The recent results of a late-stage trial have delivered yet another hit to the Alzheimer’s scientific community.
TauRx’s experimental drug, LMTX, fared no better than a placebo at improving cognitive and functional skills in patients with mild to moderate Alzheimer’s disease. The Phase 3 study involved 891 patients.
The drug, LMTX, targets the protein tau, which is responsible for the tangles of nerve fibers that form in the brains of people with Alzheimer’s. For years, researchers targeted another protein, amyloid beta, which causes the sticky plaques associated with the disease — but these trials were unsuccessful in halting the progression of Alzheimer’s. Current treatments improve Alzheimer’s symptoms but no treatment has yet to slow the disease progression.
Despite these results, Dr. Ronald Petersen, of the Mayo Clinic told Reuters, “The notion that tau is still a very viable target for treatment in Alzheimer’s disease remains alive and well.”
LMTX, however, did show benefit in approximately 15 percent of patients who were not taking standard Alzheimer’s drugs. But more, larger trials will need to replicate these results to confirm that the drug can boost cognition as a monotherapy.
The treatment is currently being tested in a second study, involving about 700 people, with final results expected later this year.
Alzheimer’s disease affects more than 5 million Americans, and that number is projected to more than triple by 2050, according to the Alzheimer’s Association.
Filed Under: Drug Discovery