their studies. So they made difficult choices. As a result, funders, including the NIH, spent tens of millions of dollars on human trials using these drugs, without first making sure the scientific underpinnings were sound. ALS patients volunteered to test lithium, creatine, thalidomide, celecoxib, ceftriaxone, sodium phenylbutyrate, and the antibiotic minocycline. A clinical trial involving the last one alone, bankrolled by the NIH, cost $20 million. The results: fail, fail, fail, fail, fail, fail, fail. Science administrators had assumed that the academic scientists had all done the legwork carefully. They had not.