Last week, the Washington Post published an article titled Alzheimer’s Drug Trial Sparks Optimism which highlighted new findings from a paper published in Nature. They shared exciting news of positive early trial results for a potential new Alzheimer’s treatment.
“Overall this is the best news that we’ve had in my 25 years doing Alzheimer’s clinical research and it brings new hope for patients and families most affected by the disease,” said one of the study’s authors, Stephen Salloway, director of neurology in the Memory and Aging program and professor of neurology and psychiatry at Brown University.
Results from the study revealed that patients treated for a year with the antibody known as aducanumab – which targets amyloid plaque in the brain – saw a significant reduction of amyloid as well as slower cognitive decline. The buildup of amyloid plaque is one of the hallmarks of Alzheimer’s disease, and no drugs have been able to reverse the signs – if later stage clinical trials are successful, aducanumab could be the first of its kind, and the first Alzheimer’s drug approved in over a decade.
Finding effective new treatments for Alzheimer’s grows more urgent every year, as the disease’s toll in both suffering and financial strain continues to increase. Today, more than 5 million patients live with Alzheimer’s, and that number is projected to grow to 13.5 million by 2050. However, If just one new treatment were developed that delayed the onset of Alzheimer’s by 5 years, the number of Alzheimer’s patients would drop by nearly one half, saving over $367 billion in healthcare costs annually by 2050.
Read the full piece here.