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Two New Alzheimer's Disease Studies Show Advances Against Different Treatment Targets
Date:7/28/2008

- Plus, Higher then Expected MCI Prevalence Shows Urgent Need for Better Therapies -

CHICAGO, July 28 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Two studies related to experimental Alzheimer's therapies reported positive results today at the 2008 Alzheimer's Association International Conference on Alzheimer's Disease (ICAD 2008) in Chicago.

One Phase II trial, of a compound called AL-108, targeted early abnormal brain changes in a protein called "tau" in a condition related to Alzheimer's called mild cognitive impairment (MCI). The researchers saw improvement on various measures of memory. Another study examined brains of people with Alzheimer's half of whom had diabetes, and half did not. The researchers found that people in the study who took a combination of insulin and oral anti-diabetes medications had fewer Alzheimer's-related brain changes (amyloid plaques) than all the others in the study. This could be a pathway for developing new treatments.

Plus, a new study from the Mayo Clinic showed higher than expected rates of MCI in a large, older population. People with MCI have ongoing memory problems, but they do not have other losses such as confusion, attention problems, and difficulty with language. People with MCI are much more likely to get Alzheimer's than the general population.

"We are making progress. It is very important that we have as many drugs as possible in the pipeline for Alzheimer's, and that we explore every available avenue for treatments," said Ralph Nixon, MD, Ph.D., of the Alzheimer's Association's Medical and Scientific Advisory Council. "However, the population is aging, and we need to make significant advances soon in treatment and prevention of Alzheimer's or it will become an overwhelming epidemic, wiping out our healthcare resources and devastating Medicare."

Dr. Nixon is Professor of Psychiatry and Cell Biology, Vice Chairman of Research in the Department of Psychiatry, and Director of the Silberstein Instit
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SOURCE Alzheimer's Association
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