Apr 23, 2011

A Possible Vaccine for Alzheimer’s (Bapineuzumab)

By Max Wallack
Alzheimer's Reading Room

It was reported today, in both the U.K.’s Telegraph and in India’s Indian Express, that there could possibly be a vaccine for Alzheimer’s within the next two years. This vaccine is being shown effective in stopping the progress of Alzheimer’s and even in reversing brain damage.

This vaccine has already reached phase three of testing, which is the final stage. It is being testing on over 10,000 patients around the world, and it is being found to be effective in preventing the buildup of amyloid and even in breaking down the buildup of amyloid after it forms. So far, the tests are showing a reduction of amyloid plaques by 25%.

The vaccine, bapineuzumab, is being developed in cooperation between Pfizer, Johnson & Johnson, and Elan Corporation. The recent development of tests to find Alzheimer’s in its earliest stages would make it possible to give this vaccine very early in the disease.

Dr. David Wilkinson, from Southampton University’s Memory Assessment and Research Centre, in England, explains:

“Hopefully, the vaccine will make a being difference to Alzheimer’s treatment. If we can give it early -- before major brain impairment is seen – it may have an important part to play.”

Dr. Wilkinson has been involved in Alzheimer’s research since the 1990’s.

The vaccination will probably cost several thousand of dollars a year, as patients will need regular injections every few months for the remainder of their lives.

Dr. Wilkinson admits that, unfortunately,getting rid of amyloid plaques does not always prevent Alzheimer’s. It has little effect on those carrying Alzheimer’s genes.

Dr. Simon Ridley, head of research at Alzheimer’s Research UK, said the vaccine could be a significant breakthrough, but,

“It’s too early to tell whether bapineuzumab could benefit people until the results of this trial are knows.”

Let’s all hope for some very good results for this vaccine!

Max Wallack is a student at Boston University Academy. His great grandmother, Gertrude, suffered from Alzheimer's disease. Max is the founder of PUZZLES TO REMEMBER. PTR is a project that provides puzzles to nursing homes and veterans institutions that care for Alzheimer's and dementia patients.

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Bob DeMarco is the Founder of the Alzheimer's Reading Room and an Alzheimer's caregiver. The blog contains more than 2,560 articles with more than 412,100 links on the Internet. Bob resides in Delray Beach, FL.

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Original content Max Wallack, the Alzheimer's Reading Room