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Adeona Announces Five Scientific Publications on Role of Copper Toxicity and Zinc Deficiency in Alzheimer's Disease and Cognitive Decline

ANN ARBOR, Mich., Oct. 12 /PRNewswire/ -- Adeona Pharmaceuticals, Inc., (Amex: AEN) announced five scientific publications on the role of copper toxicity and zinc deficiency in Alzheimer's disease and cognitive decline. The author of all these publications is Adeona's scientific founder and consultant, George J. Brewer, M.D., the Morton S. and Henrietta Sellner Emeritus Professor of Human Genetics and Internal Medicine at the University of Michigan.

The first two publications describe the results of Adeona's observational clinical study of zinc and copper status in 29 patients with Alzheimer's disease, 30 patients with Parkinson's disease, and 29 age- and sex-matched controls (CopperProof-1). The CopperProof-1 study was conducted at Albany Medical Center by Earl Zimmerman, M.D., Director of the Alzheimer's Centers, Eric Molho, M.D., Director of the Parkinson's Disease Centers and Dzintra Celmins, M.D., of the Parkinson's Disease Centers.

The first publication entitled, "Subclinical Zinc Deficiency in Alzheimer's Disease and Parkinson's Disease," was published in the November 2010 issue of the American Journal of Alzheimer's Disease & Other Dementias. Serum zinc and urinary zinc were compared across the three groups of patients. The results showed a significantly lower serum zinc level in patients with Alzheimer's and patients with Parkinson's than in controls.

The second publication entitled, "Copper and Ceruloplasmin Abnormalities in Alzheimer's Disease," was published in the September 2010 issue of the American Journal of Alzheimer's Disease and Other Dementias. That publication describes how copper may play a role in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease and increased exposure to environmental copper and/or defective ceruloplasmin function could directly be contributing to the Alzheimer's epidemic.  

Since the initial presentation of the CopperProof-1 results by Adeona during the 2009 International Conference on Alzheimer's Disease, the finding of zinc deficiency in Alzheimer's disease has been independently confirmed by two other groups that published their findings in 2009 and 2010.    

The third publication is an editorial entitled, "Copper toxicity in the general population" and was published on April 12, 2010, in Clinical Neurophysiology. Dr. Brewer's editorial is associated with a study published in the same journal by the investigators, Salustri C, et al, "Is cognitive function linked to serum free copper levels? A cohort study in a normal population". In a cohort study utilizing a battery of neuropsychological tests, the investigators of the latter study report for the first time an inverse correlation between serum free copper levels and cognition in an otherwise healthy cohort of post-menopausal women over the age of 50 (p<0.001).  

Remarking on the Salustri study as well as the substantial body of scientific evidence over the last six years implicating copper toxicity in cognitive loss, Dr. Brewer raises the important questions in his editorial, "why has there never been a formal toxicity study of copper in drinking water, while most developed countries embrace household copper plumbing, with its copper leaching problems?" and "with all the evidence emerging in the last six years, why are pharmaceutical and neutraceutical companies continuing to put large amounts of copper in their supplement pills, and why are they allowed to do so?"

The fourth publication entitled, "Risks of Copper and Iron Toxicity During Aging in Humans", was published in electronic form on December 7, 2009 in Chemical Research in Toxicology. The publication addresses the emerging evidence on the role of chronic copper toxicity in a broader array of diseases that widely affect persons over the age of 50, including Alzheimer's disease, atherosclerosis and complications of diabetes mellitus. Dr. Brewer concludes in that publication, "it seems clear that large segments of the population are at risk for toxicities from free copper and free iron and... it seems clear that preventive steps should begin now."

The fifth publication entitled, "The Risks of Copper Toxicity Contributing to Cognitive Decline in the Aging Population and to Alzheimer's Disease," was published in the June 2009 issue of the Journal of the American College of Nutrition.  The publication addresses the mounting evidence accumulated over the last seven years implicating chronic soluble inorganic copper toxicity, especially from inorganic sources of copper such as that regularly leeched into tap water, and copper which is included in most multivitamin/mineral supplements. According to the "Copper Hypothesis" outlined in the paper by Dr. Brewer, "the epidemics of MCI (mild cognitive impairment) and AD (Alzheimer's disease) in our population over age 50 is partly due to the ingestion of inorganic copper in drinking water and copper supplements."

George J. Brewer, M.D., Adeona's scientific founder and consultant, remarked, "We are starting to build the peer-reviewed scientific literature that supports the hypothesis that copper toxicity and zinc deficiency is a hallmark of Alzheimer's disease and cognitive decline. With that scientific infrastructure in place, I believe that high dose oral zinc administration should prove to have a vital therapeutic role in these disease conditions."

About George J. Brewer, M.D.

George J. Brewer, M.D., is the Morton S. and Henrietta Sellner Emeritus Professor of Human Genetics and Internal Medicine at the University of Michigan. Dr. Brewer was a member of the National Science Council's "Committee on Copper in Drinking Water" convened at the request of the Environmental Protection Agency in 2000 to consider the issue of what level of copper in drinking water could be considered "safe". In his 2010 book Toxic Copper The Newly Discovered Culprit in Alzheimer's & Dementia, Dr. Brewer argues that considering the scientific evidence that began to emerge since 2003, the current Environmental Protection Agency "safe" level of copper in drinking water is at least 100 times too high. Dr. Brewer has published over 500 scientific papers, several books and is the inventor of oral zinc therapy approved by the FDA in 1997 to prevent chronic copper toxicity in Wilson's disease.

About Adeona Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

Adeona (Amex: AEN) is a pharmaceutical company developing new medicines for serious central nervous systems diseases. Our primary strategy is to license clinical-stage drug candidates that have already demonstrated a certain level of clinical efficacy and develop them to a valuation inflection point resulting in a significant development and marketing collaboration. We have four drug candidates and one medical food candidate in development. Further information on the company is available at

This release includes forward-looking statements on Adeona's current expectations and projections about future events. In some cases forward-looking statements can be identified by terminology such as "may," "should," "potential," "continue," "expects," "anticipates," "intends," "plans," "believes," "estimates," and similar expressions. These statements are based upon current beliefs, expectations and assumptions and are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties, many of which are difficult to predict and include statements regarding the role of high dose oral zinc administration in the treatment of Alzheimer's disease. The forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those set forth or implied by any forward-looking statements. Important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those reflected in Adeona's forward-looking statements include, among others, a failure of future scientific literature and clinical studies to continue to support the hypothesis that copper toxicity and zinc deficiency is a hallmark of Alzheimer's disease, the failure by us to successfully commercialize Zinthionein, and other products containing oral zinc for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease and other factors described in Adeona's report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2009 and any other filings with the SEC. The information in this release is provided only as of the date of this release, and Adeona undertakes no obligation to update any forward-looking statements contained in this release on account of new information, future events, or otherwise, except as required by law.

SOURCE Adeona Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
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