We note with sadness the passing of Dr. Hung Li, a pioneer in Spinal Muscular Atrophy research, in March of this year. Dr. Li was passionate about SMA basic and therapeutic research, committed to high-quality science and doing the right thing for SMA patients and families. His contributions to the field include the introduction of new mouse models, preclinical testing paradigms, methods for determining SMN genotype and expression levels, and early tests of such HDAC inhibitors as sodium butyrate and valproic acid in SMA model mice. His findings were translated into a small-scale clinical study with valproate, with encouraging preliminary results for adult patients.
His tenure at Academia Sinica leaves a legacy of important SMA research and we are grateful for Dr. Li’s tireless efforts.