New Alzheimer’s disease drug trial set to start in Australia

A new Phase 2 clinical trial looking at the efficacy of a drug called ‘Anavex 2-73' is set to begin at the Alfred Hospital, Victoria.

Anavex 2-73 is a drug designed to not only relieve the symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease, but also slow the progression. It works by blocking Tau and amyloid-beta proteins, thus preventing the oxidative stress and cell death seen in the brains of people Alzheimer’s disease. Anavex 2-73 has been trialled in the lab, on animals and on healthy volunteers and just recently it was administered to a person with Alzheimer’s disease.

The Phase 2 trial will assess 32 people with mild to moderate Alzheimer’s disease. The goal of this particular trial is to determine the maximum tolerated dose of the drug, while also assessing participant’s resulting cognitive skill, blood results, and brain scans.

Stephen Macfarlane, Associate Professor and Director of Aged Psychiatry at The Alfred Hospital, who is leading the Australian trial said Anavex 2-73 aims to protect the brain, helping nerve cells live longer and assisting with the removal of amyloid plaque, which builds up in the brains of people with Alzheimer’s disease.

“It’s really important to have a drug that can both relieve symptoms and slow the disease progression because if you just slow down what would otherwise be a decline over 7- 10 years, people might survive for longer, but their quality of life won’t be improved,” he said.

The Phase 2 trial is being fast tracked and results could be known within the year. If results are promising, a larger Phase 3 trial would take place involving thousands of participants and extended across the country.

Alzheimer’s Australia recommends consulting your health professional before taking part in clinical trials. You can also visit our research website which provides detailed information and questions to ask before participating in a research trial - http://dementiaresearchfoundation.org.au/whats-involved-participating

If you want more information about current Alzheimer’s disease drugs available please call our National Dementia Helpline on 1800 100 500 or visit www.fightdementia.org.au

Dementia News will keep you posted on the trials outcomes.



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