Drug May Slow Alzheimer's
Preliminary research suggests that a new drug produced by Eli Lilly could reduce the progression of Alzheimer's disease by a third.
After an 18-month trial that ended in failure in 2012, the drug manufacturer took a closer look at the data and found that its drug solanezumab appeared to slow progression by around 34 percent during the study. To get a clearer picture, they asked over 1,000 of the patients from the original trial with mild Alzheimer’s to take the drug for another two years.
The new more encouraging results were presented at the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference in Washington, D.C.earlier this week, and they showed that those taking the drug the longest had the most benefit. The suggestion is that the severity of cognitive decline typically seen in 18 months would take 24 months for people taking the drug.
Currently, no medications can slow down dementia. Existing medications work instead to manage symptoms of dementia by assisting the function of dying brain cells.
Experts cautioned against becoming overly optimistic about Eli Lilly's finding. It is far from definitive; more will be known about the drug's true effectiveness after the completion of another clinical trial, which is expected next year.
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