August 22, 2016

Today's Top Alzheimer's News


An August 22, 2016 article reported that “AstraZeneca PLC said Monday that the Alzheimer's drug it is codeveloping with Eli Lilly & Co. has received fast-track designation from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, a status designed to speed up the development of promising new medicines.”

An August 21, 2016 article reported that British researchers are leveraging wearable technology and other techniques to identify biomarkers for Alzheimer’s. According to the article, “Experts hope to find new markers - tell-tale signs on eye scans, brain scans or in the blood, for example - that might offer the earliest clue of the onset of dementia. The research, funded by the National Institute for Health Research and the Medical Research Council, is being aided by around 250 volunteers, including former university academic Peter Lindon.”

An August 21, 2016 article reported that “With more than four months left until David Ricks becomes Eli Lilly's top executive, his eventual legacy is already being shaped by the struggle to find an elusive treatment for a horrific disease [Alzheimer’s].” According to the article, “Ricks won't be responsible for the success or failure of the drug. But if phase-3 testing shows solanezumab can slow the progress of Alzheimer's, as Lilly hopes, Ricks' top priority will be to ensure the drug's commercial success. If the results are disappointing, Ricks would have to reassure investors that Lilly can still be a leader in Alzheimer’s treatment and make up for solanezumab's lost potential with other new products.”

An August 19, 2016 Huffington Post blog by Lou-Ellen Barkan highlighted “our short-sighted approach to Alzheimer’s funding.” According to Barkan, “What does surprise me is our continued short-sightedness when it comes to Alzheimer’s funding. Both of my parents had dementia, so, believe me, I understand that finding effective therapies is essential. But, while we wait, good care is the best medicine we have. So, the lack of funding available to support an effective system of dementia care is an egregious oversight…The absence of focus on care is a tragic omission and one we will all pay for dearly - as individuals and as a nation…Today, with no prevention or cure in sight, the U.S. healthcare system is unprepared to withstand the extraordinary pressure of so many people ill with dementia and needing care. Make no mistake. This “perfect storm” is on the way. If philanthropists, foundations, government and other funders play their part to support those who care for people with Alzheimer’s and dementia, a national crisis can be mitigated.”


The New York Times: Private Equity Pursues Profits in Keeping the Elderly at Home

Brain Blogger: Link Between Diabetes and Alzheimer’s Disease

Fast Co Exist: Use It Or Lose It—How Brain Exercise Fights Alzheimer's