New antibody treatment shows progress in slowing effects of Alzheimer's

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Posted at 8:23 AM, Sep 30, 2022
and last updated 2022-09-30 10:52:54-04

LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — Chartorn Renfro has been an avid volunteer with the Alzheimer’s Association for the last 13 years.

It’s a passion that grew as he took care of his family living with the disease.

“My mother-in-law died from Alzheimer’s some years back. She lived with us for a brief time, my wife and myself. She was an advocate for people with Alzheimer’s,” Renfro said.

“I’ve been passionate about helping and trying to get people who have Alzheimer’s better care.”

A new report out this week may give the Alzheimer’s community hope of more care being in the works.

Biogen recently released data from a trial that showed progress in a new treatment for Alzheimer’s disease.

It’s an antibody treatment called Lecanemab.

According to Biogen’s Phase 3 clinical trial, which studied patients in the early stages of Alzheimer’s, Lecanemab helped slow cognitive decline by 27%.

“What’s so exciting about Lecanemab and the treatment and research that is coming out is that this could delay further cognitive impairments,” Alzheimer’s Association Greater Kentucky and Southern Indiana Chapter Executive Shannon White said.

“It’s the most promising treatment we’ve seen in Alzheimer’s disease treatment research to date.”

Biogen along with Eisai have applied for FDA approval with a decision expected in January 2023.

The news gives White and other leaders with the Alzheimer’s Association that research into fighting this disease is paying off.

“We really see that the research field is accelerating on some of these treatments and it might be more than one treatment that is coming out that looks at and attacks Alzheimer’s at different angles,” White said.

“This gives our families hope that they can slow cognitive decline and have more quality time with their loved one before it’s in the late stages of Alzheimer’s.”

Renfro felt optimistic as well when he heard the news.

He’s been a part of a trial for a different Alzheimer’s treatment for the last seven years which has him ready and willing to see any progress in helping Alzheimer’s patients and caregivers.

“We can delay people having the symptoms and having the severe symptoms, that is just amazingly good news. I’m hoping that the trials really are as good as they are said to be,” Renfro said.

The Alzheimer’s Association hopes to get an update on Lecanemab sometime in November.