The interview was based on Biogen’s presentation of the results of a phase I trial of a monoclonal antibody that works to eliminate amyloid. In a relatively small number of patients, the monoclonal antibody treatment lead to less amyloid and improved cognition. To read the interview in the Boston Business Journal, CLICK HERE.
The same day of the interview, a larger study showed that it is abnormal tau that causes the damage, not amyloid. However, Dr. Lieff pointed out that Dr. Tanzi had shown that it is very possible that amyloid produces abnormal tau, which causes the neuronal damage. Therefore, getting rid of amyloid might also get rid of tau.
One question about this study is Biogen’s choice of subjects. They were people in whom amyloid had been detected, but in whom there was no evidence of Alzheimer’s. There is no clear way to define early Alzheimer’s since some people have amyloid without Alzheimer’s and some with Alzheimer’s have smaller amounts of amyloid than is typical.
Links for previous posts describing other important factors in Alzheimer’s.