Potential new drug could help slow Alzheimer’s

A promising new drug that has helped reduce the clinical decline of early signs of Alzheimer’s in trials is waiting to be approved by regulatory bodies.

Alzheimer patients showed promising results

The innovative new medicine, aducanumab, has been developed by US drug company Biogen and Eisai, a Japanese pharmaceutical manufacturer, and has helped slow down the loss of function of memory and language in patients with the disease.

A report of the study, which included 3,285 patients in 20 different countries, states that participants showed between 15% and 27% less cognitive decline than those who received a placebo. The best results were seen in those patients who were given a higher dose of the drug. Based on these promising results, Biogen are now seeking approval from the FDA for aducanumab and hope it will soon become a standard treatment for Alzheimer’s. Indeed, Biogen are working with the FDA to launch a new study. 

Patients were given cognitive tests to ascertain if the drug was having any benefits and brain scans to monitor the build-up of amyloid, an abnormal protein that accumulates in the brain of Alzheimer sufferers and prevents normal cell function. Tests showed that those participants on a higher dose of aducanumab had less amyloid build up, giving the scientists ‘further confidence that what [they] were looking at was very strong.’

The future of Alzheimer's treatment?

Chief science officer at the Alzheimer’s Association, Maria Carrillo, is very excited for the new drug: "There are lots of implications for these results, not only for those currently diagnosed with early Alzheimer’s disease, but also for re-energizing prevention trials. This is the very first time in the field that we have had the type of positive news that could be transformational."

Dennis J Selkoe M.D, co-director for the Ann Romney Center for Neurologic Diseases at Harvard Medical School in Boston, has also praised the drug, saying: "aducanumab is the breakthrough we have long been waiting for, one that I believe will stand the test of time." He also says that it could "open the floodgates to make better versions" and give patients the hope they have waited a very long time to receive.

At Allenbrook Nursing & Residential Care Home, we provide the best possible care for those living with Alzheimer's disease in Hampshire. Don't hesitate to contact us to find out more on 01425 656589.