VIDEO + ARTICLE:
The A4 Study is a cutting-edge trial aimed at preventing Alzheimer’s. The clinical trial is testing healthy adults who are at risk for the dementia. It is the first trial to alert people to their risk in advance.
Read about the research. See Dr. Sperling describe its real potential to create a vaccination that prevents memory loss.
A cutting-edge clinical trial is testing whether early medical intervention in people at risk for Alzheimer’s can slow down progression of disease pathology before symptoms emerge.
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For the first time, people with no Alzheimer’s disease symptoms are being told of their risk status before being asked to join the randomized controlled trial. As part of the overall prevention trial, neurodegenerative ethics experts monitor how learning about their risk of developing Alzheimer’s impacts trial participants.
Alzheimer’s disease afflicts more than 13% of individuals over the age of 65, and remains one of the most feared consequences of aging.
10,000 individuals between the agos of 65 and 85 are needed to find the one thousand participants who will be the perfect fit.
The A4 Trial (Anti-Amyloid Treatment in Asymptomatic Alzheimer’s Disease Trial) requires that patients enrolled must have one of the pathologies typically seen in Alzheimer’s disease dementia, which will be assessed using a brain PET scan that measures amyloid. Given that studies have shown that about one third of clinically normal older individuals have evidence of amyloid plaque accumulation but may not develop any cognitive symptoms within their lifetime, the patients who are enrolled in the trial based on positive amyloid results may or may not go on to develop Alzheimer’s disease dementia.
The A4 study is a landmark public-private partnership, funded by theNational Institute on Aging/NIH, Eli Lilly and Company, and several philanthropic organizations. The A4 trial is coordinated by the Alzheimer’s Disease Cooperative Study, located at the University of California, San Diego.
Now is the time.
- R. A. Sperling, D. M. Rentz, K. A. Johnson, J. Karlawish, M. Donohue, D. P. Salmon, P. Aisen. The A4 Study: Stopping AD Before Symptoms Begin? Science Translational Medicine, 2014; 6 (228): 228fs13 DOI: 10.1126/scitranslmed.3007941