NPR - Treatment For Alzheimer's Should Start Years Before Disease Sets In

 – October 17, 2012  –– 

Treatment for Alzheimer's probably needs to begin years or even decades before symptoms of the disease start to appear, scientists reported at this week's Society for Neuroscience meeting in New Orleans. "By the time an Alzheimer's patient is diagnosed even with mild or moderate Alzheimer's there is very, very extensive neuron death," said Dr. John Morrison of Mount Sinai Medical School. "And the neurons that die are precisely those neurons that allow you to navigate the world and make sense of the world." Dr. Morrison and others said it's possible that several recent trials of drugs for Alzheimer's have failed because the drugs were given after symptoms had already started to appear. "It's possible we've tested things and discarded them prematurely," said Dr. Sam Gandy, from Mount Sinai. "Now that we can see the changes in the brain that underlie Alzheimer's, we really should re-evaluate some of the things we've looked at."
- Dr. John Morrison, Professor, Neuroscience, Dean of Basic Sciences and the Graduate School of Biological Sciences, Mount Sinai School of Medicine
- Dr. Sam Gandy, Professor, Neurology, Psychiatry, Associate Director of the Mount Sinai Alzheimer's Disease Research Center, Mount Sinai School of Medicine
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