For readers who have a friend or loved one suffering from Alzheimer’s, the news of yet anther mixed result from a promising drug may not come as a surprise. Indeed, the lack of a cure for this horrible disease can be as frightening as its symptoms, which some characterize as watching a loved one disappear before one’s eyes.
In this case, the drug is crenezumab. Researchers hoped the drug would target beta amyloid, a protein found in the brains of Alzheimer’s patients. In a clinical trial, doses of the anti-amyloid drug were given to patients with mild to moderate Alzheimer’s diseases. Of the 431 participants, some received a high dose, while others received either a low dose or a placebo. In the group that received the high dose, the rate of cognition decline was slowed, but not enough to be statistically significant. In addition, the drug did not appear to improve patients’ functional abilities in performing daily living and other tasks.