Alzheimer’s could become curable sooner than we think. An experimental drug could help reduce the toxicity in the brains of patients who have the disease.
The first test results look promising. People who got a high dose of the novel drug felt they regained some of their memory and clear thinking. The new drug is called aducanumab and it could prove one of the important tools to fight Alzheimer’s.
Dr. Eric Reiman, executive director of the Banner Alzheimer’s Institute in Phoenix believes that if the findings are confirmed, this is going to change the way we look at Alzheimer’s disease.
Before the medicine goes on the market, larger studies will have to be completed to show if it really works in slowing down the progression of Alzheimer’s.
Officials from Biogen, the company which makes the drugs, were cautious in interpretations too. The study included 165 patients with early stages of Alzheimer’s.
Dr. Alfred Sandrock thinks they’re on to something. The entire medical community hopes that new tests confirm the results of the small-scale study. But that is unknown, to date.
The results look encouraging to pharmaceutical companies. They’ve invested millions of dollars to come up with an approved drug version to treat the cause of Alzheimer’s. However, so far, there is no approved medicine so far.
However, doctors note that it was a welcome surprise to see a significant reduction of existing plaques in the brains of Alzheimer’s patients.
Biogen is already doing larger scale studies for the aducanumab medicine. These will include 2,700 patients. But results will only become available in a couple of years’ time.
There are some reasons to believe that aducanumab could succeed where others have failed.
One would be that this drug can ignore the non-threatening forms of amyloid protein but it seems to attack the toxic forms of the protein, which attack brain cells.
Unfortunately, there are side effects associated with the drug, like bleeding or accumulation of fluid in the brain. Some patients even dropped out of the trial because of those unwanted effects.
If the drug works, this would prove that the amyloid toxicity hypothesis is true.
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