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Wednesday, October 10, 2012

-Is Slight Better than None? October 10,2012

Solanezumab is the name of a new medication from Eli Lilly which has been chosen for a long term multi-country trial to see where and how it has an effect on reducing memory decline. A drug from Roche was also chosen. Neither one of these is "the home run we were expecting" but there was a two point decline in a ninety point test of people with mild symptoms of Alzheimer's disease in a study of 1000 subjects.
Although Lilly reported a higher success rate by combining two studies and there is no immediate prospect of FDA approval at this time, the stock value soared.
The hope is that the effect of this medication will be long-lasting and that it will halt, not merely delay, the progress of the disease. Research is showing that any medication to treat Alzheimer's desease will need to target the very early stages of the disease. It is also growing apparent that Alzheimer's disease is complicated and that many different cellular structures are involved.
For us who are caregivers or children of Alzheimer diseased parents reaching middle age, it is important that we contribute to baseline knowledge by getting ourselves tested and watching for unusual symptoms in ourselves and our agemate siblings. We want to participate in whatever way we can to reduce the occurrence of Alzheimer's disease in the next generation. I know there is a fine line between self-awareness of symptoms and hypochondria as well as a huge attempt to both worry and to deny. Let's work to find that balance.

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