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Alzheimer's Drug Shows Positive Results in Mild Cases
Posted: Tuesday, October 9, 2012 2:59 PM
Joined: 12/6/2011
Posts: 3326

From Alzheimer's Daily News:

Researchers announced that an experimental Alzheimer's therapy has shown it slows the progression of the disease in people with mild cases, bringing them a step closer to finding the first treatment and to understanding a cause of the complex disease.

Academic researchers discussed the results of large studies on solanezumab and bapineuzumab. The aim of both therapies is to remove beta amyloid from the brain. The sticky protein has long been thought to be a toxic substance that affects functioning of the brain - similar to how high cholesterol levels damage the heart.


The findings on solanezumab were presented by the Alzheimer's Disease Cooperative Study. The study supports amyloid as a target for future Alzheimer's research.


Until now, researchers have only been able to theorize about the mechanisms of the disease. Research is also being conducted on other possible causes, including inflammation and tau, tangles of proteins thought to disrupt communication among neurons' pathways.


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Mimi S.
Posted: Tuesday, October 9, 2012 7:17 PM
Joined: 11/29/2011
Posts: 7027

This is a great report. 

My DIL wrote; "It's the 50% loss of critical brain cells already lost at onset of mild symptoms THAT"S REALLY SCARY!"

That's why we have to get into more common usage two tools we have: the spinal tap and the Pittsburg compound PET scan!!!

Lane Simonian
Posted: Tuesday, October 9, 2012 9:30 PM
Joined: 12/12/2011
Posts: 5174

The potentially good news is that the hippocampus where most neuron die as a result of Alzheimer's disease is one of the few parts of the brain that neurons can be regenerated through stem cells.  The problem in Alzheimer's disease is that the pathway that leads to the regeneration of neurons is cut off.  Or to put it another way, the problem is not so much that brain cells are dying (although obviously this is a problem) but that they are not being regenerated. 


Here's a good analysis of solanezumab from the Corante website.