What pharmacologic research is being conducted for the treatment of Alzheimer disease (AD)?

Updated: May 09, 2019
  • Author: Shaheen E Lakhan, MD, PhD, MS, MEd; Chief Editor: Jasvinder Chawla, MD, MBA  more...
  • Print

Current pharmacologic research in AD focuses principally on the development of disease-modifying drugs that can slow or reverse the progression of AD. Targets of these investigational agents have included beta-amyloid production, aggregation, and clearance, as well as tau phosphorylation and assembly. To date, none of these drugs has demonstrated efficacy in phase III trials. [99] However, a 2018 phase II study showed promising results for an antiamyloid agent in patients with early-stage AD. The study included 856 patients with early AD (mild cognitive impairment due to AD or mild AD dementia) and amyloid pathology confirmed by positron-emission tomography (PET) or cerebral spinal fluid (CSF) tracer. The agent, BAN2401, was found to significantly reduce brain amyloid at high doses. The study also showed a dose-dependent, statistically significant, and clinically meaningful slower decline in cognition and function with the highest dose compared to placebo. [100]

Potential surgical treatments in the future may include the use of devices to infuse neurotrophic factors, such as growth factors, to palliate AD.

Did this answer your question?
Additional feedback? (Optional)
Thank you for your feedback!