Tags: new | alzheimers | drug | aducanumab

New Alzheimer's Drug Aducanumab Clears Plaque, Slows Decline

Image: New Alzheimer's Drug Aducanumab Clears Plaque, Slows Decline

(Press Association via AP Images)

By    |   Thursday, 01 Sep 2016 07:36 AM

A new experimental Alzheimer's drug – aducanumab – cleared out protein build-up in the brains of people suffering from mild forms of the disease and slowed their mental decline, according to results of a preliminary trial revealed Wednesday.

While aducanumab showed promised in the Phase I drug trial, Robert Howard, a professor of old age psychiatry at University College London told Agence France-Presse that the drug has other important test hurdles to get over.

"Although potentially this is an exciting story, it is important to temper any excitement with considerable caution," Howard told AFP. "It would be premature to conclude that this is likely to represent an effective treatment for Alzheimer's disease."

Details of the trial and the drug were published Wednesday in the science journal Nature.

The pre-clinical animal model and Phase 1b study in prodromal and mild Alzheimer's patients both demonstrated that aducanumab reduced amyloid-beta in the brain and the reduction was dose-dependent, said Biogen, the drug's maker.

"These early studies of aducanumab show its effectiveness in removing amyloid plaque from the brain as well as its potential effect on the slowing of cognitive decline in patients suffering from Alzheimer's disease," said Dr. Alfred Sandrock, executive vice president and chief medical officer at Biogen.

University College London neuroscientist John Hardy told Science News the new data was "tantalizing, but they are not yet definitive." Science News noted that 165-person study was "relatively small."

Eric M. Reiman, executive director of the Banner Alzheimer's Institute in Phoenix, said in a commentary in Nature that the study did not have enough patients to prove that the drug really works but the research has benefits.

"In addition to confirming the amyloid hypothesis, finding that the effects of treatments such as aducanumab on amyloid-beta or other biological measurements of Alzheimer's disease are associated with a cognitive benefit might help to accelerate the evaluation and regulatory approval of promising Alzheimer's prevention therapies that are based on reducing the biological measurements alone," Reiman said.

"Indeed, confirmation that an anti-(amyloid beta) treatment slows cognitive decline would be a game-changer for how we understand, treat and prevent Alzheimer's disease."

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A new experimental Alzheimer's drug – aducanumab – cleared out protein build-up in the brains of people suffering from mild forms of the disease and slowed their mental decline, according to results of a preliminary trial revealed Wednesday.
new, alzheimers, drug, aducanumab
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2016-36-01
Thursday, 01 Sep 2016 07:36 AM
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