For two decades, biotech companies trying to tackle Alzheimer’s disease have had little success. While vaccines have often shown promise for certain patients, they’ve come with devastating side effects for others—brain swelling, for example—because researchers haven’t been able to reliably keep patients’ immune systems from kicking into overdrive when exposed to the vaccines. Now, a four-year old Dublin startup believes it may be on to something.
To be clear, United Neuroscience Inc. hasn’t solved Alzheimer’s yet, nor has it claimed to. But previously unreported results from a small, recent United clinical trial show that 96 percent of patients responded, without serious side effects, to the Alzheimer’s vaccine the company calls UB-311. The patients demonstrated improved brain function and showed a reduction in the protein plaque gumming up their neurons.
United’s vaccine stimulates the patient’s own immune system to attack amyloid, which some researchers believe to be the leading cause. The vaccine’s job is to slow the proteins’ clumping and, if possible, reverse some damage and restore brain function.
United needs a bigger sample size for its next Alzheimer’s study, but the latest one appears to have successfully targeted suspect proteins without any serious side effects.
Read full, original post: A First Step for a Family Biotech’s Vaccine Against Alzheimer’s