Drug companies report on a new class of Alzheimer’s drugs that may slow cognitive decline in the earliest stages of Alzheimer’s.
But in a field in which nearly every drug has failed to do what its backers initially hoped, several scientists also cautioned against putting too much emphasis on data that showed incremental progress.
A new study, also presented at the conference, claims that 28 million Baby Boomers will develop the disease by 2050.
But he said it is becoming clearer that Alzheimer’s resembles a syndrome more than a disease, with multiple pathways and pathologies and therefore no single target to focus on for a possible cure. The most recent data show that 63 percent of all unpaid Alzheimer’s and dementia caregivers are women.
There were no differences between the two groups on cognitive performance at one year.
On Tuesday, researchers from Duke University presented findings on a study of 141 women and 257 men, aged in their mid 70s, who suffer from Alzheimer’s disease.
Older women with mild memory impairment worsened about twice as fast as men, researchers reported Tuesday, part of an effort to unravel why women are especially hard-hit by Alzheimer’s. There is a need to investigate why this is the case, said officials. Scientists once thought the disparity was just because women tend to live longer, but there’s increasing agreement that something else makes women more vulnerable.
Physicians determined a working diagnosis and a management plan for each study participant, who then had florbetapir PET scans. A small study suggests it could someday be possible to detect Alzheimer’s-like changes in saliva, which is simple to obtain, easily transportable and has been successfully used in diagnosing a variety of diseases and conditions.
Regular physical activity may reduce the risk of cognitive decline, Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias.
The goal of this multicenter study was to evaluate the impact of amyloid positron emission tomography (PET) on patient management and outcomes in a randomized, controlled setting.
However, researchers noticed that it was having an impact on people with mild symptoms.
Grossburg stated that older adults are highly advised to remain socially active and also exercise daily and stay mentally challenged.
Compared with a program of stretching offered to a control group, the aerobic conditioning increased blood flow to regions of the brain involved in memory and reasoning, and brought about corresponding improvements in attention, planning and organizing – skills that collectively contribute to “executive function”.
In those patients, solanezumab appeared to slow the progression of cognitive decline by about 34 percent, they said. These studies highlight the potential value of non-drug therapies for Alzheimer’s and other dementias and remind us that research ought to adamantly pursue multiple approaches to Alzheimer’s therapy and prevention.
The difference was driven by medication changes – particularly the use of cholinesterase inhibitors, Pontecorvo reported at the Alzheimer’s Association worldwide Conference here.