In a new study from the University of Arizona, researchers have developed a new therapy for Alzheimer’s disease designed to restore cognitive function in early-stage patients.
They found that the neurosteroid allopregnanolone, or allo, used to treat women with postpartum depression, promotes connectivity between neural networks required for cognitive function in patients in the early stages of Alzheimer’s disease.
The therapy is now proceeding through a Phase 2b clinical trial. Phase 2b trials involve rigorous testing for efficacy in groups of 100 to 300 patients.
The researchers believe that treatment with allo will restore brain function and independence for patients. Regenerating the brain means regenerating a life.
In the study, the team found that the MRI brain imaging provided early evidence of a regenerative response in Alzheimer’s patients treated with allo.
Importantly, the Phase 1 data indicated a strong safety profile while demonstrating none of the brain bleeds associated with recently approved Alzheimer’s treatments.
These early findings led to their Phase 2 clinical trial for 200 Alzheimer’s patients, which is currently enrolling participants.
This trial follows a successful three-month Phase 1b/2a trial, which developed an optimal treatment regimen and dose, and monitored patient progress through MRI brain imaging and blood tests.
Approved as safe for medical use in 2019, allo is a naturally produced steroid that has been used in high doses to treat postpartum depression, a mood disorder that can affect women after giving birth.
To promote regeneration in the Alzheimer’s brain, the medication is delivered at a low dose once a week.
Importantly, this new method of use does not require the long hospital stay associated with postpartum treatment.
The team is currently developing novel allo formulations and delivery strategies that will ensure that treatment is easy, efficient and affordable.
They say it may be effective in treating other neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s disease.
Alzheimer’s disease leads to loss of cognitive function and independent living and is the sixth-leading cause of death in the United States. There is currently no cure.
If you care about Alzheimer’s disease, please read studies about this new drug may prevent Alzheimer’s disease effectively and safely and findings of your eyes can show early warning for Alzheimer’s disease.
For more information about Alzheimer’s and your health, please see recent studies about a simple tool to predict your risk of Alzheimer’s and results showing that a new early sign of Alzheimer’s in the brain.
One researcher of the study is Roberta Diaz Brinton.
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