Experimental Alzheimer's drug leaves scientists split over effectiveness

Experimental Alzheimer's drug leaves scientists split over effectiveness

Experimental Alzheimer's drug leaves scientists split over effectiveness

The company continued its testing in placebo-controlled clinical trials involving more than 3,000 patients in 20 countries before halting the studies in March because the drug did not appear effective. The data were presented at the Clinical Trials on Alzheimer's Disease Conference in San Diego. Changes during the study and unusual analyses make the results hard to interpret, and the true size of the risks and benefits is unclear. He is on an FDA panel likely to review the drug but won't participate because he was involved in one of the studies.

Response was mixed among experts in the field, with some welcoming the new data and others cautioning that more scrutiny is required if the drug is to pass regulatory muster with the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Some doctors who consult for the drug's developers disagreed.

Meanwhile, Paul Aisen, director of the Alzheimer's Therapeutic Research Institute, said the current results were "consistent and positive" in showing a benefit at a high dose, which he maintained represents "a truly major advance" in Alzheimer's disease.

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Aducanumab aims to help the body clear harmful plaques, or protein clumps, from the brain.

The American biotechnologist Biogen and his Japanese partner Eisai are making rapid progress with their experimental means for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease.

More than five million people in the United States and millions more worldwide have Alzheimer's.

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