A vaccine being tested in human patients by Dublin-based company United Neurosciences has shown promising results, according to a press release.
Details of the clinical study
Many biotechs have aimed to resolve Alzheimer’s via a vaccine over recent years, only to call it off due to nasty side effects such as brain swelling. But this drug, which the company has dubbed UB-311, is offering hope after wrapping up a Phase 2a Clinical Study. Next, the drug will begin a 2b study, which will further determine efficacy, before going on to a Phase 3 study if all is successful. Phase 3 is the necessary trial before drug approval and is tested on large groups of patients.
For the Phase 2a study, the drug was tested amongst a group of 42 patients with mild cognitive impairment who were likely in the early stages of Alzheimer’s. The group was divided in three; one was given a placebo and the other two were given the vaccine, administered via shots, three times and then followed up with booster shots either every three or six months.
Results of the study
Of the patients, 96 percent responded to the drug and showed improved cognition and a lower level of beta-amyloid, the toxic plaque that accumulates in Alzheimer’s patients and the target of the vaccine.
“The positive results show that we can safely raise and maintain anti-[beta-amyloid] antibody titers in a predictable and sustained manner. High response rates, reproducibility of response and generation of antibodies directed to relevant toxic protein species are key elements of an effective therapeutic vaccine for neurodegenerative conditions. The UNS platform is proving that it can deliver on these requirements.”
– Peter Powchik, EVP of Research & Development, United Neurosciences
And while the results are encouraging enough for United Neurosciences to continue pursuing the vaccine with the same patients, the small number of patients tested means the results are not statistically significant. Additional results will likely be announced in March 2020 at the 14th International Conference on Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s Diseases in Lisbon, Portugal.