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Research suggests new drug can slow down Alzheimer’s disease

23 July 2015 15:34


Research shows the drug solanzumab could slow down Alzheimer’s disease with medical experts showing concern at the rising levels of those suffering with the disease.

A new drug is set to be unveiled that could slow down Alzheimer’s disease. In the UK, it is thought 225,000 people will develop dementia this year. That is one person every three minutes. Research conducted by the Alzheimer’s Society says in the UK 850,000 people have some form of dementia that will grow to a million in less than 10 years and by the year 2051 it will rise to two million.

Currently, Aricept,is given to patients sufering from the disease but the medication manages only the symptoms of dementia by helping the dying brain cells. Solanezumab, on the other hand according to researchers, can attack the deformed proteins, called amyloid, that build up in the brain during Alzheimer’s.

Studies have been made into the use of solanzumab which if given to patients early enough can slow down the condition.

Dr. Eric Karran, director of research at Alzheimer’s Research UK, said the drug had a “significant benefit” for people with a mild form of the disease, although “I’m not for one moment suggesting it is curing it.

Researchers think new drugs might work if they use a high enough dose
What happened is, in the people who didn’t get the drug, the people on a placebo, there was a deterioration in their disease, as we would anticipate. But in people who received the drug, the rate of their deterioration was slower by about 30%. So when you looked at the two groups at 1.5 years there was a clear difference between those who had been given the drug and those who didn’t get the drug.”

Should the findings be successful it could still be several years before the drug is available on the NHS as more trials need to take place.

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