September 2014

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Positive Trial Results Reported for Treatment of Agitation

This month Avanir Pharmaceuticals, Inc., announced that it has conducted a positive clinical trial for the safety and efficacy of AVP-923 for treatment of agitation in patients with Alzheimer’s disease. Researchers in the study say this represents an exciting advancement in Alzheimer’s research, primarily because as of yet there are no FDA-approved drugs for treatment of agitation related to the disease. Read more about it here.

RSVP for 7th Annual FDA/Alzheimer’s Disease Allies Meeting

Anticipation is building for our 7th Annual FDA/Alzheimer’s Disease Allies Meeting for patient groups, regulators, researchers and industry. It’s November 6 from 8:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m. at the Bethesda North Marriott Hotel & Conference Center (5701 Marinelli Rd., Bethesda, MD 20852). This meeting will explore challenges related to clinical meaningfulness in therapeutic development for early Alzheimer’s disease.

NIA Offers Alzheimer’s Medications Fact Sheet

While to date no medications have been developed to stop Alzheimer’s disease, there are some FDA-approved prescription drugs that can help with some of its symptoms. The National Institute on Aging (NIA) has a helpful webpage called the Alzheimer’s Disease Medications Fact Sheet that offers a synopsis of the different drug treatments currently available, along with information about dosage and potential side effects. It’s available here.

2014 World Alzheimer’s Day Recognized

Did you know that September 21 was World Alzheimer’s Day? As part of the ACT-AD coalition, we are all doing our part to raise awareness about this terrible condition. In recognition of this day, we wanted to share a way we can all help find a cure: the Alzheimer’s Prevention Registry. This is an online community dedicated to ending Alzheimer’s where members are sent opportunities to participate in prevention trials and kept up-to-date with the latest news. We encourage you to learn more and how you can participate here.

Bexarotene’s Effect on Alzheimer’s May Be Dependent on Disease Severity

Bexarotene is a cancer drug that showed promise in combating Alzheimer’s in past clinical trials. But a new study just released in The Journal of Biological Chemistry from researchers at the University of Illinois at Chicago College of Medicine found that the effect of the drug was dependent on the severity of the disease.
The study revealed the drug reduced levels of neurotoxic beta-amyloid protein in experimental mice with late-stage Alzheimer’s disease. However, in early stages of the disease, the levels increased. Read more here.

Study Shows Link between DNA Methylation and Alzheimer’s

A study led by researchers at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, Mass., and Rush University Medical Center in Chicago, Ill., has shown how DNA methylation, the biochemical alternations of the building blocks of DNA, in the brain may play a role in the onset of Alzheimer’s disease. The researchers noted the findings may “help us to better understand the biological impact of environmental risk factors and life experiences on Alzheimer’s disease.” The study was published in Nature Neuroscience.

Study Offers New Insights of Buildup of Beta-Amyloid Plaques in Brain

Researchers at UC Berkeley have produced a study that casts new light on the brain’s ability to adapt to the buildup of beta-amyloid plaques. This is the first paper to draw a direct connection between cognitive performance and increased brain activity in response to the buildup of these proteins. Go here to read more.