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Aducanumab: a new drug for Alzheimer's disease

Aducanumab: a new drug for Alzheimer's disease

  • US Food and Drug Administration has approved Biogen’s Aducanumab (Aduhelm), the first drug to target an underlying cause of Alzheimer’s disease.
  • There are 30 million people suffering from Alzheimer's disease globally. Of them, about 6 million are in the US,
  • Alzheimer's disease is the most common form of dementia and contributes 60-70 percent of the cases.
  • The Drug was Tested on patients who were in the early stage of Alzheimer’s disease, not on moderate or severe cases.

How it works:

  • Aduhelm, is a monoclonal (referring to cloning of unique immunity cell) antibody that reduces amyloid-beta, which is a protein that leads to plaque formation in the brain.
  • Plaque formation happens due to the accumulation of debris in the brain from neuron breakdown.
  • The drug slow the progression of Alzheimer’s disease, allowing patients to remain as self-sufficient as possible for as long as possible.
  • It is not a cure.

Side effects:

  • Brain swelling, due to high dose
  • Headache
  • Cost: about $56,000 per year

What is Alzheimer’s disease

  • Alzheimer's is the most common cause of dementia, a general term for memory loss and other cognitive abilities serious enough to interfere with daily life.
  • Alzheimer's disease accounts for 60-80% of dementia cases.
  • According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), it is a syndrome in which there is deterioration in memory, thinking, behaviour and the ability to perform everyday activities