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New setback in the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease

A promising molecule against Alzheimer’s disease has not shown the expected effectiveness in a series of clinical trials whose results are published Tuesday in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA).

The results of three clinical trials have been disappointing with this new molecule to improve cognition.

Previous studies have suggested that idalopirdine from the Danish pharmaceutical group Lundbeck, could improve cognitive abilities in people with Alzheimer’s already treated with existing drugs to minimize symptoms without stopping the development of this incurable neurological degeneration .

Three trials and more than 2,500 participants

This international team of researchers conducted these three clinical trials in 34 countries with 2,525 participants at least 50 years of age with moderate Alzheimer’s disease. From 62 to 65% of the participants were women.

A molecule tried for 24 weeks

The clinical trials, each lasting 24 weeks each, were conducted between October 2013 and January 2017.

In each of these studies, participants were randomly selected to take a certain dose of idalopirdine a placebo with another existing Alzheimer’s treatment.

Disappointing results with idalopirdine

” The results were disappointing because this new molecule did nothing to improve the cognition of the participants or to contain their cognitive decline whatever the dose .”

” These results show that idalopirdine should not be used for the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease, ” write authors including Dr. Alireza Atri of the California Pacific Medical Center in San Francisco.

Setbacks that put an end to expensive research

The setback was made public a few days after the US pharmaceutical giant Pfizer announced its decision to end its expensive and futile research to use funds for other diseases.

The consequence, 300 redundancies

This decision will result in the dismissal of 300 people in the United States, Pfizer said in a statement.

By 2050, more than 115 million people could have dementia

According to the World Health Organization, more than 36 million people worldwide have dementia, including a majority of Alzheimer’s disease.

This number is expected to double by 2030 and triple by 2050, to 115.4 million, if no effective treatment is discovered in the coming years.

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